‘50 Years After the Fire’ event set for 2017

Dorchester Star - - Front Page -

CAM­BRIDGE — East­ern Shore Net­work for Change (ESNC) an­nounces “50 Years After the Fire: A Com­mem­o­ra­tion of Our His­tory”, a com­mem­o­ra­tion of the sum­mer of 1967 and the fire on Pine Street, July 2124, 2017, in Cam­bridge.

The week­end will fea­ture walk­ing tours, art ex­hibits, book read­ings, a gala din­ner, prayer break­fast and more. De­tails will fol­low in the

com­ing months.

The sum­mer of 1967 was the height of Civil Rights Move­ment in Cam­bridge, Mary­land. On the even­ing of July 24, 1967, a fire erupted on Pine Street, the heart of the African-Amer­i­can com­mu­nity. An ele­men­tary school, sev­eral busi­nesses and a church were de­stroyed

in the fire.

“I was born and raised in Cam­bridge, and it wasn’t un­til our event in 2012, ‘45 Years After the Fire: How Do We Know Where We’re Go­ing If We Don’t Know Where We’ve Been’ that I re­al­ized that this com­mu­nity had never talked about the fire,” said Dion Banks, co-founder of ESNC. “The heal­ing process never re­ally started here. We aim to change that with this series of events.”

Many lo­cal or­ga­ni­za­tions have

signed on to help with this en­deavor, in­clud­ing, Al­pha Ge­n­e­sis CDC, Cam­bridge Main Street, Cam­bridge Po­lice Depart­ment, Ch­e­sa­peake Col­lege, City of Cam­bridge Depart­ment of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment, Dorchester Cham­ber of Com­merce, Dorchester County Depart­ment of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment, Dorchester County Faith Al­liance, Dorchester County His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety, Dorchester County Pub­lic Schools, Dorchester Tourism, the Har­riet Tub­man Or­ga­ni­za­tion, the Har­riet Tub­man Un­der­ground Rail­road Na­tional His­tor­i­cal Park, the Na­tional Un­der­ground Rail­road Net­work to Free­dom and WHCP.

“We are elated that so many or­ga­ni­za­tions have de­cided to join us in com­mem­o­rat­ing such a turn­ing point in our com­mu­nity,” said ESNC co-founder, Kisha Pet­ti­co­las. “The only way to learn from the past and move on from it is to have all parts of the com­mu­nity to ac­knowl­edge what hap­pened.

“The vast ar­ray of or­ga­ni­za­tions that have come to the ta­ble makes us be­lieve that heal­ing is pos­si­ble,” she said. ”ESNC’s mis­sion is to raise aware­ness of is­sues in Dorchester County and to cre­atively work with the com­mu­nity to in­form, ed­u­cate, and foster change which leads to so­cial and eco­nomic em­pow­er­ment.”

For more in­for­ma­tion about the or­ga­ni­za­tion, visit the web­site, www. es­nc­cam­bridgemd.com/50th-an­niver­sary-civil-rights.

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