Making Change in Community Heritage Preservation in Southern California

Promised Land, Hallowed Ground: Commemorative Justice and Making Change in Community Heritage Preservation in Southern California, Pt 1 — Symposium


Join the Institute for the Study of Los Angeles (ISLA) and me, Alison Rose Jefferson, M.H.C. | Ph.D., their Scholar in Residence, for a symposium with invited guest speakers to discuss and respond to the context of American history and culture in relation to Belmar History + Art, a commemorative justice project in Santa Monica, California, Saturday, March 20, 2021, 1:00 to 5:00 pm.

Learn more about this ISLA/Occidental College free virtual public program, how to register, and find an event flyer here.


Belmar History + Art Full Outdoor Exhibition Installed and More Programming to Roll Out Soon


We did it! Now you can visit the permanent history and art exhibition around the perimeter of the new Historic Belmar Park as all is fully installed. The Belmar History + Art initiative exhibition features the stories of people places and events of the erased African American experience in Santa Monica on fully installed history interpretive panels which were developed from my research and a large sculpture, “A Resurrection in Four Stanzas” by April Banks.



When visiting the new park, you are welcome to experience the exhibition in any order, but you may wish to begin at the entrance to the sports field on Fourth Street, at the large upright sign that says “Welcome to Historic Belmar Park,” and continue down the path south along Fourth toward Pico Boulevard.

After your exhibition tour at the park, you can learn more about the history of the African American experience in Santa Monica by reading my essay, “Reclamation and Reconstruction: The Erased African American Experience in Santa Monica’s History” and my book, Living the California Dream: African American Leisure Sites during the Jim Crow Era which underpin the content of the Belmar History + Art programming.

You can watch the virtual grand opening ceremony for Historic Belmar Park and the Belmar History + Art project which was held on Sunday, February 28 here. Lesson plans and youth artwork developed will also be rolled out soon, along with other programming of the multi-faceted education, inspirational, and remembrance commemorative justice BH+A project in the City of Santa Monica.

Learn more about the Belmar History + Art initiative here.


Belmar History + Art project’s Historian Alison Rose Jefferson (left) and Artist April Banks (right). Photography by Leroy Hamilton, January 25, 2020.

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