Commemorating the 150th anniversaries of the Civil War and the end of American slavery


The following were comments provided by audience members at the November 10, 2009, event at Virginia Union University:

1. This conversation is long overdue. Thank you for being a host!

2. One of the suggestions during Session I suggests an important addition to the working group: A representative from Richmond Public Schools.

3.    From one participant:

  • Software, not hardware, for interpretation
  • Mine existing data from City of Richmond and Virginia Department of Historic Resources
  • Develop a single digital identifier for each place/center of interest, come up with identifier for use for each site. Call Steve Waldron (City of Richmond GIS) or me Tyler Potterfield:  646-6364 for details.

4.    Explore the stories of the free blacks in Richmond before the end of the Civil War. Less presentation and more opportunity for conversations.

5.    If we are to have a conversation with the public involved then when do we actually take the time out to converse and gather thoughts and feedback. Suggestion: make more time hearing from the public and people who care in the spring at VCU.

6.    Excellent program this evening. I suggest some focus on Unionists in Richmond and the Commonwealth. Suggest far more creativity in the use of technology for engaging tourists (podcasts, audio tours, Google maps, Twitter, Facebook, etc.). One is always behind in such matters.

7.    More discussion, less lecture (x 2). An opportunity for frank discussion missed.

8.    Definitely allow a period for public comment and conversation after thought-provoking (and interesting) presentations.

9.    Abolish the words “white” and “black” to define the American, European, and the American-African. These words suggest the superiority of one people and the inferiority of another people.  Not Color!

10.    Need to provide information on how to make jobs available for Richmond people!!!!

11.    Love the “City Walks” idea!

12.    Where is Richmond’s “hallowed ground” (like Gettysburg) and how do we steward it to invite transformative experiences?

13.    Need facilitated small group dialogues as part of planning and events, with specific goals to accomplish. More non-org people as part of core planning team.

14.    From one participant:

  • Clean up Broad Street—very non-tourist.
  • Create opportunity for dialogue on Richmond’s many assets as well as challenges that obstruct inclusion.
  • First real opportunity for “reconciliation” discussions, like South Africa.

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