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Meet Don and Jocelyn Pinkard of Hidden History DFW in Grand Prairie

Today we’d like to introduce you to Don and Jocelyn Pinkard.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
After working for various corporations for over 35 years, my wife and I were lucky enough to afford retirement two years ago. Since we were both in our early 60s and fairly healthy, we decided to focus on things that we were truly interested in doing. We also wanted to focus our efforts in areas where we felt we could actually provide value.

One of the things that interested both of us throughout our lives was learning about African-American history.

We had visited the newly opened African-American History Museum in Washington D.C. during our first year of retirement. We had also taken African American history tours in New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Baltimore, Jacksonville, and other American cities.

In Dallas, we realized that there was not a company providing regularly scheduled tours focusing on local African American history. We also realized that local schools districts in the area did not provide much in their curricula related to local African-American history.

We started Hidden History DFW to be a vehicle to provide the teaching of local Dallas African-American history.

Has it been a smooth road?
No, there have been significant challenges on the road to getting our company up and running the last two years.

One of the biggest challenges was the development of the actual content needed to support the tour. This required a tremendous amount of background research, even though my family has lived in the Dallas areas for generations. I’ve lost track of the countless hours spent in the library, interviewing people, and verifying facts for the tour.

It was also a challenge to develop a physical route that allows the story of African Americans to be told in a three hour time period.

Another challenge was just the logistics of developing an online booking system that met the needs of our customers.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Hidden History DFW – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
We have been in operations for two years now. We provided 20 tours in our first year and will provide more than 30 tours this year.

We offer public tours that are open to anyone twice a month on Saturdays. We also offer private tours that can be scheduled at any time.

Our customers include individuals, public schools, private schools, youth groups, senior groups, church groups, family reunions, and alumni gatherings.

We have the ability to perform private tours for groups as small as two people, and also can provide tours for groups as large as 50 people.

By the middle of the summer, we will have provided tours for over 1,000 people in the Dallas area.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Absolutely, according to a recently released census update Texas has the largest African American population of any state in America.

There are over 1 million African Americans currently living in the Dallas area, but very few people have much knowledge of their history in this area.

One of the things that has surprised us is how many non-African American people have taken our tour. In terms of the total number of people taking our tour, we have had as many non-African American customers as we’ve had African-American customers.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Jocelyn Pinkard

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