Looking for a summer or fall road trip destination? What better place to explore than a museum. Today we are featuring African American Museums in the South. These museums are the perfect destination for family-friendly fun and their gift shops are the perfect spots to pick up hostess gifts and home decor. Be sure to share images of your favorite travels this summer using the hashtag #lbacksouthernbelle
African American Museums in the South To Visit
Our archives contain historical documents, books, rare photographs, and videos. Our collection includes artifacts, newspaper ads for runaway slaves, obituaries, certificates of midwives and rural black doctors, photos and sketches of inventors, such as Leonard Julien and Madame C. J. Walker, in addition to politicians, soldiers, artisans, and entrepreneurs.
Founded in 1994 and located in historic DeLand, the seat of Volusia County Government, AAMA is a unique and vital resource in this part of Florida. It is the only museum in the area devoted primarily to African American cultures and art. The museum houses a revolving gallery where visitors will find works of both established and emerging artists. The museum is also the home to a permanent collection of more than 150 artifacts, including sculptures and masks from countries of Africa.
In addition to the visual arts, the museum founded the Little Theater of DeLand in 1999 to afford children and adults an opportunity to develop their dramatic abilities.
The mission of the African-American Panoramic Experience (APEX) Museum is to accurately interpret and present history from an African-American perspective in order to help all American and International visitors better understand and appreciate the contributions of African-Americans to America as well as the world.
The Alexandria Black History Museum includes the Museum, the Watson Reading Room, and the Alexandria African American Heritage Park. Other African American historic sites in Alexandria include the Contrabands and Freedmen Cemetery Memorial, and the Freedom House Museum.
The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, part of the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument and an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is a cultural and educational research center that promotes a comprehensive understanding for the significance of civil rights developments in Birmingham. Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2017, BCRI reaches more than 150,000 individuals each year though award-winning programs and services.
The Museum seeks to become a permanent repository for visual, oral and written records and artifacts commemorating the lives and accomplishments of Blacks in Virginia. Our goal is to become a statewide resource on the many facets of Black history through exhibitions, discussions and celebrations. The Museum collects documents, limited editions, prints, art and photographs for use in its Black History Archives program. This program will be of major significance because of the scarcity of written records on the Black experience.
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African- American Arts + Culture (formerly the Afro- American Cultural Center) celebrates the contributions of Africans and African- Americans to American culture and serves as a community epicenter for music, dance, theater, visual art, film, arts education programs, literature and community outreach.
The mission and purpose of the John Gilmore Riley Center/Museum for African American History & Culture, Inc. is to discover, archive and illuminate the blended interrelationship of African American, Native American and European history and preserve African American landmarks and legacies throughout the State of Florida as an enduring public resource through tourism and education. Established in 1996, the museum’s programs provide an environment and means to encourage and empower participants to develop an awareness of and gain an appreciation for the educational and social contributions of African Americans to Florida’s history.
Jackson, MSThe Mississippi Civil Rights Museum shares the stories of a Mississippi movement that changed the nation. The museum promotes a greater understanding of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement and its impact by highlighting the strength and sacrifices of its peoples.
Little Rock, Arkansas
The museum is dedicated to telling the story of the African American experience in Arkansas. The Center’s name is taken from the Mosaic Templars of America, a black fraternal organization founded in Little Rock in 1883 whose headquarters sat on the prominent West Ninth and Broadway location. Like many businesses throughout the United States, the Mosaic Templars of America organization was forced out of business during the Great Depression. Originally, the Center planned to restore the 1913 Mosaic Templars of America National Grand Temple, but the original building was destroyed by fire in March 2005. The new 35,000 square feet interior is a state-of-the-art museum complex with exhibits, classroom, staff offices, and an Auditorium that seats 400 people. The façade of the new structure is a facsimile of the 1913 building complete with the Annex building façade, which burned in 1984.
The Muhammad Ali Center is a multicultural center with an award-winning museum dedicated to the life and legacy of Muhammad Ali. The Center’s museum captures the inspiration derived from the story of Muhammad Ali’s incredible life and the six core principles that have fueled his journey.
Established in 1991, the National Civil Rights Museum is located at the former Lorraine Motel, where civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Through interactive exhibits, historic collections, dynamic speakers and special events, the museum offers visitors a chance to walk through history and learn more about a tumultuous and inspiring period of change.
New Orleans, Louisiana
The New Orleans African American Museum of Art, History and Culture (NOAAM) was founded in 1996 under the guidance and extensive support of the City of New Orleans Department of Housing and Neighborhood Development. NOAAM is located in the Tremé section of New Orleans, a neighborhood that was once home to the nation’s largest, most prosperous and politically progressive community of blacks by the mid-1850s.
The Tubman Museum is the largest museum in the nation dedicated to educating people about the Art, History, and Culture of African Americans.
Also, be sure to share your favorite African American Museums with us so we can add them to the list. Hope you enjoy these African American Museums as a part of your next vacation!