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Museum gets $25,000 grant for genealogy

The Kansas African American Museum has received a $25,000 grant to establish a statewide history and genealogy program called "Knowing Me, Knowing You."

The program is designed for anyone with a contribution to Kansas black history.

The grant, awarded by the Chester and Ada Franklin Scholarship Fund and co-trustees Bank of America and Samuel L. Adams, will allow the Wichita museum's staff to set up video cameras in six Kansas towns with important African-American ties: Nicodemus, Topeka, Kansas City, Wichita, Hutchinson and Weir.

The staff will collect stories and other information from residents and place them into a permanent archive, which, when edited, could be made available on the museum's Web site for purchase, said Mark McCormick, the museum's director.

The program is designed to build cultural bridges, he said.

"The more we know about ourselves and about each other, the easier it will be for us to scale the barriers keeping us apart," McCormick said.

In addition, the grant will also help fund the museum's Web site upgrades, a public research area in the museum and workshops featuring genealogical experts. The program is expected to begin next year.

For more information, contact McCormick or Prisca Barnes at 316-262-7651 or mark.mccormick@tkaamuseum.org and prisca.barnes@tkaamuseum.org.

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