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MSU Library to feature prestigious African American collection

17 Feb 2015 8:42 AM | Tina Harry (Administrator)

At places like Walt Disney World and the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, more than four million people have viewed The Kinsey Collection's artifacts, manuscripts, books and art documenting African American history.

Soon, the collection, comprising one of the largest private collections of African American pieces in the world, will make its first visit to the Magnolia State at Mississippi State University. Free, public viewings of The Kinsey Collection's "African American Treasures" will be open March 21-June 20 in the John Grisham Room at Mitchell Memorial Library.

Because the collection is private, not a permanent public display, viewing "African American Treasures" is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, according to organizers. They suggest residents, schools and media make plans to see the pieces during its short three-month visit.

Pieces in The Kinsey Collection, owned by Bernard and Shirley Kinsey of Los Angeles, celebrate African Americans' achievements and accomplishments throughout U.S. history, especially through their impacts on culture and art.

Highlights of the "African American Treasures" display coming to MSU include an early copy of the Emancipation Proclamation and a signed copy of Brown v. Board of Education. Also, rare works from early 19th century African American artists will be displayed.

The Kinsey family, including son Khalil, will visit campus to celebrate the opening of The Kinsey Collection at MSU. Bernard Kinsey will speak at a 3 p.m. public presentation on March 22 to offer insights into the respective pieces on display at the university, as well as why he and his wife are so passionate about gathering items for the collection.

The collection is presented by the Bernard and Shirley Kinsey Foundation for Art and Education. The organization seeks to educate the public about African American history by highlighting African American accomplishments over time, closing societal and cultural gaps between African Americans and other populations, and eroding the stereotypes undercutting equality.

The exhibit is made possible by MSU Libraries, African American Studies at MSU and grants from Visit Mississippi, Starkville Visitors & Convention Council and the Mississippi Humanities Council, through support from the Mississippi Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this exhibition do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or the Mississippi Humanities Council.

To discover more, schedule group tours or view exhibit hours for "African American Treasures" from The Kinsey Collection at MSU, visit http://library.msstate.edu/Kinsey. More information about the Kinseys, The Kinsey Collection and its history is available at www.thekinseycollection.com.

African American Treasures

Submitted by

Stephen Cunetto
Administrator of Systems

Mississippi State University Libraries



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