An anonymous donor has gifted $10 million to rebuild America’s Black Holocaust Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin after it was closed in the 2008 recession.
On December 8, the founder of the museum’s son, Virgil Cameron, announced the news WISN reported.
“When I first heard about it, it was just mind-blowing,” said Cameron.
“Unbelievable exuberance,” museum President and CEO Robert Davis said of the news.
The museum was forced to close down during the economic recession of 2008 and after the founder’s death.
“We can’t entertain the discussions anymore that our museum is ever going to close again, and so sustainability was kind of paramount to what my discussions were with the donor,” Davis said.
According to Visit Milwaukee, the museum “builds public awareness of the harmful legacies of slavery in America and promotes racial repair, reconciliation, and healing.”
Lynching survivor Dr. James Cameron originally founded and opened the museum in Milwaukee in 1988.
The website stated that the founder said people should “forgive but never forget” injustices made against them and that hatred “poisons the hater from within.”
Officials of the museum said that the large donation is helping them to buy a building across the street from the original museum on West North Avenue.
The new location will be used for teaching purposes and parking space that was otherwise scarce.
Cameron said that despite not knowing who the donor was, he is sure his parents would be proud that their legacy lives on.
“He’s looking at us right now, and I know he and his mom are probably dancing and saying, ‘Way to go. Way to go. I love you guys,’ Cameron said.
The Black Holocaust Museum is located in Milwaukee’s Bronzeville neighborhood, and the new building is set to open in February.