The childhood home of Fred Hampton will now serve as a museum, community garden, and recording studio.
With the release of Judas and the Black Messiah over the weekend, millions of people were likely exposed to the story of Fred Hampton for the first time. The Shaka King-directed film starring Daniel Kaluuya opened to rave reviews, drawing $2 million at the box office in the first weekend. The film’s success has notched at least one tangible positive result–turning Hampton’s childhood home into a community center and museum to preserve the Black Panther Party’s legacy.
Over the weekend, the Hampton House’s GoFundMe page surged past its donation goal of $350,000. The number was reached after a widespread effort on social media led by Noname and more. The money will help bring the house on 804 South 17th Avenue in Maywood, Illinois up to code. Hampton’s relatives are seeking landmark status for the building, so the property will be protected from demolition.
Fred Hampton Jr., who now serves as the chairman of the Black Panther Party Cubs, plans for Hampton House to archive the Panthers’ history through a museum and political education programs. Members have already started a community garden to provide food for neighbors, a recording studio to run music programs and Hampton Jr.’s “Free ‘Em All Radio” broadcast.
“The revolutionary is never satisfied,” Hampton said of the on-screen portrayal of his father’s life. “We wish we could have gotten more political content in.”
On Friday, Fred Hampton Jr. released the first episode of the Judas and the Black Messiah podcast. Joined by the film’s actors, creative team, and members of the Party, the episode explores true stories behind the characters portrayed in the film. Future episodes will focus on more modern struggles, with conversations regarding incarceration and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Judas and the Black Messiah is now playing in theaters and streaming on HBO Max. Stay tuned for further updates on Fred Hampton Jr. and the Hampton House.