I am a landscape architect in the greater Atlanta, Georgia, area. In the recent past I was an educator in the field of landscape architecture, urban design, and environmental planning as a member of the faculty at the University of Georgia’s College of Environment and Design, from 1996 to 2005. My undergraduate degree was in Geography, from University of Ghana, and I hold a Master of Landscape Architecture degree from University of Georgia. My background in the humanities and in environmental design recently led me to pursue a doctorate that combined my diverse academic and praxis interests, and I graduated in 2013 with a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies from the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts at Emory University.
My research explores intersections of African American history, culture, and literature in colonial and antebellum slavery in the American South, and combines humanities with design arts and technology. My focus is on what I term "Hidden Landscapes of Slavery,"—places and spaces, like some former plantations and slave auction sites in the American South that are unmarked and without commemoration. I research historical and contemporary maps and texts for spatial, architectural and cultural information to facilitate remapping and re-imaging said landscapes, to recreate these as virtual sites that allow commemorative attention towards the former enslaved persons who inhabited these places. My work is about the connections of people and place. My most recent journal publication, “Unearthing the Weeping Time: Savannah’s Ten Broeck Race Course and 1859 Slave Sale,” was published in Southern Spaces, an online Interdisciplinary Journal about regions, places and cultures of the U.S. South. My most recent publication, “ ‘Torn Asunder’: Savannah’s 1859 ‘Weepin’ Time’ Slave Sale,” is a sidebar in the book, Slavery and Freedom in Savannah, edited by Leslie M. Harris and Daina Ramey Berry, University of Georgia Press, 2014: pp. 61-63.
My interest in the Butler family, especially descendants of the formerly enslaved, began when I inadvertently discovered in 1997 that some of the Butler slave names were very similar to my own Akan (Ghanaian) name, and indeed that of some of my family members and friends. 1771 slave names that were orthographically reminiscent of contemporary Ghanaian names. Kinfolk!... I have been searching since, trying to connect descendants with ancestors, African and American, and walking the very landscapes the enslaved ancestors trod. Please join me ...
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