Five Year Plan:  Archives

This photograph, taken at Camp Pontanezen, Brest in 1919, shows Kathryn Magnolia Johnson—one of the very few African American women to serve in World War I—with YMCA secretaries, soldiers, and nurses. From the Museum’s Fighting Racism in the Trenches.

As the nation’s oldest independent Black museum, the DuSable serves an essential role as the curator and caretaker of Chicago’s African American experience. Its archives—including letters, photographs, official documents, printed matter, and other ephemera—tell the individual and collective stories of its communities and their citizens, many of whom have entrusted their personal histories to the Museum. Recognizing its responsibilities to its constituents’ past, present, and future, the Museum will, over the next five years:

  • Engage its professionally credentialed staff to undertake a complete inventory and study of its archives
  • Ensure that its archives management policies remain in line with industry best practices
  • Accession and conserve archival documents where necessary
  • Renovate its on-site archive storage to maximize efficiency and maintain industry standards
  • Create a virtual archival loan program that engages partner institutions in telling the story of the African American experience—in full and in context
  • Actively engage the archives in the development and presentation of the Museum’s educational programs and interpretive programs, including exhibitions

Great News! You can now TEXT-TO-DONATE!

Text the code “DUGIVE” to 44-321