News and Information for the Alexandria Black History Museum

News coverage, books and brochures on the Museum and Alexandria's African American History.

Page updated on Jun 27, 2021 at 12:06 PM

News Coverage

  • News coverage of the Contrabands and Freedmen Cemetery Memorial dedication.
  • The Washingtonian Magazine picked the Alexandria Black History Museum as one of its "Hidden Gems" for their February 2014 issue.
  • WTOP and  NBC report: Film "Twelve Years a Slave" has ties to the Washington, D.C. area. Northrup was sold into slavery in 1841 through the Washington, D.C. slave dealer James H. Birch. In 1858, after Northrup was again a free man, Birch was co-owner of the Alexandria Slave Pen, now Freedom House Museum. Read the Associated Press article on WTOP, November 5, 2013, and watch the NBC News video from November 6, 2013, and see the film at local theaters.
  • National Trust Visits Museum -- As part of its efforts to document Contraband heritage sites, the National Trust for Historic Preservation  visited Alexandria and interviewed Audrey Davis, Assistant Director and Curator of the Alexandria Black History Museum, and local historian Lillian Patterson. Check out the Preservation Nation video and learn about Alexandria's Contraband history!

Book:  African Americans in Alexandria, Virginia: Beacons of Light in the Twentieth Century

African American History in Alexandria BookThe book African Americans in Alexandria, Virginia: Beacons of Light in the Twentieth Century has been nominated by the Library of Virginia (LVA) for its 17th Annual Library of Virginia LIterary Awards in the nonfiction category. Winners will be announced at LVA's Gala on October 18, 2014.  The book is also one of the selections for the Virginia Festival of Books. Authors Audrey Davis and Char McCargo Bah will join other authors on a panel on Community History at the Festival on March 21, 2014 at noon, in Charlottesville, VA. The book is available for sale at the Museum, at the Historic Alexandria Museum Shop located at The Lyceum, and online from   The Alexandria Shop. All proceeds will go to the Museum to assist in their programming.

Walking Tour Brochure

Download A Remarkable Journey: A Guide to Alexandria’s African American History. 

Television: Mercy Street

Mercy Street, the six-episode PBS drama that premiered on Sunday, January 17, 2016, is inspired by true stories of Civil War Alexandria, Virginia. The Office of Historic Alexandria joined  Extraordinary Alexandria in providing visitor experiences that uncover the real people behind the characters on the show, the realities of Civil War medicine, changing roles for women, and the breakthrough experience of enslaved African Americans claiming their freedom. 

  • Watch the trailer here
  • WJLA Interview with Beth Hoppe from PBS and Audrey Davis from Alexandria Black History Museum, January 13, 2016.