#MakingHistory with the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African American History and Culture

With the opening of the new Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African American History and Culture (SI / NMAAHC) in Washington, DC, I had the opportunity to attend the artifacts donors preview (Saturday, September 17), along with some of the other opening programming in the new building and on the Washington Mall (September 22–24, 2016). As a participant in and attendee at this historic event I was able to view the photographs I contributed of African Americans from California displayed in the permanent exhibits

Historian Alison Rose Jefferson

Historian Alison Rose Jefferson in front of part of the exhibit which features photographs of Dr. Peter Price Cobbs and Rosa Mashaw Cobbs as they are in the process of migrating from Montgomery, Alabama to Los Angeles,

in the new, nineteenth Smithsonian Institution (SI) museum. The Museum architecture and layout are brilliantly done, giving visitors a sense of African Americans’ journey from the darkness of enslavement through freedom struggles and the long civic rights movement, while shaping and impacting American society and history with many cultural, social, political and economic accomplishments. Learn more about the photographs I contributed to the NMAAHC opening exhibits here.

Cristyne Lawson

Cristyne Lawson pointing at a photograph of grandmother Mary McReynolds Stout who migrated from Texas to the Los Angeles area in 1908. Historian Alison Rose Jefferson facilitated this photograph becoming part of the permanent exhibits of the new SI Nat’l Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington, DC, 17 September 2016.

In May 2017 I attended another new SI museum opening event the “Future of the Black Past” Conference, which offered fresh views on African American history and an agenda to guide future inquiry. Contributing to the exploration of the African American experience, preserving broader voices in American History, and participating the new Museum’s opening programming is fulfilling work!

Due to popular demand, if you want to visit the new SI museum you must have a “Timed Pass” to enter for the foreseeable future. Go to the NMAAHC website for information to plan your visit.

Enjoy all the wonderful stories told in the NMAAHC exhibits! See stories guests have posted about their visit to the new African American museum at #APeoplesJourney and #MakingHistory.

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