New name, look for DuSable Black History Museum and Education Center ahead of Juneteenth

City council members, Chicago Park District join festivities for museum's historic change

ByMaher Kawash WLS logo
Sunday, June 19, 2022
New name, look for oldest Black history museum in US
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The DuSable Black History Museum and Education Center on the South Side of Chicago celebrated its rebranding just before the Juneteenth holiday.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A new name and a new look for the oldest Black history museum in the country.

Now gracing the South Side of Chicago is The Du, short for the DuSable Black History Museum and Education Center.

"This is a time for reimagination reinvention and just growth throughout the city and the state and just the country," said Patricia Knacze.

A full celebration was held Saturday with the rebranding as Chicago's youth showcased their talent in a musical performance ahead of the unveiling.

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And the timing of the historic change also lined right up with the commemoration of Juneteenth.

"We want young people to have this same experience of knowing their history," said 20th Ward Ald. Jeanette Taylor. "How do you know where you're going if you don't know where you came from?"

"The new name and colors of this museum are one positive but what really matters is the education that comes from the museum which advocates hope lasts a long beyond the rebranding.

"We have to connect the rich history of the black race to education and educating our young people because when they know where they come from, then they can chart a path to greatness," said Myetie Hamilton, Chicago Park District Board president.

The new name also enforces a new call to action from the museum. It's a push to celebrate and educate when it comes to the history of Black people.

"This museum isn't just for Black Chicagoans. It's for all Chicagoans," said Shermann "Dilla" Thomas.