Thank you to Mr. Tom Duckenfield, III, and Dr. Garret Lowe for presenting Headstones & History: Black Lives Matter(ed) for the Stone Ridge community last night as part of our Better Together program. Their presentation focused on how the erasure of African American and indigenous communities occurred throughout the DC metro area from the 1600s through the present day. They discussed land acquisitions and the impact of European settlers on indigenous Algonquian Nacotchtank (Anacostian) peoples and free and enslaved African Americans spanning critical moments in DC’s history. Mr. Duckenfield and Dr. Lowe began their work together in the summer of 2020, researching the ancestry of two cemeteries, Mount Zion and the Female Union Band Society, in Georgetown. They enlisted the help of 25 people, mostly teenagers, from the DC area to uncover and restore headstones and bring to life the stories of the deceased. Through their project, they reveal a rich, racially diverse, and complex history and continue to add to the ancestry and genealogy of area marginalized people.
Learn more about their inaugural project.