The Show on KJZZ

Listen live weekdays at 9 a.m.

African American Museum of Southern Arizona has its grand opening

Published: Monday, January 16, 2023 - 9:43am
Updated: Monday, January 16, 2023 - 9:57am

The African American Museum of Southern Arizona had its grand opening this weekend, ahead of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. 

Former Wildcat basketball player Bob Elliott and wife Beverely are the co-founders. The idea blossomed after Beverely tried to answer their grandson’s question: if there is a place where local Black history and achievement is held.

“There is not an African American museum in the state of Arizona. Now she’s got to go tell our grandson and she tells him and he said ‘there’s no black people around here who’d done anything?'" Bob Elliott said. 

There was a museum specifically in Phoenix, George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, but they have been temporarily closed and it's unclear when, or if, they'll reopen.

The goal of the new museum, located at University of Arizona, will be to enlighten visitors about the contributions of African Americans to southern Arizona. 

Arizona History Race + Diversity