American Writers Museum Story of the Week 2/28/2020

AWM Story of the Week

Every week, the AWM is excited to bring you stories written by our visitors in our Story of the Day exhibit, which features typewriters that visitors can interact with directly, or our newest temporary exhibit, My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today. Check back weekly for new stories, and visit the Museum to try out our typewriters, see the exhibit, and possibly be featured here!

Part of our newest temporary exhibit features an interactive station that allows visitors to write their family’s story on a luggage tag and stamp it with the reason their family came to the United States or how they’ve moved within the country, whether it was Family, Refuge, by Force, for Freedom or Opportunity, or a different reason. Below are four stories shared in the exhibit, which opened to the public November 21, 2019. Visit the Museum or comment below to share your family’s immigration (or migration) story.


A luggage tag detailing a story written by a visitor to the My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today Exhibit at the American Writers Museum in Chicago

“My family came as slaves, but didn’t let it become our family story. We used opportunity and hard work to continue our story and further our history. So, force may be how we got here. But, opportunity is why we remained and thrived here.”

11/30/19

A luggage tag detailing a story written by a visitor to the My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today Exhibit at the American Writers Museum in Chicago

“On my first day in middle school, my first subject was American history. My teacher was talking about a guy named “George Washington.” I turned to my seatmate and said, “Who’s George Washington?” My classmate looked at me funny, he pulled out a dollar and said, “This guy here, he’s the first president of the US.” That’s when it dawned on me, I’m in a whole new world.”

1/10/20

A luggage tag detailing a story written by a visitor to the My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today Exhibit at the American Writers Museum in Chicago

“Native Americans still live!

My family is native to this land. We are the native Americans. Later in life my great-grandmother was born, her mom and ancestors before were Native American & her dad was African American.”

1/12/20 Shanija Ary’el Coleman

A luggage tag detailing a story written by a visitor to the My America: Immigrant and Refugee Writers Today Exhibit at the American Writers Museum in Chicago

“At age 15 I left my family in northern Myanmar and walked to India. After a year there, I was flown to Michigan to start a new life. At 25, I am now an American citizen, a senior in university, a home owner – yet I have not seen my parents since the day I fled for my own safety from the military.”

1/5/20 Mang Boih
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