Eartha M.M. White Museum Reopens at Clara White Mission
The Eartha M.M. White Historical Museum officially reopened after a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The newly renovated space represents more than 150 years of Jacksonville's Black history. Adonnica Toler, the museum director, and her team of volunteers curated items belonging to the founder of the Clara White Mission, Dr. Eartha M.M. White.
The Museum is a tribute to Dr. Eartha M.M. White and her mother, Clara. The mother-daughter duo planted the dream that soon became the Clara White Mission Inc. The nonprofit offers serves homeless Veterans by providing transitional housing and vocational programs to put people to work. They also serve the homeless hot meals daily. The mission is a one-stop-shop for social services and mental health resources, in addition to being the homebase for its other enterprises like White Harvest Farms.
About the Eartha M.M. White Museum
The museum is a fresh introduction to White who was a humanitarian, philanthropist, and icon. She impacted every aspect of society in Jacksonville and across the nation. There are five exhibits visitors can experience to learn about White, her work, personal life and personal space. The museum includes a collection of several of White's personal belongings along with a simulation of what the mission looked like when she lived and worked in the building located at 613 W. Ashley Street from the 1920s to the 1970s.
Another exhibit at the museum, "Photos by Weems" is a favorite for many visitors, as the photographs highlight what life was like for Blacks living in Historic Lavilla during the 1930s and 40s.
The grand reopening of the Eartha M.M. White Historical Museum took place on Dr. White's birthday, Tuesday, November 8. The ribbon cutting ceremony featured Valerie Esguerra, the #JaxNEXT100 writing contest winner who shared a spoken word performance, and guest lecturer Jerry Urso, the Grand Historian of the Most Worshipful Union Grand Lodge of Florida.