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Hundreds Turn Out to Support Black Archives

By Maria Carter

Kansas City, MO – The Missouri Attorney General's office dissolved the Black Archives of Mid-America in January after it failed to file paperwork as a non-profit. Attorney General Jay Nixon held a public forum to get input on the future of the Black Archives. KCUR's Maria Carter was there and has this report.

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The Black Archives had humble beginnings. Founder Horace Peterson started the archives in summer of 1974 with his personal collection. That collection now encompasses more than 40,000 documents and artifacts. The archives faced financial problems after the city cut funding several years ago, and many people complained that artifacts were not being stored properly and were inaccessible. More than 40 people gave public testimony, including city council woman Sandra McFadden Weaver.

Sandra McFadden-Weaver: We knew the light bill was steady going up as long as thee was a light shining, and we knew that people were working without being paid. We knew it was our heritage in the building. We knew it ever since the door opened. We know it now, and whether we want to stand here and accept it or not I want to say I'm sorry.

McFadden-Weaver called on those attending to support the archives. A new board for the Black Archives turned in paperwork to the attorney general's office earlier this week. The Attorney General's office will now review those documents.

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