The APEX Museum
The African-American Panoramic Experience (APEX) Museum is located in downtown Atlanta's Sweet Auburn Historic District. The museum includes numerous exhibits and programs related to the local, regional, and national experiences of people of color. The museum also offers programs for children and community lectures, and other events that present the African American perspective throughout history. The museum was established by Dan Moore in hope of highlighting the contributions of African Americans. Since it opened in 1978, thousands of visitors from more than forty countries have toured the museum.
Backstory and Context
The African American Panoramic Experience (APEX) offers a variety of exhibits that change three to four times a year and range from hairstyles to art, dance, and African history. The museum epitomizes the rich and often untold story of African and African-American history and culture. APEX is housed within a 100-year-old building, erected by African-American masons. Visitors can gain appreciation and understanding of the African-American experience and social contributions through exhibits, artifacts, and presentations spanning centuries, from ancient African civilizations to contemporary events.
The first video is projected on the wall in front of the trolley, and it provides a history of Africans before they became slaves. The video speaks on history that goes back to 6500 B.C., discussing the success of Africans before the slave trade and how they were queens, pharaohs, and war leaders, as well as the wealth of Africa because of ivory.
The second video is about how African slaves became African Americans but still faced struggles of segregation; however, they progressed economically and civilly right on Auburn Avenue. For example, blacks started owning their own business in the 1800s, which included stores, news articles, and hotels.
The APEX was originally founded by Dan Moore. Unlike other African American Museums, with the APEX, Mr. Moore wanted a place to celebrate and honor the contributions of African Americans. APEX's mission statement is as follows:
"Founded in 1978 to chronicle & present African American Art, History & Culture, our purpose is to inform & enlighten youth & the broad base public to the many positive achievements and contributions of African Americans. We endeavor to promote intercultural understanding, expand racial & ethnic tolerances, and to encourage positive avenues in Black youth. Our philosophy is that bigotry and prejudice are fostered by ignorance and that hopelessness and despair felt by much Black youth are fueled by a lack of positive exposure. We use vivid & entertaining mediums to light a spark, to make a difference."
APEX Museum aims to accurately interpret and present history from an African American perspective. It strives to help all American and international visitors better understand and appreciate the contributions of African Americans to America, as well as the world.