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Amplify: Edmond’s Black History Online Exhibit

The Edmond Historical Society and Museum presents a new online exhibit called Edmond’s African American History: Land Run to Integration. https://www.edmondhistory.org/edmonds-african-american-history/ 
 
The topic of African Americans in Edmond is often questioned, mostly because of its absence. From the 1920s until the 1970s, no African Americans lived in Edmond. The influence of the Jim Crow laws, the Ku Klux Klan, and even Oklahoma City Public Schools integration affected Edmond, which was promoted as “100% white” for many years.

Was Edmond a sundown town? It is likely, although no confirming photographs or ordinances have surfaced, other than memories.
 
And yet, African Americans are part of Edmond’s founding story. Several important families homesteaded on land near Edmond because of the 1889 Land Run, and a separate school for minorities was operated from 1892 to 1905. Afterward, it was not until 1954 that African American students returned to Edmond, when six women enrolled at Central State College (now University of Central Oklahoma). By the 1970s, African Americans slowly began to move into Edmond’s city limits.
 
Edmond’s African American History is a culmination of research used for a museum exhibit in 2017, now expanded and available to everyone.
 
Topics addressed in this exhibit include: Edmond’s Early African American Community, Separate Schools, Jim Crow Laws, Was Edmond a Sundown Town?, Promotion of Edmond as 100% White, The Ku Klux Klan in Edmond, School Integration, White Flight Fuels the Growth of Edmond, Integrating Edmond, and the End of An All-White Edmond.

Museum Information: Edmond Historical Society & Museum hours are 10:00-5:00 Tuesday – Friday and Saturday 1:00-4:00. Please visit the museum website at www.edmondhistory.org

 
Amy Stephens
Executive Director
Edmond Historical Society & Museum
431 S. Boulevard St., Edmond, OK  73034
405-340-0078 Ext 103 astephens@edmondhistory.org

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