From the shackles that bound the hands of slaves, to a letter signed by Booker T. Washington on Tuskegee Institute letterhead, artifacts convey the history of black people in the United States.

The University Program Board at Illinois State University will host the True Black History Museum, a traveling museum that teaches black history through the use of rare and authentic artifacts. Shown in celebration of Black Heritage Weekend, the museum will be on display from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, February 24, in the Escalante Room of Hewett-Manchester residence halls.

The exhibit is free and open to the public.

With items dating from the late 1700s to the 21st century, the collection explores civilizations in Africa, the mid-Atlantic slave trade, slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Jim Crow, the Civil Rights/Black Power movements through the modern day, and celebrates and highlights contributions of African Americans in the arts, sciences, sports, entertainment, education, and politics.

The museum is part of Black Heritage Weekend, celebrating black history and achievements. On Sunday, February 25, the Black Student Union will host the Black Heritage Ball, which is also open to the public.

For additional information on the museum, contact the University Program Board at