Talking About Race Matters


Race is an important conversation to DFM.
We are undergoing an extensive research initiative to discover the lives of the enslaved in Inwood and Upper Manhattan.
Head to our DyckmanDISCOVERED page for more information!


Join the Discussion . . .

One of the most important topics throughout history and today is the topic of race. We at the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum feel that it is important to have and to facilitate conversations on race, even though they can be challenging. Because of this, we have put together a series of talks with experts, each looking at the topic of race from a different perspective. Our hope is that we can all come together, learn from one another, and to continue the conversation. 

FEBRUARY 2024 SERIES

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Headwraps of African Women in America

Cheyney McKnight

Cheyney McKnight will give a lecture on headwraps found among both free and enslaved African Women in America from the 18th to 19th century. Attendees will learn how headwraps changed from region to region, and the cultural and historical significance of styles.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Fashion, Race, Identity, and Power: Black Dandy Beginnings

Monica Miller

This talk will explore the politics of fashion and dress for enslaved and free Black people in 18th and 19th-century Europe and America. Beginning with the phenomenon of dandified “luxury slaves” in 18th-century London, Miller will discuss the way in which the enslaved and free in America used fancy dress and fashion to both visualize freedom and critique contemporary hierarchies of race, gender, class, and sexuality. This talk is based on Miller’s book Slaves to Fashion, a cultural history of Black dandyism, which uses print culture, colonial histories, literature, and theater to tell the Black dandy’s story.

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Redressing American Fashion: Black Designers in the 19th and 20th Centuries

Elizabeth Way

Black people have always significantly shaped American fashion through their style, their labor, and as innovative fashion makers. From nineteenth-century dressmakers, both enslaved and free, to transitional creatives who helped navigate what an American designer could be, and late-twentieth century designers, embedded in the formal New York industry, Black people have always been a driving force in American fashion.

Register Here

SEPTEMBER 2022 SERIES

Thursday, September 14, 2022

The Impact of the Age of Exploration on What We Eat

Lavada Nahon

Thursday, September 21, 2022

Food Justice is More than Growing Food and Feeding People

Karen Washington

About the Talk:

For many the idea of decolonizing our lives, includes ‘eating like our ancestors’ but what if you have no idea what your ancestors ate? How far back does one look for those ‘ancestors’? When and how did the world’s foods get so mixed up? In this short program, culinary historian Lavada Nahon will look at the global food and eating exchanges of the 17th and 18th century and their lingering impact on what we eat today.

About the Talk:

People in poor urban and rural communities are told that if they want food security, all they have to do is grow their own vegetables, give up soda and exercise, as if, by magic, eating vegetables and drinking water are going to solve the problems in the food system, without looking at the institutional. environmental and structural determinants that reinforce racism in today’s society. How has the COVID-19 changed the way people now think?

Thursday, September 28, 2022

Here to Stir the Pot: TikTok as a Tool for Elevating Culture & Catalyzing Change

Ora Kemp

About the Talk:

Sprinkle, share, chop, crop, fold and follow; the recipe for a strong social media profile built to catalyze change is like perfecting a recipe. Some content requires a bit of spice, maybe a sweeter delivery, but the flavor needs to stay strong and pronounced, potent in its presentation and uniquely you. Every post is a calculated dose of decolonization, a delectable dissemination of digital decadence and an unfiltered taste of how food is ingrained in cultural traditions. Join us as we serve up social media as the amuse bouche for catalyzing change.

FEBRUARY / MARCH 2022 SERIES

Thursday, February 10th at 6pm

Museums Respond to the Demand for Social Justice: Are We Creating A Sustainable Mash Up?

Ms. Deborah Schwartz


About the Talk:

Some cultural institutions are setting their sights on democracy and social justice. What does it look like in our programming, our governance structures, and our community relationships?

Wednesday, February 16th at 6pm

Courageous Conversations

Mr. Ty Jones and Mr. Michael Dinwiddie


About the Talk:

A moderated discussion centered around the intersection of art and social justice. Seeking to uphold our founding commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, our goal is to foster community maintenance through art and conversation.

Wednesday, February 23rd at 6pm

Flow y Movimiento in the Heights: Social Justice & Advocacy in High School

Susan Natacha Gonzalez and Beatriz Oliva


About the Talk:

The daily practice of social justice requires discerning the needs of those we serve. How can organizations assess, and respond to community demands to develop programs and provide support for participants and families? The provision of academic programs, non-traditional social-emotional and mental health services within the academic setting will be explored.

Wednesday, March 2nd at 6pm

The American Plate: Race, Place, Taste and the Future of Food Equity

Ms. Ora Kemp


About the Talk:

Sowed from seeds of fertile grounds, sweat drenched brows and broken backs, the flavors of the American plate are seasoned with slavery’s bitterness. Salted with segregation and smoked in stacks of racial injustice, the hunger pangs that linger in the gut of black and brown folks has fully grown into an insatiable desire for change.

Slides and sources mentioned during talk (PDF)

This program is hosted in partnership with The Classical Theatre of Harlem.

This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the Honorable Ydanis Rodriguez, New York City Council, District 10, and the Manhattan Borough President’s Office. Additional funding is provided by TD Bank.

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2021 SERIES

Wednesday, August 25th at 6pm

Bedtime Stories about Slavery and the Legacy it Left on this Nation

Mr. Joseph McGill


About the Talk:

What started as an attempt to bring much needed attention to extant slave dwellings, has evolved into a movement to change narratives at historic sites throughout the nation.

Wednesday, September 1st at 6pm

I Was Here: Reshaping the American Commemorative Landscape

Marjorie Guyon, Marshall Fields, Patrick J. Mitchell, Dr. Michael Preacely, Michael Baer, and Barry Darnell Burton


About the Talk:

Created by photographing contemporary African Americans as archetypal Ancestor Spirits, the Portraits invoke the Human Family – Man, Woman, Child, Mother, Father, Sister, Brother.

Wednesday, September 8th at 6pm

Markers on the Land: Slavery, Commemoration and the History of Africans in Northern Manhattan

Dr. Robert W. Snyder, Peggy King Jorde, Dr. Andrea Mosterman, and Richard Tomczak


About the Talk:

With changes contemplated for an African burial ground and Native American ritual site in Inwood, join us for a panel discussion on the history of slavery at Dyckman House, in New Amsterdam, and in the early years of the United States. How might we best study this past and commemorate it in the present?

Wednesday, September 22nd at 6pm

“Troubled Like the Restless Sea”: Frederick Douglass and the “Profusion of Luxury” in Early America

Dr. R. Ruthie Dibble and Dr. Tiffany Momon


About the Talk:

Over 150 years after the publication of My Bondage and My Freedom, Frederick Douglass’s rhetorical genius still offers new insights into American art and history. Co-curators Drs. Ruthie Dibble and Tiffany Momon illuminate how a passage from Douglass’s autobiography became the basis of a collaborative curatorial intervention at the Milwaukee Art Museum that explores the troubled status of luxury goods in early America.

Wednesday, September 15th at 6pm

‘A Long Time Coming’: The Archaeology and History of the Native and African American Community in Setauket, NY

Dr. Christopher Matthews


About the Talk:

This presentation will discuss recent archaeology and community-based research focused on the mixed-heritage Native American and African American community in Setauket, on Long Island, NY. The talk will explore this history of this community, highlighting their long struggle to persist despite consistent and intensifying racism and displacement.

This program is made possible by funding from the Bowery Residents’ Committee and The New York Community Trust.

FEBRUARY / MARCH 2021 SERIES


Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/unearthing-seneca-village

Unearthing New York City’s Forgotten Past: Seneca Village the Life and Death of an African American and Irish Immigrant Community

Mr. Herbert Seignoret


About the Talk:

Seneca Village was established in the 1820s as a free Black settlement. The Institute for the Exploration of Seneca Village History (IESVH) has defined its boundaries as 82nd to 89th Streets and 7th to 8th (Central Park West) Avenues, as these streets might extend into the park.

CLICK for Herbert Seignoret’s Select Bibliography and Additional Resources

Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/dyckman-oval

The Story of Dyckman Oval: Uptown Manhattan’s Historic Negro League Baseball Stadium

Mr. Don Rice


About the Talk:

When the legendary Dyckman Oval ballpark opened at the northern tip of Manhattan in 1917, Major League baseball was still decades away from including players of color. Black independent teams at the time were filled with fantastic players, and NYC sports fans wanted to see these teams play. But for years local stadium owners had blocked many of them from booking games here.

Click here for Don Rice’s resource list to learn more about the Dyckman Oval.

Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/zora-neale-hurston-and

Zora Neale Hurston and Pura Belpré: Pioneers of Black and Latinx Folk Culture in Upper Manhattan

Dr. Will Walker


About the Talk:

In January 1932, at the John Golden Theater on 58th St. between Broadway and 7th Ave., the famed writer Zora Neale Hurston mounted a daring and innovative revue called The Great Day, which featured Black folk culture in all its splendor.


Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/sylvester-manor

The Enslaved at Sylvester Manor: Revealing their stories through Landscape and Memory

Ms. Donnamarie Barnes


About the Talk:

Sylvester Manor on Shelter Island, the ancestral home of the Manhansett People, began in 1651 as a provisioning plantation worked by enslaved Africans brought from Barbados. For almost 400 years, the place has descended through the same family.

Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/harlem-jazz-and-dance

Black Dance and Music Connections with Jazz Power Initiative

Mr. Eli Yamin and Ms. Shireen Dickson


About the Talk:

How did the uptown spirit of community collaboration translate into worldwide recognition of black American artistic excellence? Join dancer Shireen Dickson and musician Eli Yamin for this experiential and participatory blend of facts, video footage, and signature songs and dances from the swing and bebop eras…

Follow the link to watch on Crowdcast or watch below on YouTube: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/slavery-on-the-dyckman

Generations of Slavery on the Dyckman Property in Inwood, 1661-1827

Dr. Gretchen Sullivan Sorin and Mr. Richard Tomczak 


About the Talk:

The generations of enslaved people that worked for the Dyckman family experienced ever-changing legal codes that restricted their movement, behaviors, and well-being. From the Dutch “half-freedom” of Jan Dyckman’s New Amsterdam, to the “negotiated manumission” of New York State, the family and their slaves were at the center of unfolding chapters of American history.

This program is sponsored by TD Bank.


This program is made possible by funding
from the New York Community Trust.

AUGUST 2020 SERIES


Watch on YouTube or follow the link to watch on Crowdcast: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/the-anti-racism-starter

The Anti-Racism Starter Pack: 5 Things to Know about Race, Racism, and Anti-Racism

Dr. Sallie Han and Dr. Tracy Betsinger


About the Talk:

In this presentation, we will discuss what is known from the anthropological sciences about race and racism. Our hope is that when we are ourselves better informed, we can help educate and guide others as well as fight back and call out ignorance and misinformation.

Watch on YouTube or follow the link to watch on Crowdcast: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/driving-while-black-race

Driving While Black: Race, Space, and the Automobile

Dr. Gretchen Sullivan Sorin


About the Talk:

It’s hardly a secret that mobility has always been limited, if not impossible, for African Americans. Before the Civil War, masters confined their slaves to their property, while free black people found themselves regularly stopped, questioned, and even kidnapped.

Watch on YouTube or follow the link to watch on Crowdcast: https://https://www.crowdcast.io/e/whiteness-slavery-and

Whiteness, Slavery, and the Making of Race in the Atlantic World

Dr. Matthew Reilly


About the Talk:

By the seventeenth century, England was establishing its empire throughout the Americas. In addition to implementing processes of land dispossession, Indigenous genocide, and large-scale agricultural production, this period also marked the rise of…

Follow the link to watch:
https://www.crowdcast.io/e/thinking-through-race

Thinking Through Race Formations in Latin America and the U.S.

Dr. Maria Chaves Daza


About the Talk:

While race impacts all communities, race is not the same all over the world. This talk will provide and introduction to how race formations differ in Latin America, including Spanish speaking Caribbean, and the U.S.

CHECK OUT OUR NEW MERCH!

Support the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum by purchasing a limited edition design that highlights the enslaved and free people who lived and worked at the Farmhouse.

Proceeds support further research and educational programming on the topic of the enslaved and free people highlighted on the products.

Make a purchase today to help us support DFM research and free public programming!


Dyckman Farmhouse Museum is funded in part by a Humanities New York CARES Grant with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the federal CARES Act.  Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this program do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.