On March 20, 2022, Christiansburg Institute and the Montgomery Museum of Art & History will unveil three history and educational wayside signs for the ‘Truth & Reconciliation Coalition: African American Memory & Storyboard Project’ on the town square quadrant in front of the post office at 2 E. Main St. in downtown Christiansburg.
The event will be from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. with the unveiling at 3:30 p.m. to be preceded by a brief program.
A formal orientation with introductions from event hosts will begin the ceremony, followed by a citizen’s address from Dr. N.L. Bishop at 3:35 p.m. Jordin Harris, a senior at Christiansburg High School and a student intern at Christiansburg Institute, will speak at 3:15 p.m.
During introductions, Christiansburg Mayor Mike Barber will address the public and share a few words about this historic milestone achievement for all of the Montgomery County community.
Beginning in 2018, Christiansburg Institute and the Montgomery Museum of Art & History staff, board members, and local community members began to organize and take action to preserve and increase awareness about the county’s deeply rich African American history and culture.
The group set out to do this work by determining a set of shared values that would guide the project: truth-telling, honesty, and reconciliation, specifically around challenging and contested histories where generational harm and racial trauma are ongoing and narratives are competing. The outcome of this work was the construction and erection of three new history and educational storyboards in downtown Christiansburg in the town-owned quadrant in front of the post office.
The Town of Christiansburg granted approval for the project in July 2021 to cultivate this public space with the addition of the storyboards to illustrate African American history in Montgomery County. The signs are themed “Community Life,” “Education,” and “Slavery in Montgomery County.”