From the colonial period onward, black artisans in southern cities played vital roles in their communities. Yet only a very few black craftspeople have gained popular and scholarly attention. In Crafting Lives: African American Artisans in New Bern, North Carolina, 1770-1900, Catherine W. Bishir—curator in architectural special collections at the NCSU Libraries—remedies this oversight by offering an in-depth portrayal of urban African American artisans in the small but important port city of New Bern. In so doing, she highlights the community’s often unrecognized importance in the history of nineteenth-century black life.
Bishir will discuss her book on Feb. 5 at 5:30 in Donovan Lounge, Greenlaw Hall, UNC—Chapel Hill.