The Grove Museum, Goodwood Museum and Gardens and the Tallahassee Museum will be hosting “Invisible Lives Tours” on Saturday, focused on slavery.
“These tours are part of ongoing collaborations among community partners to tell more complete stories about local and regional history. Each of the three museums will offer free tours focused on the lives of enslaved people who shaped Tallahassee’s history before and after emancipation,” the Department of State announced on Thursday.
“The Department of State, which oversees the Grove Museum, is proud to join with our community partners in Tallahassee to offer the Invisible Lives Tours,” said Florida Secretary of State Laurel Lee. “The Invisible Lives Tours will educate the public about the history of slavery and the contributions of African Americans to our local area and the United States. I encourage everyone to come out to the Grove Museum, Goodwood Museum and Gardens and Tallahassee Museum on September 14 to experience these special tours.”
Tours will be offered on the hour starting at 10 a.m. and ending at 3:00 p.m. at Goodwood Museum and Gardens and at Tallahassee Museum. Tours at The Grove Museum will be offered on the half-hour starting at 10:30 a.m. and ending at 3:30 p.m.
“As part of the research process for the Invisible Lives Tour, The Grove Museum staff combed through census records, voter rolls, marriage licenses, deeds and probate records,” said Johnathan Grandage, the executive director of the Grove Museum. “These records revealed glimpses into the lives of enslaved people in Tallahassee, including those who worked on the Tallahassee-St. Marks Railroad and at the Grove, Orchard Pond and Lake Jackson plantations.”
The Invisible Lives Tours are a collaborative effort between the Grove Museum, Goodwood Museum and Gardens and Tallahassee Museum to create more inclusive and complete narratives about historic sites in Tallahassee. The tours at each museum will focus on the lives of individuals and families connected to each site.
“We are really excited about this partnership as it has helped move Goodwood forward in our efforts to tell an inclusive story,” said Nancy Morgan, the co-executive director of Goodwood Museum and Gardens. “This project has laid important groundwork for some permanent changes in interpreting this historic site.”
The ultimate goal of the Invisible Lives Tours is to share new research with the community and better integrate African American history into the interpretation of Tallahassee’s historic sites.
“The Tallahassee Museum has a long-standing commitment to fully revealing the story of our region’s history as well as connecting with our diverse audiences,” said Russell Daws, the president and CEO of the Tallahassee Museum. “We are thrilled to collaborate on this project with The Grove, Goodwood and other community institutions. Through this project, we plan to foster research, develop programs, and cultivate exhibits that further people’s full knowledge and understanding of our history.”