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Please be advised that Telfair Museums recognizes the Savannah Safe Pledge and the reinstatement of the Savannah/Chatham County mask mandate. Masks are required for visitors and staff at all three of our museum sites.

Jepson Center free to locals June 12-13; free libation ceremony and virtual lecture

SAVANNAH, GA (June 7, 2021) — Telfair Museums will mark Juneteenth 2021 with free admission to the Jepson Center, a free libation ceremony, and a free virtual lecture.

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 12 and 13, Savannah and Chatham County residents will receive free admission to the Jepson Center in partnership with the City of Savannah. The free weekend will be highlighted by a libation ceremony at 12 p.m. Saturday on the front steps of the museum led by local historians Vaughnette Goode-Walker and Jamal Toure. Activity kits focusing on the Black experience and themes related to current exhibitions, including works by Savannah artist Sauda Mitchell, also will be distributed.

Juneteenth celebrates the beginning of the emancipation of enslaved Americans on June 19, 1865, by order of Union General Gordon Granger in Texas.

At 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 15, Telfair will host its annual Juneteenth lecture with a virtual appearance by historian and author Anthony Cohen, whose book “Patrick & Me” chronicles his journey as a fourth-generation descendant of an enslaved man who escaped to freedom on the Underground Railroad. Drawing from an 1856 interview with his forbearer, Cohen carefully reconstructs the amazing life story of Patrick Sneed—a slave of African, Jewish, Irish, and Cherokee heritage—who fled from bondage in Savannah and later went on to fight in the Civil War.

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“As we mark Emancipation Day, we’re excited to welcome respected historians and the public to come together to reflect upon, share, and honor the unique history of our city and our region,” said Jason Kendall, Telfair’s public relations director. “With things opening up and summer officially getting underway, it’s a great time to gather and to celebrate. We’ll be back in the fall and heading into next year with a number of impactful exhibitions of works by more Black artists, including Sonya Clark, Noel W. Anderson, and William Golding, and the culmination of our years-long Legacy of Slavery in Savannah project and symposium in 2022.”

Telfair recently expanded its regular days and hours as it continues to pare back limitations enforced during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last year. All three of Telfair’s sites—the Jepson Center, the Telfair Academy, and the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters—now are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays, in addition to Thursdays through Mondays. The museum remains closed on Wednesdays. The museum’s award-winning cafe partner Joe’s at the Jepson, the No. 1-ranked Savannah restaurant on TripAdvisor, is open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. seven days per week.

About Telfair Museums:

Opened in 1886, Telfair Museums is the oldest public art museum in the South and features a world-class art collection in the heart of Savannah’s National Historic Landmark District. The museum encompasses three sites: the Jepson Center for the Arts, the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters, and the Telfair Academy. For more information visit telfair.org.