Great Smokies African American Experience Project

Presenters Antoine Fletcher, Science Communicator for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and Atalaya Dorfield, Research Assistant for the African American Experience Project will lead the "Great Smokies African American Experience Project" discussion at 7 p.m. on September 16 on Zoom. Hosted by the Social Sciences, Humanities, and Foreign Languages Department at A-B Tech.

In 2018, Great Smoky Mountains National Park realized that there was a missing piece to its rich puzzle of history, which led to the park’s new project, the African American Experience Project. This project is a collaborative effort with park partners and the community to document and share the untold stories of African Americans in and outside the Smokies.  These stories have been shared by many African Americans around crackling campfires, sun-beaten front porches, and the lamp lit bedrooms, but they have yet to be shared with the world.

To tell this story, the park is conducting research into African American experiences in the Great Smoky Mountains region of Appalachia from the early 1540s to the present-day. Research topics in this framework include slavery, the American Civil War, social dynamics, laws and policies, careers, recreation, and oral histories.  These are a few of the many key topics that will help park visitors understand this important, yet untold story.  We are conducting town halls with local colleges and universities not only to share these stories and this history with the public, but to also connect with community members and to open opportunities for community partnerships.

Visit to register and receive the Zoom link.

The event is free and open to the public. 

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