The symbol of hate and racism was located near the Segregation Gallery on the second floor of the museum.
A noose was found in the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) on Wednesday, near an exhibit highlighting segregation in the United States, Reuters reports.
The noose — long representing the taut and dark history of racism in this country — was said to be found in a public gallery on the second floor; also home to a private, more secluded gallery that houses the coffin of Emmett Till, the Black teenager who was lynched in Mississippi after being falsely accused of whistling at a White woman.
The area was closed off to guests for about three hours while U.S. Park Police investigated.
In an internal email, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution Davis Skorton called the incident an “act of hatred.”
“The Smithsonian family stands together in condemning this act of hatred and intolerance, especially repugnant in a museum that affirms and celebrates the American values of inclusion and diversity,” he wrote. “We will not be intimidated.”
“The noose has long represented a deplorable act of cowardice and depravity — a symbol of extreme violence for African Americans,” founding director Lonnie Bunch wrote in a statement. “This was a horrible act, but a stark reminder of why our work is so important.”
This is the second time in less than a week that a noose has been found on Smithsonian grounds. Last Saturday, the symbol of hatred and death was found hanging from a tree near the Hirshhorn Museum. The incident is yet another in a month marred with racially motivated attacks from self-proclaimed White supremacists, including the Portland attacks and the fatal stabbing of Bowie State student Richard Collins III.
Authorities do not yet know who is responsible for the act. An investigation continues.
[BLANK_AUDIO] President Trump visited the National Museum of African American History and Culture in DC today, vowing to fight bigotry and unite our quote divided country. Now, to say Trump has a very checkered past in reaching out to black people is an understatement, to say the least. This is the same man who tried to discredit the Central Park Five even after they were exonerated, claimed we all live in inner cities, and tried to get the black vote by asking, what do you have to lose, remember that? Mm-hm. But, to play devil's advocate, Could his visiting the Museum finally be a step in the right direction in improving relations with our community? Or is it's just as more cowered/g>> Calculated.>> [LAUGH] Okay on the count of three. SLAYED OR SHADE?>> I'm sort of->> Okay I got to start with Girl. Whitney, cuz Whitney's in between. I'm gonna scoot over. Yeah, you might. I'm in between. Listen, this is not Trump's idea. This is Omarosa's idea. And so Omarosa is slang right now because she's getting the president. President of the United States even though we don't wanna say it 45 is going into the museum. It's shade because we all know it's not genuine but it's bringing light. There are tons of people now that are gonna see this Agent [UNKNOWN] should go in and to, [LAUGH] to that museum and might wanna check it out. And I hate to say it but it's true, for some people this might be significant. Okay, and Clowie? I hope the spirit of the ancestors **** his soul. Up out of that body as soon as he crossed the threshold. [LAUGH] How dare he. How dare he have the audacity to try to pander to us. It's too little too late. And he needs to get his life together. Okay, and Rah. I think he's very unstable, with all due respect. Because he still is our president at the end of the day. Mm-hm. But I just think that he's very calculating. He's a lot more intelligent than people like to give him a credit for. There was a quote that he made in like the 90's that said, if I run for president in this year, Republicans are so damn that they'll still vote for me and I've still win. And so I think about he's about 20 steps ahead of even his Office and they have no idea what he has in store for us. Mm. Yeah. That's kinda scary. Calculated. We have no idea. I think Trump and I think calculation. Yeah, okay Kayla. What are they saying? [LAUGH] [UNKNOWN] all around so far So Sherman Hilton says, I will not believe he's real until he apologizes for his comments and sets up some policies that help us. Nichelle Webster says, don't hold your breath about change because he visited a black historical museum, right-o. Yeah. [BLANK_AUDIO]