« Back to Events

2019 elinor williams hooker tea talk series

2019 Elinor Williams Hooker Tea Talk Series

Portsmouth Public Library
175 Parrott Ave.
Portsmouth, NH 03801
United States603-427-1540

For the sixth year, the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire will hold its Elinor Williams Hooker Tea Talk series from February to March.

Presented by the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire (BHTNH) in partnership with the Portsmouth Public Library, these Sunday afternoon “Tea Talks” will be held on six consecutive Sundays, from 2 – 4 pm, from February 3rd through March 10th. All events are free and open to the public unless where noted.

BHTNH Executive Director JerriAnne Boggis explained the significance of this year’s theme, “That Which Divides, That Which Unites”.

“We chose this theme because it feels as if the country is once again fractured, divided along political, ideological, and racial lines. We wanted to explore the aspects that divide us and discuss ways in which we could bridge the divide.”

“Our Tea Talks allow us to discuss conflicts around topics such as access to wealth, public policy, education, gender, and religion. Through shared stories from our panelists and lively conversations from our audience, these Sunday afternoon programs not only allow us to revisit the past but present ideas on how we as a nation could move beyond these tensions. Ou final Tea Talk is once such as we will be introduced to three innovative ways to build bridges.”

“The mission of the Tea Talks,” said Boggis, “is to share stories, strengthen bonds, engage hearts and minds in order to create stronger, more inclusive communities.”

The Tea Talks are named in honor of Elinor Williams Hooker, a long time New Hampshire resident, educator and activist, and the wife of Thomas L. Hooker, who served from 1966 to 1974 as Director of the New Hampshire Division of Welfare.

Boggis sees the Tea Talks as a way for those in the community to have an open and safe sharing of ideas. “It is this camaraderie and good cheer that accompanies each glass of African mint tea that Valerie Cunningham and I had hoped to recreate when we first started our Elinor William Hooker Winter Tea Talk Series. It is a time to reflect, to honor one another’s opinions, a place to learn and grow and in so doing move the needle a little closer to equality and justice for all.”

The Winter Tea Talk Series, presented by the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire in partnership with the Portsmouth Public Library, is a series of participatory lectures related to New Hampshire’s Black history and African American culture. Four of these Talks will be held at the Portsmouth Public Library, Levenson Room, 175 Parrot Avenue, Portsmouth, NH, other locations are noted below. All talks are from 2 – 4 pm. In case of inclement weather, a canceled talk will be rescheduled for, March 18 or March 25.

The Series is sponsored by New England Blacks in Philanthropy

For more information about the Tea Talks, please visit http://blackheritagetrailnh.org/programs/tea-talks/

2019 Elinor Williams Hooker Tea Talks Schedule

Sunday, February 3
Land, Wealth, and Policies of Marginalization
(This Event will be held at South Church in Portsmouth)

Despite improvements in education, social mobility and many other critical arenas, large racial and ethnic disparities still exist in the U.S. This panel will explore how government policies and environmental issues disenfranchised the very groups they should equalize.

Presenters Meghan Howey, Woullard Lett

Sunday, February 10
Black Women Magic in New Hampshire

Through shared stories and an exploration of the feminist movement, this panel will focus on some of New Hampshire’s most successful Black women and their journey to the powerful position they hold in white-centered environments.

Presenters   Melanie Levesque, Yvonne Goldsberry, Nadine Thompson

Moderator   Robin Hackett

Sunday, February 17
In the Beginning, There was the Word

The relationship between religion and race in American is complex.

This panel of theologians will explore the relationship between church, race, and state and the role the church could play in healing the soul of the nation.

Presenters Rev. Robert Thompson, Rev. Gail Avery, Rev. Larry Brickner Wood (TBC)

Moderator: Claudia Maturell

Sunday, February 24
Permit Patty, BBQ Becky, & Coupon Carl

Join us for an experiential talk to explore the role of implicit bias, a universal phenomenon, not limited by race, gender, or even country of origin, in our lives.. It is a major contributor to racism. Is there anything we can do about it? The answers may surprise you.

Presenters: Michele Holt-Shannon, Dottie Morrison

Sunday, March 3
Tell Me the Truth: Exploring the Heart of Cross-Racial Conversations
(This Event will be held at Temple Israel in Portsmouth)

Join Shay Stewart-Bouley (Black Girl in Maine) and author Debby Irving (author of Waking up White) as they talk about racism’s impact on their lives and how the conversation has been instrumental in their own understanding of 21st-century racial dynamics.

Sunday, March 10
And Still We Rise

Hear from one organization that is working to strengthen the cultural knowledge and identity of New England Native American youth and families; discover new state initiatives for economic growth through diversity and inclusion; and begin the dialogue around reparation for the injuries of enslavement and its aftermath

Presenters Wildolfo Arvelo, Judy Dow, Brenda Lett

Moderator Cait Vaughan

About the Black Heritage Trail of NH

The Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire works to visibly honor and share a truer more inclusive history through exhibits, educational programs, curriculum development and tours that can change the way our country understands human dignity when it is free of historical stereotypes.

Founded in 2016, its mission is to promote awareness and appreciation of African American history and culture in New Hampshire, celebrating a people’s history of resilience, versatility, and courage.

The BHTNH seeks to promote awareness and appreciation of African American history and culture in New Hampshire through education and public programs including creating appropriate memorials at significant locations within the state.

To see more local events, click here.