Untold Stories: Former Enslaved Americans Who Sought Freedom in Lawrence, KSAfrican American Quilt Museum and Textile Academy
- Marla Arna Jackson, Director, African American Quilt Museum and Textile Academy
“Untold Stories: Former Enslaved Americans Who Sought Freedom in Lawrence, KS” shines a light on explores the often-overlooked reality of life for the previously enslaved, who continued to struggle to achieve equality long after the war.
This project incorporates 10+ years of research, development and implementation of Living History and uses multiple artistic mediums (including costumed interpretation & storytelling using a 19th century dress replica, a large ceramic tile mural, and creative documentation panel displays) to connect with visitors and viewers via video, podcasting, and online streaming of panel discussions.
The purpose of this project is to raise awareness of the African-American incredibly complex nuance in the experiences of enslaved Americans, as well as shine a light on the realities of post-civil living for newly “free” Black citizens in Lawrence, Kansas. We achieve this by sharing the stories of Maria Rodgers Martin and Elizebeth Lawton.
Marla Arna Jackson
Director, African American Quilt Museum and Textile Academy
Marla Arna Jackson is a world-renowned visual narrative textile artist, quilter, historical researcher, author, and community-based visual art educator. Marla Jackson is a renowned quilter and textile artist who also serves as director of the African American Quilt Museum and Textile Academy located in Lawrence, KS.
Marla’s quilts — which take inspiration from oral histories of her ancestors, historical figures, and the Kansas region — have been exhibited at more than 35 national and international venues, including the American Folk Art Museum, the Museum of Biblical Art, KU’s Spencer Museum of Art, the Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum and the National Museum of African American History and Culture.