Forks of the Road to unveil maps

Published 12:08 am Tuesday, November 22, 2011

As the Friends of Forks of the Roads Society Inc.’s coordinator, I, at 7:30 a.m. Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, will unveil and dedicate a copy of FRSI’s new Forks of the Road traveling exhibition: “America’s Domestic ‘Slave’ Trading Routes Map,” professionally and colorfully printed on a 4-by-6-feet sign.

The map sign is installed on FRSI’s vacant lot at 226 St. Catherine St. at the corner of St. Catherine and Junkin Streets, about a mile east of downtown Natchez.

It’s fitting and most appropriate that this historic second-largest deep southwest enslavement hub of America’s internal slave trading, from the upper old mid and eastern seaboard south to the lower southwest, become an annual Thanksgiving Day pilgrimage remembrance site.

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It’s most meaningful and proper to coordinate a Forks of Road annual Thanksgiving Day pilgrimage remembrance in solidarity with the America’s indigenous nations’ unthanksgiving sunrise ceremonies on Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay, commemorating the “survival of Native American people following the settlement of Europeans in the Western Hemisphere.”

As a result, both African and indigenous nations suffered and endured great tragedies for which the effects and affects are still lingering among descendants in the Americas and around the world this Thanksgiving!

Both African and indigenous nations had many similar cultural practices before and after Columbus lost the way to the land called the Americas. Many “Indian” nations adopted runaway Africans and made alliances against common oppressors.

The internal America’s “slave” trading routes map shows the probable sea, rivers, streams, Native American and animal trails, stagecoach and mail roads enslaved and free blacks were force-shipped on and walked over the Overground Railroad Passages of Sorrow to the Forks of Road and beyond.

In Maryland, Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, Florida, Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee, professional dealers, traffickers and speculators by hook, crook and sometimes outright kidnapping, tore apart mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, cousins, babies, young children, relations and friends already enslaved or were so-called free people in the upper South.

They force-brought them to the new lower south markets, such as the Forks of the Road, to be sold into chattel enslavement, yet again, that’s partly the reason blacks live in southwestern U.S. today!

All comers, regardless of racial types, cultures, religions, spiritual traditions, political beliefs, educational, economical, social and male/female backgrounds are solicited to take a brief Thanksgiving Day time out and come to the unveiling and dedicating of the internal American “slave” routes map at 7:30 a.m. to give thanks to the people of yesterday who made the opportunities possible for those of us living today!

If you can’t come to Forks of Road, go to the cemetery and give thanks! Set a plate of food and empty chair at the eating table!


Ser Seshsh Ab Heter-CM Boxley is the coordinator of the Friends of Forks of the Roads Society Inc.