Thursday, January 12, 2012

The African-American Heritage Center of Delaware - A Racist Idea

The News Journal had an article on the proposed African-American Heritage Center of Delaware. The proposed African-American Heritage Center of Delaware has been beat around for a number of years. In 2004 by way of a bond issue from the City of Wilmington one million dollars was obtained to establish it. Another $2.5 million has to be raised for the project. The Afro-American Historical Society and the Delaware Historical Society were the only two organizations to submit proposals for the grant.

The News Journal has an interesting selection of photos with their article. The one of Harmon Carey, who heads the Afro-American Historical Society, shows him standing in front of a run down looking building where they had proposed to change to a heritage center. He is dressed in a plait outdoor's jacket with a skull cap on his head. The photo of Scott W. Loehr, the chief executive officer of the Delaware Historical Society, shows him standing inside the society's Research Library, a grand structure. Obviously the News Journal was going with the sympathy vote on photos.

As I have said before in my experience it is rare to see Black people in museums or doing research on history or genealogy, I also have a hang up about public money going to any museum or culture center that is dedicated to any hyphenated race or ethnicity group, (didn't we try for equality and doing away with separate facilities based on race back in the 1960's? )so to me the possible $3.5 million this will take (and no ones believes it is only going to be $3.5 million) could be put to better use elsewhere.

Anyway the Wilmington Mayor selected the Delaware Historical Society to run the project. It was based on a proven track record of running historical museums in Delaware. As was pointed however the Delaware Historical Society tends to take my view and has not done much to exhibit Black people culture in Delaware. So I am sure the Delaware Historical Society will be searching for the token Black people to sit on the board and contribute their name to the project - you have to love Delaware it is so 1970's.

No comments: