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Martin Luther King Jr.
Smithsonian curators chase history in search of items from Baltimore unrest

As Aaron Bryant walked along North Avenue on the night of Freddie Gray's funeral, his photographer's eye noted how the rising flames framed the "waves of police in riot gear" and the wall of ministers calling for calm. Instinctively, the Baltimore man says, he began mentally cataloging the most evocative "visual cues" around him. He knew they would help inform his work chronicling the moment as a photography curator at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African American History & Culture, now under construction on the National Mall in Washington. As he surveyed the unrest on the evening of April 27, Bryant asked himself a series of...