Founder Randi Randolph didn’t realize she would ever create a museum, let alone try to save a town. But when she learned about the troubles her hometown of Alton, Illinois, was having, she had a vision to return. She had moved to California and lived there for several years. In 2007, Alton’s economy took a hard hit and the town began to sink into despair and crime. Randolph knew she could help the community through arts, education and entertainment. Her top priority was to help the town get back on its feet. The first step was finding a way to bring the community together. Randolph discovered that the community needed a common goal. She created a goal for them: to learn about African-American history. To do this, she had to create a place where everyone could come together to discover their culture. Museum En Black is the spearhead for Randolph’s community redevelopment project for Alton.
Alton is a very special place. It is one of the cities that had a stop for the Underground Railroad, a series of routes that spanned from the south to Canada. Thousands of African Americans traveled them in the hopes of finding freedom in the North. Alton is also home to many famous African Americans, such as Miles Davis and Tuskegee Airmen George and Arnold Cisco. Right now, we are working to secure a permanent home for the museum. The most recent exhibit was in the Alton Square Mall. Alton Square Mall has new ownership and our community still does not have a clear picture of their direction? Through our exhibits you will see paintings, photographs, albums, art, antiques, quilts and much more. Each color, piece of furniture and patch of fabric illustrates a treasured memory. We invite you to our next exhibit to share the wealth of our history. This museum is only one way to help revitalize Alton. We strive to bring our community together through bring education, training and entertainment. We would like to hold a variety of classes for our residents, particularly our youth, such as quilting. If you would like to teach a quilting class, please contact us today.
Adjacent to the museum will be a charter school. The school will expose children to new information about the museum as well as teach them to do everything green. Being eco-friendly has become a way of life in not just the products we purchase, but how we use our natural resources. The children will learn how to build solar panels and aquaponics systems, which will also teach them responsibility and accountability. We are working on securing a building for our school. To help our dream of bringing this school and other community projects to life, we have set up a crowdfunding campaign. Museum En Black is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible. Please donate to make our dream a reality.
Museum En Black
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Our exhibits change regularly. Contact our team to be informed about our current exhibits.