Transforming Public History from Charleston to the Atlantic World

We are pleased to release further information about “Transforming Public History from Charleston to the Atlantic World,” a 2017 conference that will be hosted by the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture, the Carolina Lowcountry and Atlantic World Program, and the Addlestone Library at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina, on June 15th-17th, with a pre-conference workshop day on June 14th. Please see the conference page here for more information:

The new site contains information about Institutional Partners, Conference Speakers, and Hotels with Conference Rates, as well as the Call for Proposals. We will continue to add information about online registration, workshop registration, the conference schedule, and additional special events and tours in the coming months. Deadline for Conference Proposals is November 1, 2016, please see our Call for Proposals here:

We are very pleased to announce that Dr. Lonnie Bunch, Director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum for African American History and Culture, will be the keynote presenter. Conference speakers for the plenary sessions include:

Michael Allen, Community Partnership Specialist, National Park Service’s Southeast Regional Office, and Director of the National Historic Landmark Theme Study on the U.S. Reconstruction Era, 1861-1898
Ana Lucia Araujo, PhD, Howard University
Scholar of the history and the memory of the Atlantic slave trade and slavery and their social and cultural legacies, particularly in South America

Richard Benjamin
, PhD, Director of the International Slavery Museum, Liverpool, United Kingdom

Alissandra Cummins
, Director of the Barbados Museum & Historical Society and former Chairperson of the UNESCO Executive Board

Rex Ellis
, PhD, Associate Director for Curatorial Affairs, Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture 

Makiba Foster
, PhD, Assistant Chief Librarian, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
Bayo Holsey, PhD, Rutgers University
Scholar of West Africa, the African Diaspora, public history, Atlantic slave trade, collective memory, and late capitalism

Ned Kauffman
PhD,  Principal of Kaufman Heritage Conservation
Research focuses on rethinking the economics of heritage and historic preservation as a tool for achieving social justice.
Caryl Phillips, Author and Playwright
Writing focuses on the Black Atlantic and experiences of people of the African Diaspora in England, the Caribbean, and the United States. 
Fath Davis Ruffins, Museum Curator, Smithsonian’s National Museum for American History

Though registration is required for conference sessions and workshops, our keynote lecture and plenary sessions will be free and open to the public.

We are also honored to partner with a noteworthy range of local, regional, and international institutions, including the National Park Service, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the College of Charleston’s Race and Social Justice Initiative, the International African American Museum, the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, and many others. Please contact Mary Battle at or with any questions or concerns, or if you are interested in partnering with us on the conference.


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