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City Hall
1565 First Street
Sarasota, FL 34236

For Immediate Release: January 31, 2012


Sarasota, FL: For the fourth consecutive year, educational materials are on display at City Hall, 1565 First Street, commemorating Black History Month. The materials, which feature new items this year, are now available for viewing in the lobby through Wednesday, February 29, 2012. The display includes photographs and newspaper articles charting African-American trailblazers in Sarasota and the history of racial integration in Sarasota County.

Multiple displays are available for public viewing, including items documenting the achievements of athletes, elected officials, entertainers, teachers and others who were and are at the forefront of black achievers in our community. One photo shows Dorothye Smith, the first African-American Teacher of the Year and first African-American principal in Sarasota County. Another photo depicts two of the earliest members of Sarasota’s African-American community, Irene and Louis Colson, who in 1897 donated land to the Bethlehem Baptist Church which, with Louis as its first minister, also became the center for educational, cultural and recreational activities in the community.

The display is being organized again this year by Sarasota residents Dorothye Smith and Mary Edmunds. It will be open to the public Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. through February.

For more information contact City Auditor and Clerk Pamela Nadalini: 941-954-4169.

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