‘Symbol of our enduring purpose’: African American History Museum celebrates its 10 millionth visitor

NMAAHC Deputy Director Michelle Commander (left) Welcomes the 10th Millionth Visitor, Marcie Williams (right).(Courtesy Robert Stewart/NMAAHC)
On Saturday, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture welcomed its 10 millionth visitor since opening to the public just over seven years ago.

As visitors lined up on Saturday, the museum’s deputy director Michelle Commander welcomed Marcie Williams as the 10 millionth guest, according to a news release.

For her honors, Williams received a gift bag with a certificate, a mug and a one-year membership to the museum.

“Our 10 millionth visitor is a symbol of our enduring purpose, and a tribute to the efforts of the past seven years, not to mention the century-long struggle for a monument to African American sacrifice and achievement on the National Mall,” Kevin Young, the museum’s Andrew W. Mellon Director, said in a news release.

The museum has become a must-see experience for many visiting the National Mall. Aside from its permanent exhibits, it has showcased exhibitions on topics like slavery, the Reconstruction era, Civil Rights and Afrofuturism.

The museum, which celebrated its seventh anniversary on Sept. 24, reached its first million visitors less than six-months after it opened in 2016.

Williams is repeat visitor to the museum and was there Saturday for a book club meeting and tour, NBC Washington reported.

Despite the attention she’s received as the institution’s 10 millionth visitor, the Fairfax County, Virginia, told NBC Washington that it was her first visit to the museum that was the most impactful.

“First time I came, I came with my family and I cried, I’m gonna be honest with you. I was a little overwhelmed,” Williams told NBC Washington.

Joshua Barlow

Joshua Barlow is a writer, composer, and producer who has worked for CGTN, Atlantic Public Media, and National Public Radio. He lives in Northeast Washington, D.C., where he pays attention to developments in his neighborhood, economic issues, and social justice.

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