What is the Freedom Bus?
The Freedom Bus is an innovative, mobile civil rights museum
Completed in April 2016, the Freedom Bus tells the stories of East Central Indiana (ECI) citizens who worked to advance civil rights in their communities. This exciting mobile museum visits schools, community centers, libraries, historical societies, and attends community events across ECI.
Our mission is to educate citizens in East Central Indiana about local civil rights history.
Although the Freedom Bus is designed for 4th and 5th grade students, anyone can learn from it!
Connect local civil rights history to our 4th and 5th grade audience.
Share untold stories of civil rights activism in the East Central Indiana counties.
Inspire a desire to work toward civil rights for all East Central Indiana residents.
Generate dialogue amongst children, teachers, and parents about civil rights.
History of the Freedom Bus
The Freedom Bus project began in 2005 when the Muncie Indiana Transit System (MITS) provided the Martin Luther King, Jr. Dream Team (MLKDT) with a retired bus to transform into a tool for educational outreach.
The MLKDT, led by the late Bea Moten-Foster, worked with Minnetrista to develop the project's vision. A $10,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Muncie - Delaware County supported initial stages of the project. When the bus's engine failed, Muncie Transit Supply donated a replacement engine. Repairs were possible due to generous gifts from community members, local churches, Muncie Community School students, and the MITS staff who donated their labor.
In Fall 2014, the Freedom Bus was placed in the hands of a group of Ball State University students for an immersive learning project. The students were responsible for researching the civil rights history of East Central Indiana and creating, building, and installing exhibit prototypes within the bus. Other students continued working on the Freedom Bus project through April 2016, testing prototypes, creating curriculum, designing a docent manual, collecting oral history, designing a website, and creating multi-media for the bus's exhibits.
Ball State Student Teams
Back Row: Darcy Gunn, Maggie Stolfa, Kaitlyn Abbott, Natalya Bulfa, Beth Messner
Front Row: Ciara Johnson, Huy Pham, Zach Herring, Sierra Trowbridge
Top Row: Chance Uhl, Samantha Ralston, Jason Conerly
3rd Row: Evan Neace, Ariel Wagner, Tai Payne, Joshua Terry
2nd Row: Claire Kochmer, Tiffany Watt, Sierra Trowbridge, Casey Marrero, Kanyinsola Ajayi
Front Row: Beth Messner, Meghann Waddle, Erika Espinoza, Michelle Majeski
Dr. Dorshell Stewart, Adelynn Brown, Ashley Caupp, Tiffany Chou, Shelby Clayton, Brianna Delsangro, Lacie Dulaney, Koehler Griffin, Mallory Hartman, Melanie Heiny, Shailey Parish, Joy Rees, John Renschler, Shelby Reser, Shea Riley, Karli Rodebeck, Gabbie Rothchild, Moilly Sitz, Sarah Stinson, Adam Werling, Joe Williamson, and members of the MLK Dream Team.
Back Row: Linda Bellamy, Samantha Ralston, Kan San Miguel, Andrew Daniels, Sam Lawson, Skyelar Huston, Casey Marrero
Front Row: Marie Prevost, Meghann Waddle, Mysti Eichinger, Sydney Wright, Neethi Jelagi, Natalie Guyon, Chris Mack, Beth Messner