Connect with us

Seeing Butterflies

Local Black female Civil War reenactors give history’s hidden figures new voices

freed01

Black Women in History

Local Black female Civil War reenactors give history’s hidden figures new voices

Days before Emancipation Day, on the top floor of a D.C. government office building with a view of the Capitol dome, Bobbie Coles is turning into someone else.

About a dozen people eat brown-bag sandwiches as she becomes “Hattie” — a slave she describes as a “nameless, faceless woman of the Civil War.” Hattie was stolen from her parents, she says. Then her 10 children, sold into slavery, were stolen from her.

Her monologue, offered in period dress and a breaking voice as she leans on a walker, isn’t designed to send audience members back to their desks with a spring in their step.

“My life has been one of hardship and toil,” she says.

“The only time I counts for anything is on the auction block,” she says.

“When I’m free, I’m going to choose my own name,” she says.

When she finishes, the only sound in the room is the rustle of old-fashioned dresses — a hallmark of the Female Re-Enactors of Distinction (FREED), six of whom are on hand for an event celebrating Emancipation Day, when slavery ended in the District of Columbia on April 16, 1862. The volunteer group performs at libraries, schools, museums and parades to bring the Civil War into…

 

Please read original article-Black female Civil War reenactors give history’s hidden figures new voices

 

Continue Reading
You may also like...
Chrysalis

I am a future butterfly at the stage of growth when I am turning into an adult. I am enclosed in a hard case shell formed by love, family, and friends. It is the hardest stage of becoming a black butterfly. You will encounter many hardships only to come out stronger and better than what you went in. At this stage, you are finding out who you truly are and how to love yourself.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

More in Black Women in History

What Does It Mean To Be “Black Butterfly Beautiful”

The image of the butterfly has come to define the many expressions of the feminine black consciousness and for a good reason. The butterfly is the perfect articulation of the exquisite beauty of nature. Whether tiny or large, brightly colored or more subdued, the butterfly’s allure is undeniable. Each one displays its own unique patterns and hues, and no one species outshines any other.

Similarly, there is no one ideal image of a black woman -- each is gorgeous in her right. All African-Americans share a glorious history of struggle and perseverance that has funneled into the modern black renaissance. And, like the graceful butterfly, the awakened black woman exemplifies the dazzling beauty of that cultural evolution.

Flying High

To Top