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This is your last chance to see two popular exhibits at the NC Museum of History

This photo made available by the Ernie Barnes Family Trust shows the painting titled “Sugar Shack,” created by Ernie Barnes in 1976. The state history museum in North Carolina has an exhibit of works by Barnes, an African-American athlete and artist whose best-known painting was “Sugar Shack,” which was the cover of a Marvin Gaye album and also appeared in the closing credits of the sitcom “Good Times.”
This photo made available by the Ernie Barnes Family Trust shows the painting titled “Sugar Shack,” created by Ernie Barnes in 1976. The state history museum in North Carolina has an exhibit of works by Barnes, an African-American athlete and artist whose best-known painting was “Sugar Shack,” which was the cover of a Marvin Gaye album and also appeared in the closing credits of the sitcom “Good Times.”

Two popular exhibits at the N.C. Museum of History in downtown Raleigh will close for good at the end of this Memorial Day weekend.

“North Carolina and World War I,” which focuses on the state’s role in the war that was supposed to end all wars, opened on April 8, 2017, just before the 100th anniversary of the United States joining the conflict.

And “The North Carolina Roots of Ernie Barnes” tells the story of a Durham native who had a successful career in the National Football League, then went on to become one of the country’s leading African-American artists.

Both exhibits close when the museum does Monday at 5 p.m. Admission to both exhibits is free.

The World War I exhibit set attendance records for the museum, drawing more than 600,000 people since it opened. It includes about 500 artifacts, old photos, historical film footage, a trench diorama and video re-enactments.

World War I veterans — soldiers and nurses — feared that their service and sacrifice would be forgotten by future generations,” museum director Ken Howard said earlier this year. “But visitors have come to see the exhibition in record numbers, proving that we all want to remember and honor their memory.”

Both exhibits had been scheduled to close earlier this year, but the museum decided to extend them through Memorial Day.

The museum has several other exhibitions, including one on Reconstruction called “Freedom: A Promise Disrupted, North Carolina 1862-1901.” It is scheduled to remain up through Oct. 27. For more information, go to www.ncmuseumofhistory.org/.

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Richard Stradling covers transportation for The News & Observer. Planes, trains and automobiles, plus ferries, bicycles, scooters and just plain walking. Also, #census2020. He’s been a reporter or editor for 32 years, including the last 19 at The N&O. 919-829-4739, rstradling@newsobserver.com.

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