Originally published on CaliforniaHomeDesign.com

Exactly 150 years ago, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring, “all persons held as slaves” shall be “forever free.” And, the Museum of the African Diaspora is honoring this anniversary with an exhibit of African American art and history from the Kinsey Collection.

More than 100 artifacts, documents, and works of art gathered by Bernard and Shirley Kinsey over the past 35 years are on display through May. The exhibit includes an early copy of the Emancipation Proclamation, letters by Zora Neale Hurston and Malcolm X, and art by masters such as Jacob Lawrence, Gordon Parks, and Alma Thomas.

“We’re not interested in the awful story,” Bernard Kinsey said at a press preview of the show. “We’re interested in all of the people that overcame struggle and we want to celebrate them.”

Click here to see more previews of the Kinsey Collection at MoAD!