Spagnola works with Asheville Mural Project to honor Black Americans

Harriet Tubman

Head on down to the intersection of Eagle and Market Street, downtown Asheville, for a mural project focused on historical Black Americans honoring February’s Black History Month. The mural is a collaboration with Asheville Mural Project ( & The YMI Cultural Center Asheville ( ,  one of the nation’s most unique and enduring African-American cultural centers.  

The subjects presented in the mural are Wilma Glodean Rudolph and Harriet Tubman, both inspirational individuals whose strength and courage made a difference for generations to come.

Wilma Rudolph was born in the 1940s in the midst of the depression. She was diagnosed with polio at a young age and was told she would not be able to walk. Because of racial segregation, she was unable to be treated properly. However, her mother was determined and transported her to a black medical collage 50 miles from their home twice a week. By the age of twelve, Wilma was walk normally. By the age of 16 she was a track star, earning an Olympic bronze metal in the 4 x 4 relay. By the age of 20, she was the first American woman to win three gold medals in the Olympics.

Harriet Tubman was a natural born leader; leading hundreds of slaves to freedom during the Civil War via the Underground Railroad. Tubman was born a slave, escaped to the north where she could have lived safely. Instead, Tubman ventured back into the south 18 times into slave territory, where there was a  $40,000 reward for her head. She was never captured. Tubman was a pioneer for social justice, succeeding time and time again in her mission to lead others towards freedom.

Both these woman broke barriers, records and restrictions to achieve greatness; setting profound examples that one person can make the world of a difference.

Wilma Rudolph