Join the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners’ regular meeting and hear the official proclamation recognizing the month of November as 1898 Commemoration Month.
What happened that day was nearly lost to history. The only coup d’etat in the country! For decades, the perpetrators were cast as heroes in American history textbooks. The black victims were wrongly described as instigators. It took nearly a century for the truth of what really happened to begin to creep back into public awareness.
Pre-registration is required.
This event is free. Suitable for ages 10+.
Register online – https://webreg.wilmingtonnc.gov or call 910-254-0907.
Historian – Sonya Bennetone–Patrick
Sonya Bennetone – Patrick (AmenRa) is the director of NHC chapter of the Black Leadership Caucus. She has dedicated her life to fighting for social justice and change within the political, medical and educational system. She has also worked hard to educate the community about the current and historical impact of racism. She has remained unrelenting, persevering in her fight for social justice, using both organizational strategies as well as civil protest. Sonya is founder and chair of the 1898 Observance Committee, Inc. Sonya Bennetone – Patrick (AmenRa) currently is a community organizer holds various offices on the national, state, regional and county level.
Join the Wilmington Ministerial Alliance as local pastors and faith-leaders lead the community in a prayer vigil for healing, unity, and grace. The group will walk to the Daily News site at 709 Church St for the prayer vigil.
Join special guests Ann-Nakia Green, granddaughter of late civil rights activist Ann Atwater, and Osha Gray Davidson, author of “The Best of Enemies”, for a virtual discussion on race and reconciliation. Learn how Atwater’s relationship with Durham County’s Klan leader evolved from hostile to an endearing relationship that lasted a lifetime.
This event is free.
Register online: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_huzk3_VyR_KYglu3BcgDeQ
Join the New Hanover County Community Remembrance Project for a ceremony and display of soil samples from locations where Black residents were slaughtered by a white mob and other significant locations. The ceremony will recognize the known and unknown victims, survivors, and descendants from both groups.
Following the 2pm Soil Collection Project ceremony at 1898 Memorial Park, a funeral procession and graveside memorial service will be held in memory of the late Joshua Halsey who was killed during the massacre and coup d’état. Halsey’s gravesite is the first of the 1898 victims to be located, which is a notable discovery made by the Third Person Project under the sponsorship of UNCW’s Office of Community Engagement and Applied Learning.
Beginning at 3:15 p.m., a horse-drawn carriage with the soil samples identifying Halsey will begin a procession from the corner of 6th and Bladen streets down Red Cross Street to Pine Forest Cemetery.
Descendants of Mr. Halsey will be in attendance, along with state and local leaders, and a graveside eulogy will be given by Rev. Dr. William Barber, II.
The community is encouraged to line the streets for the funeral procession. WECT will live-stream the procession and graveside service on their social media pages and on WECT.com for the community to watch.
Meet & Greet at 3:30 pm
Join us for a meet & greet with Kieran Haile, a direct descendant of Alexander Manly. Alexander Manly was the editor of The Daily Record, Wilmington’s African American newspaper. Mr. Manly was run out of town after his printing press was burned during the white supremacy campaign of 1898.
Film Screening at 4:30 pm
Following the meet & greet, join us for a screening of “The Red Cape”, a narrative exploration of the 1898 Wilmington Race Riot – the only proven violent overthrow of a government in U.S. history. We hope this film inspires compassion and illuminates a crucial yet forgotten piece of our Civil Rights history.
Join Pulitzer Prize-winner and author of Wilmington’s Lie: The Murderous Coup of 1898 and the Rise of White Supremacy, David Zucchino, in conversation with Executive Director of the Arts Council of Wilmington, Rhonda Bellamy, about the 1898 Race Riot. Following the event, there will be a meet-the-author and book signing opportunity next door at the Bellamy Museum site.
In 1897, Rev. J. Allen Kirk came to Wilmington to pastor Central Baptist Church on Red Cross Street. Kirk was outspoken and a community leader. He soon became the target of the white supremacy campaign. While Kirk was preaching from the pulpit one Sunday in 1898, armed white ministers waited outside the church to capture him. A State Marker highlighting Rev. Kirk’s bravery and commitment to racial equality and justice will be placed on the corner of 3rd & Red Cross Streets.
VIP reception to immediately follow at City Hall.
Dr. Benjamin Chavis, member of the Historic Wilmington 10 will be the featured keynote speaker for the 1898 Commemoration Unity Service. Chavis, a son of Wilmington, returns 50 years later to give a unity address to Wilmington as we heal forward. This service is free and open to the public. Masks are required. This service will be streamed live on NHC Facebook.