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2019 Pre-Conference Tours
Registration Information
October 7 - October 11, 2019
College Park Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
3501 University Blvd East
Hyattsville, MD

2019 Pre-Conference Tours

More than eight (8) years after the last National Conference convened in the state of Maryland, AAHGS returns to the DMV (District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia), an area rich in African American governmental, historical, cultural, educational, and entertainment activities and sites. The AAHGS Host Chapters offer some research opportunities and/or tourist attractions for you to explore and enjoy while you are here. Our goal is to help make your journey to the 40th AAHGS National Genealogy Conference 400 Years of Black History: The Struggles, Challenges and Perseverance in the DMV an even better experience.       

The tour dates range from Monday, October 7th through Friday, October 11th.  Snacks and beverages provided for all-day tours.
All tour buses depart from and return to the College Park Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
3501 University Blvd East, Hyattsville, Maryland 20783. 

Be sure to register early as space is limited!

Monday, October 7th    from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM 

Tour Cost: $70     Register

 Spend the day at two of the most well-known attractions in the State of Virginia

Mount Vernon - 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway Mount Vernon, VA 22121
The home of America's first president, George Washington overlooks the Potomac River.

The Mount Vernon Tour will not only include The Mansion (only the first floor is handicap accessible), a one and one-half story house built in 1735 by George Washington's father, Augustine; but the Lives Bound Together Exhibition which explores the stories of nineteen enslaved individuals (interactive touch screens with biographical details of each person, furnishings, buttons, artifacts, etc. of the time); the Greenhouse Slave Quarters; and the Tribute of the Slave Memorial which commemorates the community of the enslaved people who lived and worked at Mount Vernon with a special wreath-laying presentation (walking involved). 

Break for Lunch on Your Own in the Mount Vernon Food Court Pavilion before completing the day at Arlington National Cemetery

Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, VA 22211 • 877-907-8585 
Largest and most famous military cemetery in the USA.

Arriving at the Women in Military Service to America Memorial (Arlington House's temporary exhibition); a tour of the cemetery includes stops and interpretation at Sections 17, 18 and 27 of the Northeast corner which served as the burial place for about 1,800 African Americans who fled to Alexandria to escape from bondage during the Civil War; the Tomb of the Unknown Solider and the Freedman's Village with an interpretation of the enslaved community at Arlington highlighting the Syphax, Gray, James Parks and Branham families.


Tuesday, October 8th     from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Tour Cost: $75.00     Register

African American Heritage Tour

Start the day with an Afro-centric Tour of the Capitol City. Experience the African American history, culture and entertainment of DC; see many great places; learn about key figures; and hear several of the important events which took place over the years.

The African American Heritage Tour makes stops at the following locations – Frederick Douglass House, African American Civil War Memorial, M.L. King Memorial, White House, Capitol, and Lincoln Memorial. Drive past Howard University, Howard Theatre, Historic U Street, Council of Negro Women Headquarters, Metropolitan AME Church, Mary M. Bethune home, Carter G. Woodson house, and Statue at Emancipation Park.
Break for LUNCH on Your Own at our next location, the Sweet Home CafÉ, housed in the National Museum of African American History and Culture

The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
1400 Constitution Ave NW, Washington, DC 20560

A People’s Journey, A Nation’s Story

End the day at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), a place where all Americans can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience, what it means to their lives, and how it helped us shape this nation.

The museum’s 12 inaugural exhibitions focus on broad themes of history, culture and community. You are invited to explore all levels of the Museum on your visit, from Heritage Hall, to galleries, theaters, cafÉ, interactive spaces, and more. While everything is a “must see” at the Museum, be sure to see the interactive exhibit on the Syphax Family, that is featured during this conference and the Green Book that has figured so prominently in the news of late. To help you plan your NMAAHC journey, please take some time to review the Museum maps online at

If you are a charter member be sure to bring your membership card to get a discount in the gift shop and cafeteria!


Tuesday, October 8th   from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM 

Tour Cost: $75.00     Register

 Harriet Tubman Heritage Tour

Explore the life of Harriet Tubman- a freedom fighter, spy, nurse and abolitionist. Journey to the Eastern Shore of Maryland, the birthplace of Harriet Tubman, and visit several sites that preserve and promote Tubman's legacy. The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center with three floors of interactive exhibits; the Harriet Tubman Museum in downtown Cambridge, where you will see a documentary on her life; and The Bucktown Village Store, where Ms. Tubman was accidentally hit in the head. There are many more sites that played a significant part in her life that you will see while traveling the scenic Harriet Tubman Byway in a comfortable motor coach.

LUNCH on Your Own at a restaurant in downtown Cambridge


Wednesday, October 9th     from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM 

Tour Cost: $80.00     Register

Sotterley Plantation Tour
44300 Sotterley Lane, Hollywood, MD 20636

Journey back to the turn of the 18th century with a guided tour of the 1703 Manor House that provides visitors with an intimate look at the lives of past residents. Hear the voices and visit the places where African-Americans lived and labored during the Slavery, Resistance & Freedom Specialty Tour. (Lunch included in tour price)


After Lunch on the Portico, you will have free time to watch videos, walk the grounds,
and/or shop in the gift shop.

(There is limited access for the physically challenged at Sotterley)
Agnes Kane Callum
(1926 - 2015), founding member of the Baltimore Maryland chapter of AAHGS. BAAHGS was renamed the “Agnes Kane Callum” chapter in her honor in 2007. The slave cabin dating back to the 1830’s on the Sotterley Plantation, was the home of Agnes Kane Callum’s great grandparents.


Wednesday, October 9th     from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM  CANCELLED   

Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Visit the campus of two institutions of higher education that were established with the intention of primarily serving the African-American community.

Morgan State University is Maryland's designated public urban research university and the largest of Maryland's American historically black colleges and universities located in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1867 the university, formerly known as the "Centenary Biblical Institute", changed its name to Morgan College to honor Reverend Lyttleton Morgan, the first chairman of its board of trustees who had donated land to the college. It became a university in 1975. MSU is a member of Thurgood Marshall College Fund.


Established in 1867, Howard University is a federally chartered, private, doctoral university, classified as a high research activity institution. With an enrollment of more than 10,000 students. Howard’s undergraduate, graduate, professional and joint degree programs span more than 120 areas of study within 13 schools and colleges.

Box lunches will be available for purchase.


Thursday, October 10th     from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM  Tour Cost: $35.00 Register

 The Library of Congress

101 Independence Ave SE, Washington, D.C. 20540

The Library of Congress (LOC) has one of the world's premier collections of U.S. and foreign genealogical and historical publications; state and county histories; church records; newspapers; telephone and city directories; family histories; state and county marriage and death records; wills, probate, and estate records; magazines (Jet and Ebony among them); slave narratives; plantation records; and many more sources of information that interest genealogists, within the three buildings that comprise the LOC complex.


In the Library’s Main Reading Room you will meet with a local history and genealogy reference librarian, who is a specialist in African-American history. You will be apprised of the genealogy resources available at the LOC and take a brief tour of the Thomas Jefferson Building. Visit to pre-register for a free reader’s card in advance of the tour, which allows you to use materials both on site and remotely.


Friday, October 11th     from 6:15 PM - 9:00 PM 

Tour Cost: $50.00     Register

Twilight Tour of DC

When the sun goes down, Washington turns into a different city!
An experienced professional licensed tour guide driver will entertain you while sharing some of the most captivating sights of the Nation’s capital.

The Twilight Tour of DC stops include: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial; Lincoln Memorial; Vietnam Memorial; Korean Memorial; The White House (photo stop); and Jefferson Memorial. Drive by legendary landmarks: US Capitol Building; Pennsylvania Avenue; Washington Monument; US Capitol Reflecting Pool; Federal Triangle; and Willard Hotel

There is no other sight quite like Washington, DC at night!


Friday, October 11th     from 9:00 PM - 1:00 AM 


  MGM at National Harbor
101 MGM National Ave, Oxon Hill, MD 20745 

This tour is for the young at heart, who want to kick back and relax after a long day of educational/genealogical workshops, presentations and lectures.


Enjoy an evening of leisure where the three jurisdictions (DMV) meet, and where friends raise their cocktails to more nights out together. It is a time and place where thrills are dealt on the stage and at the gaming tables, where weekenders and world travelers alike discover a grander way to experience Washington, DC on the banks of the Potomac River. Chat with friends as you enjoy a midnight snack at one of the many restaurants that are open late on Friday nights.

You are on your own to explore the sights and sounds in the upscale ambience of MGM at National Harbor. Check out the web site below to see coming attractions and things to do and see while there. “Have fun and leave the driving to us!”

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