Charles Sumner School Museum & Archives

Charles Sumner School Museum & Archives This historic site was one of the first public schools in the nation for African American children and currently houses records and artifacts related to DC Public School history and serves as a cultural venue, hosting programs, events, and exhibitions.

Operating as usual

09/11/2021

On this day, we remember six members of the DCPS family we lost 20 years ago: students Asia Cottom, Bernard Brown, and Rodney Dickens, and teachers Hilda Taylor, James Debeuneure, and Sarah Clark.

They were chosen to participate in a trip to study ecology in California beside National Geographic Society researchers. On September 11, 2001, less than 35 minutes into the trip, their flight was hijacked. At 9:37 a.m., the plane crashed into the Pentagon. All passengers on board were killed, and 125 Pentagon employees lost their lives.

Asia was a new student at Backus Middle School. Her father worked at the school as a coach and a classroom aide. Teachers remembered Asia as kindhearted and eager to help her classmates.

Bernard was the type of student who kept teachers on their toes at Leckie Elementary School. Bernard’s teachers agreed that he was showing real progress, and that was one of the reasons why he was recommended to participate in the trip. He loved basketball and wanted to play professionally one day.

Rodney always made the honor roll at Ketcham Elementary School. His mother expected him to be a role model for his two younger brothers, as his two older sisters had been for him. His favorite activity was watching professional wrestling—no matter what he was doing, “…he made it home to see wrestling,” his aunt remembered.

Asia, Bernard, and Rodney were each 11 years old.

Hilda Taylor was a veteran teacher at Leckie Elementary School, teaching 6th grade. Originally from Sierra Leone, she immigrated to the United States to create a better life for her family. Ms. Taylor was a mother and a grandmother.

James Debeuneure returned to the classroom as a second career. He was a 5th grade teacher at Ketcham Elementary School. He was known for arriving early and leaving late. Mr. Debeuneure was a father of three.

Sarah Clark began teaching in DCPS in 1965 and worked as a 6th grade teacher at Backus Middle School. She was engaged to be married. Ms. Clark was a mother of two.

Asia, Bernard, Rodney, Hilda, James, and Sarah are forever in our hearts. Our deepest sympathies remain with their families.

We are pleased to announce that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives will re-open to the public this coming Monday,...
09/10/2021

We are pleased to announce that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives will re-open to the public this coming Monday, September 13, 2021 for limited hours. Our hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 10am until 3pm until further notice. We have also resumed in-person research visits on a pre-scheduled basis. To schedule a research appointment, please send an e-mail to [email protected]

We very much look forward to welcoming back in-person visits. See you soon!

We are pleased to announce that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives will re-open to the public this coming Monday, September 13, 2021 for limited hours. Our hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 10am until 3pm until further notice. We have also resumed in-person research visits on a pre-scheduled basis. To schedule a research appointment, please send an e-mail to [email protected]

We very much look forward to welcoming back in-person visits. See you soon!

08/26/2021
Youth In The Archives

It's never too early to learn your history!

Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at Sumner Museum to actively practice SANKOFA.

Join Director Kimberly E. Springle and a panel of our Community Collaborators as they discuss the importance of introducing - even the youngest of us - to the wonderful world of Archives!

Be sure to tune in to our August installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum.
Come see what DC Youth have produced by using Sumner Museum Archives and other wonderful local repositories.

We invite you to join the conversation by bringing your curiosity and questions.

LIVE STREAMING ON YOUTUBE AND FACEBOOK @SumnerMuseum THIS THURSDAY.

We look forward to engaging with you all!

It's never too early to learn your history!Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at...
08/26/2021

It's never too early to learn your history!

Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at Sumner Museum and other local repositories.

Join Director Kimberly E. Springle and a panel of our Community Collaborators as they discuss the importance of introducing even the youngest of us, to the wonderful world of Archives!

Be sure to tune in to our August installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum and see what DC Youth have produced by using Sumner Museum Archives and other wonderful local resources.

Join the conversation and connect with our phenomenal panelists.
LIVE STREAMING ON YOUTUBE AND FACEBOOK @SumnerMuseum THIS THURSDAY.

We look forward to seeing you all!

08/26/2021
08/26/2021
08/24/2021
It's never too early to learn your history!Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at...
08/20/2021

It's never too early to learn your history!

Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at Sumner Museum and other local repositories to actively practice SANKOFA.

Join Director Kimberly E. Springle and a panel of our Community Collaborators as they discuss the importance of introducing even the youngest of us, to the wonderful world of Archives!

Be sure to tune in to our August installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum and see what DC Youth have produced by using Sumner Museum Archives and other wonderful local repositories.

Join the conversation by bringing your curiosity and questions.
LIVE STREAMING ON YOUTUBE AND FACEBOOK @SumnerMuseum THIS THURSDAY.

We look forward to engaging with you all!

It's never too early to learn your history!

Join us for an exciting conversation shining light on DCs Youth engagement at Sumner Museum and other local repositories to actively practice SANKOFA.

Join Director Kimberly E. Springle and a panel of our Community Collaborators as they discuss the importance of introducing even the youngest of us, to the wonderful world of Archives!

Be sure to tune in to our August installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum and see what DC Youth have produced by using Sumner Museum Archives and other wonderful local repositories.

Join the conversation by bringing your curiosity and questions.
LIVE STREAMING ON YOUTUBE AND FACEBOOK @SumnerMuseum THIS THURSDAY.

We look forward to engaging with you all!

https://youtu.be/AvhHNCuZHrYWe are excited to share this month's installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial R...
07/30/2021
Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum July '21- Relevance of Sumner Archives with Mara Cherkasky

https://youtu.be/AvhHNCuZHrY

We are excited to share this month's installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum. As we continue to emphasize the Sumner Museum's 35th Anniversary, we will hear from Mara Cherkasky, writer, historian and co-founder of Prologue DC, LLC. She will speak about how Sumner Museum Archival Collections have helped enrich her research on various DC cultural projects. Tune in for this exciting conversation with the Museum Director. As a bonus, you don't want to miss hearing about Mara's dream event for Sumner Museum!

We are excited to share this month's installment of the 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum. As we continue to emphasize the Sumner Museum's 35...

Welcome to our June 2021 Installment of our 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum. This year, on the occasio...
06/29/2021
Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum June '21- Sumner Museum Origins: An Interview w/ Anatol Steck

Welcome to our June 2021 Installment of our 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum. This year, on the occasion of the 35th Anniversary, we are reflecting on the rich institutional history of Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives. We are kicking off our Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research forum with an exciting discussion with Anatol Steck, one of the earliest museum staff members. From 1987 to 1999, Anatol worked as a research assistant and museum special at Sumner School Museum and Archives. In 1999, he joined the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum where he currently serves as Senior Project Director in the International Archival Programs Department of the National Institute for Holocaust Documentation. Join us as we welcome Anatol back to share his personal stories and experiences as a staff member along with origins of the Museum.

https://youtu.be/QLZwovW8o-w

Welcome to our June 2021 Installment of our 5th Annual Hurlbut-Walker Memorial Research Forum. This year, on the occasion of the 35th Anniversary, we are ref...

We are proud to highlight our newest staff addition, Crystal Hurd!  Crystal has been on staff at Sumner Museum for almos...
06/29/2021

We are proud to highlight our newest staff addition, Crystal Hurd! Crystal has been on staff at Sumner Museum for almost three years. She is the Museum Programs Coordinator and though she wears multiple hats, her central functions include developing and coordinating public programs, managing social media, outreach and engagement support, marketing and graphics design. She also gets her hands dirty often in the collections and responds to public research inquiries. Crystal comes to us with a background in hospitality and customer service. She states that she has longed for a time where she could say without a shadow of a doubt that she absolutely loves here job. She has truly found her place at Sumner Museum and has embarked on a new and exciting career path. Like the entire staff, Crystal most looks forward to opening the doors of the Museum again. She states “I miss in-person programming, greeting researchers, art exhibitions, welcoming visitors and listening to impromptu oral histories when someone recognizes themselves or someone they know in one of our galleries.” We are grateful that Crystal is a part of the Sumner Museum family.
To read more about Crystal first Museum Professionals' Conference, click here: https://aaslh.org/a-new-professionals-time-aaslh2020/

***In these photos, Crystal walks the very same staircase that many black students would climb nearly 150 years ago, when Sumner School first opened its doors. She often points out that this is one of her most favorite spots at Sumner Museum. She says, "I can just imagine the hope, joy and relevance each one must have felt as they walked into the building for the first time in 1872 (and every year after). Its just awe-inspiring to imagine all the stories these stairs could tell!!!"***

We are proud to highlight our newest staff addition, Crystal Hurd! Crystal has been on staff at Sumner Museum for almost three years. She is the Museum Programs Coordinator and though she wears multiple hats, her central functions include developing and coordinating public programs, managing social media, outreach and engagement support, marketing and graphics design. She also gets her hands dirty often in the collections and responds to public research inquiries. Crystal comes to us with a background in hospitality and customer service. She states that she has longed for a time where she could say without a shadow of a doubt that she absolutely loves here job. She has truly found her place at Sumner Museum and has embarked on a new and exciting career path. Like the entire staff, Crystal most looks forward to opening the doors of the Museum again. She states “I miss in-person programming, greeting researchers, art exhibitions, welcoming visitors and listening to impromptu oral histories when someone recognizes themselves or someone they know in one of our galleries.” We are grateful that Crystal is a part of the Sumner Museum family.
To read more about Crystal first Museum Professionals' Conference, click here: https://aaslh.org/a-new-professionals-time-aaslh2020/

***In these photos, Crystal walks the very same staircase that many black students would climb nearly 150 years ago, when Sumner School first opened its doors. She often points out that this is one of her most favorite spots at Sumner Museum. She says, "I can just imagine the hope, joy and relevance each one must have felt as they walked into the building for the first time in 1872 (and every year after). Its just awe-inspiring to imagine all the stories these stairs could tell!!!"***

Eugene Meyer publishes a regular blog with interesting and engaging articles.  He recently wrote a piece about Central h...
06/29/2021

Eugene Meyer publishes a regular blog with interesting and engaging articles. He recently wrote a piece about Central high School, titled ‘DC’s Central High school and the March of Time’. View the article at the following link. While you are there, take a look around and view other content and subscribe!

https://eugenelmeyer.com/2021/05/20/dcs-central-high-and-the-march-of-time/

Eugene Meyer publishes a regular blog with interesting and engaging articles. He recently wrote a piece about Central high School, titled ‘DC’s Central High school and the March of Time’. View the article at the following link. While you are there, take a look around and view other content and subscribe!

https://eugenelmeyer.com/2021/05/20/dcs-central-high-and-the-march-of-time/

06/28/2021
06/25/2021

Our city has had some MAJOR HITTERS on our public schools' Faculty and Staff Roster. AND WE STILL DO!!

#AfricanAmericanMusicMonth #BlackMusicMonth
#LearnLocal #LoveLocal

#DCMuseums #ACreativeDC #DCMuseums #DCPS #DCPCS #DCFamily #SANKOFA #DCPublicCharterSchools #DCPublicSchools #DCMemories #dchistory

We are excited to share with you that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives has rejoined the planning committee for ...
06/25/2021

We are excited to share with you that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives has rejoined the planning committee for the only conference in the city with a singular lens on DC History. The DC History Center recently announced that the 48th Annual DC History Conference will take place March 31-April 2, 2022, which is a change from the usual November date. We are proud to partner with other outstanding local history and cultural organizations to assist in planning and coordinating the 48th convening. Please save the date! Check out the official announcement here: http://dchistory.org/announcing-the-48th-annual-dc-history-conference/

#ProfessionalDevelopment #DCMuseums #ACreativeDC #DCMuseums #DCPS #DCPCS #DCFamily #SANKOFA #DCPublicCharterSchools #DCPublicSchoolsDCPublicSchools #DCMemories #dchistory

We are excited to share with you that Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives has rejoined the planning committee for the only conference in the city with a singular lens on DC History. The DC History Center recently announced that the 48th Annual DC History Conference will take place March 31-April 2, 2022, which is a change from the usual November date. We are proud to partner with other outstanding local history and cultural organizations to assist in planning and coordinating the 48th convening. Please save the date! Check out the official announcement here: http://dchistory.org/announcing-the-48th-annual-dc-history-conference/

#ProfessionalDevelopment #DCMuseums #ACreativeDC #DCMuseums #DCPS #DCPCS #DCFamily #SANKOFA #DCPublicCharterSchools #DCPublicSchoolsDCPublicSchools #DCMemories #dchistory

Sumner Staff Visits National Museum of Women in the ArtsA part of Sumner Museum staff culture and professional developme...
06/24/2021
Sumner Museum Prof. Dev. - Nat'l Museum of Women in the Arts - Sonya Clark: "TATTER BRISTLE MEND"

Sumner Staff Visits National Museum of Women in the Arts
A part of Sumner Museum staff culture and professional development is engaging with local museums and cultural professionals behind the scenes on regular field trips. Over the past year due to circumstances related to the pandemic, we had to take our field trips virtual and met with some incredible individuals from all across the country, which expanded our connections and perspectives.

Check out Highlights from our Recent Visit to view the exhibition,
Sonya Clark: Tatter, Bristle, and Mend (More info here: https://nmwa.org/exhibitions/sonya-clark-tatter-bristle-and-mend/)

Our staff thoroughly enjoyed the exhibition that featured works by Sonya Clark, who also happens to be a Washington, DC Native. Her body of work was extremely thought-provoking, creative, and intellectually stimulating. The other art galleries were enriching as well. As we were on site studying the ways in which the works were interpreted and how the NMWA education and curatorial staff members incorporate methods to engage visitors, we were extremely impressed with the Security Staff from entry to exit. Each member of the Security Team was very knowledgeable about the various exhibits and made our visit more meaningful. Even when we leave Sumner for visits to other sites, our mission and purpose follows us. After sharing with the Security Staff Members where we were visiting from, we discovered that all of the Security Staff that we engaged with were Alumni of DC Public Schools. Therefore, we also had an opportunity to share details with them about our Museum and its many offerings.

#SonyaClark #TatterBristleMend #NationalMuseumOfWomenInTheArts #ProfessionalDevelopment #DCMuseums #ACreativeDC #DCMuseums #DCPS #DCPCS #DCFamily #SANKOFA #DCPublicCharterSchools ##DCPublicSchoolsDCPublicSchools #DCMemories

Sumner Staff Visits National Museum of Women in the ArtsA part of Sumner Museum staff culture and professional development is engaging with local museums and...

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1201 17th Street NW
Washington D.C., DC
20036

Metro Accessible: Farragut North (Red Line), Farragut West (Orange & Blue Lines)

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