From June 30, 2012 through May 30, 2014, the Legacy Museum of African American History in Lynchburg is running an exhibit titled “Trouble Don’t Las’ Always”, exploring the lives of free and enslaved African Americans living in Central Virginia during the Civil War and in the years that followed, spanning from 1860 to 1890. The title comes from an enslaved workers’ spiritual song, remembered and written in 1937 by Bob Ellis, who had been enslaved in his childhood in the Lynchburg area.
Curated by Dianne Swann-Wright, founding curator of the Frederick Douglass – Isaac Myers Maritime Park in Baltimore and former director of African American and special programs at Monticello, the exhibit seeks to render the social and cultural history of Central Virginia’s African Americans more visible. “Trouble Don’t Las’ Always” is framed around two focuses: the period of “Trouble” before and during the war, and the beginning of “Always” following emancipation and the end of the war. The exhibit features photographs, documents and artifacts from the time period, and examines
The exhibit was funded in part by a grant from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities.