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“Freedom’s Hope: In Search of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” with Jana Brown, Sod House Museum
February 20, 2016
Professor Jana Brown from Northwestern Oklahoma State University will be at the Sod House Museum on Saturday, February 20, at 10 a.m. to present an overview of black history in Oklahoma and the struggles faced by African Americans.
Brown will discuss some examples of the fulfillment of the freedmen’s goals as well as some struggles they encountered. Toward the end of Reconstruction, Southern freedmen began seeking alternatives to life in the South. Brown will discuss the factors that motivated freedmen to leave the South and goals they had when seeking a new home. Eventually, they looked toward new lands opening up in Oklahoma Territory. Combined with freedmen of the Five Civilized Tribes, these individuals created at least 50 All-Black towns. In addition to these incorporated towns, there were other smaller enclaves of black settlers. Professor Brown’s current research includes the All-Black enclave that existed in Major County, Oklahoma, near Cleo Springs. This group is associated with the Pioneer Cemetery and what was the Happy Valley School.
Professor Jana Brown is the social science education coordinator and an instructor of History at Northwestern Oklahoma State University. Brown is currently seeking a Ph.D. at Oklahoma State University.