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Dunbar Center, 1951

Dunbar Center, 1951 image

Dunbar center was named for black poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. Its constitution promoted "civic and cultural and recreational interest and activities" and directed "character building and community betterment programs among the colored citizens of Ann Arbor and its suburbs." It provided a drop-in center for kids, like those shown with assistant director Virginia Ellis around 1951. [Note: This photo was originally labeled as 1940, but we were able to verify through other sources that it was taken in 1951.] Social and educational programs included teas and dances, and classes in reading, cooking, music, and arts and crafts.

In the late 1950s Dunbar's bylaws were amended to include all citizens and the name was changed to the Ann Arbor Community Center. It moved to a new building on North Main Street in 1960.

Frame location: Corner of North Fifth Avenue and Detroit Street

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