The Ukrainian American Archives & Museum of Detroit
The mission of the Ukrainian American Archives & Museum of Detroit is to educate the public about the history, culture, and art of Ukraine, with a special focus on Ukrainian American immigration. The museum exhibits traditional crafts such as pottery, woodcarving, and embroidery. In addition, it acts as a center for research, with a large library and document archives. Finally, the museum hosts various heritage programs that teach the Ukrainian language and folk crafts such as religious icon painting and beadwork.
Backstory and Context
The museum also acts as an important center for Ukrainian and Ukrainian-American research, with a focus on immigration. It holds a significant collection of archives, photographs, oral histories, and a library of over 25,000 books. In addition, the museum hosts classes in Ukrainian and English and workshops in various traditional folk crafts such as embroidery and pysanky decorating. In 2013, the Detroit Historical Museum hosted a traveling exhibit from the Ukrainian American Museum in order to introduce Ukrainian history to a broader audience. The exhibit, entitled “A Cultural Thread: The Enduring Ukrainian Spirit,” included artifacts and photographs exploring the impact of Ukrainian immigrants on Detroit. 1
The museum is currently housed in a two-story historic building that used to be a bank. The bank was at one time on Woodward Avenue, but was later moved to its current address on the corner of Charest and Conner in Hamtramck. Roman and Ivanka Dacko bought the building after immigrating to Detroit from Ukraine after WWII. The Dackos were heritage collectors and eventually combined their collection with another Ukrainian museum in Warren to form the Ukrainian American Museum in 1958. The museum acquired a larger building in October 2015 in order to better accommodate its collections and events under one roof and plans to move once renovations are complete. 2