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SouthBound: Elijah Heyward III And The New Museum On 'Sacred Ground' In African American History

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You can’t understand the South without trying to understand Charleston, South Carolina.

Tourists know it for the pretty houses and five-star restaurants. Some white Southerners revere the Citadel and the Civil War sites.

But for Black Americans, Charleston was Ellis Island rewritten as a horror story – the primary port through which slaves came into this country.

Now, on a wharf in Charleston Harbor, the International African American Museum is rising to tell that story. It’s scheduled to open in 2022.

And Elijah Heyward III, a son of that South Carolina coast, is the museum’s chief operating officer.

In some ways, it’s a job he has prepared for his whole life.

Let's keep the conversation going. Who do you want to hear from next on the SouthBound podcast?

Submit your idea in the box below. You can also send a tweet to @tommytomlinson or @wfae, and email me at ttomlinson@wfae.org.

Show notes:

Other music in this episode:

  • Jahzzar, "In the Museum"
  • Josh Woodward, "Ships"

New episodes of SouthBound come out every other Wednesday. Subscribe:

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SouthBound is a production of WFAE. Our host is Tommy Tomlinson. Our audience engagement manager is Joni Deutsch, and our main theme comes from Josh Turner.

Tommy Tomlinson has hosted the podcast SouthBound for WFAE since 2017. He also does a commentary that airs every Monday. He's the author of "The Elephant in the Room," a memoir about life as an overweight man in a growing America. He spent 23 years as a reporter and local columnist for the Charlotte Observer, where he was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in commentary. He has also written for publications including Esquire, ESPN The Magazine, Sports Illustrated, and Garden & Gun. He’s a graduate of the University of Georgia and was a 2008-09 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. Tommy and his wife, Alix Felsing, live in Charlotte.