Sunday, April 10, 2022
The National Museum of African American History and Culture presents the next page from Our American Story
Friday, January 14, 2022
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday by displaying the slain civil rights leader’s original speech from the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
The speech will be on display in the “Defending Freedom, Defining Freedom” gallery from Thursday to Feb. 27.
The case with the speech inside, initially on display at the museum in fall 2021, will be reinstalled in time for visitors to see the document before the holiday.
In addition, the museum will be open to the public for normal operating hours (10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.), with advanced and same-day free timed entry passes available online. No walk-ups will be allowed.
The speech was originally possessed by basketball coach George Raveling, who got it while volunteering at the 1963 march. Recently, Villanova University gained stewardship and has entered into a long-term loan agreement with the museum to display it.
Saturday, April 24, 2021
The Smithsonian Institution announced Friday that about half of its museums, along with the National Zoo, will reopen in May after shuttering in November because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture is slated to re-open on May 14, 2021. Passes will be available starting May 7th.
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) recently announced that the city will ease some of its COVID-19 restrictions on May 1. At that time, museums will be allowed to operate at 50 percent capacity.
Thursday, October 01, 2020
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture has a new president.
On Tuesday, the museum announced that Kevin Young, the director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York, will take over for Lonnie Bunch III (the museum’s founding director from 2005 to 2019), who is now the Secretary of the Smithsonian.
The leadership change will take effect Jan. 11, the museum said.
Young, an author, a poet, and an editor, led the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (2016-2020) as the institution acquired the manuscript of Alex Haley’s “The Autobiography of Malcolm X,” including a once-lost chapter, and the Harlem-based archives of Harry Belafonte and James Baldwin.
Before Young took the helm at the Schomburg Center, he was a professor at Emory University. He was also the curator of the university’s Raymond Danowski Poetry Library, a 75,000-volume collection of rare and modern poetry, and curator of literary collections.
“I look forward to directing the National Museum of African American History and Culture in this next phase of leadership, after its founding, opening and dynamic exhibitions and events,” said Young in a museum press release. “Having visited the museum myself with my family, I know what a powerful place it is, transforming visitors both in-person and online, and revealing the centrality of African American culture to the American experience. I am eager to engage further directions in the museum’s mission, embracing our digital present and future while furthering conversations around Black history, art, liberation, and joy.”
Tuesday, September 15, 2020
On Friday, September 18, the National Museum of African American History and Culture will reopen to the public.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture will begin a gradual, phased reopening for the Museum. The museum will be putting safety first with new measures in place to protect everyone’s health. Free, timed-entry passes will be required for entry. Please review the important information below as you plan your visit.
Learn more about the NMAAHC reopening here: Welcome Back
Saturday, August 01, 2020
Last month, the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) launched “Voices Of Resistance And Hope,” a web portal where members of Black communities can share their experiences of life during the coronavirus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement.
From the NMAAHC web page:
Voices Of Resistance And Hope
Sharing Stories In Times Of Crisis
The COVID-19 pandemic and the mass protest movement for police reforms and social justice are affecting the lives of millions of people around the world. We want to know how these issues have affected you.
You are invited to be part of this online collection of personal stories from members of the African American community during the current crises in America. Upload your images, first-hand accounts, personal stories, essays, poems, photographs, short videos or observations. Your personal expressions can help to create shared experiences with others in the nation and reinforce what so many of us are longing for during these turbulent times — an opportunity to celebrate the American values of resiliency, optimism, and spirituality.
You can find out more about Voices of Resistance and Hope or share your story here: Voices Of Resistance And Hope
Saturday, July 25, 2020
Friday, March 13, 2020
The following is a statement from the National Museum of African American History and Culture:
As a public health precaution due to COVID-19 (coronavirus), the National Museum of African American History and Culture will temporarily close to the public starting Saturday, March 14.
We are committed to ensuring the health and safety of all our visitors, employees, and volunteers. We are in close communication with local health officials and the Centers for Disease Control. Due to the rapidly changing nature of the situation, we are not announcing a re-opening date at this time.
We will provide updates on a week-to-week basis via our website. Follow @NMAAHC on Twitter for updates about the museum's operating status. In the meantime, we invite you to visit NMAAHC.si.edu to explore our virtual exhibitions, online collections and educational resources.
Monday, January 27, 2020
Walmart donates $5 Million to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
BENTONVILLE, Ark., Jan. 27, 2020 — Walmart announced today a $5 million grant to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, D.C. Walmart’s support of NMAAHC is a part of the company’s continued commitment to advance causes that promote diversity and inclusion.
“The National Museum of African American History & Culture is a vital institution, deepening everyone’s understanding of our nation’s history through the lens of the African American experience,” said Julie Gehrki, vice president of philanthropy at Walmart. “Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have a long history of supporting diversity and inclusion, and we are pleased to support the museum as they continue to build out programs to advance their mission.”
This grant is the second donation Walmart has made to support the museum’s initiatives, with the first $5 million donated in 2010 to support the design and construction of the facility. The second investment will benefit the visitor services programs, corporate leadership council and other areas including collections and acquisitions, scholarship and research, education and public programs, exhibitions and emerging technologies.
Since opening in 2016, NMAAHC, the 19th Smithsonian Institution Museum, has welcomed more than 7 million visitors who have explored the exhibits and more than 3,000 artifacts on display. It is the only national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of African American life, history and culture, and is a public institution open to all, where anyone is welcome to participate, collaborate, and learn more about African American history and culture. Later today, Walmart will host a private event to celebrate the museum’s contributions and acknowledge the critical role the Congressional Black Caucus played in helping to make the museum a reality.
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation seek to transform systems to help create more equitable opportunities for all. Specifically, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation invest in work to diversify talent pipelines, build more inclusive small business ownership and enhance community cohesion. Most recently, Walmart funded a report published by FSG, which outlines steps employers can take to remove barriers to advancement of frontline employees of color.
For more information on Walmart’s commitment to diversity, inclusion and philanthropy, please visit Walmart.org.
Friday, January 17, 2020
Although NBA star Stephen Curry is sidelined with an injury, Under Armour continues to release fresh colorways of his latest signature shoe, the Curry 7. The latest look is inspired by the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., arriving just in time for Black History Month.
The limited-edition Under Armour Curry 7 “Our History,” according to the brand, was inspired by the Golden State Warriors’ trip to the museum in February 2018 as well as Curry’s fascination with the venue, which was designed by architect David Adjaye. Under Armour said the brand and the baller reflected on the trip when coming up with the design and concept behind the BHM shoe.
The Curry 7 “Our History” shoe features tiers of brown, olive and bronze (as well as hits of neon green), which is reminiscent of the museum’s three-tiered exterior. Further diving into the theme, Under Armour placed the museum’s longitude and latitude coordinates on the heel tab.
The Under Armour Curry 7 “Our History” arrives Jan. 20 on UA.com and at UA Brand Houses and select retailers, and it will retail for $140. Ahead of the release, a limited number of pairs will drop on Jan. 18 on the SC30 product wall at the Chase Center Warriors Shop at Thrive City in San Francisco.
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
No Passes Required and Extended Holiday Hours For National Museum of African American History & Culture
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture will welcome visitors for no-pass entry and extended hours next Thursday, Dec. 26 through Monday, Dec. 30.
Starting on Dec. 26, the museum will be open 10 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Individuals will be able to enter the museum without a pass on Dec. 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30. Groups of 10 or more require a pass every day. Regular visitation procedures will resume Dec. 31. The museum’s full visitation policies are found at nmaahc.si.edu/visit.
Sunday, December 08, 2019
Exhibition About African American Movie Posters On View Through Nov. 1, 2020.
“Now Showing: Posters from African American Movies” opened at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, Nov. 22. The temporary exhibition will be on display until November 2020. It showcases how movie poster design has been used to frame ideas, create moods and stoke interest in films and characters. More than 40 objects and graphics celebrating black films, filmmakers and actors from the museum’s expansive poster collection will be on display in the Earl W. and Amanda Stafford Center for African American Media Arts (CAAMA) gallery.
“Now Showing” is the first exhibition in the National Museum of African American History and Culture to feature augmented reality (AR). Through AR, visitors will have the unique opportunity to have an interactive experience with objects inside the gallery by using their mobile devices. Once inside the exhibition, visitors will go to hi.si.edu on their mobile web browser from their smart device and view exclusive content on various objects inside the exhibition.
Many of the items featured in “Now Showing” are from the Larry Richards Collection, a poster collection acquired by the museum in 2013 that includes more than 700 objects. This exhibition features original posters, lobby cards and select ephemera highlighting more than 70 years of African American image making.
The exhibition is divided into four sections: Film Pioneers, The Problem of the Color Line, A Star Is Born and Black Power & “Blaxploitation”. Each thematic category highlights the role African American films have played on the perception of African American culture and society as a whole.
“Film can serve as a peek into ideals about culture and society,” said Rhea L. Combs, curator and head of CAAMA. “This exhibition introduces visitors to films featuring African Americans they may be less familiar with, and at the same time, it recognizes some of the most historically and culturally relevant films made over a 70-year period. The significant artistry and design work that goes into creating not only the films, but the posters that promote the films, are not to be underestimated. When one explores the long-standing history of African American images on screen, these posters become significant artifacts about the perception and perspective of race, gender and culture that have been a part of our social landscape for decades.”
In the first section of the exhibition, Film Pioneers, visitors can view some of the earliest influencers in African American cinema, like actors Laurence Criner, Ralph Cooper and Lena Horn. This section also examines how non-black filmmakers created content for patrons excited to see black performers on the silver screen. The Problem of the Color Line examines the phenomena known as “passing,” where a mixed-race person passes as an accepted member of another racial group to avoid discrimination. A Star Is Born shows how increased interest in films helped create celebrities, increased representation in films and instilled a sense of pride in black communities across the country due to increased number of African Americans appearing in this new medium. The exhibition concludes with Black Power & “Blaxploitation,” which highlights the rise of movies geared toward black audiences in the 1960s–70s. During this era, Blaxploitation films centered around black casts and were usually set in and around urban environments. These films often brought black communities together by promoting black empowerment and breaking down racial barriers.
First Exhibition With Augmented Reality Experience
For the first time at the museum, AR will play a role in the exhibition experience. Visitors can interact with eight select posters and learn more about the objects using their mobile devices. The feature will use video and other pop-up displays to educate visitors on the objects in the gallery—creating a unique, one-of-a-kind experience.
“Now Showing: Posters from African American Movies” is in the museum’s CAAMA gallery, a temporary exhibition space located on the second floor. The public can be a part of the online conversation by using #CAAMALens.
About the National Museum of African American History and Culture
Since opening Sept. 24, 2016, the National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed more than 6 million visitors. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu, follow @NMAAHC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, or call Smithsonian information at (202) 633-1000.
Thursday, October 17, 2019
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY AND CULTURE ACQUIRES ITEMS FROM THE AMERICAN BLACK FILM FESTIVAL
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Begin with the Past: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture by Mabel O. Wilson
Rising on the National Mall next to the Washington Monument, the National Museum of African American History and Culture is a tiered bronze beacon inviting everyone to learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience and how it helped shape this nation. Begin with the Past: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture is the story of how this unparalleled museum found its place in the nation’s collective memory and on its public commons.
Begin with the Past presents the long history of efforts to build a permanent place to collect, study, and present African American history and culture. In 2003 the museum was officially established at long last, yet the work of the museum was only just beginning. The book traces the appointment of the director, the selection of the site, and the process of conceiving, designing, and constructing a public monument to the achievements and contributions of African Americans. The careful selection of architects, designers, and engineers culminated in a museum that embodies African American sensibilities about space, form, and material and incorporates rich cultural symbols into the design of the building and its surrounding landscape. The National Museum of African American History and Culture is a place for all Americans to understand our past and embrace our future, and this book is a testament to the inspiration and determination that went into creating this unique place.
Wednesday, September 04, 2019
From Labor Day through February, you won't need a pass to enter the museum on weekdays, the NMAAHC announced over the weekend. Visitors will be able to enter the museum on a first-come, first-served basis on weekdays starting at 10 a.m.
You will, however, still need a timed-entry pass on weekends. You can get same-day passes for weekends online.
In addition, advance timed passes for Saturdays and Sundays in December will become available starting Wednesday at 9 a.m. You'll be able to search for advance timed passes for Dec. 1 and the weekends of Dec. 7-8, 14-15, 21-22 and 28-29.
You can also reserve passes here https://nmaahc.si.edu/visit/passes ot by phone by calling 844-750-3012.
Admission and passes are free.
If you're visiting on a day that passes are required, remember that everyone in your group will need his or her own pass, including babies. In addition, the museum will continue to require advance timed-entry passes every day for groups of 10 or more.
Thursday, July 25, 2019
The National Museum of African American History and Culture to acquire archive of Ebony and Jet magazines
Friday, July 19, 2019
U.S. Bank announces a $1 million investment with the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, D.C. With this five-year investment, U.S. Bank will join the prestigious Corporate Leadership Council, a community of engaged corporate donors whose values reflect a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.
“Honoring and celebrating African American culture is an important part of American history,” said Andy Cecere, Chairman, President and CEO of U.S. Bank. “At U.S. Bank, we are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion and the arts – which brings us closer together and strengthens our communities. Through this support of the National Museum, we hope these historical stories and rich cultural experiences will continue to inspire many for generations.”
The National Museum of African American History and Culture was established by Act of Congress in 2003, following decades of efforts to promote and highlight the contributions of African Americans. The Museum opened to the public on September 24, 2016, as the 19th and newest museum of the Smithsonian Institution and stands upon four pillars. One pillar – to help all Americans see how their stories, histories and cultures are shaped and informed by global influences aligns with U.S. Bank employees’ shared core value of drawing strength from diversity.
About the National Museum of African American History and Culture
Since opening Sept. 24, 2016, the National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed more than 6 million visitors. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu, follow @NMAAHC on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, or call Smithsonian information at (202) 633-1000.
About U.S. Bank
U.S. Bancorp, with 74,000 employees and $476 billion in assets as of March 31, 2019, is the parent company of U.S. Bank, the fifth-largest commercial bank in the United States. The Minneapolis-based bank blends its relationship teams, branches and ATM network with mobile and online tools that allow customers to bank how, when and where they prefer. U.S. Bank is committed to serving its millions of retail, business, wealth management, payment, commercial and corporate, and investment services customers across the country and around the world as a trusted financial partner, a commitment recognized by the Ethisphere Institute naming the bank a 2019 World’s Most Ethical Company. Visit U.S. Bank at usbank.com or follow on social media to stay up to date with company news.
Susan Beatty, U.S. Bank
Saturday, July 06, 2019
Wednesday, March 27, 2019
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture will display—for the first time—the Emily Howland photography album containing a previously unknown portrait of abolitionist and Underground Railroad-conductor Harriet Tubman. The Howland album will be the museum’s first acquisition to be displayed in Heritage Hall, the museum’s main entry hall. It will be on exhibit Monday, March 25, through Sunday, March 31, and then relocated to the “Slavery and Freedom” exhibition on the C3 Level in the museum’s History Gallery.
“This photo album allows us to see Harriet Tubman in a riveting, new way; other iconic portraits present her as either stern or frail,” said Lonnie G. Bunch III, the founding director of the museum. “This new photograph shows her relaxed and very stylish. Sitting with her arm casually draped across the back of a parlor chair, she’s wearing an elegant bodice and a full skirt with a fitted waist. Her posture and facial expression remind us that historical figures are far more complex than we realize. This adds significantly to what we know about this fierce abolitionist—it helps to humanize such an iconic figure.”
A recently announced visitation policy allowing for walk-up entry without passes Monday through Friday starting at 1 p.m. will provide visitors access to viewing the Tubman photograph.
Two years ago, the National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Library of Congress jointly acquired the photograph as part Howland’s photo album. Howland (1827–1929), a Quaker school teacher, taught at Camp Todd, the Freedman’s School in Arlington, Virginia. The album was originally compiled as a gift for her. Containing 49 images taken circa 1860s, it includes a more commonly known Tubman portrait taken later in life and images of Sen. Charles Sumner, woman’s activist and abolitionist Lydia Maria Child, organizer Samuel Ely, William Henry Channing, Col. C.W. Folsom, Charles Dickens and the only known photograph of John Willis Menard, the first African American man elected to the U.S. Congress.
Read more about Emily Howland's photo album here: https://nmaahc.si.edu/about/news/album-previously-unknown-photo-young-harriet-tubman-go-public-view-first-time