Dubois Circle Marks 110th Anniversary

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John W. Franklin, senior program manager, National Museum of African American History and Culture, speaks about the upcoming opening of the museum in Washington, D.C. in September. (Photo by Chanet Wallace)

The Dubois Circle, a women’s group founded in 1906, held their 110th annual meeting at Martin’s West in Baltimore on May 17.

Named after the noted late scholar Dr. W.E.B. Dubois, the Dubois Circle is one of the oldest in Baltimore and prides itself on having notable speakers address issues of the day.

In 1926, for example, Langston Hughes, poet and author, spoke before the group.

Following a recitation of the group’s achievements over the past year by President Patricia C. Jessamy, who is leaving the group to move to Atlanta, the longest serving members were acknowledged. They are: Helena H. Hairston, Betty I. William, and Roslyn C. Wood.

Following a vocal performance by Aleea Powell, a student at the Baltimore School for the Arts, John W. Franklin addressed the group. Franklin, senior program manager, National Museum of African American History and Culture, spoke about the upcoming opening of the museum in Washington, D.C. in September.

Franklin gave a brief overview of the struggle to get the museum funded and then discussed highlights from the collection. Among them: Remnants of slave ship recovered off the coast of Mozambique, Emmett Till’s casket, Harriet Tubman’s hymnal, a segregated rail road car, a Tuskegee Airmen training plane and the Mothership used during Parliament Funkadelic musical performances.