CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Mercedes-Benz Vans, who is manufacturing the Sprinter van in North Charleston, announced their support of the International African American Museum during a company-wide Diversity Day celebration on Thursday.
The company said their role will be in support of creating the IAAM’s Studio Time Workshop, which will provide dynamic, interactive educational opportunities for visitors of all ages.
Michael Boulware Moore, IAAM president and CEO, and Joseph P. Riley, Jr., lifetime IAAM board member and former mayor of Charleston, joined the festivities at the manufacturing plant.
“The partnership between Mercedes-Benz Vans and the IAAM is a natural fit,” said Riley. “Our two organizations share an understanding of the value of education, a dedication to supporting arts and culture, a deep-rooted interest in fostering dialogues and understanding between various people and cultures, and a commitment to the state of South Carolina and its residents.”
Nearly half of all enslaved Africans forced to America through the Transatlantic Slave Trade arrived in Charleston, and the vast majority disembarked at Gadsden’s Wharf, the future home of the International African American Museum (IAAM).
The museum will present unvarnished history and culture, commemorate and celebrate the foundational role that Africans and their descendants played in the making of America, and highlight their diasporic connections around the world.
“At its core, the IAAM is a center of education,” said Michael Boulware Moore. “We are committed to creating dynamic learning experiences, which will provide missing chapters of our nation’s past, uncovering the broad and central role African Americans have played in building our state, country and world. We are excited to work with Mercedes-Benz Vans to foster life-long learning opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds.”
The museum will include immersive, interactive exhibits engaging to all ages and feature the Center for Family History, a leading genealogy archive that will help visitors identify their individual threads in the complex tapestry of history.