Reconstruction Timeline Workshop 1

The Timeline is an interactive 50 foot living document that we at Oak Hill will be using to guide workshops and activities over the next two months. The conversations and work done at Oak Hill over the past year have resulted in a timeline of moments in history that shaped the way we as a society understand race and class today. This is an incomplete history and therefore visitors are invited to participate in its development in various ways and to challenge the propaganda of history so commonly presented to us as a public. A version of the resulting narrative will be published in book form later this year. 

The Timeline consists of three tracks. The first track looks at slavery in its evolving forms — slavery, indentured servitude, labor, incarceration, etc. The second track, Public School Baltimore, is a social history of public education in Baltimore. The third track is a history of new left activism in Baltimore originally compiled by Chuck D’Adamo in 1982 and updated in the early 1990’s. These three narratives work together to shed light on how and why certain historic events took place, and acts of resistance that accompanied them. 

Historical memory is the roadmap that guides our understanding of the past, our place in the present, and our hopes, intentions, and expectations of the future. Artists and cultural producers often visualize and communicate this memory. It is from the work they produce that we as a society frame our understanding of the past, present, and future.