The African American Heritage Museum of Southern New Jersey (AAHMSNJ) sprang from the passion of its founder, Ralph E. Hunter, Sr.
After retiring from a long career in retail, Ralph began collecting cultural treasures that he stumbled on while traveling or just by being an astute observer of his surroundings.
Ralph’s reputation for preserving and showcasing unique and local culture spread. He became the go-to person when Atlantic City families discovered their own historical treasure that they wanted to share with the world.
The extraordinary exhibit “Portraits of A People” was the result Ralph accepting an invitation to explore a discovery found tucked away beneath an AC home. Before long, Stockton College began to notice the museum and the contribution it could make to the school’s growth.
After years of searching for an Atlantic City location, in 2013, AAHMSNJ became the anchor for the Noyes Arts Garage in AC — a Stockton University facility. Now with two locations, the museum has over 3,000 pieces.
The AAHMSNJ traveling museum visits schools throughout the region and the corporate and rotating exhibits are available for installation at other facilities. The museum is also a show place for local African American artists who’s work deserves attention.
For many artists, breaking into the gallery world was illusive until AAHMSNJ came along.