Luxury Richmond bed and breakfast Maury Place at Monument an ideal lodging choice when visiting the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia. The Black History Museum features exhibitions and collections celebrating the many facets of Black history and contributions in Virginia. Founded in 1981, the Black History Museum is now celebrating its 30th year, currently featuring the exhibit "Pearls of Wisdom: Black Families and the Nobility of Everyday Living" through July 1, 2011. This exhibit features traditional wisdoms from African American Families in Virginia, explores the New Voices of Wisdom from area youth, and displays the Art of Wisdom as seen in paintings, fabric, and jewelry of local Artists. Located at 00 Clay Street, the Museum is open Tuesday - Saturday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, and is closed all major holidays. Admission to the Museum is $5 for adults.
The Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia is located in Jackson Ward, one of Richmond's most significant historic neighborhoods. After the American Civil War, free blacks and former slaves created a thriving business community that was known as the "Black Wall Street of America". The area also was a center of culture and entertainment, and was compared to Harlem in New York City. At the center of the Jackson Ward neighborhood is a statue of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, a Richmond Virginia native. Prominent churches in the neighborhood include the Third Street Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church and Hood Temple African Methodist Episcopal Church, and notable residents included Bishop F.M Whittle, Addolph Dill, and Max Robinson.
One of Richmond's most notable historic persons, one whose life is celebrated in our city's Jackson Ward neighborhood, is Maggie Walker. Maggie Walker was the first African American female bank president, and the first woman to charter a bank in the United States. The daughter of woman who had been both a slave and a Union spy, Maggie Walker began her career as a school teacher. In the early 1900's she charted the St. Luke Penny Savings Bank, which became the Consolidated Bank and Trust Company. Maggie Walker and her bank are credited with improving the lives of countless African American families in the early part of the 20th century. Maggie Walker was awarded an honorary Masters degree from Virginia Union University in 1923, and the Maggie L. Walker Virginia Governor's School is named in her honor.