Savannah State University will celebrate National Freedom Day with wreath-laying ceremony

Maj. Richard R. Wright, Sr.

Savannah State University will celebrate the annual National Freedom Day at Noon on Wednesday, Feb. 1 with a special wreath-laying ceremony at the Maj. Richard R. Wright, Sr. Bust on Felix Alexis Circle by Maxwell Saunders, the great-great-great grandson of Maj. Wright, SSU’s first president. 

Themed “How to be Free in 2023: A Vision for the Future Rooted in Our Past,” the ceremony will include student leaders from SSU’s NAACP, Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society, and Honors Program reading the 13th ,14th, and 15th Amendments. The event is open to the public and there is no admission to attend.

The observance also includes a roundtable discussion led by Dr. Christina Davis, associate professor of Africana Studies and Dr. Carolyn V. Jordan, director of SSU’s Honors Program, at 6:30 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom, with students from Clark Atlanta University joining the conversation virtually.

Maj. Wright is considered the architect of National Freedom Day, established to commemorate President Lincoln’s signing of a resolution proposing the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery in the United States. A proclamation naming Feb. 1 National Freedom Day was signed by President Truman in 1948.

"As the oldest public [historically black] institution of higher learning in the state of Georgia, Savannah State University must always celebrate our heritage,” said Dr. Jordan. “As a former enslaved African, our founding President Maj. Richard Robert Wright Sr. understood the importance of establishing National Freedom Day to memorialize the anniversary of the signing of the 13th amendment, and to promote and foster the spirit of always looking to our future but forever remembering our past.” 

For more information, contact Dr. Jordan by calling 912-358-4089 or email jordanca@savannahstate.edu

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