Last year, Epcot introduced us to ”Re-Discovering America: Family Treasures from the Kinsey Collection”. This relatively new exhibit, added to the American Heritage Gallery at the American Adventure Pavilion, features artifacts that celebrate the history of African American achievements and contributions. The exhibit features the private collection of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey and is themed around five major areas: hope, belief, courage, imagination, and heritage.
It appears that this spring we’ll see some brand new antiquities added to the exhibit. New pieces have are already on display, and additional pieces will be added throughout the season.
New objects joining the exhibit will include:
- Distribution of Population in New York, 1801 – At the Philadelphia Convention of 1787, states with smaller populations voiced their concern about representation at the federal level. This resulted in the Three-Fifths Compromise stating that only three-fifths of the slave population would be counted in the census. The Distribution of Population in New York, 1801 was one of the first few census calculations done by the state of New York following the compromise.
- Noon Wash by artist Jonathan Green — His work with acrylic and oil paints reflect the hope of African Americans throughout history.
- Slave Songs of the United States – Published in 1867, this original collection of African American music was the first of its kind. Northern abolitionists William Francis Allen, Charles Pickard Ware and Lucy McKim Garrison collected 136 songs from the slaves of Southern plantations, phonetically recording them as they heard them, in an effort to preserve the unique and powerful art form.
- Tintype Photographs - Popularized in the mid-1850s, tintypes were easier to produce than previous methods and made photographs accessible to more people. Though their names have been lost to history, the subjects of the tintype portraits included in the exhibit continue to share their stories of courage .
- Carte de Visite – Following a similar printing process as tintypes, carte de visite photographs were easier and more economical to produce, with the image printed on a high quality paper. The carte de visite photographs being added to the Courage portion of the exhibit feature African American soldiers from both sides of the Civil War
The Kinsey family’s private collection features rare art, documents, books, and artifacts, and approximately 40 pieces have been on display at Epcot in the interactive exhibit where guests are able to use touch screens to further explore the art, artifacts, and history. Guest-activated lanterns also help bring the history to life.
To see a bit more about this exhibit, make sure to check out this tour around the American Adventure Pavilion. It is a wonderful exhibit that features some incredible artifacts. If you haven’t stopped to check it out while you are waiting to see American Adventure, you absolutely need to do so. (And make sure you catch Voices of Liberty too…AMAZING.)