Ruth Odom Bonner, Daughter Of A Slave, Opened National Museum of African American History and Culture [VIDEO]

0 Posted by - September 25, 2016 - AGE OF OBAMA, Black First, IN THE NEWS, LATEST POSTS, SLAVERY, Video

Along with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, 99-year-old Ruth Odom Bonner rang the bell to officially open the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, the nation’s first Black history museum, as reported by the Huffington Post.

“Today, we have with us a family that reflects the arc of our progress: the Bonner family ― four generations in all, starting with gorgeous 7-year-old Christine and going up to gorgeous 99-year-old Ruth,” President Barack Obama said. “Ruth’s father, Elijah Odom, was born into servitude in Mississippi. He was born a slave. As a young boy, he ran, though, to his freedom. He lived through Reconstruction and he lived through Jim Crow. But he went on to farm, and graduate from medical school, and gave life to the beautiful family that we see today ― with a spirit reflected in beautiful Christine, free and equal in the laws of her country and in the eyes of God.”

Several thousand people from across the country gathered on the National Mall to watch the museum’s opening ceremonies on September 24.  

“It’s like walking across the desert and finally getting to a fountain of water to quench your thirst,” said Verna Eggleston, who toured the museum, as reported by the Toledo Blade. “It’s absolutely breathtaking for me.”

According to museum officials, almost 3,000 items throughout 85,000 square feet of display space are available for view, including a Tuskegee Airmen training plane and the casket of Emmett Till.

“It’s been 100 years in the making,” explained said U.S. Circuit Judge Robert L. Wilkins. “So many people have dreamed about this, fought for this and wanted this to happen. It’s going to be a testament to their work and a testament to so many of our ancestors that this museum will open on the Mall.”

The bell the Obamas rang with the Bonner family was from the First Baptist Church in Williamsburg, Virginia, one of the first Black-run Baptist churches. The Freedom Bell, which dates back to 1886, will return to the church for its 240th anniversary later this year.



  • Elizabeth Iverson September 26, 2016 - 8:25 am

    Rights for all!

  • OKema Lewis October 1, 2016 - 8:52 pm

    Hello I amglad that you are addressing the history of our culture with a Museum but we have in Chicago the DuSable Museum of African American History. So this sir is not the first African American Museum.

  • Linda October 4, 2016 - 11:50 pm

    My first experience with black culture was a real eye opener when we moved from the Montana, Arizona, Colorado mining areas. We moved to a small town in South Carolina, Lauren’s. My now wonderful friend, June, my neighbor was a black woman who shared her growing up years and it was not at all as I grew up.Her children and grandchildren became a part of our family and to this day, 17 years later we have the same feelings exist, at least for us and I believe for all of them. As a nurse, I attended her only daughters childbirth and they named him after our grandson. My husband and I love June for the honesty friendship and love we have always felt from her and her family. The down side was some of her friends who didn’t make us feel accepted, they must have had reasons we didn’t know about. We were called Jim Crow, I had to read about what it meant!! Then we saw Jesse Jackson talk and putting down “whites” ?? June said she knew him from years before and he was a trouble maker then too. Then we got a black president and again I’m very disappointed, from so many examples of pitting blacks against whites to Ferguson, to putting a traitors family in the rose garden to use Muslim words to this country that gave him the chance to do better. On the positive side we were privileged to meet and talk with a 90 year old black woman who wrote a column in the Simpsonville paper. She was the most beautiful spirit to visit with and her wisdom was a privilege to hear. She passed before we moved on to our next job and I had the chance to meet her daughter and she too is lovely but I felt the racial divide from her and I know it wasn’t me. As for racial discrimination our family had a chance to experience it being used against us and we never felt like we deserved it. My friend and her family and some of their friends were so wonderful and they will always be a part of our life to us but I have seen a LOT of the reverse in other places The movie Remember The Titans has become a history lesson for me. We have Native Americans in our family and having lived around so many reservations and knowing so many of them and their history I’m not sure black people can complain, more doors open for them from what I saw throughout my life. We are a speck of the white opinions and while I can’t speak for anyone but me I’m not sorry for the feelings we have since I have experienced it myself. Each person needs to look within and know for themselves the truth of who they are and each person as an individual not a race. I’m not in favor of Illegal Immigrants, illegal is just that illegal, do it legally so we can uphold the laws of the land in this country. It is hard to deal with anyone who comes to our country without o knowledge of what we stand for only to break our laws at every move causing a greater debt to our country and adding nothing to make it better. As for black history, the research I have read tells me that black slavery was initiated by black people bringing black people to this country too so there is plenty of blame to go around. The man, Ben Carson, famous neurologist is one of my hero. He doesn’t talk about how hard life was, he credits his loving and caring Mother and took it from there. I read his life and listen to him speak and I would vote for him, and use him as an example to my grandchildren if they think they have it hard. I hope what I have had to say has in no way caused anyone negative feelings I certainly have none Thank you for the chance to share my thoughts.

    • Kaye Buckley November 7, 2016 - 10:00 am

      This has to be a joke.

      • Gary July 2, 2017 - 2:14 pm

        Obviously you learned nothing from living in South Carolina. Please go post on Yahoo or someplace

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