Museum News

Statement on the Passing of Historian Ira Berlin

Lonnie G. Bunch III issued the following statement today honoring the legacy of Ira Berlin, a historian whose groundbreaking research and books explored American slavery and its impact on American culture.

June 9, 2018
A panel for our "Future of the African American Past Symposium," moderated by Ira Berlin with Elsa Barkley Brown, Tiya Miles, Dylan C. Penningroth and Deborah Gray White.

“The National Museum of African American History and Culture mourns the passing of Ira Berlin, one of the most gifted and generous historians of his generation. Dr. Berlin's innovative scholarship changed the way historians understand slavery and its impact on America. His work is at the heart of the way this museum interprets slavery in our exhibition "Slavery and freedom." Personally, as a friend and mentor, Dr. Berlin shaped my career and my understanding of the possibilities of doing history. We were all made better by his creativity and his generous spirit. He will be missed, but his contributions to our understandings of the American past will never be forgotten.”

Lonnie G. Bunch III, Founding Director

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About The Museum

The National Museum of African American History and Culture will be a place where all Americans can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience, what it means to their lives and how it helped us shape this nation. A place that transcends the boundaries of race and culture that divide us, and becomes a lens into a story that unites us all.