The Community Curation Program

Bridging the divide between African American generations with digital technology

African American families have a rich history of storytelling that informs, inspires, and imparts each generation with a sense of place and purpose. The Museum’s Community Curation Program combines this tradition with modern technology to preserve our past and share our stories.

The Community Curation Program (CCP) is a new initiative supported by the Robert Frederick Smith Fund for the Digitization and Curation of African American History. Its goal is to bridge the generational divide in African American communities by providing access to online services that will support the preservation and sharing of stories by and for the community through the digitization of video, audio, and archival images and documents.

From the Collection, Gift of Princetta R. Newman

Along with our many family stories, the CCP will also include contributions by civic organizations, community groups, religious organizations, and other nonprofit organizations. The CCP will be a unique opportunity to celebrate African American history at the community level and tell the full American story. From these digital community efforts, African Americans of all ages will be able to join together to preserve the traditions of family and community organizations for current and future generations of Americans.

Participate Now

The Robert Frederick Smith Explore Your Family History Center is located on the 2nd floor of the Museum in the Explore More! interactive gallery area. The Center’s Community Curation Program will expand with the launch of a new online platform in  November 2017. The Museum is inviting individuals and organizations from across the country to begin identifying, collecting, and curating the stories that will make the CCP a unique archive of just some of the never before known histories found within African American communities.

By encouraging all Americans to participate in the curation and preservation of our communities, the CCP will inspire each of us to be an active participant in our national history.

Learn More

To learn more about the Community Curation Program, download (pdf) a brochure about the program. To receive periodic updates, please email the Museum at For more on the Robert Frederick Smith Explore Your Family History Center, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions.