The Lemon Project: A Journey of Reconciliation has been working for over a decade. The Lemon Project team has grown from one lecturer to include one director, an associate director, a postdoctoral fellow, two graduate assistants, and 35 undergraduate and graduate student affiliates in the Lemon Project Society. Our on- and off-campus community has grown even more. We have forged partnerships with community organizations in the Tidewater area, and we have had a leadership role in the growth of the Universities Studying Slavery Consortium (USS). At every stage in the last thirteen years, our growth has been grounded in the spark from the 2007 Student Assembly Resolution that started it all.
As we continue the second decade of living up to this vision, we remain steadfast in our commitments to our core goals to:
- contribute to and encourage scholarship on the 329-year relationship between Africans and African Americans and William & Mary
- build bridges between the university and Williamsburg and Greater Tidewater area
- join in the effort to make the current campus a safe, comfortable, and productive space for current students of color
- continue and expand our leadership role in the growing national and international movement of colleges and universities studying their full histories as they relate to slavery and its legacies.
And today, we launch this blog as part of our commitment to inviting the Williamsburg community, the USS community, and of course, William & Mary students, alumni, staff, and faculty, to join us on our ongoing “journey of reconciliation.” Much of our work is intentionally public-facing: we showcase new findings and interpretations on our website and celebrate it at the annual symposium; we partner with grassroots community organizations advocating for racial equity in the Tidewater region; and we organize and support programming for undergraduates through the Lemon Project Society.
But have you ever wondered what we actually do and see in the archives? How do we find community partners? Or what happens in a meeting of the Lemon Project Society, Branch Out weekend, or at Lemon’s Learners, our summer program for middle school students? The Lemon Project Blog will give you a behind-the-scenes look at how we interpret archival materials, develop community building programming, and how we learn with and from our undergraduate affiliates. Through this new medium, we will be able to share our process with our whole community.
We invite all our community members to submit reflections on The Lemon Project’s historical findings, on- and off-campus community building, learning and teaching about African American history, and current events from a historically informed perspective committed to William & Mary’s core values and to the Black Freedom Struggle.
LP Submission Guidelines
We welcome submissions from anyone who shares our interest in African American and African Diaspora history, social justice concerns, and The Lemon Project’s 4 major goals. Blog posts might, for instance, speak about new historical findings relevant to understanding the university’s 329-year relationship with African American communities, reflect on relevant current events or community programs, or amplify the voices of Black students and community members.
Please submit your blog posts here.
Thank you to Dr. Vineeta Singh, the 2018-2020 Lemon Project/Omohundro Institute Postdoctoral Fellow, for writing this post and helping us to imagine what the Lemon Project Blog can be.