Check Out These Museums in Birmingham, AL
Birmingham is widely considered the cultural and entertainment capital of Alabama. It has many galleries, museums, venues, and events to offer residents and tourists alike.
If you’re looking at Birmingham homes for sale, check out some of the many institutions that highlight a different part of the city’s history and contribution to the nation.
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
Birmingham played a pivotal role in the Civil Rights movement. It’s home to the Birmingham Campaign, a 1963 movement by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference to bring attention to the integration efforts of African Americans in the city. It’s where scenes of violent police aggression against civil rights protesters sparked an outrage across the nation.
The Civil Rights Institute is across the street from the 16th Street Baptist Church, which was bombed during the movement.
The Institute chronicles the role Birmingham played in the civil rights movement and serves as a forum for understanding the universal problem of racism.
Birmingham Museum of Art
The Birmingham Museum of Art houses a diverse collection of more than 27,000 paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, and decorative arts dating from ancient to modern times.
Many cultures are part of this collection, with works of Asian, European, American, African, Pre-Columbian, and Native American art.
In addition to the interior collection the museum also has The Charles W. Ireland Sculpture Garden. The Upper Plaza was designed for and exhibits the museum’s most monumental pieces of permanent sculpture. Its focal point is Lithos II, a “waterwall” created by Elyn Zimmerman that represents the geological striations of Birmingham.
The Sculpture Garden’s sunken Court is an open air space used for temporary exhibitions and art-making activities.
Birmingham Negro Southern League Museum
Baseballs Negro Southern League was created in 1920 and lasted until 1951. It was a feeder route for many black baseball players to progress to the Negro American League and Negro National League.
The museum presents the history of the league while also noting the impact it had on Birmingham and the world of professional baseball at large.
The memorabilia dates back to the 1800s. Some noted pieces that are housed there are Willie Wells’ game worn uniform, Bullet Joe Rogan’s pitching jacket, 1,500 original signed baseballs, and first great power hitter in the Negro League Louis Santop’s bat “Big Bertha.”
Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum
This museum was established in 1994 and houses over 750 motorcycles and 45 cars, making it the largest collection in the United States, and possibly the world. There are bikes from 17 nations with 125 manufacturers represented.
It’s part of the Barber Motorsports Park, a multi-purpose racing facility that has been the site of the IndyCar Series’ Grand Prix of Alabama since 2010 and is also the home of the Porsche Track Experience.
Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame
The Hall of Fame was founded in 1978, and opened a museum in 1993.
It honors the pioneers who shaped jazz history and gave rise to the art form. The museum looks at jazz history from its roots to present-day, with 40 years worth of archives and artifacts, that include Ella Fitzgerald’s dress, instruments, memorabilia, and other personal effects.
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