Celebrating Civil Rights on the Shore

Exterior of the Charles H. Chipman Cultural Center

The Beach to Bay Heritage Area will present their annual celebration, Civil Rights on the Shore: An Evening of History and Song with Dr. Clara Small and Dr. John Wesley Wright, Tenor at the Charles H. Chipman Cultural Center in downtown Salisbury on May 8th from 4:30-6:30pm.

Enjoy an evening with Dr. Clara Small and Dr. John Wesley Wright to discover and celebrate the Civil Rights movement here on the shore. The Charles H. Chipman Cultural Center, built in 1838, will serve as the backdrop for this event. The Chipman Center is the oldest standing African-American church on Delmarva. Later abandoned as a church, it was purchased by educators, Professor Charles H. Chipman and his wife Jeanette Chipman. They donated the building for use as a cultural center to honor the history and accomplishments of the black community.

Dr. Clara Small, a local historian who has dedicated her life to telling the story of black Americans from Delmarva will be presenting the history of civil rights here on the shore. Professor Emeritus at Salisbury University, Small spent 36 years teaching history in courses including World Civilizations, Civil Rights in American Society, African American History and related topics. She is unarguably the region’s foremost scholar on the history of Black America on the Delmarva Peninsula.

Tenor John Wesley Wright will be performing a selection of civil rights anthems.  He holds degrees from Maryville College and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he earned the M.M. and D.M.A. in Performance Studies. A native of Rome, Georgia, he works as Associate Professor of Music at Salisbury University (Salisbury, MD), coordinating the voice and opera workshop programs. 

Refreshments, beer & wine and hors d’oeuvres will be provided. Cost of tickets is $35. To learn more about the event and to purchase tickets click here