Port marker installation and unveiling planned in Port Arthur

Published 12:12 am Wednesday, March 13, 2024

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The African American Cultural Society, in collaboration with Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Marker Project (MPCPMP) and essential stakeholders, are proudly presenting, acknowledging and honoring the enslaved ancestors of the City of Port Arthur at 2 p.m. March 23 at “Popeye” Holmes Park on Fourth Street in Port Arthur.

This solemn event is a reminder of the pain and trauma of the enslaved ancestors and a tribute to their strength and endurance, organizers said.

The event coincides with the annual International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade at 2 p.m. March 25.

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The Sabine River and Sabine Lake regions is where captive African children, women and men first disembarked after the voyage across the Atlantic Ocean is known as the Middle Passage, organizer said.

“We will gather at our local judicial system of the courthouse,” organizers said.

“Enslaved human beings were often sold from the steps of courthouses. Then traffickers went inside the courthouse to file the papers from their transaction in the sale of these human beings, who were considered property.”

The focus is on the ancestors who experienced the stress and trauma of enslavement and the imprints of that stress and trauma biologically passed down through the generations of their descendants.

International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade is a United Nations international observance designated in 2007 to be marked on March 25 every year.

The day honors and remembers those who suffered and died as a consequence of the transatlantic slave trade, which has been called “the worst violation of human rights in history,” in which in more than 400 years more than 15 million men, women and children were victims.