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Local African American History Museum Starts Campaign To Move Into Bigger Building

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) - The Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum is kicking off Black History Month by receiving a donation that will help with its mission to bring black history to the forefront.

The current museum is only 4,000 square feet, but museum employees say if they can raise $27 million, they can move into a 30,000 square-foot building.

Executive Director for the Carter G. Woodson African American Museum in St. Petersburg, Terri Lipsey Scott says "It is our time now that we as a city, county and state looked to expand the presence of African American history and have it presented in the most prestigious way."

She says her life goal is to educate as many people as possible about African American history.

"As a young African American growing up in the south, images of positive African American influence were rare, and to think how many stories were suppressed regarding the contributions made by African Americans that has ensured this nation's greatness, is mind-boggling."

So that's why she started "The Woodson's invest in Black History Month" campaign to raise $27 million to move the museum from the current 4,000 square-foot building to a 30,000 square-foot space.

"To ensure that stories are told and so youth can reflect upon the greatness of those who look like them," said Scott.

The new museum which educates people of black history will be constructed along a historic African American corridor: 22nd Street, also known as "The Deuces."

"It is critically important that we expand the space that is currently available," said Scott.

On Tuesday, the mayor of St. Petersburg, Ken Welch, announced the city's partnership with the museum and campaign.

"It just brings focus to the importance of history and why if we are talking about equitable development, why understanding history is a crucial part of that," said Welch.

On Tuesday, the museum received its largest private donation of one million dollars from the Milkey Family Foundation, something Scott is excited for.

"The idea of making this the Smithsonian of the South is what we thrive for," said Scott.

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