BALTIMORE (WJZ) — America faces yet another racial reckoning after a mass shooting last weekend in Buffalo, New York. The attack on a predominantly black community is being investigated as a hate crime.
As this tragedy is investigated, a Baltimore museum is preparing to open a new exhibit focused on the ongoing struggle for civil rights.
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The Maryland Center for History and Culture on Park Avenue in Baltimore is on a mission to educate a new generation.
Allison Tollman told WJZ that the new exhibit will highlight Maryland’s contributions to the fight for equality.
“Civil rights transcended generations and the . . . it happened here in Baltimore. It happened here in Maryland and it’s still happening here today,” said Allison Tollman of the Maryland Center for History and Culture.
The exhibit focuses on Maryland’s rich but sometimes unknown historical connections to the civil rights movement. In 1968, Governor Spiro Agnew jailed nearly 300 students marching for better conditions at Bowie State University.
That fight came nearly half a century before a settled lawsuit in 2021 that will provide millions in new funding for historically black Maryland universities.
In the 1950s, local college students challenged racial systems by staging sit-ins at separate restaurants years before the South lunch counter protests.
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“Morgan State College was the focus, other schools participated — Johns Hopkins University had quite a few people participating in the 1950s and into the 1960s,” said Dr. David Terry, author and history professor at Morgan State University.
The exhibit features audio recordings of everyday Marylanders telling stories in their own words. College professors say their students are desperate to learn more.
“I think I’ve heard from many, many students that they feel like they’ve been denied this story in a way, haven’t been given enough of it, been taught it in a way that’s maybe a little too narrow,” said dr Joshua Clark Davis, history professor at the University of Baltimore.
The struggle for equality continues to this day. We saw it in 2020 after the murder of George Floyd.
In the wake of last weekend’s mass shooting in Buffalo – which is now being investigated as a hate crime – the exhibition will seek to break down barriers as the fight for equal rights in America rages on.
“It lets you know there’s a lot more that needs to be done,” said Professor Linda Day Clark, a visual artist and also a professor at Coppin State University. “And these people that we often honor in an exhibition like this are our elders. So now it’s up to us. Now it’s up to the youth to make sure the fight stays real.”
The exhibit opens this Friday and will feature dozens of stories told by Marylanders then and now.
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https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2022/05/18/baltimore-exhibit-focuses-on-marylands-ties-to-the-civil-rights-movement/ Baltimore Exhibit Focuses on Maryland’s Connections to the Civil Rights Movement – CBS Baltimore