WASHINGTON — Thousands of people from all over the country, including many Georgians and yes, Oprah Winfrey, will gather on the National Mall this morning to watch as President Barack Obama formally dedicates the new National Museum of African American History and Culture.
The mood here may be celebratory and reflective, but the history behind the Smithsonian Institution’s 19th museum is anything but short or breezy.
Atlanta Congressman John Lewis, who is slated to speak at the grand opening this morning, is a reminder of that. It took the longtime lawmaker and civil rights icon more than 15 years of wrangling on Capitol Hill to get members of Congress to greenlight the museum.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg for a memorial that traces its roots back to 1916.
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