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This Museum was created to tell a diverse, inclusive, ‘warts-and-all’ narrative of the American Revolution, so sharing the often-untold stories—especially of people of color—is a core element of what we do every day. But during Black History Month, we are shining a special spotlight on the Black men and women who played essential roles in establishing our nation.
Adrienne Whaley, Director of Education & Community Engagement

Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia

The Museum's upcoming special exhibition opens Feb. 11, 2023.

Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia exhibit graphic featuring a portrait of James Forten.

New Exhibit Coming Soon

In this upcoming special exhibition, the Museum will introduce visitors to James Forten and his descendants as they navigated cross-racial relationships in Philadelphia during the American Revolution to become leaders in the abolition and women's suffrage movements.

Exhibit Details

Don Troiani's "Brave Men as Ever Fought"

Watch as the Museum's Michael Idriss explores one of Troiani's latest works depicting young James Forten witnessing Black and Native American troops of the Continental Army's Rhode Island Regiment marching past the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia on Sept. 2, 1781, en route to Yorktown, Virginia.

First-Person Theatrical Performances

Explore the lives and legacies of James Forten and Elizabeth Freeman during Black History Month with performances in the Museum's Alan B. Miller Theater on the second floor.

Meet James Forten First-Person Theatrical Performance
 

Meet James Forten

A 20-minute, first-person theatrical performance about the life of James Forten — a free Black Philadelphian, Revolutionary War privateer, successful businessman, and stalwart abolitionist — written by local playwright Marissa Kennedy and performed by actor Nathan Alford-Tate, debuted in conjunction with the Museum's special exhibition, Liberty: Don Troiani's Paintings of the Revolutionary War.

Tiffany Bacon portrays Elizabeth Freeman at the Museum of the American Revolution.
 

Meet Elizabeth Freeman

A 25-minute, first-person theatrical performance about Elizabeth Freeman — a Massachusetts woman who sued for her freedom from enslavement and won — will be performed by actress Katrina Hall and was written by playwright Teresa Miller. The performance debuted in conjunction with our 2020-21 special exhibit, When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807.

Digital Resources

Dive deeper into the stories of unsung Revolutionaries at the Museum and online all month long.

The Finding Freedom interactive tells the stories of Eve, London, Deborah, Jack, and Andrew--enslaved people during the American Revolution.
 
Interactive Feature

Finding Freedom

The Museum’s virtual resources are always available, including the new Finding Freedom digital interactive, which examines the stories of enslaved people of African descent in Virginia who followed different paths to freedom during the Revolutionary War. These stories are also available to explore in the Museum’s galleries via a touchscreen kiosk.

Explore Online
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First-Person Performance

"Meet Elizabeth Freeman" Performance

Watch the original first-person theatrical performance portraying the life and experiences of Elizabeth Freeman, a Massachusetts woman who sued for her freedom from enslavement and won, produced in conjunction with our past special exhibit, When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807. "Meet Elizabeth Freeman" stars Tiffany Bacon as Elizabeth Freeman and was written by Teresa Miller.

Watch Online
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Special Exhibit

When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807

Explore the stories of the women and people of color who first pioneered the vote in the Revolutionary era with the When Women Lost the Vote virtual exhibit, available to all online through a robust virtual experience.

Explore Online
The Deborah and London Tableau figure at the Finding Freedom interactive in the galleries.
 
Museum Galleries

Virtual Museum Tour

Explore other personal, often-unfamiliar stories of free and enslaved people of African descent during the Revolutionary era. Learn about Deborah Squash, who ran away from Mount Vernon and sought protection with the British Army; Olaudah Equiano, who purchased his own freedom and published a memoir of his experiences; and Crispus Attucks, a dockworker of African and Native descent who was killed during the Boston Massacre and is considered by many historians to be the first casualty of the American Revolution; among many others.

Explore Online

Ways to Save

See and do more for less with discounted ticket prices, Museum Membership, and special deals.


A young visitor finds a clue in the Liberty exhibit's family-friendly scavenger hunt.
 

Online Exclusive Ticket Discounts

Available with online purchase only

The Museum is currently offering two ticket discounts available with online purchase only, including a Family Four-Pack (two adult GA tickets and two youth GA tickets) for $55 as well as Adult GA tickets for $21 ($24 if purchased at the Museum).

Purchase Tickets
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Become a Member

Join in February to get a gift on us!

Learn more about becoming a Museum Member at the level that is perfect for you or your family to get unlimited Museum access for a full year, discounted tickets to lectures and special events, invitations to Member-exclusive events, and so much more.

Learn More
African American Museum via Visit Philly M Kennedy
M. Kennedy for Visit Philly 

Ticket Discount Offer with AAMP

Offer now available!

Visitors can save up to $6 per person when they get tickets to both the Museum and the African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP), with reduced parking at AAMP available upon request. Discounts can be redeemed by showing museum ticket stubs at the front desk.

More About AAMP

From the Museum Shop

Shop these staff picks from the Museum Shop for Black History Month.

This image shows the book cover of A Fools Errand: Creating the National Museum of African American History and Culture in the Age of Bush, Obama, and Trump by Lonnie Bunch, III. A Fool’s Errand is written in golden bold letters, while the subtitle and Lonnie’s name are written in white font. There is a photograph of Lonnie in a suit and his hands folded in front of him. He is smiling at the viewer.
 

A Fool's Errand

By Lonnie Bunch

Founding Director Lonnie Bunch’s deeply personal tale of the triumphs and challenges of bringing the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture to life. His story is by turns inspiring, funny, frustrating, quixotic, bittersweet, and above all, a compelling read.

Purchase
A Rhode Island Regiment soldier figurine based on Don Troiani's Brave Men as Ever Fought painting.
 

Rhode Island Regiment Figurine

This miniature figurine depicts a soldier from the Continental Army's 1st Rhode Island Regiment and is one of the soldiers painted by nationally renowned historical artist Don Troiani in one of his latest works, "Brave Men as Ever Fought," commissioned by the Museum with funding provided by the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail of the National Park Service.

Purchase
We The People Cover by Aura Lewis and Evan Sargent
 

We The People

By Aura Lewis & Evan Sargent

We The People is a perfect and interactive introduction to the U.S. Constitution. It explores the history behind the powerful document, clearly explains each article and amendment, highlights its relevance and today and inspires involvement and change.

Purchase