NORTH BETHESDA, MD— Take “A Walk in Father Henson’s Footsteps” as M-NCPPC, Montgomery Parks offers free tours and a spoken word poetry event to celebrate Black History Month at Josiah Henson Special Park, 11420 Old Georgetown Road.
Learn about the extraordinary life of Reverend Josiah Henson, whose autobiography inspired Harriet Beecher Stowe’s famous novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin, during FREE guided tours of the Josiah Henson Special Park. Tours will be offered each Saturday, February 4, 11, and 18 between 12:00 noon and 4:00 pm. On Saturday, February 25 tours will be offered between 12:00 noon and 3:00 pm. Visitors will also retrace the footsteps of Reverend Henson from enslavement to escape on the Underground Railroad to freedom in Canada, and walk the grounds where Henson toiled as a slave on the Isaac Riley plantation.
“Reverend Josiah Henson was an extraordinary man,” said Shirl Spicer, Museum Manger for M-NCPPC, Montgomery Parks. “He was a slave, a preacher, an Underground Railroad fugitive and conductor, an entrepreneur; an author…the list goes on and on. This tour will be a fantastic way for children, adults and groups of all ages to learn about Josiah Henson and Montgomery County’s rich African American heritage.”
The Department of Parks will close out its Black History Month celebration at Josiah Henson Special Park on Saturday, February 25, from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm with a special poetry event, “Lyrical Rhythms: The Sounds of Freedom.” Tours will not be conducted during the event.
Poets are invited to create their own “sounds of freedom” in the form of original poetry focused on any of the following themes: slavery, freedom, Underground Railroad, Reverend Josiah Henson, “Uncle Tom,” Civil War, or any other topics related to the African American experience. During the event, poets will read their original works. A reception with light refreshments will immediately follow.
For more on these upcoming events and volunteering, see www.JosiahHensonSite.org or call M-NCPPC, Montgomery Parks Museum Manager Shirl Spicer at 301-650-4373.