PHOENIX — The Phoenix Police Department is investigating after an African American museum in downtown Phoenix was vandalized with swastikas and racial slurs Sunday.
The George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center discovered that the fence and ground in front of the building had been covered with offensive graffiti.
Sgt. Mercedes Fortune, a spokesperson for the Phoenix Police Department, told Patch that an investigation is ongoing and no arrests have been made.
In a tweet, Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego condemned the vandalism and said that the Phoenix Graffiti Busters, a city-sponsored group that cleans graffiti around the city, will assist in the clean-up at the museum dedicated to African American history in Arizona.
“The horrific display of hate at the George Washington Carver Museum is reprehensible,” she said. “An attack like this has no place in our community. I continue to support the center’s work in preserving and sharing the African American experience.”
In a statement, Barbara Thompson, the secretary for the Carver Museum, said that the attack will not deter the museum in its mission.
“While we are extremely disappointed by the recent vandalism to the property, we remain steadfast in our mission,” Thompson said. “Whoever decided to deface this treasured property with swastikas and racial slurs did not understand that our history is far too wide and too deep to be destroyed by mere graffiti. We shall rise above.”
The Phoenix Union Colored High School opened in Phoenix in 1926 as part of the city’s segregated school system. The Carver Museum now occupies that space and serves as an educational center and meeting place. It was named for Carver, a prominent Black agricultural scientist who discovered over 300 uses for peanuts.
The cultural center has created a GoFundMe page to help them “continue the preservation of African-American heritage, arts, and culture, and to honor the African-American experience in Phoenix, Arizona.”