BuzzFeed News

Reporting To You

29 Must-See Items At The New Smithsonian Museum Of African American History

After years of construction — and painstaking work by historians to build an enormous collection — the museum opened to the public on Saturday.

Posted on September 24, 2016, at 3:16 p.m. ET

1. Shackles used on slaves worn before 1860.

Jaclyn Nash / Smithsonian Institution

2. A slave cabin relocated from the Point of Pines Plantation in Charleston County, South Carolina.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

3. A book of hymns owned by Harriet Tubman.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

4. A bible owned by Nat Turner.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

5. A National Negro Business League pin from around 1908 featuring Booker T. Washington.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

6. Charred pennies from the Tulsa, Oklahoma riot in 1921.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

7. An entire train coach from Southern Railway that contained segregated compartments.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

8. A 1944 training aircraft used by the Tuskegee Airmen.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

9. A dress made and worn by Rosa Parks.

Alex Jamison / Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

10. A tape recorder used by Malcolm X in 1960.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

11. Lunch counter stools used at a sit-in at a restaurant in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

12. Shards of stained glass from the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama — the site of a 1963 bombing.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

13. A ticket stub from the 1964 World Heavyweight Championship bout between Sonny Liston and Muhammad Ali, then known as Cassius Clay.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

14. A program from Martin Luther King Jr.'s 1968 funeral.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

15. The warm-up suit worn by athlete Tommie Smith while raising his hand in the Black Power salute on the medal podium at the 1968 Olympics.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

16. Writer James Baldwin's passport.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

17. A trumpet owned by musician Louis Armstrong.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

18. A red Cadillac owned by Chuck Berry.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

19. Sammy Davis Jr.'s tap dancing shoes.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

20. A vest worn by Jimi Hendrix.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

21. A jumpsuit worn by singer James Brown.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

22. A shirt worn by Michael Jackson during his 1984 Victory tour.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

23. A jacket worn by Eddie Murphy in the 1987 film Beverly Hills Cop II.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

24. The boombox carried by Radio Raheem (Bill Nunn) in the 1989 film Do the Right Thing.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

25. Michael Jordan's basketball shoes.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

26. A couch from the set of The Oprah Winfrey Show.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

27. Former secretary of state and retired four-star general Colin Powell's army uniform.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of General Colin L. Powell, USA

28. A door with rescue markings from when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005.

Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

29. A button from Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.

/ Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of M. Denise Dennis

Support our journalism

Help BuzzFeed News reporters expose injustices and keep quality news free.

Start
ADVERTISEMENT