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Exhibit Documents Black Pioneers

Black pioneers of the Pacific Northwest will be featured in a special exhibit that opens Monday at the Crescent Court downtown.

The exhibit documents the major contributions of African Americans beginning with black explorers in 1788. It includes some 100 panels depicting life stories and accomplishments of these pioneers.

The exhibit will be on display in the lower level hall of the Crescent Court at Main and Wall.

A ribbon-cutting to open the exhibit will be at noon.

Story teller Ralph Hayes will be the featured guest at the opening.

The free exhibit will run through May 19. The hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

One of the featured pioneers is William Owen Bush, who served in the first state Legislature from Thurston County after Washington statehood in 1889.

He helped pass legislation establishing a college for agriculture, which later became Washington State University.

Bush was the son of George Bush, a Pennsylvania free man, who migrated to Oregon in 1844 with his wife and five children. The Bushes later settled in Washington.

Sponsors of the exhibit are The Bon Marche, Goodale & Barbieri Cos. and The Spokesman-Review.

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