Reading Into History Book Wrap: Breaking Ground, Breaking Silence - Meet the Author

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February 24, 2013


DiMenna Children's History Museum at New-York Historical Society

Upper West Side


Free with admission: $15 adults; $12 teachers and seniors; $10 students; $5 kids ages 5-13; free for kids 4 and younger

Event description: Read "Breaking Ground, Breaking Silence: The Story of New York's African Burial Ground" in honor of African-American History Month and then come to the Barbara K. Lipman Children's History Library for this special event.

Co-Author and urban archaeologist Gary McGowan will be there. Family participants will discuss the book, ask the author questions, and see African American related objects from the New-York Historical Society's collection.

About "Breaking Ground: Breaking Silence: The Story of New York's African Burial Ground":

In 1991, archaeologists digging at the site of a future office building in lower Manhattan found human remains. These remains are part of the oldest known cemetery for people of African descent in the United States. The people buried here were soldiers, farmers, and members of loving communities. Most were also enslaved. The discovery of this site exposed the realities of urban slavery and African-American life in colonial New York.

In this "moving and enriching" (Kirkus Reviews, 1998) Coretta Scott King Honor Award book, author Joyce Hansen and urban archaeologist Gary McGowan bring this untold history to young readers through the life stories of individuals buried at the site. In doing so, they show readers how, with bones, artifacts, and detective work, archaeologists can reconstruct histories lost through time and prejudice.

About the Monthly Reading into History Book Club Each month families read a historical fiction or nonfiction book and participate in on-line discussions with authors, educators, and other families. Get ideas for discussion, ask authors questions, and visit the History Detectives blog! At the end of each month, families can attend a Book Wrap event where they will share reactions to the book, see cool museum artifacts and documents related to the book, meet other history detectives, and even the authors! Past authors have included Walter Dean Myers, Neela Vaswani, and Donna Jo Napoli.

Address: 170 Central Park West
Upper West Side, NY 10024
Phone: 212-485-9293

About DiMenna Children's History Museum at New-York Historical Society

Bring food: Yes
Buy food: Yes
Where is food allowed: Food allowed in designated spots
Changing tables in the women's room(s): Yes
Changing tables in the men's room(s): Yes

The New-York Historical Society is dedicated to fostering research, presenting history and art exhibitions, and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical is the oldest museum in New York City. New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered political, cultural and social history of New York City and State and the nation, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.

The New-York Historical Society’s museum is the oldest in New York City and predates the founding of the Metropolitan Museum of Art by nearly seventy years. Its art holdings comprise more than 1.6 million works. Among them are a world-class collection of Hudson River School paintings, including major works by Thomas Cole and Frederic Edwin Church; iconic genre and history paintings including works by William Sidney Mount and Eastman Johnson; a vast range of American portraits, including paintings by Rembrandt Peale and Gilbert Stuart; all 435 of John James Audubon’s extant preparatory watercolors for Birds of America; and an encyclopedic collection of more than 800 works documenting the full range of representational sculpture in America from the colonial period to the present day. The Museum also holds much of sculptor Elie Nadelman’s legendary American folk art collection, including furniture and household accessories such as lamps, candlesticks, textiles, glass and ceramic objects, as well as paintings, toys, weathervanes, sculptural woodcarvings and chalkware. 

The DiMenna Children’s History Museum at the New-York Historical Society presents 350 years of New York and American history through character-based pavilions, interactive exhibits and digital games, and the Barbara K. Lipman Children’s History Library. The DiMenna Children's History Museum encourages families to explore history together through permanent installations targeted for children 8-13 and a wide range of family learning programs for toddlers, children and preteens.