New mini-museum, “The African-American Military Experience Exhibit,” explores all aspects and nuances of military experience among black soldiers in the United States, at the Long Beach African-American Cultural Center at Bixby Knolls.
An exhibit that kicked off on Veterans Day will run through May 28, celebrating different themes in the lives and achievements of black soldiers, according to the exhibit curator and AACCLB board member, Sharon Diggs-Jackson.
Diggs-Jackson said the exhibit focuses on how African Americans have supported and fought in American wars despite the inequalities they faced.
For example, black soldiers would go home to separate bathrooms and restaurants, she noted, “that’s why we’re talking about it as experience because military service for African Americans has affected their whole life “.
“We want people to understand this totality,” said Diggs-Jackson.
The exhibition is free to the public at the following times:
- Tuesday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
- Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Fridays from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., days which include tourist guides
The theme for this month and December will be the military history of the United States and the overall military experience of black America, said Diggs-Jackson.
The coming months are planned to present themes such as:
- January 2022: “Military and medical heroes”
- February 2022: “Long Beach Military Service and Heroes of the Sea”
- March 2022: “Women’s History Month”, celebrating the women who served and the airmen of Tuskegee, the first group of black airmen
- April 2022: “Long Beach takes off, with McDonnell Douglas and Boeing Aircraft”
- May 2022: “Hello to all Long Beach Veterans”
The African-American Military Experience exhibit opened last week in conjunction with an existing exhibit, Forgotten Exhibits, co-owned by Sharon McLucas, which features a traveling museum of African-American artifacts.
For more information on planning a group or private tour, contact Sharon Diggs-Jackson at 562-739-5276 or email AACCLB at [email protected]
The Long Beach African American Cultural Center is currently located at the Expo Center for the Arts at 4321 Atlantic Ave.
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