Liberation Station, North Carolina’s First Black-Owned Children’s Bookstore, Opens on Juneteenth

Just in time for Juneteenth, North Carolina’s first Black-owned children’s bookstore is opening in Raleigh.

The Liberation Station bookstore is laying out the red carpet with a grand three-day opening celebration starting June 17. Store owner and founder Victoria Scott-Miller says the kick-off will begin with bass-baritone Mark Hill Williams` serenading customers with “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” followed by the “Big Black Book Signing.” “We have 10 authors and illustrators from all across the country that we have invited to come and sign books on the spot,” Scott-Miller told WUNC.

On Sunday, the bookstore will host a “White Glove” program for which participants must register. The first 15 children to join will wear white gloves and be allowed to touch and experience literary artifacts from famous Black authors like James Baldwin. Scott-Miller said opening the store in the chosen location was intentional. “The intentionality behind opening up is to say that not only are we going to plant ourselves in the heart of downtown Raleigh on a historic street, but we’re also going to amplify voices through literacy,” Scott-Miller said. “So while everybody else is focusing on themselves, we’ll be focusing on the children.”

The vibrant location is headquartered on the second floor of the Efird’s building on Fayetteville St. in downtown Raleigh next door to another Black-owned business—a sip and paint place. The mother of two told WRAL 5 that the North Carolina capital city deserves something like Liberation and is making sure children of all shades see themselves in the books they read. Liberation is the perfect place as the bookstore highlights stories featuring African American characters. “Raleigh deserves this,” she said. “It just made me feel like we can do it too.”

To end the grand opening launch on Juneteenth, the store will host a march called “Liberation Walk” from N.C. State Capitol building to the bookstore with a group of Black equestrians. The store will then host a book signing with children’s book author Caitlin Gooch aka The Black Cowgirl.