It was designed to provide information about how to approach dialogue surrounding the history of slavery, freedom, and race in America. This guide was created to help interpreters generate ideas and options for how to have deep conversations around race with your park’s visitors. The example dialogic questions in this guide will help you craft your own experiences. In short, this document is simple framework. It is up to you to tie the discussion to the place you interpret.
While this guide contains examples of historical stories at certain parks related to slavery, freedom, and race in America, many of these dialogic approaches can be applied in different settings. Many stories like these are out there waiting to be told, including at your own park.
Every site in the National Park Service has a part of this story buried within its landscape. There are many local resources that can help you find stories of race in your place. Community members and cultural resource experts work in your parks or live just beyond their boundaries. Reaching out to these knowledgeable people can help you find the story of your place.
This guide includes an extensive annotated bibliography. Many of the sources listed will help you as you begin searching for your site’s story, and deepen your knowledge of how race and slavery echo within your place, as well as your park’s role in the greater American narrative.
Lastly, this guide is a work of encouragement: tell these stories and have these discussions