Historically African American Leisure Destinations Around Washington, D.C.
By Patsy Mose Fletcher
Join the Historical Society as author and public historian Patsy M. Fletcher reveals the history behind Washington’s forgotten era of African American leisure. She will be joined by Howard Chichester, Bette Wooden, and Novell Sullivan, who are DC residents who experienced some of these leisure destinations.
From the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century, African Americans in the Washington, D.C. area sought leisure destinations where they could relax without the burden of racial oppression. Local picnic parks such as Eureka and Madre’s were accessible by streetcars. Black-owned steamboats ferried passengers seeking sun and sand to places like Collingwood Beach, and African American families settled into quiet beach-side communities along the Western Shore of Maryland.