Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.
- Booker T. Washington

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.


[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
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Wow! Another packed house tonight for "Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Piece"...spoken word + artistry in action -sc

RT@LRLolly: Yum! Sweet potato pie@MosaicTemplars

The Louis Heard Quartet is amazing! Holiday Open House at MTCC!

RT@donnaterrell_tv: Not going to be easy to judge "Say It Ain't Say's Sweet Potato pie" Contest. Mosaic Templars

RT@donnaterrell_tv: Judging a sweet potato pie contest at Mosaic Templers today. Lucky me. It's my absolute FAVORITE pie!


Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterApril 23, 2014 9:36 pm
It's time for another "It's in the Bag." Join us Tuesday, May 6 at 11:30 a.m. as we celebrate the flavors of Arkansas. Mosaic Templars Cultural Center will host entrepreneurs and owners of some amazing restaurants in Central Arkansas who are examples of Arkansas's diverse culinary community. Special guests include: Rodney Cummings of All American Wings, Rosalia Monroe of Rosalia's Family Bakery, and Melanie Lacy of Yum YUM Cafe': Dedicated to Delicious Consumption of Plant-based Food.Hear their inspirational stories of success…and maybe try a sample or two!
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterApril 21, 2014 7:00 pm
Sunday, April 27 at Mosaic Templars Cultural Center!
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterApril 21, 2014 6:33 pm
Congrats to NLR native Nate Powell on being nominated for 2014 Eisner Awards! Nate Powell, Congressman John Lewis, and co author Andrew Aydin will visit Mosaic Templars Cultural Center as a part of the Central Arkansas Library System's Arkansas Literary Festival! Have you called to reserve your copy of "March: Book One"?
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterApril 17, 2014 2:38 pm
Tickets are going fast for Speak Now! We only have a few left so call 501.683.3593 or visit for tickets.
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Mosaic Templars Cultural Center
Mosaic Templars Cultural CenterApril 16, 2014 9:07 pm
Don't miss your opportunity to meet a Civil Rights Icon! Mosaic Templars Cultural Center in partnership with the Central Arkansas Library System and the UALR Institute on Race and Ethnicity welcomes Congressman John Lewis! Lewis was the youngest person to speak at the March on Washington in 1963. He'll be joined by Andrew Aydin who worked closely with him to create "March: Book One" a graphic novel about his life. Join us for the Arkansas Literary Festival on Sunday, April 27 at 1:30 p.m. for your chance to meet this historic man of courage.
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