Educating imaginative, resilient leaders for God's changing world.


Lecture Will Explore Experience of Slave Families in Atlanta Area


Decatur, GA.— Three antebellum slave families who were moved from their homes in coastal Georgia to the Atlanta area will be the focus of a lecture by Columbia Seminary professor Erskine Clarke, Thursday, February 16, 8:00 p.m., at the Atlanta History Center, 130 West Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. Clarke’s lecture, titled “My Pen Cannot Express the Griffe,” is drawn from his book Dwelling Place: A Plantation Epic (Yale University Press, 2005). In the lecture, he will explore the experiences of three slave families who were moved from Georgia’s coast, the lowcountry, to Roswell, Marietta, and Atlanta in the 1840s and 50s. After tracing the histories of the families over several generations in the lowcountry, he will tell stories of their removal to a distant place and how they struggled, even with inexpressible grief, against the oppression of slavery. A book signing follows the lecture. Reservations are required. Please call 404-814-4150 for more information, or to make a reservation. The cost of the event is $5 for Atlanta History Center members and $10 for non-members. Dwelling Place has been described by Pulitzer Prize winner Dan Carter as “a work of grand sweep and great power. In a form that reads like a novel, Erskine Clarke tells the stories of four generations of wealthy white planters and their slaves and the extraordinarily complex ways in which these two communities interacted. It is a multigenerational tale of black and white, told in a grand narrative style.” Clarke is professor of American religious history at Columbia Theological Seminary. His lecture at the Atlanta History Center is part of the Aiken Lecture Series, funded by a bequest from the estate of Atlantan Lucy Rucker Aiken, seeks to illuminate aspects of African American life in Atlanta and the Southeast before 1946. Columbia Theological Seminary, located in Decatur, Georgia, was established in 1828 and is one of 10 theological institutions of the Presbyterian Church (USA). 

Media Contact:
Michael Thompson
Director of Communications

View All News Releases