Exhibition shares histories of Africans in Hull and East Yorkshire

The stories and social histories of people with African heritage are to be shared in Our Histories Revealed, a fascinating exhibition at Hull History Centre, as part of the African Stories in Hull and East Yorkshire project.

The project, which received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund in May 2016, aims to create a record of the local stories, oral histories, art and music that have been collected from people across Hull and the East Riding, from extraordinary family histories to anecdotes remembered over the dining table.

It examines the presence and contribution of people of African descent in the Hull and East Yorkshire region between 1750 and 2007, the bicentenary of the abolition of the slave trade.

Project spokesperson Gifty Burrows said: “This has been a wonderful project so far. The opportunity to hear these often forgotten or unheard stories has been fascinating. From the incredible to the everyday, it shows the breadth of experiences that people have had in the area.

“It’s also been encouraging to hear that taking part in the project has opened up discussions within families with people unearthing new information and sharing knowledge about things that happened in the past.”

We’re still looking for more people to share their stories and experiences with us and would encourage people to get in touch.
– Gifty Burrows, Africans In Yorkshire project

The exhibition will feature images and artworks, but will also offer people the opportunity to listen to some of the family stories that people have recorded for the project, listen to music, watch video footage and see artefacts and memorabilia.

The project continues into 2018, with the team welcoming further contributions from people in the region.

Gifty added: “We’re still looking for more people to share their stories and experiences with us and would encourage people to get in touch. We want to create as thorough a record of the experience of people of African descent in this area as possible and the more contributions we have, the better that will be.”

People are also encouraged to bring photographs along to the exhibition or upload them to the project website to help build up a bigger picture of the history of people of African descent in the region.

Gifty said: “We don’t necessarily need lots of information about the people in the pictures, just a rough date and location could be enough.”

  • To find out how you can make a contribution to the project, visit the Africans In Yorkshire website, or email the team.
  • The free exhibition, supported by Hull City Council, runs from Tuesday 26 September to Saturday 21 October.