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Online Lecture: African-American Heritage Foodways in New York – Discovering A Different Root
February 10, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
African American Heritage Foodways in New York – Discovering A Different Root
Wednesday, February 10
7:00 pm via Zoom
To register go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/135883389877
Lecture by Lavada Nahon, Culinary Historian and Independent Scholar
For many people the idea of African American foodways equals ‘Soul Food’ or southern cooking. Before the great migration of the 19th century, the foodways of Blacks in New York were based on the culinary traditions of the Dutch and indigenous people as much as they were British or African. Differences in climate also meant different foods were grown or available for foraging. Black History Month gives us an opportunity to look at New York’s colonial period and ponder a different root to our food lineage. Culinary historian, Lavada Nahon will share information about the colonial and early new nation periods, highlighting Dutch and indigenous foodways, the work of enslaved and free cooks, and their impact on our current food culture that you can enjoy at home.
Lavada Nahon is a culinary historian who is focused on the 17th – 19th century mid-Atlantic region, with an emphasis on the work of enslaved cooks in the homes of the elite class. She currently is the Interpreter of African American History for the Bureau of Historic Sites; a division of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Her mission is to bring history to life – both its tastes and by giving presence to the Africans and African Americans enslaved in the landmass that was once New Netherland in whatever way possible.
Lavada has 18 plus years of public history experience working with a variety of historic sites, societies and museums across the tri-state region. She has cooked on a variety of historic hearths many of which are no longer in use. She has developed educational programs, after-school programs, lectures and tours, period presentations and historic dinners for sites ranging from the New York Historical Society, Albany Institute of Art and History, Dyckman Farm House Museum, Johnson Hall, many more. She worked as a museum associate and educator for Historic Hudson Valley for 12 years at Van Cortlandt Manor and Philipsburg Manor Upper Mills, and as a production coordinator for their special events team. Currently she is on the reinterpretation team for Dey Mansion in Wayne, NJ, the home of the Passaic County Historical Society and is also working with several other historic sites to give presence to the Africans once enslaved on their properties.
This lecture is part of our ongoing program Food for Thought: A Tasty Exploration of Food, History, Culture and Community