Colorado is using a $75,000 grant to search and register Green Book locations throughout the state.

In an era of racial segregation and hate crimes, places in the Green Book – printed directories that listed sites along American highways that welcomed Black travelers by automobile – played a critical role in the survival of hundreds of African Americans. According to CBS ColoradoColorado History is now committed to ensuring that stories about such locations in its state proceed to be shared.

The initiative, which received recent funding in January, continues as a part of a nationwide study to nominate Green Book properties for state and national registers of historic places.

“We have an Underrepresented Community Grant that we use to document places,” explained Terri Gentry, Black community engagement manager at History Colorado. “So you can go to Pueblo, Colorado and find a registered place. These were safe places for our family members and community members as they traveled around the state.”

Gentry’s desire to be involved goes far beyond the skilled aspect, as she has deep roots in Colorado. She is grateful for the opportunity to find out about her family and the memories she made as a child traveling with each sets of grandparents, and also mentioned the experiences of her grandparents, great-grandparents and great-great-great-grandparents.

“I want to celebrate who they are and show the work they have done to create place and space for our community,” Gentry said, according to CBS.

There are 160 Green Book sites designated across the state. Colorado History is currently in the technique of hosting a series of community meetings along the I-25 corridor with the goal of hearing from the community and establishing a list of additional key historic treasures to explore.

“It offers a perspective on history that many people are not aware of. Travel and certain experiences help you understand part of the story,” Gentry said. “We wanted to go out and see the country. We wanted to get out and take advantage of everything this country had to offer. The Green Book websites offered this.”

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