Running From Racism: Raleigh's First Black-Owned Children's Bookstore, Liberation Station, Closing D

Running From Racism: Raleigh's First Black-Owned Children's Bookstore, Liberation Station, Closing D

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Unbowed and Unbroken: Liberation Station's Brave Stand Against Intolerance

Liberation Station, North Carolina's first Black-owned children's bookstore, was forced to close after less than a year because of death threats. The clear pattern of a certain demographic doing everything in their power to keep children from reading continues.

The store's grand opening on Juneteenth, 2023, marked a moment full of progress and promise. "It was a day of joy, a celebration of diversity and literature," said Victoria Scott-Miller in a social media post on the Liberation Station Instagram account.

Founded by Victoria Scott-Miller, the bookstore aimed to showcase stories by Black and POC authors and illustrators, enriching the community and providing young readers with diverse narratives.

However, the celebration was soon overshadowed by safety concerns.

Facing Harassment: Security Concerns for a Black-Owned Bookstore

Within months of its grand opening, Scott-Miller reported a series of threats against the bookstore. In one disturbing incident, an anonymous caller provided specific details about her son's clothing. 

These threats forced the bookstore to alter its operations. Scott-Miller tried changing business hours and implementing new safety strategies in an effort to protect staff and visitors.

This announcement has left many wondering about the motives of the threats.

Landlord's Lack of Support: Searching for New Tenants

The challenges escalated when Scott-Miller sought assistance from the building's landlord, hoping for support in addressing the harassment. Instead, she was informed that the landlord was considering new tenants for the space. The move felt like a betrayal of the bookstore's mission and safety efforts. 

 "Instead of support, we were met with the prospect of being replaced," Scott-Miller said via the Instagram post. 

This lack of support from the property owner added to the adversity faced by Liberation Station, highlighting the broader challenges Black-owned businesses encounter.

Looking Ahead: The Continued Mission of Liberation Station

According to NewsOne, Liberation Station will vacate its current location by April 30, she emphasized that this is not the end of the bookstore's journey but rather a pivot to continue their mission elsewhere.

The bookstore will operate until April 13, after which it plans to donate the remaining inventory to literacy nonprofits in the Triangle area, ensuring that their educational impact endures.

Scott-Miller's resilience and commitment to providing access to diverse children's literature underscore the importance of Liberation Station's mission.

"Leaving Fayetteville Street is not the end of our story," the post by Scott-Miller concludes. 

As the bookstore prepares for its next chapter, its story remains a powerful testament to the strength of community and the enduring fight for representation and safety in the face of adversity. It is also a reminder that hate-fueled movements like conservative book bans won't stop with schools and libraries.


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