Hefty donation helps fund Emmett Till childhood home renovation effort

Chicago News

CHICAGO — A movement to turn Emmett Till’s childhood home in Chicago into a museum received a financial boost this week.

Till’s former home at 6427 South St. Lawrence Avenue was designated a Chicago landmark in February, with Naomi Davis’ non-profit organization ‘Blacks in Green’ purchasing the building.

A 14-year-old Emmett Till was visiting relatives in Mississippi in the summer of 1955 when he was lynched. The brutal murder helped to ignite the nationwide Civil Rights Movement.

Davis has been working to create a house museum, community theater and garden, dedicated to honoring Till and his mother, telling the stories of millions of African Americans who fled the south during the Great Migration.

“We are remembering and we’re teaching these future generations about the beauty, the fortitude, the work ethic and the Great Migration. It is a story that needs to be better understood,” Davis said.

Horizon Therapeutics, a pharmaceutical company, donated $100,000 to the renovation effort, prompted by members of Horizon’s African American employee network who saw the news reports and wanted to play a role in creating a learning experience for everyone.

“We’re doing this because it really makes sense. It aligns with our anti-racism efforts and our commitment to make change, transformative change in the community,” Heidi Moore of Horizon said.

Davis said she hopes other companies will follow suit to help fund the $11 million project that is slated to open in 2024.

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