Thursday, February 1, 2018

Black Gold, Slavery and Reed Gold Mine – Black History Month Tours

Feb 1, 2018

The origins and impact of slavery in Cabarrus County, and the benefits of slave labor to Reed Gold Mine will be examined during Black History Month. Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site will offer “Black Gold: North Carolina Slavery and Reed Gold Mine” tours every Saturday in February at 1 p.m. and examine the area’s social and economic environment during John Reed’s lifetime.

When John Reed arrived in Cabarrus County in 1782 as a Hessian army deserter he found himself at home in a community with a familiar language and culture. Owning slaves in colonial and antebellum North Carolina was a societal norm, and through their labor economic ventures like farming and gold mining boomed.

The “Black Gold” tour allows Reed Gold Mine to share a forgotten part of North Carolina history, connect with the origins of Reed Gold Mine and discover how piedmont North Carolina was transformed through the years of backbreaking labor of enslaved men, women and children. What may have been the largest find, a 28-pound nugget, was unearthed by a neighbor’s slave, Peter, while working in the mine.

In telling the slavery story of eastern Cabarrus County through the 19th century, Reed Gold Mine will share its importance in the greater North Carolina narrative. “Black Gold” provides the opportunity to connect with people and fill an educational need extending beyond one month on the calendar. The story of the discovery of gold is important at Reed Gold Mine, but it is not the only story to be told. “Black Gold: North Carolina Slavery and Reed Gold Mine” is $2 per person age 8 and older; children ages seven and under can join the tour for free. Tours begin at 1 p.m. each Saturday in the visitor center.

For additional information, please call (704) 721-4653 or email Reed Gold Mine is located in southeastern Cabarrus County 12 miles southeast of Concord, 25 miles east of Charlotte, and 18 miles west of Albemarle.

Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The site is closed on Sunday, Monday and on major holidays. Admission is free. Reed Gold Mine is part of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, Division of State Historic Sites, Office of Archives and History.

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