About the Museum
For over half a century, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History has dedicated itself to exploring and celebrating the rich cultural legacy of African Americans.
Through dozens of permanent and visiting exhibitions, over 300 annual public events and programs, as well as education and research opportunities for adults, children, and visiting scholars, The Wright inspires visitors toward greater understanding, acceptance, and unity by reflecting on the triumphs and tragedies of African-American history.
Home to the Blanche Coggin Underground Railroad Collection, the Harriet Tubman Museum Collection, and the Sheffield Collection—a repository of documents regarding the labor movement in Detroit—among many other notable materials, The Wright houses more than 35,000 artifacts pertaining to the African American experience.
Each year, more than half a million people visit The Wright to engage with its unparalleled collection. Interested in seeing the museum for yourself? Plan your visit today.
A Word on Dr. Charles H. Wright, Founder
An idea came to me that African Americans needed a museum to collect and preserve our history and culture. And, with the help of many minds and hands, that idea came to fruition.
A trip to Denmark changed our founder's life, and lit a fire within him to create what would become one of the first cultural institutions of its kind in the United States.
On encountering a memorial to World War II heroes in Denmark during the mid twentieth century, Detroit-based obstetrician and gynecologist Dr. Charles H. Wright felt inspired—inspired to create a repository for African-American history and culture, a space for celebration and remembrance that would inspire generations of visitors.
"I was committed to what I defined as 'one of the most important tasks of our times,'" Dr. Wright would later remark, "ensuring that generations, especially young African Americans, are made aware of and take pride in the history of their forebears and their remarkable struggle for freedom."
Over half a century since Dr. Wright first opened the International Afro-American Museum in January of 1966, The Wright has expanded significantly in size and in ambition.
The state-of-the-art, 125,000 square-foot facility that the museum currently occupies in Detroit's thriving Midtown serves as a cultural beacon for the City of Detroit, and for the United States, championing the stories of African Americans and offering a space for rigorous contemplation for visitors of all backgrounds.