With the success of the National African American Museum of History and Culture in Washington, D.C., people from all backgrounds have been given the opportunity to experience the great strides made by Black people in America. However, the history of Black America spans beyond the East and West Coasts.
For Black people to understand their place in America, they must also understand the roots and passageways that led us to step foot on American soil. This is why CEO Michael Boulware Moore is thrilled to discuss the $75 million development of the International African American Museum in Charleston, Soiuth Carolina.
Although the museum will not be completed and ready to open until 2019, Moore talked with BET Digital News about the incredible and innovative pieces that we can expect to see at the International African American Museum.
Moore, who is a descendant of African-American pioneer Robert Smalls, has a strong connection to African-American history as well as South Carolina. Smalls, who was deemed a hero of the Civil War and helped convince Abraham Lincoln to allow freed slaves to enlist in the Union Army, acted as a prime figure in the advancement of Black people.
“We’re located on one of the most historically important sites in African-American history,” Moore told BET. “About 80 percent of African-Americans can trace a relative back to Charleston. This will be a place where African-Americans can pay homage to their ancestors, much like Europeans can with Ellis Island.”
Additionally Moore spoke of a technologically innovative aspect of the museum that will allow for people to trace the history of their family, knowledge that many African-Americans do not know.
“Our center for family history will be a place where you can find your personal strand of your family’s history,” Moore said. “The person we are working with did Michelle Obama’s genealogy. Using the genealogy process, in addition to DNA companies, people will be able to piece together their families that were broken apart.”
Right now is a crucial time for people of all backgrounds to understand how Black people have helped to shape the country. Because of the incredible work Michael Moore is doing, the International African American Museum is sure to take its place amongst the greatest historical centers in African-American history.
(Photo: International African American Museum)