DPSF moves into Provident 1898 co-working space in historic NC Mutual Life building

The DPS Foundation has a new home at Provident 1898! We’re so proud to be doing this work for community-led transformation of our public schools in this space that holds such an important place in Durham’s history and making this the city we love today. 

From Provident 1898:
Legacy + Providence are values that anchor Provident1898. Occupying a historic building with its own legacy of Black business and entrepreneurship, our space is inspired by that history, and the stories of women and men in our community who have led the way, intervening in “business as usual.”

On June 23, 1957, seven activists staged a sit-in at Durham’s Royal Ice Cream parlor to protest segregation. A precursor to other NC sit-ins, the Royal Ice Cream sit-in significantly influenced the strategies used by civil rights activists in the Southeast during the 1960s, and led to a court case interrogating the legality of segregation.

We have preserved a small part of that history. The old neon sign that hung at the entrance of the Royal Ice Cream parlor now has a new home in Provident1898. It reminds us that the effort we put forth to cultivate an equitable community today, is what will shape our tomorrow.

Magan Gonzales-Smith