Save the Date

The Historic Trust will share their story through the “Fighting for the Right to Fight: African American Experiences in World War II” traveling exhibit October 1, 2021 – January 15, 2022. The Exhibit will be presented at the Artillery Barracks, 600 Hatheway Rd, Vancouver, WA 98661. Built in 1904, the Artillery Barracks are part of the Vancouver National Historic Reserve Historic District. 

In the years leading up to World War II, racial segregation and discrimination were part of daily life for many in the United States. For most African Americans, even the most basic rights and services were fragmented or denied altogether. To be Black was to know the limits of freedom–excluded from the very opportunity, equality, and justice on which the country was founded. Yet, once World War II began, thousands of African Americans rushed to enlist, intent on serving the nation that treated them as second-class citizens. They were determined to fight to preserve the freedom that they themselves had been denied.

Through a myriad of interactive experiences, visitors will discover the wartime stories of individual servicemembers who took part in this journey of extraordinary challenge, from unheralded heroes to famous names, including Alex Haley (US Coast Guard); Sammy Davis Jr. (US Army); Benjamin Davis, Jr. (US Army Air Forces); Medgar Evers (US Army) and more.

The centerpiece of the exhibit is an original eight-minute video about the famed 332nd Fighter Group (better known as the Tuskegee Airmen), who in many ways became the public focus of African American participation during the war. The piece is narrated by television personality Robin Roberts, whose own father flew with the Tuskegee Airmen during the war.

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If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for this event, please email Judy Starr at or call 360-992-1835

Thank you to our sponsors who helped make this event happen

National Sponsors 

Presenting Sponsor 

Platinum Sponsor

Friends Sponsor

Supporting Sponsor

NAACP Vancouver Branch  •  Clark County Historical Museum • Community Military Appreciation Committee (CMAC)

Fighting for the Right to Fight: African American Experiences
in WWII was produced by The National World War II Museum