The Griot Museum of Black History
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The Griot Museum of Black History, located in St. Louis, Missouri, was founded in 1997. Originally named The Black World History Wax Museum, the organization changed its name to The Griot Museum of Black History (“The Griot”) in 2009. In some west African countries, the griot, is a historian, storyteller, praise singer, poet and/or musician. The griot is a repository of oral tradition and is often seen as a societal leader who preserves and shares cultural traditions of a community. Likewise, the museum collects, preserves, and shares the stories, culture, and history of Black people with a focus on those with a regional connection to St. Louis.
Exhibits and ProgramsEdit
The Griot has numerous displays of wax sculptures, art, and memorabilia. Featured historical figures include Carter G. Woodson, Josephine Baker, Dred and Harriet Scott, Elizabeth Keckley, William Wells Brown, James Milton Turner, Clark Terry, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Miles Davis, Madame C.J. Walker, York, Percy Green, among others. Museum founder Lois Conley made many of the wax sculptures herself.
The museum features a slave cabin built on the Wright–Smith Plantation in Jonesburg, Missouri. Other exhibits include documentary videos as well as a model section of a ship intended to replicate those used to transport Africans to America during the Atlantic Slave Trade.
Black HIV/AIDS Awareness 2019Edit
The Griot marked the 50th anniversary of the death of Robert Rayford, the first known victim of HIV/AIDS in the United States. The museum hosted events around National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, February 7, encouraging community members to contribute memorabilia and providing health screenings.
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- "Griot Museum of Black History, St. Louis, Missouri". RoadsideAmerica.com. Retrieved 2019-04-18.
- Fowler, Nancy. "Urban League and Griot Museum join forces to keep African-American history alive in St. Louis". Retrieved 2017-10-06.
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- Naffziger, Chris (2019-02-06). "The historic Griot Museum hosts an urgent series of events for National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day". www.stlmag.com. Retrieved 2019-04-18.