February, March Public Programming Begins With Discussion on Interim Director Spencer Crew’s Latest Book “Thurgood Marshall: A Life in American History”

“Proud Shoes: The Story of an American Family” Exhibition Opens in Family History Center
February 3, 2020
News Release

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Thurgood Marshall book cover.

A discussion with Spencer Crew, interim director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, on his new book Thurgood Marshall: A Life in American History will lead the winter programming at the museum. Crew will join in conversation with Paul Finkelman, president of Gratz College about the newly released biography, detailing the life of America’s first black Supreme Court justice and his cultural and historic significance. Several programs will celebrate Black History Month and Women’s History Month, including a musical performance and discussion on African American women in jazz, an interactive program on food accessibility and a discussion about African American women’s contributions in World War I at home and abroad. All programs held in the museum’s Oprah Winfrey Theater will stream live on the museum’s Ustream channel at ustream.tv.  

Historically Speaking: Thurgood Marshall—A Conversation Between Spencer Crew and Paul Finkelman
Monday, Feb. 10; 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. (Oprah Winfrey Theater)

Spencer Crew, interim director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, will discuss his recently published biography of America’s first black Supreme Court justice, Thurgood Marshall, with moderator Paul Finkelman, president of Gratz college and a specialist on American constitutional and legal history. Crew’s latest publication, Thurgood Marshall: A Life in American History, chronicles the justice’s legendary career as a civil rights litigator and founder of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. A book sale and signing will follow the discussion, courtesy of Smithsonian Enterprises. Admission is free; however, registration is required at https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/upcoming.

District Treasures
Wednesday, Feb. 12; 11 a.m.

The museum will welcome visitors to join in the latest installment of the Save Our African AmericanTreasures, a national initiative to reclaim and preserve valuable family and community relics. Visitors are encouraged to bring in family treasures and heirlooms to the museum to receive a professional review from preservation specialists. Attendees will gain insight into the historical significance of their items and best practices for preservation. This month’s District Treasures focuses will focus on objects, ephemera, textiles, paper, books and photographs. Admission is free; however, registration is required at https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/upcoming.

Engineering STEM Day
Saturday, Feb. 22; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

To help celebrate National Engineering Week, this event will highlight the long lineage of African American engineers, scientists and inventors. This program will introduce museum visitors to the world of engineering and share how African Americans have shaped and influenced the world by educating them on the earliest people of African descent using their knowledge of rice cultivation to the newest generation of technology prodigies and inventors. Ticket information and more details on the event are available at https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/engineering-stem-day.

NMAAHC Live: Jazz, Gender and Society With Terri Lyne Carrington
Wednesday, Feb. 26; 7 p.m. (Oprah Winfrey Theater)

Grammy Award-winning drummer and scholar Terri Lyne Carrington will perform and discuss the contributions of African American women musicians to the canon of jazz. The evening will begin with selections Carrignton from her critically acclaimed album Waiting Game and conclude with a conversation between the artist and curator Dwandalyn Reece, the museum’s acting associate director for curatorial affairs and curator of music and the performing arts. CDs will be available for sale courtesy of Smithsonian Enterprises. Ticket information and more details on the event are available at https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/upcoming.

“Proud Shoes: The Story of an American Family” Exhibition Opens in Family History Center
Friday, Feb. 28 (Family History Center, second floor)
“Proud Shoes: The Story of an American Family” explores the family history of Pauli Murray, a pioneering lawyer, priest and writer who published a major African American genealogy 20 years before Roots. The exhibition showcases the racial and social dynamics between the union of a free black family from the North and a mixed-race family of the South. “Proud Shoes” is on display Feb. 28 through Aug. 28.

Soultalkin With Aunt Lu: An Oral History Workshop and Discussion
Saturday, March 7; noon (Family History Center, second floor)

Kelly Elaine Navies, the museum’s oral historian, will share lessons she has learned doing oral history with African American women, offer guidelines for how people can record the stories of the African American women in their life and discuss the significance of capturing the stories of the African American women. To register for the event, email familyhistorycenter@si.edu.

A Seat at the Table: A Conversation About Food Equity and Sustainability
Thursday, March 19; 6:45 p.m. (Heritage Hall)

The museum will host a thought-provoking conversation on food insecurity in Washington, D.C. Julianne Malveaux will moderate a discussion among urban anthropologist Ashanté Reese, food justice activist Michele Tingling-Clemmons and Samir Meghelli of the Anacostia Community Museum regarding their efforts to ensure equitable food access. The speakers will discuss how black residents navigate and resist unequal food distribution systems through community gardening and resource sharing. After the presentation, audience participants will have the opportunity to share their stories and ideas on how to combat structural forces that determine food access in urban areas. “A Seat at the Table” is an interactive program for participants to consider challenging questions about race, identity and economic justice over a family-style meal. This program will be produced as part of the Smithsonian Material Culture Forum. To purchase tickets and to learn about the latest installment of A Seat at the Table, visit https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/upcoming.

Historically Speaking: We Return Fighting: World War I and the Impact of African American Women
Thursday, March 26; 7 p.m. (Oprah Winfrey Theater)

To celebrate Women’s History Month, the museum will host a conversation on African American Women and their contributions during World War I on the home front and the battlefield. Contributors of the museum’s book We Return Fighting: World War I and the Shaping of Modern Black Identity, Lisa Budreau, senior curator of military history at the Tennessee State Museum, and Brittany Cooper, professor at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, will discuss the Gold Star Mothers and the Golden 14, the first African American women in the U.S. Navy. Ticket information and more details on the event are available at https://nmaahc.si.edu/event/upcoming.

About the National Museum of African American History and Culture

Since opening Sept. 24, 2016, the National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed more than 6 million visitors. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu, follow @NMAAHC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram or call Smithsonian information at (202) 633-1000.

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SI-32-2020

Media Only

Jermaine House

(202) 633-9495

housej@si.edu

Jason Spear

(202) 633-9904

SpearJ@si.edu

Public Programs