Hidden Women

The Storyteller

Tammy Denease was born in Columbus, Mississippi where she spent countless hours with her great-grandmother and grandmother.

Her great-grandmother was a former enslaved person and lived to be 125 and her grandmother lived to be a 107. Both were known storytellers and passed this gift along to their granddaughter.

Tammy loves history and being able to tell others about the past. In her position as Museum Educator, she instructs children through stories of Colonial History, Health, Medicine, Slavery, and  Indigenous People History. In addition, she is a historical tour guide for local Colonial-American homes.

The Concept

As a Historian and a Black Woman, I was inspired by these women and their stories. I was moved to act as I was bothered that the entire history was not being told correctly. As I dived deeper in the knowledge of who they were, I knew I had to own the challenge of bringing their stories to the people.

The Journey

My journey began with the relationship I had with my great grandmother who had been enslaved and lived to be 125 years of age. Growing up in Mississippi, it was mandatory to know your heritage. When my immediate family migrated to the East Coast, this was nonexistent.


Society in the Northeast and the country at large was teaching the Black community only had 3, sometimes 4, people they should celebrate (Martin; Fredrick; Harriet; Sojourner). It was a far cry from the known history for other nationalities where many are celebrated. This did NOT sit well with me.


After many years in the Corporate America (banking, insurance, utilities) and becoming a parent, I decided I wanted to share the knowledge with my children that my grandmother imparted to me. I found the urge to use my historical background. It never occurred to me to go to take the educational path for history as I grew up with it. Instead, I went to school for business management. Ironically, in 2004, I started in the Museum field. Later that year, I started on the road to becoming many things that are intertwined. Historian; Actor; Researcher; Performing Artist; Teaching Artist; Presenter; Lecturer.


The Energy

My energy comes from my passion for the history of my culture. My passion is LIFE!! I am invigorated by educating and teaching others of a time and place they may not know. To see their faces when that “light” turns on is worth all of my efforts of recreating the stories of these women’s lives.