We encourage museums and museum-related organizations to consider their roles as anchor institutions in their communities; as carriers and nurturers of American culture to use their roles and voices in the civic space to call attention to the racism underlying the Charlottesville demonstrations, to provide historical context for public understanding of the forces at work here and in other parts of the country, and to provide safe spaces in which these contentious issues can be discussed and comprehended.
We thank museums and associations--including Monticello, The US Holocaust Museum, AASLH, and The National Civil Rights Museum--that have made statements concerning the rallies. We have seen that the St. Louis community chose the grounds of the Missouri Historical Society, a safe and inclusive space, on which to hold a weekend vigil. We encourage other museums to join as they can.
We offer our heartfelt support and counsel to museums as they seek to play a responsible role at this time.