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Current Exhibit:

African Americans in Berkeley

Art, Entertainment, Literature, Sports, 1940–2010

Glenn Burke (Mark Hundley/AP); Edythe Boone (Liz Hafalia/The Chronicle); Tramaine Hawkins (source unknown); Richard Pryor (Bob Riha Jr/WIREIMAGE)

The Berkeley Historical Society presents Year 3 of African Americans in Berkeley, building upon the foundation of African Americans in Berkeley: Four Families introduced in 2019 and African Americans in Berkeley's History and Legacy presented in 2021. Highlights of Year 3 are significant contributions made by Berkeley African Americans in the worlds of art, entertainment, literature and sports from 1940 to 2010.

We are honored to feature the work of educator Ruth Acty, journalist Belva Davis, artists Mildred Howard and Edythe Boone, singers/musicians Tramaine Hawkins and Joshua Reman, and athletes Don Barksdale, Glenn Burke, and Steve Odom, among many others.

On view are stars Whoopi Goldberg and Richard Pryor, who spent pivotal years in Berkeley. Also in the spotlight are gathering places like Rainbow Sign, the Black Repertory Group Theater, and the annual Berkeley Juneteenth Festival.

This exhibit celebrates the African American contributions to community and culture over the years in Berkeley.

The exhibit was organized by Harvey Smith and Stephanie Anne Johnson with the assistance of Mary Jackson, David Knott, Byron Rumford III and Tina Jones Williams.

The exhibit will feature complimentary live and virtual events throughout.

The exhibit is open, admission free, Thursday through Saturday 1 to 4 pm, through October 8, 2022.

From Street to Ballot Box: Berkeley Politics in the 1970s (2021)

African Americans in Berkeley's History and Legacy (2021)

Berkeley's Fascination with Food (2020)

The Heart of Berkeley: The Historic McGee-Spaulding District (2013)

More Online Experiences

You can now browse or search in much of our collection on CatalogIt Hub.

We invite you to visit our participatory Berkeley History Facebook Group page and consider joining the group. 

You can also delve into Berkeley history online via the links on our Online Resources page

See our Calendar for online events, and see our YouTube channel for videos of past events.
Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.


In addition to changing exhibits, the History Center features a permanent illustrated Timeline of Berkeley History giving an overview of major periods and events in the evolution of the city.

Hours (during exhibits): Thursday–Saturday, 1–4 pm.

Admission free, donations welcome.

Wheelchair accessible. (If you arrive by wheelchair, please phone us so we can open the door at the top of the ramp.)

Berkeley Historical Society and Museum

1931 Center Street, Berkeley 

Telephone: 510-848-0181

Mailing address: P.O. Box 1190, Berkeley, CA 94701


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