Tenn. State Museum hosts ‘Lunch and Learn’ on North Nashville history

Dr. Learotha Williams, Jr.

The Tennessee State Museum will host a free ‘Lunch and Learn’ on the history of North Nashville on Thursday, January 16. The lecture will take place from noon till 1 pm in the Digital Learning Center. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch to eat during the event.

According to a release from the museum: “With the rapid decline and disappearance of North Nashville’s historic environment and the continued displacement of its long-term residents, the time has come for a critical reassessment of the life, culture, and history of the community and its current and future place in the city’s collective memory.”

The Lunch and Learn will be presented by Learotha Williams, Jr., Ph.D., an associate professor of African American and public history and coordinator of the North Nashville Heritage Project at Tennessee State University.

Dr. Williams will highlight how the memory of this community resonates among both long-term and recent residents of North Nashville, with a focus on how the community often cultivated sensibilities and became the source of protest movements that challenged the status quo in the Music City. He will provide insight into who and what is celebrated in our collective memories; the individuals, events and significant spaces that have been erased from our collective consciousness; and who determines which of these are worthy of public study and recognition.

Dr. Williams is a native of Tallahassee, Florida, earning his Ph.D. in African American and Post-Civil War history from Florida State University in 2003. Before arriving in Nashville, he worked in the public sector as a Historic Sites Specialist for the state of Florida. From 2004-08, he was employed as a professor of African American and public history and program coordinator for the Black Studies Program at Armstrong State University in Savannah, Georgia. Dr. Williams has written about African American politicians during Reconstruction, freedmen education in the Post-Civil War South, and the administrative responses to student activism at HBCUs during the Black Freedom Struggle.

The museum is located at 1000 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., and is free and open to the public Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10 am–5 pm; Thursdays from 10 am–8 pm; and Sundays from 1 pm–5 pm.

Additionally, the museum will host several events during Black History Month. For more information on exhibitions and events, visit .