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Free admission all weekend
The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center proudly proclaimed Aug. 28 as John Lewis Day at the Center, in honor of the late representative.
Fifty-seven years ago, on Aug. 28, 1963, more than 200,000 people participated in the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Lewis, chairman and co-founder of Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, delivered a speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. He spoke to the lived reality of African Americans at the time: lack of employment, voter suppression, police violence, and homelessness.
Known for his activism, Lewis went on to be elected to the House of Representatives in 1986. He served Georgia's 5th District until his death earlier this year.
A press release said, “Fifty-seven years later, Lewis’s speech remains chillingly relevant, just as the resistance to oppression that became the Underground Railroad remains relevant today. Lewis continued the work of the freedom seekers who came before him. We must all continue the work of John Lewis.
“In honor of Lewis' legacy of fighting for racial equality and voting rights, we welcome all to visit the Heritage Center to learn the history behind his activism and to be inspired by the stories of perseverance told within our walls.”
John Lewis Day features:
√ Free admission to the Heritage Center from Friday, Aug. 28, thru Sunday, Aug. 30, courtesy of the Niagara Falls National Heritage Area.
√ A free copy of the “Black History Coloring Book: Entrepreneurs” with all purchases of at least $57.
√ On-site voter registration provided in coordination with Niagara Organizing Alliance for Hope.
The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center is an experiential museum that reveals authentic stories of Underground Railroad freedom seekers and abolitionists in Niagara Falls, aims to inspire visitors to recognize modern injustices that stem from slavery, and take action toward an equitable society. Open since May 2018, the permanent exhibition, “One More River to Cross,” features the rich stories of the Underground Railroad in Niagara Falls, the crucial role played by its location and geography, and the actions of its residents – particularly its African American residents.
The Heritage Center’s immersive exhibits and cutting-edge interpretation affirmatively align with the principles of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, whose mission is to connect the past to modern social justice issues – “to turn memory to action.”