Great Afro-American Wax Museum

Commercial / Maryland

The Great Afro-American Wax Museum is an active museum centred around black educational history and prominent historical wax figures in Maryland.

The actual name of the location has been modified to protect the location as much as possible from vandalism.

The Great Afro-American Wax Museum was founded in 1983 in a converted storefront. 1 It relocated along the National Road in 1988 into a converted firehouse and grew to feature dozens of representations of figures ranging from Egyptian ruler Imhotep to President Barack Obama.

By 2012, the museum attracted 150,000 visitors annually, rivalling and surpassing many of the city’s more centrally located attractions. 1

In the 1990’s, the Great Afro-American Wax Museum began planning for a larger space. 1 It began acquiring neighbouring properties in 1995 and in 2003, had 50 nearby rowhouses demolished after the lots were donated to the museum by the city.

The first designs for a new museum building were presented to the city in 2011. 1 The project’s first phase would entail the construction of a 120,000 square-foot building, with only 40,000 to 60,000 square-feet used for the museum. An underground parking garage would also be built.

One of the building’s the museum owns is a former three-story residence built in 1913. 2 It was sold to the Great Afro-American Wax Museum in 1995 and will ultimately be demolished for the new museum complex.


Sources

  1. Sherman, Natalie. “Blacks in Wax Museum presses forward with expansion.” Baltimore Sun, 14 Oct. 2014.
  2. “Ward – 08 Section – 04 Block – 1102 Lot – 056.” Real Property Data Search, Department of Assessments & Taxation.