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Nauticus to Honor Norfolk Native, William Roscoe Davis, In Celebration of Black History Month 

Esteemed Speakers from local HBCU’s featured in Free “EdTalk” Lecture Series

Norfolk, Va. (February 13, 2024) – In celebration of Black History Month, Nauticus invites the community to join them on February 22 at 6PM as they kick off their free “EdTalk” lecture series titled “Beacon of History: Illuminating the Past, Igniting the Future”.

The event will feature esteemed speakers, Dr. William Wiggins (Hampton University) and Dr. Colita Fairfax (Norfolk State University), who will explore the remarkable journey of William Roscoe Davis, born a slave in Norfolk, who escaped to Fort Monroe during the Civil War and became a pivotal figure as the head lighthouse keeper at Old Point Comfort.

Dr. Wiggins and Dr. Fairfax will discuss the little-told narrative of Davis as “contraband” and how his resilience and contributions illuminate a significant chapter in African American history. The speakers will share their efforts to locate Davis’s final resting place, shedding light on the importance of preserving African American cemeteries and honoring the legacies of those who paved the way.

This event is free and open to the public, space is limited, and reservations are required. Reserve your seat here.

About the Speakers 
Dr. William Wiggins is a historian and scholar who taught at University of Connecticut, St. Olaf and Allegheny Colleges, Hampton University and Columbia University where he also served as an Assistant Dean. Dr. Colita Fairfax is a Professor, Honors College Senior Faculty Fellow, and an inaugural faculty scholar in the Center for African American Public Policy at Norfolk State University.

About Nauticus  
Nauticus is a maritime discovery center located along the waterfront in downtown, Norfolk, VA, offering a unique form of experiential learning for all ages. Through interactive exhibits and STEM to STERN programming, Nauticus uses the museum, Battleship Wisconsin, sailing center, and Schooner Virginia to tell the story of the maritime environment, industry, and the military. The Nauticus Foundation is the nonprofit, 501©3 that supports the mission and activities of Nauticus. Nauticus’ mission is to benefit the community through education, impactful experiences, and sharing access to maritime resources. For more information, visit