Bizarre Foods and the Escape of the 28

The story of  the Escape of the 28 is featured in an episode of Bizarre Foods currently airing on the Travel Channel.  Check the Travel Channel website  for showings of “Underground Railroad” episode or watch it on You Tube.  Many local and regional historians and food experts appear in the show–the Wainscotts, Kristin Kitchen, Carl Westmoreland, Kathy Dahl, Diana Porter, Charles Campbell, Christelle Lee, Dr. Eric Jackson.

“The foods represent the fight to hold on to their identity while in bondage and on their journey towards sovereignty,” says chef Michael Twitty of Locust Grove in Louisville.  “We were the greatest commodity in early America.  How you survived your oppression is your greatest form of cultural capital”  “Our comfort foods are also our uncomfort foods” says Twittey who is a chef and re-enactor at Locust Grove.

The production leaves Louisville and travels to Petersburg Kentucky where they visit with the current owners of the Parker Farm, the farm from which many of the 28 escaped. The Wainscotts own the Greyhound Tavern and the Tousey House.  The episode comes across the Ohio River and the follows the route of the Escape of the 28 to College Hill to 6 Acres Bed and Breakfast.

Interspersed within the food segments are scenes from Charles Campbell’s film “All or Nothin” which was filmed on the route of the escape of the 28 with many actors from the Cincinnati Black Theater Company.

It is very exciting that our historical research has now brought the Escape of the 28 to national attention.  Worth Watching, but of course, I’m biased!

Diana Porter, August 26, 2018

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