African American Museum of Dallas

Claire Hebert

Claire Hebert

In 1989, the city of Dallas was challenged with a question: How can we bring awareness of past and current issues facing the African American community? In response to this challenge, six individuals began exploring the feasibility of creating a museum that would serve as an educational tool for future generations. These six men — Dr. Marvin Newberger, Dr. Mark Newberger, Greg Newberger, Bartlett Green, Larry Marshall and Richard Marshall — collaborated with various organizations and formed an executive board to launch the African-American Museum of Dallas. The purpose is simple: To develop an institution that will preserve and promote understanding of the unique heritage, experiences, and challenges of people of African descent. The museum serves as more than just a space to store artifacts; it is a place where visitors can learn about history while simultaneously inspiring future generations to go beyond what has already been achieved in order to achieve even more.

Origins of the Museum

The African American Museum of Dallas originally opened in June 1992 as The Black Heritage Museum. Founder Marvin Newberger explains that the name change to the African American Museum of Dallas came about to avoid being too narrow in scope. The Black Heritage Museum was designed to feature the history and culture of African Americans and people of African descent all over the world, with an emphasis on the Southern United States. During its 19-year run, the museum became a cultural landmark in the city of Dallas and attracted visitors from all over the world. In 2011, the museum closed to undergo a major renovation and expansion project that was completed in 2017. The museum reopened on February 7, 2017, as the African American Museum of Dallas.

The Importance of the African American Museum

A museum is not just a building where you store artifacts and specimens to look at; it is a place of memory and meaning. Museums can be physically situated anywhere—in a large city, small town, or even in a virtual space. But like memory, they often become most poignant when they are situated in a particular place. The African American Museum of Dallas is more than just a place to view artifacts from the past; it is a monument to black cultural and social history. The museum serves as a reminder that, despite obstacles, African Americans have always worked toward a better future. The museum provides a space that allows visitors and residents alike to familiarize themselves with black history and culture.

Preservation and Exhibits

The museum features three permanent exhibits: Our People, Our Stories: An Oral History of African Americans in Dallas; The Color of Culture: Visual Arts by African Americans; and The Game of Life: Sports and the African American Experience. Our People, Our Stories features artifacts and audio recordings of oral histories conducted with African Americans who have lived in the Dallas area. The Color of Culture highlights a wide variety of art from various periods of time. The Game of Life explores the sporting world from the perspective of black athletes and other figures. The museum also hosts rotating exhibitions throughout the year. The museum offers various programs for guests of all ages, including workshops, lectures, and special events. Guests can also participate in research, curatorial, and archival projects.

How to get to the Museum

The museum is located at 3536 Grand Ave, Dallas, TX 75210. The museum is open Tuesday–Saturday from 10 AM–5 PM, and Sunday from 12 PM–5 PM. The African American Museum of Dallas is located in South Dallas, near Fair Park. Visit the museum’s website to learn more about events and exhibitions, and make sure to follow them on social media to stay up to date on all the latest happenings. The museum is located close to several hotels, including the Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Dallas South (tourism-dallas.org/visitor/where-to-stay), Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Dallas South (tourism-dallas.org/visitor/where-to-stay), and the Hampton Inn & Suites Dallas-Fair Park/South (tourism-dallas.org/visitor/where-to-stay).


The African American Museum of Dallas is a place where people can learn about African American history, culture, and the issues facing the community today. The museum hosts various exhibitions and events throughout the year, and is a great place to learn more about the rich and varied history of black people in Dallas and beyond. Visit the museum website to learn more about events and exhibitions.

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