National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center Spring/Summer 2021



New Exhibit - Rhythm of the Revolution
opens Sat., May 15!

The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce, Ohio, presents a new exhibit called Rhythm of Revolution. The exhibit, which opens on Sat., May 15, maps the visual flow of artistic, cultural, social, and political change in America from 1619 to the present day.
Using three-dimensional objects from the NAAMCC collections, Rhythm of Revolution explores how Black artists, religious leaders, and activists worked within their spheres of influence to transform Ohio and our nation. Over time, these known and unknown change agents connected deeply rooted African traditions, interpreted those traditions to attempt to solve contemporary challenges, and worked to pave the way forward into a better future.
This exhibit was created by the NAAMCC curators Rosa Rojas, Hadley Drodge, and Derek Pridemore, who worked with Wright State University Public History graduate students. Daniel Willis said, “I found the class to be an incredibly eye-opening experience, and it was nice to explore a different side of museum work. In the end, it is immensely satisfying to see the final product.” Classmate Travis Terracino added, “The most challenging thing about history is speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves anymore. This class aided me in understanding a deep and often overlooked American history.”
NAAMCC assistant curator Hadley Drodge explains, “NAAMCC has been collaborating with the Wright State Public History Program for several years to provide hands-on exhibit creation and collections management experience to students. We had the students do a deep dive into the history and accomplishments of African Americans’ to be better historians.”  NAAMCC curatorial assistant Derek Pridemore added, “As Wright State Public History grads, it’s important to us and NAAMCC to allow students to gain valuable work experience that could help them find employment in the museum field. Hadley and I had the good fortune of being former interns here, and we received the same mentoring from our staff and museum leadership.”

All exhibits are included with paid museum admission: $6/adult, $5/senior, $3/ages 6–17, Free/Ohio History Connection & NAAMCC members. For more information, call NAAMCC at 800-752-2603 ext. 0 or visit The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center is located at 1350 Brush Row Road in Wilberforce, Ohio.  

NAAMCC reopens Sat., May 15!

The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center will re-open to visitors on Sat., May 15, 2021. Our schedule will be:

  • May Museum Hours (beginning May 15): Friday & Saturday only  9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Museum Hours (beginning June 2): Wednesday – Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Masks and Social Distancing are required until further notice

We are excited to welcome you back to see our fabulous exhibitions: 

Queens of the Heartland
The exhibit features the stories of 30 Ohio African American women who were a significant influence in the Suffrage and Civil Rights Movements from the 19th through the 21st centuries. The Queens of the Heartland exhibit tells the stories of these change-makers through panel text as well as three-dimensional objects. This exhibit includes portrait illustrations of these historical figures by New York artist Nichole Washington, whose current work focuses on identity and celebrates African American women. For more information, go to The Ohio Arts Council partially supports this exhibit.
African Americans Fighting For a Double Victory
Explore the many ways that African Americans served our country in the military and on the home front during World War II through this exhibit of World War II materials from the NAAMCC collections.  Discover the art of Charles Alston, commissioned by the Office of War Information to promote the war effort among African Americans, explore stories of the Tuskegee Airmen, the Red Ball Express, and Wilberforce-area veterans.  Learn more about the impact of African American World War II veterans had on the advances in Civil Rights that happened during and after the war. 
Behind the Mask-Black Power in Comics
Behind the Mask: Black Power in Comics explores African Americans’ painful and triumphant history in comic books. The exhibit delves into the history of black comic book characters who, in the past, were rarely featured as heroes.  Black comic book creators are now emerging to establishing superheroes of their own, reflecting a truer self-identity and cultural pride. 
What’s in your attic? -Selections From Our Permanent Collection
When the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center (NAAMCC) opened its doors in 1988, it was in the vanguard by being one of the first national museums dedicated to African American history. Today, NAAMCC houses over 8,000 artifacts, 600 linear feet of archived materials and remains a pioneer in preserving and presenting African American history and culture.  Learn more about the 30-year history and cultural influence of the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center.  A special mini-exhibit entitled Playing with Identity: Selections from the Lillian M. Bartok Black Doll Collection is a part of this exhibit. 

All exhibits are included with paid museum admission: $6/adult, $5/senior, $3/ages 6–17, Free/Ohio History Connection & NAAMCC members. For more information, call NAAMCC at 800-752-2603 ext. 0 or visit The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center is located at 1350 Brush Row Road in Wilberforce, Ohio.

Join NAAMCC for our Spring
Online Programs


NAAMCC is offering a diverse menu of online programs featuring thought-provoking topics covering art, genealogy, and history. Use the links in each description to register. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Thursday, May 13  7 p.m.   Free Program
“Lifting as We Climb”: the life and legacy of Mary Church Terrell
Learn about suffragist and Civil Rights pioneer Mary Church Terrell (1863–1954). A graduate of Ohio’s Oberlin College, Terrell is featured in the NAAMCC exhibit, Queens of the Heartland. Her parents were both enslaved, but they rose quickly to become one of the wealthiest families in the South. Terrell may be unknown to us now, but her advocacy work in the 20th century is foundational to the Black activism movement. Join Dr. Treva Lindsey of The Ohio State University Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Sandra Rattley, Executive Producer, Director & Writer of the PBS’s American Masters series “Unladylike2020” for a lively discussion of Terrell’s life. She is profiled in “Unladylike2020”, a series of 26 short films profiling diverse and little-known American women. The program will include a screening of Terrell’s film, followed by a discussion of why she was selected for “Unladylike2020”. Register for this free education program through this Zoom link 
Sat., Jun. 19 • 1–2:30 p.m.
Black Music: The Soundtrack of Humanity
A special program in commemoration of Juneteenth
Co-hosted by the Ohio History Connection
$20/per registrant; $5/Ohio History Connection member; Free/Ohio History Connection premium member

Join us in commemorating Juneteeth as we explore Black music with two renowned performers and educators. Dr. Ted McDaniel and Dr. Mark Lomax III will discuss Black music as a continuum and reflect on spirituals and blues related to the foundation of global music. In addition, they will talk about music as a symbol of resistance during the late 1800s and beyond. Dr. Lomax will share selections from his collection, 400: An Afrikan Epic, that directly relate to Juneteenth. Tickets: Ohio History Connection ( Learn more about the history and significance of Juneteeth in a blog post written by Jerolyn Barbee and Derek Pridemore of the National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center. See that post here.
Thursday, Jul. 15 7 p.m.   Free Program
Raggin’ On: The Art of Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson’s House and Journals 
Carole Genshaft and Deidre Hamlar, co-curators of Raggin’ On: The Art of Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson’s House and Journals, will discuss the exhibition, which is on view through Oct. 3 at the Columbus Museum of Art. They will examine the artist’s lifelong dedication to documenting the ordinary and extraordinary lives of Black people to “fill in the blank pages of American history.” The exhibition and accompanying catalog are part of the Aminah Robinson Legacy Project, established after Robinson bequeathed almost her entire estate to the Museum before she passed away in 2015. The curators will also discuss aspects of the Legacy Project, including the renovation of the artist’s house and establishing the Aminah Robinson residency for African American artists. Register for this free education program through this Zoom link.                             

Get creative for free! Introduction to African Inspired Handmade Beads and Jewelry Workshop starts June 3

Join Rosa Rojas, Lead Curator at the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce, and Cincinnati jewelry artist Talitha Sydneia for Introduction to African Inspired Handmade Beads and Jewelry. This free workshop series is a part of the Ohio History Connection’s 55+ Adult Classes sponsored by Aroha Philanthropies. This program is limited to participants who are age 55 and older. 
During this 8-week workshop, up to 12 participants will learn about African cultural practices through the use of various select materials traditionally used in the making of physical adornments, compare traditional bead-making processes and materials with contemporary ones, create African-inspired beads in polymer clay, learn three different clasp methods and which is the best option for different stringing cords, learn basic design skills in jewelry-making.
At the end of the eight-week session, each student will have completed from one to three wearable art pieces in the form of jewelry. Students are invited to showcase their work during a curated fashion show where they can serve as models or request a friend or family member's participation. They will also have the opportunity to discuss their creative process and the inspiration behind their color and form choices.
Class Details:
Thursdays -June 3, 10, 17, 24, July 8, 15, 22, 29, 2021. No class on July 1st.
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
For participants aged 55+ only. Maximum class size: 12
Free/participant. Registration is required. All workshop supplies are included.
Go to to register and for more information.
Please Note: The workshops will be conducted in-person at the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center, 1350 Brush Row Rd., Wilberforce, OH. 

NAAMCC announces COVID-19
collections moratorium

To facilitate the processing of our current backlog of donations that occurred while the museum is closed due to COVID-19, NAAMCC will not be accepting new loans or unsolicited archive or object donations until further notice.  Please do not bring or mail donations of artifacts to the NAAMCC during this period. Museum staff will not accept any items offered, and all such offers will be declined. We will honor all existing loan agreements and any loans that have been approved before Sept. 15, 2020.   

NAAMCC, like all museums, has a responsibility to maintain the highest possible standards of professional museum practices. A moratorium on collections acquisition and loans is the only option while our small collections management staff focuses exclusively on the significant and complex projects that have been delayed due to the pandemic. In very limited instances, NAAMCC may solicit material of substantial historical importance during the moratorium. However, these exceptions will be rare and need to be authorized by museum administration before any documents or artifacts can be left with museum staff.
We will review this temporary policy at the end of the second quarter of 2021 based on the status of the COVID-19 in Ohio. For more information, contact NAAMCC Collections Manager Linda Collins at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 800.752.2603 ext. 2124.

Become a NAAMCC supporter of our
$30 for 30 Fundraising Campaign


For over 30 years, the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center is the place to learn about African American history and culture! We serve Ohio by educating audiences about the great achievements of Black Ohioans and national figures throughout the year.
We are continuing to receive donations during the COVID-19 health crisis, so thank you to all of you who have supported us. We hope you will give $30 or more to the campaign and encourage your family and friends to join you in supporting our mission. Your donations will support our online educational programs, collections care, and facilities maintenance.

You can mail your $30 or more contribution to: 
National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center
P.O. Box 578
Wilberforce, Ohio 45384-0578

Or you can make a credit/debit card donation online using this secure link. Thanks for your continuing support!


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