DABS History

The Detroit Association of Black Storytellers, we know as DABS, was formed by
Amy Jackson and Anita Timbers, storytellers from network and Detroit Story League, discussed the idea of bringing the National Association of Black Storytellers to Detroit; for the purpose of forming an affiliate to the National Association Of Black Storytellers (NABS).

To undertake this tremendous job, they decided to form a group of black story tellers from various sources, such as:

  • Schools
  • Churches
  • Libraries
  • Other storytelling groups for the purpose of forming an Association

The first organized meeting of this group, was held at the home of Jennie Crittenden, 19560 Afton Rd. in Detroit, Michigan and on October 31, 1991.  Amy Jackson was selected as first president and Elaine Gregory was selected as the first secretary at this historic, landmark meeting.

DABS, had its first installation of officers and celebration of its new charter and charter members on, Saturday, June 27, 1992, in the Historical Museum on Woodward Ave. in Detroit, Michigan.

DABS hosted their first Storytelling Concert titled, “IN THE TRADITION, FESTIVAL of BLACK STORYTELLING”, held in Cobo Hall, in Detroit, Michigan.

Through the efforts of Dorothy Jones, Treasurer, DABS was granted a 501 (c), (3), non-profit status in 1995.

DABS and its members have won many rewards for storytelling at various cultural events, donated scholarships, supported the Museum of African American History, sponsored trips to Black Historical sites, and to the National Association of Black Storytellers Conferences.

DABS, continues to honor our ancestors through keeping the oral tradition alive, by telling stories in churches, libraries, schools and cultural events.

Michele Pierrie