A Statement from Montgomery History
June 4, 2020
Montgomery History expresses its sincere condolences to the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and the countless others in our country who have lost loved ones and suffered from systemic racism. As an organization we are committed to using local history to build safer, more welcoming communities. We believe understanding and coming to terms with our history, including acknowledging past and present injustices, will help us move forward and realize the full potential of all the people who call Montgomery County, Maryland home.
Exploring our shared history, and the assumptions embedded within it, exposes a painful truth: the ideology of white supremacy did not die with the abolition of slavery. It festered and assumed new forms: Jim Crow laws, white terror lynchings, “separate but equal” practices, mass incarceration of African American men, housing discrimination, voter suppression, and violence against people of color. We must acknowledge that institutions traditionally associated with cultural memory, such as ours, have contributed to and supported white supremacist narratives in the past. So while some of the institutional structures of racism have been partially mitigated by legal rules, the root problem persists.
Montgomery History will continue to forge a new, more inclusive narrative that celebrates diversity and provides a platform for all voices to be heard. We ask that you join with us by offering your guidance and vision. Share with us your stories, your ideas, and your aspirations. We invite you to participate in telling the story of Montgomery County so that meaningful change, informed by our collective past, will emerge from our grief and disillusionment. We are optimistic that history will look back at this point in time and see a community that chose a path to the future rooted in empathy, mutual respect, and dignity.
-The Montgomery History Family