Girl Scouts Beyond Bars Troops Celebrate African American History and Culture

Nine members of Troops 7140 and 7856 participated in a multi-faceted Girl Scout weekend adventure on November 23rd.

The weekend began Saturday morning with a celebration of two African American suffragist leaders and the unveiling of a historic marker at their former homes on DruidHill Avenue in Baltimore City. The girls conducted the flag ceremony and led the Pledge of Allegiance at Union Baptist Church before the group of over 70 who gathered to pay homage to two African American women pioneers.BBT3

The girls learned about the lives of the two honorees: Augusta Chissell and Margaret Gregory Hawkins. Both women worked tirelessly for women’s suffrage, at a time when black women were not well treated or accepted within the women’s suffrage movement. The girls also heard presentations from the Maryland Women’s Heritage Center, National Collaborative Women’s History Sites/Votes for Women Trail, Maryland Suffrage Commission, Dubois Circle of Baltimore, and the Afro-American Newspaper.

Following the presentations, the Girl Scouts and all assembled walked three blocks to the site of the historic marker unveiling. Once everyone arrived at the former homes of Mrs. Chissell and Mrs. Hawkins, the Girl Scouts gathered near the marker and helped to unveil the historic Votes for Women Trail marker (which is similar in size and prominence as the historic markers seen along roadways).


After walking back to the church, the Girl Scouts traveled by van to Girl Scouts of Central Maryland headquarters to eat lunch, work on badges—including the Right to Vote badge and make dinner together.  

Well-fed and in very good spirits, the Girl Scouts boarded the van for their next adventure–a trip to Morgan State University to watch the world-class Dance Theatre of Harlem perform. It was an outstanding artistic and physical performance that engaged and enthralled the girls and the entire audience, featuring classical and modern dance choreography.

All through this very long day, the girls learned about the history of African American heroes, from the suffrage leaders of years past, to those breaking racial barriers in the arts just a few decades ago.


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