Ancestral Capital explores history to curate the hidden connections and social references of our common humanity.
CONCEPTS IN CURATION Knowledge Feeling Imagination
These separate ideas are powerful but can be troublesome without each other. We encourage conversation and action to combine all three. Tour group participants have varying degrees of each concept. We at Ancestral Capital seek to build a camaraderie within each group.
We have curated tours and events for over 5 years on several sacred spaces. Along with other Richmonders we have curated cultural reclamation of neglected spaces, assisted in locating unmarked burial sites and hosted seasonal volunteer events. Our specialty is in using music and other mixed media to build a human connection to all ethnicities and ages.
There are hundreds of dedicated local volunteers, advocates, nonprofits and local businesses working to restore and honor Richmonds sacred spaces. Ancestral Capital wants every visitor and their families to retain a lasting and hopeful connection.
There is beauty, long overlooked, in this area. Ancestral Capital has a deep connection to the people of Richmond. With family ties to media, entrepreneurship, politics and art dating back to 1863 and beyond.
There are stories to be told and new ways to experience them. We believe on the musical concept of "bluphoriA". A word that means " Find Joy inside the Pains of Life".
We adhere to three concepts in curation:
Put yourself into the times and spirit of the people of Richmond. These songs capture what the Elders were hearing in their daily lives. Most of these songs have direcdt connections to Richmond and it's history.
John Mitchell - Director
John H. Mitchell is a native Richmonder. His great great uncle was born 100 years before our speaker in 1863. In 1883 John Mitchell Jr. became the editor of the Richmond Planet where he served until his passing in 1929.
The current Mr. Mitchell is a composer, storyteller and director of the Richmond Planet Foundation. The Richmond Planet Foundation (nonprofit 501c3) carries on the spirit of “The Fighting Editor”. The foundation works to curate and protect the physical and philosophical legacy of Richmonds post emancipation history.
His current work as the Community Ambassador for the Cemeteries at Evergreen focuses on descendant engagement and gathering written and oral histories of the thousands of ancestors interred there.
The cemetery, which was founded in 1891 by five African American business leaders is also a worldwide UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the resting place for many of the city's first African American business professionals and educators.
His father, John T. Mitchell, (Radio News Director, 1916 - 2017) and grandfather, Roscoe C. Mitchell, ( Writer for The Planet, The Afro and Times Dispatch, 1889- 1944) both worked for his great great uncle. The paper was a powerful crusader for freedom and community empowerment. John Mitchell Jr. was a true journalist and fought for justice and against lynchings.
John has worked as an arranger and performer for Elektra Records and traveled the U.S. and Europe with several musical groups.
A proud graduate of Richmond Public Schools he studied Jazz Composition at the Berklee College of Music in Boston Massachusetts.
More on JM4 HERE