Join Buncombe County Public Libraries in a Community Celebration of Juneteenth

Buncombe County -- Buncombe County Government Community News June 9, 2021

At its regular meeting on May 4, the Buncombe County Board Commissioners voted to make Juneteenth an official holiday, joining communities across the country to recognize the importance of celebrating this important day. Pack Memorial Library and Buncombe County Special Collections (BCSC) will host a variety of events in honor of Juneteenth.

On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas bringing news that the Civil War had ended and to enforce Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, issued two and a half years earlier. The news galvanized African-Americans across Texas. Some celebrated, others left to find family members from whom they had been separated, and still others continued fighting to free themselves from white landowners who did not want to accept the proclamation.

In Asheville, African-Americans claimed their freedom in late April 1865, when Union cavalry arrived in the region. Today, June 19, or Juneteenth, is recognized across the nation as a holiday to celebrate and uplift African-Americans everywhere.

BCPL looks forward to celebrating this important holiday. On Tuesday, June 15, from 5-7 p.m. the public is invited to a community celebration at the lower level of Pack Memorial Library. There will be indoor and outdoor activities and opportunities for community members of all ages, including:

Community art and archiving activities
Opportunities to view historical documents related to enslavement and emancipation held in the Buncombe County Special Collections
Opportunity to contribute to a community time capsule
Storytelling, music, and light refreshments
Buncombe County Special Collections introduces Carolina Record Shop

For the past year, a team of artists and archivists, have collaborated to transform BCSC into a space that is welcoming, accessible, and encourages our community to engage with history. 

After months of work, BCSC, Engaging Collections, and Different Wrld are proud to present Honey Simone’s Carolina Record Shop. The Record Shop is an installation of images, stories, oral histories, and other materials from BCSC’s collections, including the Black Asheville History Collection and Andrea Clark’s image collection, among others. The public is invited to a panel discussion and grand opening.               

“Everyone is an Archivist” panel discussion hosted by Jefferson Ellison

Wednesday, June 16, noon-1:30 p.m.

Buncombe County Special Collections (BCSC), lower level Pack Memorial Library

This lunch and learn style event will feature a panel discussion including Honey Simone (Different Wrld), Katherine Calhoun Cutshall (BCSC), and Lydia See (Engaging Collections). Jefferson Ellison (JAWBREAKING) will moderate. 

Learn more about the process of creating the Carolina Record Shop, transforming BCSC, and how everyone in our community can be an archivist.  

Lunch provided, and capacity is limited to the first 20 registrants. 

Follow this link to register.

Carolina Record Shop Grand Opening

Thursday, June 17, 5-7 p.m. 

Buncombe County Special Collections (BCSC), lower level Pack Memorial Library

Join us for an open house reception in the Special Collections at Pack Memorial Library with the artist and other community members to celebrate and learn more about the evolution of the room during the partnership between BCSC, Different Wrld, and Engaging Collections. 

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