Preserving Our History, Ensuring Our Future
As one of the oldest African Heritage organizations in the country, the Rhode Island Black Heritage Society has recorded, retained and interpreted these historical facts and preserved the documents and artifacts of African-American and African descendant’s history and accomplishments in Rhode Island.
Our primary mission is the preservation of African Diaspora descendant’s historical artifacts – books, art, papers and images, as well as facilitating the interpretation efforts by those seeking to enlighten others about our heritage.
The origins of the American Civil Rights Movement began right here in Rhode Island...
Among the many "Firsts"
- Enslaved and Free Africans enlisted in the Revolutionary forces and served in the Rhode Island 1st Regiment; participating in several major battles, including the Battle of Rhode Island and Yorktown.
- In 1780, free Africans established their own self-help organization, the Free African Union Society in Newport, Rhode Island.
- Africans in Rhode Island would establish one of the nation’s earliest free African schools in 1808 and later after the Civil War would promote the integration of all public schools in Rhode Island.
Rhode Island Black Heritage Society = Preserving Our Heritage & History for Forty Years.
Join us as we honor and celebrate the work of our founders. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ (#RIBHSorigins) to discover the important work they accomplished during the first years of the society, and our continued work today.