Black History Month webinar


Madeline Ruebush

History professor and Faculty Coordinator of the Social Justice Institute at Bakersfield College, Oliver Rosales, introduces speaker Ashley Adams.

Madeline Ruebush, Reporter

Dr. Ashley Adams discussed reparations and preserving African American history with BC students and faculty in a webinar presented on Feb. 27 that included her research regarding Allensworth, Calif.

Adams works as a professor and Acting Director of Public Policy at Northwestern University. There, she researches how preservation of African American history is an act of reparations. She also studies how preservation practices in the communities that surround Allensworth State Historic Park impact BIPOC communities throughout the United States.

“There are not enough resources and money put towards the historical preservation of our history,” she stated.

Her main goal in her research of the Historic Park is to remedy this and create recommendations that can be applied to other preservation sites as well as the creation of new Black historic sites.

Her recommendations have already worked to include “more black voices” in decision-making at the Allensworth State Historic Park.

Her family history has guided her in her goal to create more inclusivity in the preservation of history, Adams explained. She descends from early settlers of the historic Black town of Nicodemus, Kansas, which, according to the National Park Service, was founded by newly freed slaves in 1877 and became a refuge for Black farmers and their families to create a place for opportunities and freedom.

She continues working with Allensworth and Northwestern University to create more diversity in the preservation field. And she serves her community in Kansas as the Board Secretary for the Nicodemus Historical Society and as the Nicodemus, Kansas Site Coordinator for a 2023 Smithsonian Exhibit.