In remembrance of Juneteenth, the New Jersey State Library will host their latest upcoming webinar, “Unconquered Spirit: The Lost Souls and the Other Slave Trade.” This event will be held virtually from 12 pm to 1 pm on Tuesday, June 20th. If you are interested in attending, registration is available on Zoom here: Register – NJSM. Kristal C. Langford and Toni D. Hendrix will lead the afternoon’s conversation.

This powerful webinar will be an information session for the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project. This project seeks to commemorate the lives and legacy of the 137 Black New Jerseyans lost to the Domestic Slave Trade. Thornton, guests will be inspired by the resilience and resistance of freed and enslaved individuals who, in 1818, e sold from New Jersey to the Deep South. Guests will also have the opportunity to hear key insights regarding Middlesex County Judge Jacob Van Wickle, remembered for his complicity in the Domestic Slave Trade.

Kristal C. Langford is a Black Studies and Psychology lecturer at William Paterson University. She is also a doctoral candidate at Rutgers University, a part of the Education, Culture, and Society program at the Graduate School of Education. Per her bio, in her doctoral work, Langford seeks “to elucidate how the proliferation of Black bodies in New Jersey’s public schools during the Great Migration agitated the hegemony of whiteness in classroom practices, teaching, and training materials.” She joined the Lost Souls Public Memorial Project in 2019, serving as a founding trustee. Langford also appeared in PBS’s documentary, “The Price of Silence: The Forgotten Story of New Jersey’s Enslaved People.” Toni D. Hendrix, the President of the Board of Trustees for Lost Souls Public Memorial Project, Inc, will join Langford.

The Lost Souls Public Memorial Project seeks to preserve and uplift the legacy of New Jerseyans lost to the domestic slave trade. This artistic memorial aims to inform, educate, and engage the general public on the true story of the slave trade in New Jersey. The 137 lives lost to the Domestic Slave Trade were largely at the hands of Jacob Van Winkle, who was never held to account while alive. Due to his corruption and disregard for human life’s sanctity, dozens of freed and enslaved African Americans were tragically sold into permanent enslavement in the Deep South. As the project honors their lives and speaks justice to power, these efforts ensure that the lives tragically lost were not done so in vain. You can read more and support this incredible work by visiting their website: Lost Souls Public Memorial Project.

If you have any questions or want to learn more about the upcoming seminar, please get in touch with the New Jersey State Library at (609) 278-2640 for additional details. Do not miss the chance to learn more about the lives of these precious souls, be sure to RSVP today.

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