Great Smoky Mountains Natl. Park — Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials are inviting the public to the unveiling of two new waysides at Mingus Mill on Tuesday at 10:30 a.m.
The new waysides are a part of the larger African American Experiences in the Smokies project.
One of the new waysides tells the story of the nearby Enloe Slave Cemetery, where several African Americans are buried. The other wayside tells the story of legendary jazz bassist Charles Mingus, Jr., and his family, according to GSMNP officials.
Charles Mingus, Jr.'s son, Eric Mingus, will perform a new piece of music that speaks to and of Mingus Mill, its location and the people who lived there, including his ancestors, GSMNP officials said.
Eric Mingus has recently reconnected with his family’s story that is rooted in the park through the African American Experiences in the Smokies project, according to GSMNP officials.
GSMNP Superintendent Cassius Cash, Eric Mingus, and others will give brief remarks, starting at 10:30 a.m. near the Mingus Creek trailhead. The performance by Eric Mingus will start at 10:50 a.m. Following the event, Park Ranger Antoine Fletcher will offer a short walking tour of the nearby Enloe Slave Cemetery.
“The new signs and the African American Experiences in the Smokies project are so important to tell the untold stories of Black people in the region,” Cash said. “And we are honored to have Eric Mingus perform a new musical piece that connects with his own ancestors who lived here. His performance will also introduce and invite new audiences to explore the African American journey in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.”