Mosaic Templars Cultural Center | Little Rock, AR

The Mosaic Templars Cultural Center is dedicated to telling the story of the African American experience in Arkansas. The Center’s name is taken from the Mosaic Templars of America [1], a black fraternal organization founded in Little Rock in 1883. The mission of the Center is to collect, preserve, interpret and celebrate Arkansas’s African American history, culture, and community from 1870 to the present, and to inform and educate the public about African American’s achievements – especially in business, politics, and the arts. General admission is free.


Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterPhoto Courtesy of Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau

The Center has permanent, changing, and traveling exhibits highlighting African American life and Arkansas black history and culture from 1870 to the present, including:

  • A Building For The Community – The history of the Mosaic Templars of America Building, which served as an important commercial and community center for African Americans in Little Rock in the early 20th century (pre-World War II)
  • African Americans in Arkansas – The African American experience in Arkansas from 1870 TO 1970.
  • Brotherhood and the Bottom Line – The contributions of Mosaic Templars of America, an African American fraternal organization, to Arkansas African American community.
  • Entrepreneurial Spirit – The rise of the African American entrepreneurial class during the era of Jim Crow.
  • A City Within A City – The significance of Little Rock’s West Ninth Street  as the economic and social center of Little Rock’s African American community.
  • A Living History: Arkansas Black History Hall of Fame highlights the contribution of African-American Arkansans to American history.


The Center also actively collects works of art by African American Arkansans. Beyond just exhibits, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center provides lesson plans and outreach programs for students and teachers. These materials are in great demand by classroom teachers and have closed a gap in the teaching of Arkansas history.

Notes:

[1] The Mosaic Templars was a black friendly society founded by John E. Bush and Chester W. Keatts, two former slaves, in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1883.The Mosaic Templars was an organization that originally provided illness, death, and burial insurance during an era when few basic services were available to black people. By 1900 Mosaic Templars’ industries grew to include an insurance company, a building and loan association, a publishing company, a business college, a nursing school, and a hospital.  By 1905 it had a number of lodges across the state with thousands of members. Its headquarters were housed in a handsome new building that opened in 1913; Booker T. Washington delivered the dedication speech. In the 1920s they claimed chapters in twenty-six states and six foreign countries, making it one of the largest black organizations in the world. However, in the 1930s, the MTA began to feel the effects of the Great Depression and eventually ceased operations. However, a single chapter remains, in Barbados.

Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
501 W. Ninth Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
Phone: (501) 683-3593
Website: www.mosaictemplarscenter.com
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THE MOSAIC TEMPLARS CULTURAL CENTER ON TWITTER

March 4th, 2015 at 12:22pm
#WomensHistoryMonth Florence Beatrice Pike was AR's first nationally recognized female African American composer. http://t.co/OwXBpuAgnV
March 4th, 2015 at 12:18pm
RT @ManganHolcomb: The new director of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, Stacy Hurst, speaks about the importance of heritage... http://…
March 3rd, 2015 at 3:40pm
Join #MTCC Fri. March 20 for a #WomensHistoryMonth celebration with some of Central AR's leading business pioneers. http://t.co/DWy8pJCauv
March 3rd, 2015 at 3:20pm
RT @EssePurseMuseum: Another trailblazer for #WomensHistoryMonth : (BTW, we look forward to a time when black history and women's... http:…
March 3rd, 2015 at 10:21am
RT @WhatHaveUHeard: @MosaicTemplars Issues Call for Artists for 2015 Creativity Arkansas. Details at https://t.co/brbJ6l1c5f

THE MOSAIC TEMPLARS CULTURAL CENTER ON FACEBOOK

Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural Center shared Department of Arkansas Heritage's photo.March 4th, 2015 at 3:14pm
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterMarch 4th, 2015 at 3:12pm
#DidYouKnow today is National What Does Your Name Mean Day!

Mosaic Templars Cultural Center takes its name from the Mosaic Templars of America. The Mosaic Templars of America was a black fraternal order founded by John E. Bush and Chester W. Keatts, two former slaves, in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1883. The Mosaic Templars originally provided illness, death, and burial insurance during an era when few basic services were available to African Americans. By 1900, Mosaic Templars’ industries grew to include an insurance company, a building and loan association, a publishing company, a business college, a nursing school, and a hospital.

By 1905, it had a number of lodges across the state with thousands of members. Its national and state headquarters were located at the corner of 9th and Broadway and opened in 1913; Booker T. Washington delivered the dedication speech. In the 1920's they claimed chapters in twenty-six states and six foreign countries, making it one of the largest black organizations in the world. However, in the 1930's, the MTA began to feel the effects of the Great Depression and eventually ceased operations. However, a single chapter remains, in Barbados.

To learn more VISIT US TODAY!

MTCC is proud to represent such an outstanding organization and history.

We invite you to tell us - WHAT DOES YOUR NAME MEAN?
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterMarch 3rd, 2015 at 6:22pm
Join #MTCC Fri., March 20 at 11:30 a.m. in celebration of some of central Arkansas’s “Phenomenal Women” in honor of National Women’s History Month. Enjoy lunch and a candid conversation with a group of African American woman who are business pioneers.

Lunch will be provided. Women Phenomenal is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Reservations are required. Contact Tameka Lee at 683.3620 or tameka@arkansasheritage.org to reserve your seat.

#WomensHistoryMonth #KnowYourHistory
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural Center updated their cover photo.March 3rd, 2015 at 5:20pm
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural Center shared Department of Arkansas Heritage's photo.March 2nd, 2015 at 6:39pm
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