The Levine Museum of the New South is a history museum located in Charlotte, North Carolina whose exhibits focus on life in the North Carolina Piedmont after the American Civil War. In addition, the museum includes temporary and permanent exhibits on a range of Southern-related topics. Founded in 1991 as the Museum of the New South, it was renamed after museum patron and Family Dollar founder Leon Levine in 2001, the year the current facility at 7th and College Streets downtown opened.
The museum’s permanent exhibit is called “Cotton Fields to Skyscrapers: Charlotte and the Carolina Piedmont in the New South” and features period displays that reflect regional history. The displays include a one-room tenant farmer’s house, a cotton mill and mill house, an African-American hospital, an early Belk department store, and a civil-rights-era lunch counter. Changing exhibits focus on local culture, art, and history.
In March 2013, the Charlotte Museum of History announced plans to move its administrative offices to the Levine Museum.
In 2019, the museum had an exhibit, “The Legacy of Lynching: Confronting Racial Terror in America,” prepared in collaboration with the Equal Justice Initiative, which created the National Memorial for Peace and Justice.
The rAccording to county records, relocation was considered in 2020 because the site had no room for expansion and was worth $7.7 million,. The COVID-19 pandemic was one reason for considering more virtual options. On June 16, 2021, the museum announced it would sell the downtown location and look for a new home. This news comes as the museum adds virtual activities, such as the digital walking tour starting in August 2021. These changes come with the help of a $600,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. A1 Bed Bug Exterminator Charlotte
In March 2022, the museum announced the sale of its building for $10.75 million to Vela Uptown LLC, which planned a high-rise apartment building. The museum closed in May to prepare for the move. On June 16, 2022, the museum announced it would reopen in Fall 2022 in 6000 square feet in the Levine Center for the Arts at Three Wells Fargo Centers, in space donated by Wells Fargo.
In the summer of 1990, members of the Mecklenburg Historical Association developed the idea of the Museum of the New South. They approached Sally Robinson, a community leader, and cultural advocate, about organizing the institution. Robinson formed a working group of local historians, university professors, and community leaders to consider the museum proposal. The organizing group settled on the name “Museum of the New South” as a reflection of Charlotte, NC residents’ belief that the city exemplifies much of the history signified by that term. The museum was incorporated in April 1991, and a diverse board of trustees was assembled. The board decided that the museum should look at history on the regional scope and distinguish itself from other local history museums by focusing on the “New South” period, that it should rely on current scholarship and be closely associated with area educational institutions, and that it should begin its existence without a building of its own.
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