Center for Digital Learning at SUNY Geneseo

Douglass Day 2023 at SUNY Geneseo

Image of Mary Ann Shadd Cary and motto "Transcribe Shadd Cary" Mary Ann Shadd Cary. Image: Public domain. Design:

This February 14, as part of Black History Month, SUNY Geneseo will participate for the first time in Douglass Day, a global annual event intended to create communal spaces for remembering and preserving Black history with Black communities in ways that promote critical reflection and joy.

Please join the SUNY Geneseo Center for Digital Learning, Center for Integrative Learning, and Teaching and Learning Center on February 14 as we celebrate Douglass Day in the College Union Hunt Room from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.—watching the organizers’ live stream together and participating in this year’s Douglass Day transcribe-a-thon.

You’ll find more information about the event on Geneseo’s local Douglass Day website. But, you may already be asking yourself, “What is a transcribe-a-thon?”

Central to every Douglass Day celebration is a community effort to transcribe digitized historical documents important to the history of Black activism, especially those of Black women activists. This year, the CDL, CIL, and TLC will lead participants in transcribing the papers of antislavery activist, women’s rights advocate, writer, teacher, and lawyer Mary Ann Shadd Cary (1823-1893), the first Black woman in North America to edit a weekly newspaper.

You don’t need to know a thing about transcription to contribute to this work! All you need is your enthusiasm and your laptop. Everything else—including instructions on how to use the web-based Zooniverse transcription platform—will be supplied.

On our local Douglass Day website, you’ll find additional information and materials, including suggestions for how to learn more about the remarkable life and accomplishments of Mary Ann Shadd Cary. If you’re an instructor looking to fold Douglass Day into a course you’re teaching this semester, you may find our instructor resources page helpful.

Everyone is welcome. We’d appreciate knowing whether you’ll be there! If you have a moment, please complete our RSVP form to let us know.