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The Coming of Freedom

Emancipation Proclamation: An Introduction

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Our American Story

Our American Story - Juneteenth

This year marks the second anniversary since President Joe Biden named Juneteenth a federal holiday in 2021. As more Americans celebrate Juneteenth with family and community, it is vital to share the important historical legacy behind Juneteenth and recognize the long struggle to make it an officially recognized holiday. It is an opportunity to honor our country’s second Independence Day and reflect on our shared history and future.
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Cultural Expressions

Black Joy: Resistance, Resilience and Reclamation

At the heart of the Black Joy movement is what many scholars, journalists, authors, and others are describing as resistance, resilience, and reclamation of Black Humanity. Life brings everyone challenges, disappointments, losses, and unexpected difficulties, regardless of race. But when race is added to the mix, the situation is compounded exponentially. When people live in a world that devalues them because they are black or brown as well as dismisses their contributions to the larger society, Black Joy is and has been an effective tool that has allowed individuals and groups to shift the impact of negative narratives and events in their favor.
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Who is the Black Panther?

The late former Marvel editor-in-chief Stan Lee may have been was a major proponent to bringing the king of the fictional nation Wakanda to life, T’Challa, the Black Panther, was never expected to gain long-term success.
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Collection Story

Black Geographies: Our Place in the World

A close look at spaces African Americans have inhabited and fought for can deepen our understanding of the connections between race, space, and place.
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Collection Story

Mary McLeod Bethune: “First Lady of Negro America”

Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune sought to uplift and to buttress the lives of Black Americans through education, organizations, politics, and strong leadership. Her endeavors were recognized by those she served, members of the press, presidents of the United States, a first lady of the United States, and countless others impacted by her works.
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Collection Story

The Harlem Renaissance in Black Queer History

The Harlem Renaissance, a literary and cultural flowering centered in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood that lasted from roughly the early 1920s through the mid-1930s, marked a turning point in African American culture. Black queer artists and intellectuals were among the most influential contributors to this cultural movement.
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Collection Story

Harriet Tubman: Life, Liberty and Legacy

Harriet Tubman has been known by many names—Araminta, Moses, conductor, daughter, sister, wife, mother, aunt. On the bicentennial of her birth, we look beyond these names to capture not only Harriet Tubman the icon, but Harriet the woman, and Harriet’s legacy of care, activism, and bravery that influenced Black women across time.
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Transatlantic Commuter

At Home and Abroad

Because he returned frequently to the United States to work, visit family, and engage in activism, Baldwin referred to himself as a “transatlantic commuter.”
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Transatlantic Commuter

Escape From America

Constrained by racial violence, homophobia, and financial difficulties, Baldwin sought physical and psychological distance abroad to pursue his craft.
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