OVERTOWN TO NORWAY: Kamila E. Pritchett, new executive director of The Black Archives History & Research Foundation of South Florida, traveled as a guest speaker last week to the Arkivforbundet National Norwegian Archives Conference. PHOTO COURTESY OF CITY OF FACBOOK

Staff Report

MIAMI, Fla. (Black PR Wire) – Kamila E. Pritchett, who became executive director of The Black Archives History & Research Foundation of South Florida, Inc. in July of last year, says she has big plans for the nonprofit institution. “For an organization that has been around as long as The Black Archives, it is important to keep growing, and evolving to remain relevant with the interests of society at large,” said Pritchett.

Founded in 1977, the Black Archives is a photographic and manuscript archival research repository dedicated to documenting the history of people of the African Diaspora in Miami-Dade Conty.

The nonprofit organization is housed at the Black Archives Historic Lyric Theater (BAHLT) Cultural Arts Complex, a historic landmark on the National Register of Historic Places built in 1913 and this year celebrating its 110th anniversary.

“The Black Archives,” said Pritchett, “has restored our properties, enlivened the neighborhood with activity at the Historic Lyric Theater, gained solid financial support with the goals of sustainability and now, I believe we are at the place in our journey where the world needs to know about the important work we are doing at The Black Archives.”

Last week, Pritchett traveled to Sandefjord, Norway as an guest speaker for the Arkivforbundet National Norwegian Archives Conference.

She was invited to present on the work of the Black Archives and the importance of its mission, specifically in the face of the current anti-African American history legislation in Florida and nationally in the U.S.

In March, two Norwegian archivists visited the Black Archives while in Miami on vacation. They took a tour of the archival repository and learned from Pritchett about Miami’s rich Black history and the work being done to preserve it. Impressed by what they learned, they offered Pritchett a flight to Norway to share her story.

"It is both heartwarming and heartbreaking, to have people on the other side of the world have more respect and interest in the history of Black people in the United States than some of our own neighbors," Pritchett said.

"No matter how challenging it can be, the work of history keeping is vital to society – and so, we persist."

To learn about upcoming events follow on Facebook @BlackArchivesMIA or Instagram @bahltsoflo.