By Sarah Springer, CNN
(CNN) - The bible belonging to Nat Turner, an American slave who led the famous slave rebellion of 1831, will be one of the first artifacts on view at The Smithsonian's National Museum of African-American History and Culture scheduled to open in 2015.
As a result of the rebellion Turner became a wanted man and was hunted throughout Virginia. When he was found he was holding a Holy Bible. A descendant of a white survivor of this slave rebellion has donated this bible to the new museum.
John W. Franklin, director of partnerships and international programs at The National Museum of African American History and Culture Smithsonian Institution, said (the bible) belonged to the Person family who were victims in the Nat Turner rebellion, which shows that African American history is not isolated and that it serves both white and black families, white and black individuals.
“It’s not just a black story, it’s never just a black story” Franklin said.
Franklin was in attendance at the groundbreaking ceremony and said the opening brought many people to the event.
“People found it to be an uplifting and energizing experience, Franklin said. “People realized also that a groundbreaking is the beginning of the process. It’s reminds us all of how much we have to do to complete the exhibition before the late 2015 opening.”
Other artifacts already acquired by the museum include a dress worn by a slave girl, materials from a dress that Rosa Parks was carrying when she was arrested for sitting in the front of the infamous bus, Harriet Tubman artifacts and a hat that belonged to Michael Jackson.
According to Franklin, who is on the collection committee, the museum has a dozen exhibitions and the committee is constantly looking for new pieces to bring to the museum.
“We have funeral photos of the casket in which Emmett Till’s body was shown to the world after the body was recovered from the river, we have things from the sports and entertainment world,” Franklin said. “This is the kind of evidence that helps piece together a story.”