In Fresno’s African-American museum, ‘all our people are local heroes’

Hidden amongst the hustle and bustle of Downtown Fresno is the African-American Historical and Cultural Museum of the San Joaquin Valley.

The museum, located in Fresno’s mural district at 1857 Fulton St., was started nearly 30 years ago by Jack Kelley, a Fresno State alumnus and the first black police sergeant with the Fresno Police Department.

“He was loved by everybody, so all people, black and white, helped put the museum together,” said Gregory Melancon, director of operations for the museum.

A founding board of 15 community members also helped to gather pictures and put the history together to create the museum, Melancon added. As Black History Month wraps up on Wednesday, Melancon recently spoke about what meaning the museum holds for the black community beyond…

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