Jones-Sneed to be Honored at Second Annual Berkshire Awards This Friday Night


NORTH ADAMS, MASS. - Dr. Frances Jones-Sneed, professor of history at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA), will be honored at the Second Annual Berkshire Awards on Friday, March 21, at 5:30 p.m., at the Berkshire Museum.

This year's awards will go to three honorees, all of whom have made significant contributions to creating, keeping and promoting artistic, historical, and natural heritage in the Berkshires, according to the Museum.

Jones-Sneed has been instrumental in discovering and documenting the heritage of the black community in Western Massachusetts. An accomplished author and historian, she was an associate editor for the book "African-American Heritage in the Upper Housatonic Valley" and is working on books about two significant individuals from the Berkshires - the Rev. Samuel Harrison and W.E.B. Du Bois.

She received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities in 2006 for her project "The Shaping Role of Place: An African-American Biography," and in 2011 led an NEH Summer Institute (co-sponsored by MCLA) on "The Role of Place in African-American Biography."

Jones-Sneed was co-director of the Upper Housatonic Valley African American Heritage Trail Advisory Council, which created the first African-American Heritage Trail in Western New England, and is a member of the Samuel Harrison Society and the Friends of the Du Bois Homesite Committee.

She has served on the board of Mass Humanities and is facilitating this year's series of talks, films, performances and discussions at MCLA called "Creating Equality," funded by the NEH, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the start of the Civil Rights Movement.

The other honorees to be honored on Friday are the Nash Family, Berkshire County philanthropists and supporters of arts and culture, and George S. Wislocki, founding executive director of the Berkshire Natural Resources Council.

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