Black History Museum

Ashland, Kentucky

The C.B. Nuckolls Community Center & Black History Museum is a nonprofit museum in Ashland, Kentucky, dedicated to the collection, documentation, preservation and study of Black history in Ashland and across America. The museum will continuously cultivate a Black history experience and honor accomplishments of the past while providing an education for generations to come.

Make a Small Donation and Receive a Free T-Shirt

  • $20 donations for sizes Medium-2X
  • $23 donation for size 3X
  • $25 donation for sizes 4-5X
  • Out of town shipping is available for an additional donation of $9 per shirt up to a 3X (Priority First Class tracking will be provided).

IMPORTANT NOTE: You must write in your total (and whether you want a local pickup or shipping ~ and include shipping details) in the optional note area during your checkout; follow the link below to proceed.

Handmade jewelry is also available at the museum (donations are suggested). CONTACT THE MUSEUM FOR WAYS TO DONATE.

Museum Operations


Tuesday-Friday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
(Saturdays will be by appointment only; please call to schedule tours)
Closed Sunday and Monday

Admission is a suggested donation of:
Adults ~ $6.00; Children ~ $3.00


901 Kilgore Drive, Ashland, Ky 41101


(606) 420-4005

Museum Operations


Tuesday-Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
(Saturdays will be by appointment only; please call to schedule tours)
Closed Sunday and Monday

Admission is a suggested donation of:
Adults ~ $6.00
Children ~ $3.00


901 Kilgore Drive,
Ashland, Ky 41101


(606) 420-4005

The C.B. Nuckolls Community Center & Black History Museum is being created as an interactive institution for the education of Black history in and around Ashland, Kentucky. It is our goal to welcome the general public as well as be a popular attraction for school groups and personal tours. The Museum will be home to exhibits, educational programs, special activities, art, genealogical research and more. Our mission is to make the museum a cherished archive for all to enjoy!

Founded in 2022, the C.B. Nuckolls Community Center & Black History Museum is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Donations are tax deductible.

Photos by Bruce Royal Photography

The C.B. Nuckolls Community Center & Black History Museum was founded in 2022 by Darrell Smith and Bernice Henry:

Darrell Smith

Smith was born and raised in Ashland, Ky. He moved to Delaware to work for MBNA American Bank where he managed CDs, Money Markets, IRAs and the Credit Card Division. He then worked for Humana Insurance, processing claims and working in customer advocacy for several years. Smith is also a Trustee and Financial Secretary with New Hope Missionary Baptist Church. He is a volunteer at the Highlands Museum & Discovery Center and is the first African American to serve on the board in more than 10 years.

In 2024, Smith was presented the Drum Major Legacy Award by Ohio University Southern “for being a champion of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy and demonstrating a commitment to equality and inclusion in the community.”

Smith has always loved Black history and created the “Ashland, Ky Black History” page on Facebook. He created the page to help preserve Ashland’s Black history.

Bernice Henry

Henry has volunteered and chaired on numerous committees for over 50 years. Her activism includes serving as NAACP vice president, chairperson of the Ashland Human Rights Commission and commissioner of the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights (7th District). Her advocacy has helped improve community relations, education and housing opportunities for all residents of Ashland and the Boyd county area. She has also served on the board for Scope Towers for several years and worked for the Ashland Independent School District for over 30 years. Henry was the first African American woman to serve on the Ashland Board of City Commissioners.

Henry has been an active member of New Hope Missionary Baptist Church since childhood. She is currently the church clerk.

The Community Center is named after C.B. Nuckolls. Affectionately called “Professor Nuckolls,” he was principal of Booker T. Washington School in Ashland from 1922-1962. The school closed in 1962 due to desegregation. Nuckolls fought hard to provide black students equal opportunities and everything they needed in education.

The Booker T. Washington school was set on fire by vandals in 1975. All the pictures, books and trophies inside the school were destroyed.

Mr. Brian Binion
Mr. Chuck Charles
Dr. Larry Ferguson
Mr. Charles Jackson Jr.
Rev. Denzella Letcher
Mr. Richard Martin
Rev. Stanley McDonald
Mrs. Ann Brown Perkins

02/27/24 — Kentucky Edition | Black History Museum | Season 2 | Episode 193, PBS

02/26/24 — Ashland celebrates Black history, Daily Independent

02/26/24 — Photo gallery from 2024 Fundraising Dinner, Shane W. Day Photography

02/10/24 — Black History Museum grows, gains momentum, Herald-Dispatch

01/04/24 — Museum co-founder to be honored at OUS, Daily Independent

12/31/23 — TDI’s top news of 2023: No. 6, Black History Museum opens, Daily Independent

10/09/23 — Museum hosts Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club, Black History Museum

04/25/23 — In Our View: New museum great addition, Daily Independent

04/23/23 — Grand opening for Black History Museum, Daily Independent

04/23/23 — Photo gallery from Grand Opening, Shane W. Day Photography

04/23/23 — Grand Opening Ceremony, Black History Museum

02/07/23 — Tri-State’s first Black history museum to open in Ashland, WSAZ

01/31/23 — Beshear visits Ashland to announce $4.1 million for Boyd County

11/20/22 — Sal’s fundraiser event

11/18/22 — Tree honors African American contributions, Daily Independent