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Celebrate Black History Month 2015

February is Black History Month!

Please join us at Josiah Henson Park each Saturday in February to Celebrate Black History Month. The park is located in North Bethesda, MD on the historic Isaac Riley Farm where the Reverend Josiah Henson lived and worked as a slave from 1795 to 1830.

Josiah Henson Black History Month imageBlack History Month is an important vehicle for understanding our past so we can build the foundation for a future. Join Montgomery Parks in bringing that past to life through free, tours, documentaries, and poetry!

“There is no more powerful force than a people steeped in their history.
And there is no higher cause for honoring the struggle of ancestors by remembering.”

~ Lonnie Bunch,
founding director, National Museum of African American History and Culture

The month of February is dedicated to highlighting the stories, struggles, and successes of African Americans. Often Black History Month is treated as a stand-alone month in which to simply research and write a book report. We suggest Black History Month can serve as an introduction to a life-long lesson in culture, community, and connections.

Montgomery Parks is proud to provide an introduction to this rich, local African American history by hosting a series of free public events at Josiah Henson Park. This park is a historic resource of international significance because of its association with Reverend Henson, whose 1849 autobiography, The Life of Josiah Henson, Formerly a Slave, inspired Harriet Beecher Stowe's landmark novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin.

Events Schedule

Saturdays | February 7, 14, 21, 28 | Noon - 4:00 pm.

Free Guided Tours - “A Walk in Father Henson’s Footsteps”

Last tour begins 3:00 pm
As part of our History in the Parks programming, Montgomery Parks is partnering with volunteer historians and archeologists to provide free guided tours at Josiah Henson Park every Saturday. Retrace the footsteps of Reverend Josiah Henson from his enslavement to escape on the Underground Railroad to freedom in Canada.. Walk the grounds where Henson toiled as a slave on the Isaac Riley plantation.

Time Team America Documentary - "The Search For Josiah Henson”

Shown at Noon, 1:00, 2:00 and 3:00 pm
Also on display every Saturday, will be PBS’ Time Team America’s documentary, "The Search for Josiah Henson," is an over-the-archaeologists'-shoulder view of discoveries made at our very own Josiah Henson Park.

This over-the-shoulder view provides a unique lens into real life on a slave plantation. Josiah Henson Park archaeological site was one of four sites selected for inclusion in their second season. Time Team America brought their high-tech equipment to help Park Archaeologists learn more about a very special man in American History, Josiah Henson.

Saturday, February 28

Spoken Word Poetry Event - "Lyrical Rhythms: The Sounds of Freedom"

3:00 - 4:00 pm | Free Admission
Close out our Black History Month celebration with our annual poetry event.

The month-long festivities conclude on Saturday, February 28 with a spoken word poetry event, “Lyrical Rhythms: The Sounds of Freedom.” Participants of all ages and races are welcome to create and share their own “sounds of freedom” in the form of original poetry, song or other artistic expressions. A reception with light refreshments immediately follows.

PLEASE NOTE: Parking for Josiah Henson Park events is available ONLY at the Kennedy Shriver Aquatic Center, 5900 Executive Blvd., North Bethesda, MD 20852.

Contact Us

Lisa MacLeman, Group Tours & Public Programs
301-650-4373 |

back to top - Last update: February 22, 2015