African American Civil War Museum to Reopen

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    A hand from the crowd reaches out to touch the African American Civil War Memorial in Washington, Saturday July 18, 1998, after its' unveiling. Hundreds of people attended the unveiling of the memorial which carries the names of over 208,000 African American Civil War veterans. (AP Photo/William Philpott)

    The African American Civil War Museum is reopening in a new location in Washington to give it more space for exhibits and programs.

    The museum opened on U Street in 1999 near the African American Civil War Memorial to help visitors understand the contributions of black soldiers. On July 18, it celebrates its grand reopening nearby in a former school building on Vermont Avenue near the memorial.

    The new location provides about 5,000 square feet after a $5 million renovation. The original location only had about 700 square feet. The new museum includes a media center and research area for descendants and scholars.

    On July 17, the museum will host a film festival. It also plans to hold future jazz and gospel festivals to reflect the neighborhood's musical history.