It’s Black History Month at school so Sophie (age 7) and Ellie (age 5) tell some stories of Black women who made history in Britain. They tell of Ivory Bangle Woman, the first black woman found in Britain; Phillis Wheatley, an enslaved black woman turned star poet; and Mary Seacole, a Jamaican doctress.
They have heard of Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King. They appreciated these stories. But wanted to hear stories from their own history. Daddy suggested Walter Tull and Asquith Xavier. But they were insistent on having Black women at the heart of the story.
We start with Ivory Bangle Lady. Of North African descent she lived in Britain in Roman times and is the first Black woman found in Britain. Her tomb has many valuable objects found with it.
Then we move onto the story of Phillis Wheatley. She was taken as a child from Africa and kept as a slave in America. But she developed a talent as a poet. She was brought to Britain where her poetry wowed London high society. Eventually, she was freed and married a free black man.
Finally, we learn a little about the amazing Mary Seacole and some of her adventures. We join her in the Crimean War. Less well known that her contemporary, Florence Nightingale, she became loved by the troops for her work caring for them. Forgotten for many years she is now celebrated.
As we close Sophie reflects on how Black History Month should be needed and that Black History and the contribution of Black people is really just a part of British history.
We also talk about our new Patrons Club. There are different tiers of membership. But they all involve more episodes each month and you can get to choose your episode or even be in an episode. We’d love you to become a member and Sophie and Ellie have got to know many of the children through it. Go to https://www.patreon.com/historystorytime to sign up. We have exclusive episodes on the Seven Wonders of the World and on the Bayeux Tapestry. This last episode ties in with our Battle of Hastings episode from last week.