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We strive to practice inclusive history. History is not a series of one-sided, happy stories. It is a combination of uncomfortable truths, differing perspectives, and difficult narratives. At the John Dickinson Plantation in Dover, for example, we tell the story of the enslaved, indentured, and free Black men, women, and children who worked, and died, on the plantation. We welcome the difficult conversations that come from interpreting the land of a founding father who wrote of freedom and liberty for all while holding human beings in bondage.
We struggle with how to tell Delaware’s more troubling history. We are stewards of Delaware’s history. This history includes stories of pain, courage, and defeat. We will not shrink from the pain of our shared history.
We are listening. We want people to be heard and to know that we are listening. Your voices will give shape to how we collect, interpret, preserve, and present history to the public.
We need your help. We can’t do this on our own. We want to be an active participant in the force for change in our communities.
We are here. We will be undeterred in bringing forth diversity in our stories and we want all voices to be heard. We strive to be a safe place for difficult conversations and uncomfortable truths.
We promise to preserve and share Delaware history, commit to expanding the parameters of that history, and preserve the history of this movement for current and future generations.
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
June 10, 2020
For more information on how we are approaching this issue, we recommend the work of our colleagues in the museum and historic preservation professions. A page with these links is available at https:///history.delaware.gov/equity.
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