National Museum of American History
1300 Constitution Ave., NW
Through some 1,100 objects, this exhibition illuminates the communities and the lives of several well-documented families in the 1780s and 1790s—the first generation of people to live in the newly created United States of America. The exhibition begins with a multimedia program that introduces the diversity of American life in the late 18th century and how 3 major cultural groups adapted to new ways of life—Native Americans; Europeans; and Africans, both slave and free.
The following 3 cultural groups are used to explore the struggle of maintaining old traditions while adapting to new ways of life:
- African Americans in the Chesapeake region
- the Seneca nation of the Iroquois Confederacy
- Citizens of Philadelphia, including craftspeople, and free blacks and their foundation of the A.M.E. Church.