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Rich Collection Of African-American History Comes To Baltimore

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — What we don’t know about African-American history. Lost documents reveal a new and never told story about the rich legacy and history of America, and now, a part of that story is here in Baltimore in the form of documents, artifacts and art.

It is part of the world-renowned Kinsey Collection at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum.

Rochelle Ritchie spent the day with this amazing family and their incredible story.

A large crowd gathered at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum in downtown Baltimore to take a history course in African-American art and artifacts.

“We have collaborated with the Kinsey family to sponsor a year-long tour. This is our third stop,” said Lisa Frison of Wells Fargo.

The people behind the collection are Bernard Kinsey, his wife and their son.

For several years, the Kinsey family has gone across the world collecting lost pieces of time to help bring to light the struggle and successes of African-Americans throughout the world.

“We were not supposed to be in the story, even though we were everywhere in the story. So when you can find us in the record, it makes it that much more valuable,” said Bernard Kinsey.

The collection showcases art that’s never been seen in person. It includes books from the 17th century, shackles that imprisoned a female slave and letters from such notable African-Americans as Malcolm X and Alex Haley.

The decision to go on a treasure hunt started with a homework assignment given to Khalil Kinsey when he was in the third grade.

“Typical family history report, family tree or what not, my classmates could go back a lot further in their lineage than I could,” he said.

Stirring the quest to know more, the family together set out on an unforgettable journey that’s made its way to Charm City.

“To really see the artifacts is what I think really blows us away,” said visitor Sonja Cendak.

For 14-year-old Carlotta Tyler, she said it’s time for the education system to revamp its history lessons.

“And I think they should go to museums like this. Like, they don’t go on that many field trips and they should to places like this. It would really help them,” she said.

The collection is on display until March 2.

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