Public Info

Explore Themes of African American Survival during Black History Month

african american survival from jim crow to civil rights and beyond flyerUnion County, NJ – February 3, 2022 —  The Union County Board of County Commissioners invites resident to attend a free lecture by Professor Keith E. Walcott of Union County College titled,  “African American Survival: from Jim Crow to Civil Rights and Beyond.” The lecture will be held on Zoom on Thursday, February 24th at 6:30 p.m.

The program is free of charge, but advance registration is required. To register online visit

“African Americans have withstood daunting obstacles to make their mark upon on our nation, and Professor Walcott offers new insights into this compelling story of survival and achievement. We encourage everyone to join with us in this exploration of Black history, and the power of the human spirit to prevail over adversity,” said Commissioner Board Chair Rebecca Williams, who will serve as host for the event.

“My generation has seen many changes in Union County, and beyond, and there are many more to come. We are very proud to provide our residents with a series of enriching, thought provoking experiences during Black History Month, and we hope this lecture helps to inform and guide the continuing work of ensuring equal justice and dignity for all,” said Commissioner James E. Baker, Jr.

Professor Walcott will begin his presentation after the abolition of slavery in the 19th century, as the cruelties of segregationist “Jim Crow” laws took hold in the south and elsewhere. The discussion will continue through 20th century manifestations of racism including discrimination through Great Depression programs and the notorious Tuskegee Study, as well as the explosion of the civil rights movement in the 1950’s and the passage of the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968.

A longtime resident of Plainfield, Professor Walcott was born in the West Indian Island of Barbados and came to the United States 40 years ago. He received undergraduate and graduate degrees in history from Rutgers University, and holds ministerial credentials with the assemblies of God. He is currently an Adjunct Professor at Union County College specializing in African American History.

This lecture is funded in part by a grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission, a Division of Cultural Affairs in the Department of State.

For more information and updates on Union County’s Black History Month series, including links for the virtual events, visit In addition, if you would like to learn more about Black History Month programs, please contact Judith Guest of the Union County Office of Community Engagement and Diversity at or 908-527-4388.

For information about the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs visit, email, or call 908-527-2550.

For information and updates on all Union County services during the COVID-19 outbreak, including free vaccination, free testing, emergency food distribution and other support services, visit General information about COVID-19 is available through the New Jersey Department of Health at

For all Union County programs and services visit, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email or use the online Contact Form.

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