Before the new Museum in D.C., there was a great museum in Baltimore City. That is the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland Afrikan Amerikan History & Culture located in downtown Baltimore, Maryland. The namesake of the museum is associated with one of the richest black men in Amerikan history. He was a Harvard law grad, had a net worth above $400 million and was the first black man to run a billion dollar business, i.e. Beatrice Foods. Brotha Reginald F. Lewis, Esq, was one baaaad brotha.
The initial question is: Is this a black owned business? According to the good brotha at the front desk, the museum is state run to an extent. However, he seemed to indicate that the board, executive staff and other stakeholders were brothas, and sistahs from the community. And of course, it doesn’t hurt that $5 million was donated in 2005 to get this project jumpin’. Although uncertain, it seems plausible and sensible that the answer to the question above is yes.
The interior of the museum is nearly brand new and state of the art. It was said that Mr. Lewis himself fought for a new building, apparently Brotha Lewis said, “we are always given old things.” There are three floors to the museum with the 3rd containing the most info. This level flaunts influential figures like Frederick Douglass, Benjamin Banneker, Harriet Tubman and even Matthew Henson (all of which had some Maryland background of some kind). It also pays heavy tribute to the Jazz era which was major in B-More.
The second floor seems to focus more on dance and critical community discourse. The area that focused on discourse had alot of good rhetorical questions to ask patrons about modern topics. One of the moat intriguing to me was………..
Highlights: 1) Great range of topics, 3) Bank of America Customers are FREE, 3) Interactove Exhibits, 4) Thought Provoking Exhibits.
Find more at: http://www.lewismuseum.org/