BENSALEM >> The African American Museum of Bucks County (AAMBC) is showcasing their mobile exhibit, "Building on The Dream: From Africa to Bucks County," at the Bucks County Visitor Center located at 3207 Street Road, Bensalem 19020.

The exhibit pays tribute to the lives, culture, accomplishments and contributions of African Americans in Bucks County, from their origins in Africa through the 21st century. The exhibit features a timeline of events in African American history in Pennsylvania, including a memorial list of African Americans who were registered as slaves in Bucks County in the 18th and 19th century, the history of the Underground Railroad in Bucks County, and the role of Bucks County AME churches in helping African Americans transition from slavery to freedom. The exhibit will run until through April 5.

During the exhibit the museum will present a Speaker Series and feature a gallery of paintings that spotlight both historical and cultural achievements from a diverse group of artists, educators and historians.

Thomas McKinney, internationally acclaimed portrait painter and watercolorist, is displaying some of his acclaimed works in the Visitor Center theater. Mr. McKinney’s paintings were inspired by what he loves most in life. His portrait subjects range from jazz greats such as Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie and John Coltrane, to gentle and endearing images of elderly people from his neighborhood. His paintings will be available for sale at the end of the exhibit.

The Speaker Series will feature two historians, Dr. Helen Heinz of Lower Makefield and the Honorable Travis Francis who will speak on different aspects of the roles African Americans played in the Civil War era, courtesy of On Demand Programs and Events.

On March 15 from 2 to 4:30 p.m., Dr. Heinz presents "Untold Stories of African American Civil War Soldiers buried at Slate Hill Cemetery in Yardley.

Dr. Heinz is an adjunct professor at Temple University and Chair of the Lower Makefield Historical Commission, mother of 10 and grandmother of 20. She will share fascinating information she discovered while researching the lives of 6 young men buried at an historic burial site in Yardley.

Dr. Heinz and the Lower Makefield Historical Commission have been working with local officials to honor these brave men with new grave markers in a re-dedication ceremony planned for this Spring.

On April 5  from 2 to 4:30 p.m., the Hon. Travis Francis presents "Contributions of African Americans from Bucks County during the Civil War Era." 

Francis, the first African American judge appointed in Middlesex County, N.J., is an avid historian of the Civil War. He will speak on the valuable role and enormous sacrifices of African Americans during this crucial conflict. Judge Francis has served as an adjunct professor at the Rutgers School of law, and presented at prestigious institutions such as the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.

Tickets to a single event are $20 per person and can be purchased on the AAMBC website: infoaambc.org.

The program is made possible by the generous contribution of Comcast and Visit Bucks County Pennsylvania.

The African American Museum of Bucks County, (AAMBC), founded in 2014, honors the legacy of the African American experience, inspiring pride in heritage, educating the public about the diverse journey of African Americans, and sharing stories that depict our shared ancestry, thus enriching the lives of Bucks County families. Its mission is to educate and honor the legacy of the African American experience from African roots to the present day. For more information on the museum and its programs visit: infoaambc.org.

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