July 14 is Dorothy I. Height Day at Benning (Dorothy I. Height) Library! Previous item July 21st Event Next item Civil Rights Pioneer...

July 14 is Dorothy I. Height Day at Benning (Dorothy I. Height) Library!

A community celebration honoring the “Godmother of the Civil Rights Movement” will take place all day at Benning Library on July 14. There will be screenings, temporary exhibits, a hatmaking craft activity inspired by Height’s trademark styles, and more. This program is organized by librarian Wanda Jones as part of the DC Public Library + Maryland Institute College of Art Curatorial Fellowship in partnership with the Dorothy I. Height Education Foundation.

This event is part of a two week installation of DC Public Library’s Soul Tent, a structure inspired by the tents of Resurrection City and the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign, where you can explore this historic struggle for justice through music, words, and images. The Soul Tent is part of the DC Community Heritage Project, a collaboration between HumanitiesDC and the Historic Preservation Office.

Watch a video about the Soul Tent here and join us at Benning Library this month!


The schedule for Dorothy I. Height Day at Benning Library July 14 includes:

  • 10 a.m.-4 p.m.: Quilt Square Making at the Soul Tent installation
  • 12 p.m.  Hatmaking activity
  • 1-3 p.m. Dorothy I. Height History presentations in the meeting room, featuring DC Public Library Special Collections
  • 1 p.m. Meet & Greet with the Dorothy I. Height Education Foundation
  • Free posters courtesy of the Dorothy I. Height Education Foundation (while supplies last)
  • 3 p.m. Soul Tent Performance by Freddie Dunn Duet

The Library as The People’s University

2018 marks the 50th anniversary of 1968, a momentous year in D.C. and our nation. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy were tragically assassinated. The Poor People’s Campaign brought activists from all over the nation to D.C., and ground was broken on our own Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. DC Public Library has partnered with artists, authors and historians in the community to connect the activism of 1968 to social justice movements today through a series of programs celebrating The People’s University.

Remember to visit the library’s 1968 online resources 24/7, including the online exhibitEvolutions and Legacies, highlighting Dr. King’s impact on D.C. as a local leader and organizer for the Poor People’s Campaign, co-curated by Dr. Marya McQuirter of the dc1968 project and DC Public Library Special Collections Archivist Derek Gray. You can access additional resources about the People’s University series here.

Check our online calendar for more great 1968 programs at your neighborhood library.