Black History Month Events in Alexandria

Black History Month Events in Alexandria

From a self-taught mathematician who mapped out the nation’s capital to abolitionist sisters who partnered with Frederick Douglass to the first Black player in the NBA, African Americans have shaped the history of Alexandria.

Explore more ways to celebrate Black history and culture throughout February and year-round on Visit Alexandria’s Black History and Culture page.


Black History Month Events & Experiences

Manumission Tour Company Virtual Tour of Local Black History: Freedom's Fight in Alexandria

February 3, 2022, from 5 to 7 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required) Virtual

 Join Manumission Tour Company to (virtually) travel the streets of historic Old Town Alexandria and hear the little-known stories of Africans and African Americans, both enslaved and freemen, at a time when Alexandria was one of American's main centers for the international and domestic slave trade. This program will give participants insight into Alexandria's pre-civil war history of urban slavery, and highlight runaway enslaved individuals, like stepbrothers Oscar and George Ball, free African Americans like Moses Hepburn and early abolitionists, such as pharmacist Edward Stabler, who pushed back against the "Peculiar Institution" of slavery.

Manumission Tour Company curates guided cultural heritage tours designed to highlight Alexandria’s extensive African American History. Learn more here.

10% Discount on Manumission Tour Company Bookings Throughout February

Throughout February 2022

Admission: $15 per adult; $12 per child (pre-discount)

Tour locations vary within Old Town, Alexandria, VA 22314

Manumission Tour Company curates guided cultural heritage tours designed to highlight Alexandria’s extensive African American History. Owned by a fourth generation Alexandrian, Manumission Tour Company offers weekend guided walking and bus tours February through December. Tour routes include “Freedom’s Fight in Alexandria,” “Duke Street Black History” and “Still’s Underground Railroad.” Personalized group tours and step-on services are available by request.

An Afternoon Lecture with the Equal Justice Initiative

February 8, 2022, from 4 to 5 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required) Virtual 

Attend an afternoon with Trey Walk, project manager with the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI). Join the Alexandria Community Remembrance Project (ACRP) to learn more about EJI and the ACRP’s work with them to educate Alexandria citizens about Alexandria’s two lynchings that occurred in 1897 and 1899.


The Life and Times of Charles Young: Presented by the National Park Service

February 10, 2022, from 7 to 8 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required) Virtual

Join Park Ranger Roger Osorio, from the Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument, to learn the story behind Colonial Young's life and the legacy he created. Charles Young, born to enslaved parents, persevered through racism and prejudice to become one of the first African American graduates from West Point Military Academy and went on to serve in many capacities and missions throughout the United States and the world at a time when opportunities for Black Americans were severely restricted. Please contact with questions or for more information.

Storytime with the Alexandria Black History Museum

February 12, 2022, at 10 a.m.

Admission: Free Virtual 

Educate kids during story time with the Alexandria Black History Museum, a collaboration with the Alexandria Library. Join Mrs. Lillian Patterson for story time and hear about African American history. The event is great for children ages 4 to 8, but all are welcome. Recurring story times occur on the second Saturday of each month.


A White Historian Explores “Race Riots” 

February 12, 2022, at 11 a.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required) Virtual 

Violent clashes between large crowds of different races have disturbed the social order in the United States since long before the Civil War, and the phrase “race riot” has been used to describe such disparate events such as the Tulsa massacre of 1921, the 1968 uprisings following the assassination of Martin Luther King and the anti-Chinese riots of the 1870s. Susan Strasser investigates the term and a history of racially-charged violence that has framed American discussions of race. Register here to receive the Zoom link.


Virtual Film Screening and Discussion of “Odessa’s Reign”

February 16, 2022, from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required) Virtual 

Tune into a film screening and discussion of “Odessa’s Reign” with producer Robin Hamilton. Crowned “Queen of the Underworld,” a Black female gangster runs the most lucrative gambling ring in D.C. in the 1950s and manages to keep the D.C. police in her back pocket. Runtime is 25 minutes. Robin Hamilton is an Emmy-award winning television host, producer and moderator for town halls and forums.  She is the founder and principal of the Around Robin Production Company, where she creates videos for nonprofits to help with fundraising, marketing and messaging.


Washington Revels Jubilee Voices in Concert

February 19, 2022, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required)


The Alexandria Black History Museum presents the Washington Revels Jubilee Voices in concert. Join the Rebels as their members explore the rich history of African American music. 


Left Behind: Stories from the Underground Railroad

February 22, 2022, from 7 to 8 p.m.

Admission: Free (Registration required)


Master Storyteller Sheila Arnold looks at what formerly enslaved people left behind when they escaped to freedom. Freedom — it’s what we all desire, but if you had to leave something or someone behind, could you do it for the hope of a word called “freedom?” Through story, song and audience interaction, Master Storyteller Sheila Arnold, looks at the fugitive slaves from the Underground Railroad and shares what they left behind – family, clothes, name and even life. There are surprises that were left behind as well, and this presentation brings humor along with thought-provoking moments. The program is historical storytelling at its best.  A one-hour program that begins with the audience’s thoughts and leads to stories that will stay in your mind long after the presentation has ended. Appropriate for all ages.