Ida B. Wells Barnett Museum is a non-profit institution dedicated to the research, identification, selection, acquisition, presentation and preservation of artifacts, visual art forms and historical documents that relate to the African American Community.
Ida B. Wells Barnett Museum was created to inspire and enrich the lives of Mississippians, sharing with them the contributions of African and African American in the field of arts in the United States and the world.
The museum is located within the Spires Bolling House on Randolph at Salem Avenue in Holly Springs Mississippi; we are a popular attraction for architectural buffs. The Spires Bolling House itself is one of Holly Springs' best preserved antebellum homes and is one of Mississippi's greatest examples of Greek revival architecture. The building is a classic example with its' characteristic octagon posts in front of the house, gable or hipped, low-pitch roof, and temple-front entryway with entry door surrounded by rectangular transom and sidelights. Our restoration project will preserve the original architectural style and historical accuracy of the home.
In addition to being an architectural destination, the building like many of the time period was built using slave labor. James Wells who was a talented craftsman was instrumental in its' construction and his daughter, Ida B. Wells, was born on site July, 16, 1862. Ida B. Wells-Barnett was a fearless anti-lynching crusader, suffragist, women's rights advocate, journalist, and speaker. She stands as one of our nation's most uncompromising leaders and most ardent defenders of democracy. The evolution of the institution from an Art Gallery into a museum has enabled it to broaden its scope of activities and includes 5 areas of programming and exhibition:
1. Ida B. Wells Room: This room contains a collection of personal memorabilia, awards, and other belonging to Ida B. Wells.
2. Permanent Art Collection: The Museum features a permanent exhibit of works created by African and African American artists. These include ceremonial masks, oil paintings and landscapes.
3. Local Genealogy Room: This room contains documentation of the genealogies of several of Holly Springs African American Families.
4. Art Gallery Exhibits: The museum rotates artists every 6-8 weeks to provide encourage returning guest to the Art Gallery for a new experience.
5. Featured Museum Programs: Exhibits, membership lectures, extension lectures, multi-cultural programs, family programs, special community programs, children's programs, grandparents programs, dramatic theatre.
The Ida B. Wells Museum serves as a cornerstone of the Holly Springs community in its efforts to generate tourism. The museum received 4500 visitors per year.
In 1996, the Ida B. Wells Art Gallery was chartered by a small group of dedicated educators, artists and civic leaders who sought to preserve and share the artistic contributions of Africans and African Americans to local, American, and world culture. In March of 2002, the Museum was renamed the Ida B. Wells-Barnett Museum and Cultural Center of African American History. A variety of family heirlooms and artifacts of African American historic value comprise the museum's collection. Of special importance is the Ida B. Wells Room which contains a collection of personal memorabilia, awards and belongings of this courageous American figure. A Genealogy Room contains documentation of genealogies of several Holly Springs' African American families. Collections by African and African American artists are also highlighted and displayed in the gallery room.
Arts and Culture