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  • Collection: Great Plains Black History Museum

Education has long been a key to African American community uplift in Omaha and across the Great Plains, despite the pervasive reality of segregation and discrimination. Black parents, students and their allies have consistently pressed for greater…

Black firefighters have a long history in Omaha, stretching back more than 100 years to the 1890s. Initially segregated, the Omaha Fire Department formally integrated its force in 1954, the same year as the historic Brown v. Board of Education…

North Omaha has been home to dozens of African American churches over the years, making religious institutions one of the most consistently vibrant aspects of the community. This undated photograph shows members of Mt. Calvary Church.

Along with the thousands of African American migrants to the urban North during the mid-twentieth century came growing political power. Increasingly, black voters in the North could provide a meaningful margin in local, state and even national…

North Omaha has been home to a number of black newspapers dating back to the 1890s. African American newspapers have historically provided an important alternative to mainstream newspapers, which rarely covered events in black communities, seldom…

Prior to the civil rights era, throughout the urban North, most white-owned hotels refused to allow black patrons to stay in their rooms. Black-owned hotels in segregated African American neighborhoods, like the Patton Hotel in Omaha, provided…

Black baseball was popular throughout the Midwest during the mid-20th century, including Omaha. It provided a social outlet for community members, opportunities for skilled ballplayers, and entrepreneurial possibilities for team owners. Many black…

In 1969, Harry and Daryl Eure created the Afro Academy of Dramatic Arts in Omaha to provide black artists the opportunity to showcase their work. In addition, the Afro Academy of Dramatic Arts provided classes in music, dance, art, theater and…

A group of African American men in North Omaha reporting for induction into the military during World War II. Despite a segregated U.S. military, nearly four million African American soldiers served their country during WWII.

During the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century a small number of African Americans came to Nebraska as homesteaders, seeking new opportunities for independence and self-sufficiency working the land. The largest black homesteading settlement…
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