Savor Black Minnesota history: 12 notable landmarks

Photo courtesy of MAAHMG The Minnesota African American Heritage Museum is located at 1256 Penn Avenue N., (4th floor) in Minneapolis

A space for the heritage, history of African Americans in MN

Diversity is something of a Twin Cities calling card. Museums throughout the metro showcase state-of-the-art inclusion, exhibits and forums.

Impressive as these establishments are, it is vital to have an institution devoted specifically to one’s culture. The Minnesota African American Heritage Museum and Gallery (MAAHMG) stands to admirably fill that bill for African Americans.

Tina Burnside, museum co-founder and civil rights attorney, notes, “Minnesota is one of the few states in the country that does not have an African American museum. That had to change,” she said.

Toward that end, she has partnered with writer and education administrator Coventry Cowens and opened the museum’s doors on September 8, 2018. 

The museum recently reopened in August of 2020 after being temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “This is a historic time in our country, and the museum has an important role to play in documenting history and encouraging conversations about systemic racism and how we move forward with solutions to address the problems,” said Burnside. 

“There have been multiple efforts to have an African American museum over the years, which have met many challenges,” noted Cowens. However, she said, “The important contributions of the Black community still [needed] to be told.”

There is also the Black Lives Matter mural on Plymouth Avenue organized by the museum and created by 16 artists. 

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