Clotilda: The Exhibition opens at Africatown

Clotilda The Exhibition In Africatown
Clotilda Descendants Association President Jeremy Ellis with Mobile County Commissioners Connie Hudson and Merceria Ludgood. (Mobile County / Facebook)

A new exhibit opened in Africatown on Saturday, July 8. The new addition is named Clotilda: The Exhibition and commemorates the 110 slaves brought to Mobile in the 1800s. Keep scrolling for more on this exhibit and its significance to Africatown, Mobile and the rest of the nation.

What is Clotilda?

Historians say that in July 1860, the Clotilda, the last known U.S. slave ship, arrived in Mobile with 110 African men, women and children on board.

When they arrived, they were separated and sold to slave dealers across the state and the captain reportedly burned the ship to hide evidence of the crime. Those who survived created a community of their own known as Africatown.

Clotilda: The Exhibition

According to its website, Clotilda: The Exhibition will cover the story of Clotilda with a special focus on the individuality and perseverance of the survivors and the community they established.

The 2,500-square-foot exhibition is a multi-sensory space, saturated with compelling stories and images. Visitors can see and hear stories of individuals’ histories, their families and their resilient spirits. Inside includes a timeline from the story’s West African origins through the founding and development of Africatown. Nearing the end of the exhibition, visitors can get a glimpse of the future of Africatown.

Fox 10 reported on the grand opening of the new addition to Africatown and offered insights from various Mobile and Africatown leaders.

“To see this come to fruition is deeply humbling but we really feel the urgency in telling their stories.”

Dr. Meg Fowler, Director, History Museum of Mobile

In addition to city leaders, the report also expressed thoughts from descendants of Clotilda, which showcases the need for an exhibition as powerful as this.

“It’s so good right now in America to know your history because if you don’t know where you came from, how do you know where you’re going?”

Shauntel Dobbins, Clotilda descendant

When can I visit?

The History Museum of Mobile operates Africatown Heritage House which is now home to Clotilda: The Exhibition. For ticket prices and information, you can visit the museum’s website.

What are your thoughts on Clotilda: The Exhibition? Let us know on Instagram + Facebook!

Callie Morrison
Callie Morrison
Articles: 69