“Tuskegee Airmen: Journey to Flight” to celebrate Black History Month at The California Museum
Developed in association with California African American Museum, exhibit reveals Tuskegee Airmen’s roles in both WWII & civil rights history
The California Museum announced “Tuskegee Airmen: Journey to Flight” will open on Tues., Feb. 7th in honor of Black History Month and to celebrate the achievements of the gallant African Americans who broke barriers as aviation heroes during WWII. Sponsored by the California Legislative Black Caucus and initially developed by the California African American Museum, this exhibition will include additional personal artifacts for The California Museum installation on loan from Sacramento-area Tuskegee Airmen and their families.
Although well-known for their heroic military battles during WWII, the Tuskegee Airmen are often overlooked for their significant achievements in the fight against discrimination. Before 1940, African Americans were barred from flying for the U.S. military. Civil rights organizations and the African American media exerted pressure that resulted in the formation of
the all African-American squadron who came to be known as the Tuskegee Airmen.
“The brave men and women involved in the Tuskegee Experiment overcame segregation and prejudice to become one of the most highly respected fighter groups of World War II,” said Senator Curren D. Price, Jr., Chair of the California Legislative Black Caucus. “They proved without a doubt that African Americans could fly and maintain sophisticated aircraft. Thanks to the hard work of the men and especially women who made their mission possible as nurses, mechanics and support personnel, the Tuskegee Airmen paved the way for integration of the U.S. military.”
“The California Museum is proud to pay tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen with the California Legislative Black Caucus for Black History Month,” said Dori Moorehead, Executive Director at The California Museum. “Their heroic stories detailing the fight for Allied victory abroad and equality at home ultimately reveals their place in history doesn’t end with WWII. By paving the way for desegregation of the military, the Tuskegee Airmen also paved the way for the civil rights movement in the 1960s and equality for all Americans.”
Through personal stories and experiences, this exhibit reveals how these courageous men and women not only fought for Allied victory abroad, but also fought for equality on the home front as an early chapter of civil rights history. Artifacts on display include aircraft and military memorabilia, along with original letters, journals and other personal mementos.
Developed by the California African American Museum in association with The California Museum, the exhibit is presented by the California Legislative Black Caucus and will continue through August 5, 2012.