RE-SCHEDULED: Interpreting Difficult History at James Madison's Montpelier

Thursday, October 18, 2018 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM


Due to Hurricane Florence threats, the Elizabeth Chew lecture planned for Thursday, September 13 is cancelled. The re-scheduled date is Thursday, October 18 – – hope to see you then!

Description: Public Presentation & Panel discussion:

The Mere Distinction of Colour at James Madison’s Montpelier presented by Elizabeth Chew, Vice President for Museum Programs at Montpelier, will discuss the ground-breaking exhibition on slavery, The Mere Distinction of Colour. Winner of five national awards, the exhibition considers slavery in the founding era, the lived experience of enslaved families on James Madison’s plantation, and the legacies of slavery in today’s society. It was organized by Montpelier staff in partnership with descendants of those enslaved by the Madison family.

Cost:  This is a free and public event.  No registration is required

Location:  The James A. Gray Auditorium,  Old Salem Visitor Center, 900 Old Salem Road, Winston-Salem, NC




This event is part of Old Salem’s Hidden Town initiative and is being co-sponsored by the Wake Forest University History Department.




Elizabeth Chew is Vice President for Museum Programs at James Madison’s Montpelier, where she oversees the Curatorial, Education, Archaeology, Preservation, and Research departments. An art historian, she holds a B.A. from Yale, an M.A. from the Courtauld Institute of the University of London and a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has worked at museums and historic sites since 1985, including Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and Reynolda House Museum of American Art. At Montpelier, she is overseeing projects to return slavery to the plantation landscape, including the exhibition The Mere Distinction of Colour, winner of five national awards. She has taught art history at the University of Virginia, James Madison University, Wake Forest University, and Davidson College and published and lectured widely on ways that art and architectural patronage relate to gender, race, and family politics.




Old Salem Visitor Center – Fully ADA accessible, ADA Restrooms