Building Quality, Connected Places: Envisioning a NEO African American Cultural Center

Submitted by Betsey Merkel on Sun, 02/19/2006 - 11:20.

In 1915 a pair of Oberlin graduates, Russell and Rowena Woodham Jelliffe, established a place where people of different races, creeds and religions could seek cultural excellence together. The location later became known as Karamu House. Join us to celebrate Cleveland's rich history of African American institutions continuing to strengthen culture and history.

Be a part of envisioning a new African American Cultural Center and brainstorming new ways of sharing knowledge and resources for a dynamic entrepreneurial place in NEO.

Check out the Midtown Wednesdays Blog for updates on the Midtown Innovation Zone's networks accelerating creative, quality and connected places.

Forum Contributors:

Eugene Cranford,Moody Nolan

Linda Henrichsen, City of Cleveland Planning Department

The Cleveland African American Museum

Karamu House

Moderator: Ed Morrison, I-Open

Strengthening cultural networks across the country:

A site was selected for the new Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture adjacent to the National Monument and across the street from the National Museum of American History. Learn more here.

The African American Cultural Center in Pittsburgh preserves the art, culture and history of African Americans in Pittsburgh and the people of African descent throughout the world.

Visit the Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Center at the University of Kentucky here.

Coming up: Wednesday, March 1: Technology, Learning and Visualization

Time: 5:00 P.M. - 6:45 P.M.

Place: FUTURE: Center for Design and Technology Transfer

The Cleveland Institute of Art

MC Bldg, 11610 Euclid Ave


Love Karamu

I have acted on the stage at Karamu. You can feel the positive energy and history in a place like that. I'll definitely come out to show my love and support for Karamu and any future place with similar goals.


Alex P. Michaels

Building the Knight Movie Studio Incubator

NEO to be major African American Cultural Center!?!?

Great topic, I-Open. I've done a bit of work with the old African American Museum, if that's its name (in an old Carnegie library near HealthSpace) and I've always felt there should be an African American Cultural Garden (and Hispanic and Native American)... now in fund-raising. Recently., I've heard business people speak of making East Cleveland along Euclid an African American music and arts district, along the lines of the French Quarter or Harlem. Yes, this all represents leveraging the unique and in these places dominent African American culture in this region.


This aspect of our regional identity and creative value is poorly leveraged today, but offers global appeal if well supported. I look forward to this forum. 

Pittsburgh: African American Cultural Center

Hello all,


I got the below information from a email that was sent to me today.

Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell announced the investment of $5 million to help Pittsburgh-area officials break ground and begin constructing the African American Cultural Center of Greater Pittsburgh. Governor Rendell said, "Once completed, this center will bring a new appreciation for the contributions of the dynamic African-American culture, while preserving its heritage in southwestern Pennsylvania. It will be a symbol of achievement and draw visitors from around the country seeking to learn more about the strengths African-Americans have brought to our communities." The $32.7 million facility will be located at the corner of Liberty Avenue and 10th Street.  The African American Cultural Center of Greater Pittsburgh is designed to be a state-of-the-art, inter-disciplinary institution devoted to examining the region's African-American population and their relationship to people of African lineage in other parts of the world. It will include the International Center for Africana Cultures, where researchers, educators and students can examine Africana music and other such- inspired art forms; computerized classrooms; studio space for artists; and retail locations where visitors can purchase fine arts and crafts by African- American artisans.