About Us

WHO WE ARE?

America's Islamic Heritage Museum

is the principal project of Collections & Stories of American Muslims, Inc. – a Washington, DC, Ward 8 based, 501 c-3 a non-profit organization. CSAM was established in 1996, it is dedicated to preserving and fostering educational community engagement programs and opportunities that provide access to, and understanding of, the history of Muslim Americans. We have been in our current location since March 2011, and have served more than 110,000 visitors to the Museum.

OUR MISSION

CSAM’s mission is to preserve America’s Islamic legacy and contributions by collecting, archiving and displaying artifacts and information about America’s rich Islamic history, including the extensive history of African American Muslims. Our mission with America’s Islamic Heritage Museum is to provide cultural educational programming and museum services for the public in the United States and abroad.

We provide high-quality arts & humanities cultural programs that highlight America’s rich Islamic history and diversity. Our programs help to promote understanding and appreciation of our shared history and common humanity particularly with DC’s Ward 8 residents, using cultural enrichment programming and social service programs.

“national treasure of our country’s Muslim heritage. A perfect resource or reference point for the history of Islam and Muslims in America.”

Eric, Museum Attendee

A MESSAGE
FROM OUR DIRECTOR

Amir Muhammad

DIRECTOR

At America’s Islamic Heritage Museum (AIHM) we welcome you to come learn about America’s rich extensive Islamic history dating back to the 16th century, while exploring some of the lives and events of the 17th, 18th and 19th century of Muslims heritage and their contributions and narratives in America.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Amir N. Muhammad

Mr. Amir Muhammad is an accomplished and noted researcher, historian, author, and poet whose works have gained him international recognition. Mr. Muhammad is the president, co-founder and curator of America’s Islamic Heritage Museum a division of Collections & Stories of American Muslims, Inc. (Traveling Exhibit, Archives, & Museum), established in 1996. He is among the foremost historians and researchers of the Islamic experience in the United States as well as one of the leading activists in creating public awareness of America’s rich Islamic history.

Amir Muhammad is an author of eight books, A Life’s Journey from the Heart of A Man; Muslims in America; Seven Centuries of History from (1312-2000); Africans: People of Color in Pre-Islamic & Islamic History; Muslims Contribution to the World; America’s Masajid & Islamic Centers: A Pictorial Account; Muslim Veterans of American Wars; Unique Tombstones: Found Across the United States; and The History of Masjid Muhammad and the Early Muslims in the Washington, DC area. His work has been published in many articles for national and international magazines and newspapers.

The book “Muslims in America: Seven Centuries of History,” has sold more than 150,000 copies and is currently out of print

Mr. Muhammad has lectured and exhibited at Harvard University, Stanford University, Rutgers University, Howard University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Indiana Bloomington, University of Florida, the University of Illinois Chicago, and a host of other universities and schools across the country. He has also provided exhibits for the State Department, the Pentagon Iftar programs, a variety of government agencies, Masajid, Churches, and community groups across the US, Bermuda, St. Thomas, Qatar, and Nigeria. He has won various awards for both his poetry and historical works.

Mr. Muhammad has more than thirty years of business management and entrepreneurial experience. Throughout his career, he held many management positions for the America’s Islamic Heritage Museum, A&H Books & Gifts, ACLU, AMC, and Masjid Muhammad.

Mr. Amir Muhammad is an accomplished and noted researcher, historian, author, and poet whose works have gained him international recognition. Mr. Muhammad is the president, co-founder and curator of America’s Islamic Heritage Museum a division of Collections & Stories of American Muslims, Inc. (Traveling Exhibit, Archives, & Museum), established in 1996. He is among the foremost historians and researchers of the Islamic experience in the United States as well as one of the leading activists in creating public awareness of America’s rich Islamic history.

Amir Muhammad is an author of eight books, A Life’s Journey from the Heart of A Man; Muslims in America; Seven Centuries of History from (1312-2000); Africans: People of Color in Pre-Islamic & Islamic History; Muslims Contribution to the World; America’s Masajid & Islamic Centers: A Pictorial Account; Muslim Veterans of American Wars; Unique Tombstones: Found Across the United States; and The History of Masjid Muhammad and the Early Muslims in the Washington, DC area. His work has been published in many articles for national and international magazines and newspapers.

The book Muslims in America: Seven Centuries of History has sold over 40,000 copies over the past 10 years, the book still sales very well today.

Mr. Muhammad has lectured and exhibited at Harvard University, Stanford University, Rutgers University, Howard University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Indiana Bloomington, University of Florida, the University of Illinois Chicago, and a host of other universities and schools across the country. He has also provided exhibits for the State Department, the Pentagon Iftar programs, a variety of government agencies, Masajid, Churches, and community groups across the US, Bermuda, St. Thomas, Qatar, and Nigeria. He has won various awards for both his poetry and historical works.

Mr. Muhammad has more than thirty years of business management and entrepreneurial experience. Throughout his career, he held many management positions for the America’s Islamic Heritage Museum, A&H Books & Gifts, ACLU, AMC, and Masjid Muhammad.

Habeebah Muhammad

Habeebah Muhammad is the owner, entrepreneur, and developer of Habeebah’s Herbals a natural products and service company. Mrs. Muhammad was the Registrar for the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum in Washington, DC. She has been employed by the Smithsonian for over 30 years. Mrs. Muhammad in the past has served as the President, Vice-President, and Secretary for the Association of African American Museums.  


Mrs. Muhammad has a BA in Sociology/Psychology from Paine College in Augusta, Georgia. She is also the co-founder and a board member of Collections & Stories of American Muslims

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Muhammad Fraser Rahim

Muhammad Fraser-Rahim is a program officer for Africa programs at the U.S. Institute of Peace.

Mr. Fraser-Rahim’s areas of expertise include security sector reform, countering violent extremism (CVE) and community oriented policing in Africa. Prior to joining USIP, Mr. Fraser-Rahim worked for the United States Government for more than a decade providing strategic advice and executive branch analytical support on CVE to the White House and the National Security Council. Mr. Fraser-Rahim has conducted original research in more than 40 countries on the African continent, and has worked as a conflict mediator, ESL instructor and adjunct professor on topics related to Africa, CVE and international relations. He is a Ph.D. candidate at Howard University in African Studies with a focus on Islamic Thought, Spirituality and Modernity, and holds a master’s degree from Howard University in History, and a bachelor’s degree in History from the College of Charleston, Charleston, SC.

precious

Dr. Precious Rasheeda Muhammad

Dr. Precious Rasheeda Muhammad—author, award-winning
speaker, historian, poet, publisher, and Harvard-trained
researcher—is nationally known for her ability to educate, inspire,
and empower live audiences and readers of diverse racial,
religious, ethnic, and socio-economic backgrounds about the
growth and development of Islam in America and the full diversity
of the American Muslim experience. Additionally, some of her writings have been used in courses at diverse universities such as Harvard, Emory, the University of Michigan, and Spelman. Exhibits Precious curated and/or advised on have been covered in publications such as the New York Times and debuted at the U.S. Department of State.
Precious brings nearly two decades of commitment to interfaith work, including chaplaincy at a 770-bed hospital and significant roles in planning and implementing the 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions. Places Precious’s work has been featured include CNN.Com, National Public
Radio, the Smithsonian, and in university classrooms nationally. For her community-building history work, in the academic community and beyond, Coe College awarded her an honorary
doctorate in 2010.

Dr. Precious Rasheeda Muhammad—author, award-winning
speaker, historian, poet, publisher, and Harvard-trained
researcher—is nationally known for her ability to educate, inspire,
and empower live audiences and readers of diverse racial,
religious, ethnic, and socio-economic backgrounds about the
growth and development of Islam in America and the full diversity
of the American Muslim experience. Additionally, some of her writings have been used in courses at diverse universities such as Harvard, Emory, the University of Michigan, and Spelman. Exhibits Precious curated and/or advised on have been covered in publications such as the New York Times and debuted at the U.S. Department of State.
Precious brings nearly two decades of commitment to interfaith work, including chaplaincy at a 770-bed hospital and significant roles in planning and implementing the 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions. Places Precious’s work has been featured include CNN.Com, National Public
Radio, the Smithsonian, and in university classrooms nationally. For her community-building history work, in the academic community and beyond, Coe College awarded her an honorary
doctorate in 2010.

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Khalil Ismail

Khalil Ismail has made a name for himself as an award-winning musical artist, creative director, and producer, but his philanthropy is the work that drives and fulfills him. Born in Washington D.C., he was raised in Baltimore and continues to dedicate his time and energy to the underserved populations of Maryland. His experience supporting local non-profits is varied and diverse, from seven years working for the Maryland Food Bank, seven years as operations manager of a women’s shelter to holding workshops across the country for youth and faith communities.
 
Khalil has created a dynamic partnership between his musical background and education, mentoring, and teaching youth from marginalized communities. Through his workshops and speaking engagements, he combines entertainment with education to promote social upliftment and spiritual consciousness. He believes strongly in the power of art and music to heal and shares his passion for creativity with the youth that he mentors.
 
Since 2016, Khalil has partnered with K.E.Y.S. Empowers of Baltimore.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, he helped to co-ordinate the distribution of hundreds of thousands of pounds of food to local baltimore communities members. They also provided rental assistance to eviction candidates during this same time. His mentorship program with K.E.Y.S. has been a success, teaching storytelling and creative therapy via zoom, meeting the youth in the local community where they are during these challenging times.
 
Khalil is also proud of his work assisting in creating the Al-Nissa women’s shelter in Baltimore, a shelter that provides health, education, shelter, and social services to under-served populations but specifically Muslim women and children in the local community.
 
Through his passion for creative endeavors, Khalil continues to dedicate his time to humanitarian projects within his local community. The fulfillment derived from helping the marginalized communities of Baltimore and throughout the state of Maryland propels him and he is continually looking for opportunities to support those around him. Through his philanthropy projects, he is honored to contribute to the empowerment of his community
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Lauren Schreiber

Lauren Schreiber is the Executive Director and co-founder of Center
DC, a growing third-space community in Washington, DC, that focuses
on building authentic relationships between those practicing and
exploring Islam and The Divine. She brings with her a depth of
organizational skills. Her community serves over 4,000 Muslims through
hundreds of events annually; the majority, are between the ages of 25
and 35. She, lives for strategic planning, facilitation, and culture creation and is passionate
about creating welcoming, healthy spaces where authenticity and differences of opinions
simultaneously thrive.  Lauren has had the privilege of studying Islamic sciences under both
Shaykh Suhaib Webb and Ustadha Ieasha Prime. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree
in Islamic Chaplaincy at Hartford Seminary under the guidance of Dr. Bilal Ansari and is leading
the effort to create a community-based chaplaincy program through Center DC in 2021. She
recently celebrated her 10th year of being Muslim. Her most important jobs are being a wife and
mama to a 3-year-old girl. In her spare time, you can find her making pupusas, writing music,
and convening monthly gatherings of Muslim Practitioners of Restorative and Transformative
Justice, a peer learning group she co-founded in 2020.

(IN HONOR OF)Sulayman S. Nyang, PhD.

Dr. Sulayman Nyang has served on Collections & Stories of American Muslims Inc, Board as Vice President since our inception in 1996. Dr. Sulayman Nyang 1944-2018

He serves as a director of Muslim Media Network Inc. He has served as a Deputy Ambassador of the Republic of Gambia to Saudi Arabia and seven other North African and Middle Eastern Countries, was the founding editor of the American Journal of Islamic Studies, now known as American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences, and was also the President of the Association of Muslim Social Scientists. Dr. Nyang received a Ph.D. degree in Government from the University of Virginia in 1974.

Dr. Sulayman S. Nyang teaches at Howard University in Washington, D.C. where he serves as Professor of African Studies in 1972. From 1975 to 1978 he served as Deputy Ambassador and Head of Chancery of the Gambia Embassy in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Following his diplomatic stint, he immigrated to the United States and returned to academic life at Howard University where he later assumed the position of department chair from 1986 to 1993. He also serves as co-director of Muslims in the American Public Square, a research project funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Professor Nyang has served as a consultant to several national and international agencies. He has served on the boards of the African Studies Association, the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies and the Association of Muslim Social Scientists. Dr. Nyang is listed on the editorial boards of several national and international scholarly journals. He has lectured on college campuses in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas.

Dr. Nyang has written extensively on Islamic, African and Middle Eastern affairs.  His best-known works are Islam, Christianity and African Identity (1984), A Line in the Sand: Saudi Arabia’s Role in the Gulf War (1995) co-authored with Evan Heindricks, and Religious Plurality in Africa co-edited with Jacob Olupona. His last book was Islam in the United States of America (1999).  Professor Nyang has also contributed over a dozen chapters in books edited by colleagues writing on Islamic, African and Middle Eastern subjects. His numerous scholarly pieces have appeared in African, American, European and Asian journals.

ADVISORY BOARD

Aisha Al-Adawiya

New York, NY

Dr. Khalid Blankenship

Philadelphia, PA

Dr. Aminah McCloud

Chicago, IL

Sacramento, CA

Dr. Muhammad Sillah

Hampton, VA

Imam Yusuf Saleem

Washington, DC

Dr. Hakim M Rashid

Washington, DC

Mohamed Zakariya

Arlington, VA

Abrar A Ansari

Texas

Vaseem Ansari

Texas

MUSEUM TEAM

Amir N Muhammad

CEO/ Curator

Habeebah Muhammad

Fundraising Coordinator

Jendaya Bell

Akilah Bell

Melanie Bilal

Lauren Schreiber

Khalil Ismail

Marnice Williams

MUSEUM CORE VOLUNTEER TEAM

Sadara Neel

Carolyn Parks

Mumin Yaseen

Bilaal Muhammed

Melanie Bilal

Intisar Munir

Melanie Bilal

Marnice Williams

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A Message From The Director

At America’s Islamic Heritage Museum (AIHM) we welcome you to come learn about America’s rich extensive Islamic history dating back to the 16th century, while exploring  some of the lives and events of the 17th, 18th and 19th century of Muslims heritage and their contributions and narratives in America. As the first director of America’s Islamic Museum (AIHM) I’m honored to be at the vanguard of a primary shift change in the way we look at America’s diversity and forgotten roots, the history of Muslims in early America. Our history, like all histories, has many narratives, many people, cultures, and dreams. We believe in connecting people using the arts, culture, and history. 

We also provide four primary, very informative and insightful programs. Our Scholars Corner features various scholars on historical and contemporary topics. Our Oral History Program provides insights into the history, culture, and narratives of the various Muslim communities that make up our society today; our Arts & Cultural programs feature and highlight various artists both Muslim and local talent in the visual arts, creative arts, and performing artists; our Community Engagement programs allow us to provide many humanities’ programs to the community as well as provide community festivals.

If you have not visited us recently you will experience some changes and additions, as we continue to work to find ways to showcase additional objects. So look for additional surprises when you visit us next. 

I invite you to come and experience our shared history at America’s Islamic Heritage Museum through our portals of exhibits from the views of American Islamic history. Bring your families, friends, and classes to discover the many hidden stories and contributions of Muslim Americans.

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