JOSEPH, OREGON__The Smithsonian Institution opened its newest museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture Sept. 24, 2016. The celebration continues and reaches far beyond Washington, D.C., to several locations across Eastern Oregon as museums and art centers present A Place for All People: Introducing the National Museum of African American History and Culture. The commemorative poster exhibition will be on view at these venues and dates:
• March 1-8, 2017 / Maxville Heritage Center – Joseph, Oregon
• March 10 – 16, 2017 / Arts Center East – La Grande, Oregon
• March 17 – 23, 2017 / Four Rivers Cultural Center – Ontario, Oregon
• March 24 – 30, 2017 / Baker Heritage Museum – Baker City, Oregon
• March 31 – April 7, 2017 / Eastern Oregon University – La Grande, Oregon
• April 8 – 21, 2017 / Blue Mountain Community College – Pendleton, Oregon
Please contact the local chambers of commerce for addresses.
Organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) in collaboration with the National Museum of African American History and Culture, “A Place for All People” highlights key artifacts that tell the rich and diverse story of the African American experience. From the child-size shackles of a slave and the clothing worn by Carolotta Walls on her first day at Little Rock Central High School to Chuck Berry’s Gibson guitar, “Maybellene,” and the track shoes worn by Olympian Carl Lewis, the exhibition presents a living history that reflects challenge, triumph, faith and hope. Admission is free.
The poster exhibition and related public programs share the many stories of African American and African diaspora people and their contributions to the local community and the American story. Spearheaded by Gwen Trice, Maxville Heritage Center of Joseph, and aided by the Eastern Oregon Visitors Association (EOVA), the recruitment of venues and planning process for bringing this important exhibit to rural Oregon has taken place over several months and brought together a variety of arts and heritage interest groups. Sponsors of the exhibition in Oregon are Oregon Historical Society and US Bank. In addition to the venues, local sponsors include the EOVA and the Union County Museum.
The journey to establish the National Museum of African American History and Culture began a century ago with a call for a national memorial to honor the contributions of African American Civil War veterans. After decades of efforts by private citizens, organizations and members of Congress, federal legislation was passed in 2003 to create the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Since then, thousands of artifacts have been collected to fill the inspiring new building that has risen on the National Mall.
Through its exhibitions and programs, the museum provides a shared lens to view the nation’s history and the possibility for hope and healing. It is a place where all can gather to remember, reflect and embrace America’s story: a place for all people. For more information, visit nmaahc.si.edu.
SITES has been sharing the wealth of Smithsonian collections and research programs with millions of people outside Washington, D.C., for 65 years. SITES connects Americans to their shared cultural heritage through a wide range of exhibitions about art, science and history, which are shown wherever people live, work and play. For exhibition description and tour schedules, visit sites.si.edu.