Jim Crow Museum

 

The objects displayed in Michigan's newest museum range from the ordinary, such as simple ashtrays and fishing lures, to the grotesque - a full-size replica of a lynching tree. But all are united by a common theme: They are steeped in racism so intense that it makes visitors cringe. That's the idea behind the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia, which says it has amassed the nation's largest public collection of artifacts spanning the segregation era, from Reconstruction until the civil rights movement, and beyond.

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Recent Submissions

  • Pilgrim, David Dr. (Jim Crow Museum Website, 2000-12)
    The Tom caricature portrays black men as faithful, happily submissive servants. The Tom caricature, like the Mammy caricature, was born in ante-bellum America in the defense of slavery. How could slavery be wrong, argued ...
  • Pilgrim, David, Dr. (Jim Crow Museum Website, 2000-10)
    The picaninny was the dominant racial caricature of black children for most of this country's history. They were "child coons," miniature versions of Stepin Fetchit (see Pilgrim (2000)). Picaninnies had bulging eyes, unkempt ...
  • Pilgrim, David, Dr. (Jim Crow Museum Website, 2000-10)
    The coon caricature is one of the most insulting of all anti- black caricatures. The name itself, an abbreviation of raccoon, is dehumanizing. As with Sambo, the coon was por- trayed as a lazy, easily frightened, chronically ...
  • Pilgrim, David, Dr. (Jim Crow Museum Website, 2002-07)
    The portrayal of black women as lascivious by nature is an enduring stereotype. The descriptive words associated with this stereotype are singular in their focus: seductive, alluring, worldly, beguiling, tempting, and lewd. ...
  • Pilgrim, David, Dr. (Jim Crow Museum Website, 2000-11)
    During the postwar period of Radical Reconstruction (1867-1877), many white writers argued that without slavery-which supposedly contained their animalistic tendencies- blacks were reverting to criminal savagery. The brute ...