Your Host: The MCJC

YH_0001.jpgFrom the Rock Wall is a production of the Marian Cheek Jackson Center for Saving and Making History.  It was developed in partnership with the many neighbors and friends whose histories are featured here and whose wisdom and insight have governed every aspect. 

YH_0002.jpgThe Marian Cheek Jackson Center is itself a response to oral histories.  In the mid-2000s, the scrappy group of students and community members who would become its co-founders began listening to neighbors’ accounts of hard-won and hard-held rights to property, education, and municipal infrastructure.  They also heard and saw immediate threats to those rights and to the generational continuity of the histories that sustained them.  The Marian Cheek Jackson Center was established in 2009 to secure, advance, and steward those histories in word and deed.  An explosion of oral history-driven action soon followed:  festivals, feasts, exhibits, performances, policy hearings, meetings, marches, vigils, organizing, a reunion of civil rights activists, a youth radio program, a digital “soundwalk,”  partnerships with over forty resource agencies, a national model for addressing displacement, and always:  more listening and more and more of the kind of everyday retelling that makes neighbors out of listeners. 

Today the Jackson Center is a hub of community-first action in three strategic areas:  housing justice, education in local Black history, and collective celebration and witness.  Each area is led by a community team, the Community Compass Group, the Community Mentor Team, and the Community Review Board, respectively.  To find out more or to be a part of the MCJC’s efforts to make history matter, visit www.jacksoncenter.info, write [email protected], call 919-960-1760, or stop by the brick house next to St. Joseph C.M.E., 512 West Rosemary in Chapel Hill.

Want to take history into action? Click here to get involved.

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