Thanks to an arts
presentation grant from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and
Tourism, Windsor Historical Society offers a special Underground
Railroad performance by the internationally-acclaimed Connecticut
performing group Nzinga’s Daughters on February 28th at 2 p.m. The
performers in Nzinga’s Daughters use poetry, stories, and songs from the
Underground Railroad to reveal coded messages hidden within Negro
spirituals and everyday objects. Participation from audience members
will be encouraged through the use of African percussion instruments,
games and participation in story and song.
The group is named for
early seventeenth century Angolan ruler Queen Nzinga, remembered for her
efforts in resisting the Portuguese slave trade. Known for her
exceptional statesmanship and guerilla warfare tactics, Queen Nzinga
effectively resisted Portuguese forces for decades through alliances
with the Dutch and her military strategies.
America’s Underground Railroad refers to the secret routes
and the network of resource people in various states that thousands of
enslaved Africans used to escape to freedom in Canada and Mexico. As
an underground resistance movement, the Underground Railroad was
decentralized and covert in nature. “Conductors” responsible for moving
enslaved Africans from “station” or safe house to “station” and the
“stationmasters” who housed them knew little more than their own part in
the operation. Oral traditions passed down about the Underground
Railroad indicate that songs, quilts, and specific code words and
phrases were used as communication aids along the routes. Come to this
performance and learn more about the Underground Railroad, its secrets,
and its inspiring songs and stories.
Our hall seats 100
people; to be assured of a seat, make reservations before the program by
calling 688-3813 x. 102. Cost for the program is $6 for adults, $5 for
seniors and students, and $4 for Windsor Historical Society members.
Parking is available in the Windsor Discovery Center and First Church
parking lots and around Palisado Green.
Society’s programming in 2009 is made possible the following donors:
Sponsors: Connecticut Humanities Council; Greater Hartford Arts
Council, Hartford Foundation for Public Giving; Windsor Federal
Anonymous Donor; Connecticut commission on Culture and Tourism, ING;
Jim and Kathi Martin; NewAlliance Foundation, Rabbett Insurance
Agency, Savings Bank Life Insurance
Griffin Land and Nurseries, Inc.; Marcia Hinckley; RTI CT; Sir