515 S. Tryon St., Charlotte
HOURS: Tues.–Sat. 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Sun. 1–5 p.m.
COST: $5 adults, $3.50 children under 12
The Afro-American Cultural Center was founded in 1974 during a festival on African-American culture, and was housed in the former Little Rock AME Zion Church in Uptown for more than three decades. In 2009, the center got a new location and a new name honoring Harvey B. Gantt, a politician and civic leader.
Gantt served as the first and only black mayor of Charlotte  from 1974 to 1983, was the first African American admitted to Clemson University in South Carolina, and served on the North Carolina Democratic Party Executive Council and the Democratic National Committee.
The 46,500-square-foot facility that bears his name is committed to preserving, promoting, and presenting African-American art, history, and culture. The center offers educational programs, stages live performances, and exhibits the works of African-American artists. It houses the Hewitt Collection, a total of 58 works by 20 African-American artists, including Charlotte artist Romare Bearden.
The exterior of the building was designed using patterns often found in quilt designs from the Underground Railroad era.