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Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia

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Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia
00 Clay Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219
Voice: 804-780-9093

The mission of the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia is to collect and exhibit artifacts and objects that serve to illustrate the history of Black peoples, with an emphasis on Virginians. Founded by Carroll W. Anderson, Sr. in 1981, the museum opened to the public at its current location in 1991.

The museum is located in the Jackson Ward section of Richmond. This is one of the historic districts and this building was a mansion built in 1832. The house has been through many changes and was important to the community. During World War I it became a Colored Navy Club. The city purchased the house and from 1932 to 1965 it became a library for blacks named Rosa Dixon Bowser Library. From 1965 to 1977 it was a school for boys and from 1977 to 1985 was an alternative High School. The museum acquired the property in 1989 and opened to the public in 1991.

There are some terrific exhibits showcasing the development of this black community. This area is considered the birthplace of Black Capitalism. Learn about the banks and businesses that were opened here by blacks. During World War II, the nightlife on 2nd Street, known as "the Deuce" became known around the world. One of the most famous native son was Bill "Mr. Bojangles" Robinson. Learn about the Civil Rights movement in the area. See a piece of the Woolworth's cafe counter where the 1960 sit-in was held.

Admission is by appointment, so be sure to call and schedule a visit.

KAT'S VIEW

The museum was very interesting. It showed what happened during the time of segregation after the Civil War. One exhibit showed what a scientist did to see what African American children thought. He had two dolls, one white and one black. The children kept picking the white doll because they thought the white people were more privileged. I also found the signs downstairs interesting.



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