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By Justin Fenton | justin.fenton@baltsun.com | December 23, 2009
The deputy director of the Great Blacks in Wax Museum, where a 20-year-old man was fatally stabbed during a fight at a party Friday night, said he was cutting ties with a local promoter who had described the parties to museum officials as Christian fundraisers. Fliers for the parties, posted on a Web page for Big Les Productions, describe them as events for young adults and "mature" high school students. Many of the posters show young men flashing what appear to be gang signs or raising their middle fingers, and promise a "sexy ladies dance contest."
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NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | June 7, 2014
A cadre of spiritual giants was inducted Saturday into the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum as the East Baltimore gallery looks to expand in its third decade. About 1,000 people gathered in Morgan State University's Murphy Fine Arts Center for a tribute ceremony honoring three pastors and a gospel singer for their roles inspiring the country through faith. "Thank God for blessing them so that they could bless others," Rep. Elijah Cummings told the audience. "I want to thank our honorees for changing the trajectory of so many people's destiny.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Sloane Brown | December 10, 2000
The temperatures may have been dropping outside, but they were rising inside the Great Blacks in Wax Museum as some 200 folks grooved at the "Oldies but Goodies Dance." Many guests brought homemade eats, typifying the cozy and kickin' atmosphere. However, at Bridget Scott's and Theresa Shelton's table, a professionally decorated cake took center stage. "It's my birthday today," Bridget explained, as she surveyed her ready-made b-day party. Among others getting into the swing of things: Liz Byrd, event chair; Phyllis Smith, event co-chair; Carol Jolley, Elma Goodman, Roberta Miller, and Sonia Poteat, event committee members; Jesse Booker Williams, Bernard Jennings and Patricia Tunstall, museum board members; Michelle Bryant, Social Security Administration computer specialist; James Owens, Harlem Park Elementary fourth grade teacher; Nora Ellison, independent financial counselor; Gaines Lansey, Morgan State University procurement officer; Lindsey Marable, Bethlehem Steel industrial engineer; Trina Walton, Fair Chance Inc. secretary; and Michael Brice, Maryland correctional officer.
NEWS
By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun | January 9, 2013
Lonnie Harris, a retired Continental Can Co. worker and an active church member, died Jan. 3 of respiratory failure at Northwest Hospital. He was 88. Mr. Harris was born in Littleton, N.C., and after the death of his parents moved to East Baltimore, where he was raised by an aunt. He attended city public schools. For more than 40 years until retiring in 1986, Mr. Harris worked at Continental Can Co., first as a factory worker, and later as a full-time shop steward. He also coached the company basketball team.
NEWS
By GREGORY KANE | November 3, 2002
TROY BRAILEY, hitching his way from South Carolina to Baltimore in the 1930s, probably had no idea he'd end up in wax. Brailey, through the kindness of strangers willing to pick up a black man headed north, found his way to Baltimore and worked as a shoeshine boy, presser and waiter before moving on to greater things. Those "greater things" are the reason the Great Blacks in Wax Museum unveiled last month its wax figure of Brailey, the legislator and civil rights activist who died in 1994.
NEWS
By Justin Fenton and Justin Fenton,justin.fenton@baltsun.com | December 22, 2009
The 20-year-old who was fatally stabbed Friday night in East Baltimore was attacked during a fight at a party at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum, records show. Police said the museum, which is in the 1600 block of E. North Ave. and features more than 100 life-size wax figures of prominent black leaders, had been rented out for a "large party" held by a group called the Baltimore Christian Warriors, according to court records and museum staff. A number of fights erupted, and Joshua Hargrove was stabbed as a group of men were escorted out of the facility just before midnight, records show.
NEWS
By Norris P. West and Norris P. West,Sun Staff Writer | September 6, 1994
Elmer and Joanne Martin began their mission to keep black history alive by carting around four wax figures in their car. Thirteen years later, 117 figures line two floors of their Great Blacks in Wax Museum in a converted East Baltimore firehouse.While their collection of wax figures has grown, one thing hasn't changed."We live right on the financial edge," Mrs. Martin laments. "An institution can't survive on that level. We can't live in the survival mode and be around 10 years from now."
NEWS
By Kate Shatzkin and Kate Shatzkin,SUN STAFF | August 26, 1999
When a visitor descends into the depths of the Great Blacks in Wax Museum to take a look at its exhibit on lynching, the first sound often is silence.Then follow words like: "Oh, my God."Here is the lynching of Hayes and Mary Turner, re-created with life-size figures and oversized horror. Billie Holiday sings "Strange Fruit," a song about lynching, softly in the background.On a sweltering August day, in an East Baltimore neighborhood better known for decrepitude and drug-selling than tourism, a sea of children in the matching T-shirts of summer camp come from as far as New Jersey and New York to see searing images like these at Great Blacks in Wax.Now, with a large new Maryland African-American History museum planned for the heart of Baltimore's tourist district, the founders of the first black wax museum in the country are wondering just what their future will hold.
NEWS
By Kimberly A.C. Wilson and Kimberly A.C. Wilson,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | June 4, 2004
WASHINGTON - Education and outreach programs at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum in East Baltimore got a boost last night when the U.S. Senate, as expected, approved a measure that would pour $5 million into the cultural center's coffers. The House approved this week an identical bill to help expand civil rights and violence-prevention initiatives at the nation's first wax museum honoring African-Americans. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski and Rep. Elijah E. Cummings introduced the National Great Black Americans Commemoration Act of 2003, which would add Justice Department money to state, city and private funds aimed at expanding exhibits, facilities and programs at the Baltimore museum, which drew 220,000 visitors last year.
BUSINESS
By Lorraine Mirabella, The Baltimore Sun | August 18, 2011
Where the passengers on the tour bus rolling west on North Avenue saw blocks of crumbling and abandoned buildings and overgrown lots, Lou Fields envisioned another Pratt Street in the making. Fields, who heads a nonprofit heritage tourism group, is leading an effort to revitalize what he views as one of the city's most overlooked thoroughfares. Progress is possible, he says, even in tough economic times. "Attention, awareness and appreciation — if you don't have those things going on, nothing's going to happen," said Fields, who views his role as that of "visionary crusader.
BUSINESS
By Edward Gunts, The Baltimore Sun | June 15, 2011
Retired basketball star Chris Webber will help the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum raise funds for a $75 million replacement facility scheduled to open on Baltimore's North Avenue corridor in 2015. The museum announced that Webber, a five-time National Basketball Association All-Star who played from 1993 to 2008, will help launch an initiative next week to raise $4 million for the sports wing of a $7 million gallery of sports, recreation and athletics that will be part of the new museum.
NEWS
By Mary Carole McCauley, The Baltimore Sun | May 18, 2010
The Rev. Al Sharpton dropped by Baltimore on Monday to seek support for a fledgling plan to create a new arts district in the city to honor African-American cultural achievements. The proposal, by a group calling itself the African-American Arts Cultural & Entertainment Consortium, is still in the preliminary stages. But Sharpton said he supports the development of such a district because it would bolster the self-image of local youths. "This is not just an investment in the business community, it's an investment in the social order," Sharpton told an enthusiastic crowd of about 200 during an early evening rally inside the War Memorial auditorium.
NEWS
February 4, 2010
WASHINGTON - A judge dismissed a lawsuit Monday by members of the nation's oldest black sorority, who sought to remove their president over alleged financial misdeeds. D.C. Superior Court Judge Natalia M. Combs Greene dismissed the lawsuit, filed by eight sorority sisters in June, against Alpha Kappa Alpha. The sisters had wanted to remove the Chicago-based group's leader, Barbara McKinzie, because they claimed she had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in AKA money on herself, some of it to pay for a wax statue of herself at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum in Baltimore.
NEWS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,tricia.bishop@baltsun.com | January 13, 2010
A District Court hearing in the Baltimore murder trial of Jonathan Miller, who is accused of participating in a stabbing at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum last month, was postponed Tuesday until Jan. 26. Miller has yet to be indicted by the Baltimore Circuit Court, potentially signaling trouble ahead. The higher court typically takes on such cases. The state's attorney's office declined to comment, and defense attorney Jack Rubin would only say that his client is innocent.
NEWS
By Justin Fenton | justin.fenton@baltsun.com | December 23, 2009
The deputy director of the Great Blacks in Wax Museum, where a 20-year-old man was fatally stabbed during a fight at a party Friday night, said he was cutting ties with a local promoter who had described the parties to museum officials as Christian fundraisers. Fliers for the parties, posted on a Web page for Big Les Productions, describe them as events for young adults and "mature" high school students. Many of the posters show young men flashing what appear to be gang signs or raising their middle fingers, and promise a "sexy ladies dance contest."
NEWS
By Justin Fenton | justin.fenton@baltsun.com | December 22, 2009
The 20-year-old who was fatally stabbed Friday night in East Baltimore was attacked during a fight at a party at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum, records show. Police said the museum, which is in the 1600 block of E. North Ave. and features more than 100 life-size wax figures of prominent black leaders, had been rented out for a "large party" held by a group called the Baltimore Christian Warriors, according to court records and museum staff. A number of fights erupted, and Joshua Hargrove was stabbed as a group of men were escorted out of the facility just before midnight, records show.
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