Michelle Obama, First Family, Tour District Six Museum In South Africa

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Associated Press

On Thursday, Michelle Obama and her family toured District Six Museum, a famous South African museum that memorializes the country's history with forced segregation.

On Thursday, Michelle Obama and her family toured District Six Museum, a famous South African museum that memorializes the country's history with forced segregation.

The visit was unplanned, as the First Family was meant to visit Robben Island, a World Heritage Site where Nelson Mandela was jailed for 18 years. The trip, which requires a half-hour ferry ride in the Atlantic Ocean, was canceled due to high winds and rough seas, the Associated Press reports.

The family instead spent an hour at the District Six Museum, led on a tour by the director and a former resident, as well as Ahmed Kathrada, a former political prisoner who was jailed with Mandela on Robben Island.


District Six, named for the Sixth Municipal District, memorializes an area of Cape Town that was forcibly segregated in 1965. Non-white residents were moved from the area and their homes were destroyed.


The museum is open every day except Sunday; tours are available in advance. And, with tickets costing around $2 for adults (children enter for free), it's a bargain.

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Michelle Obama, First Family, Tour District Six Museum In South Africa (PHOTOS)

Michelle and her mother listen to Bonita Bennett, director, as they visit the District Six museum. 

Founded in 1867 as a mixed community of freed slaves, merchants, and immigrants, the apartheid government in 1965 declared it "white" and forcibly removed 60,000 residents and bulldozed their homes.

Michelle Obama listens to Ahmed Kathrada, top left, former political prisoner on Robben Island and anti-apartheid figure, as she visits the District Six museum.

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama listens to Ahmed Kathrada.

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama stands with her mother Marian Robinson, left, and daughters Sasha and Malia as they listen to former resident Noor Ebrahim as they visit the District Six museum.

Michelle Obama stands with Karen Dudley, right, at her restaurant "The Kitchen" as she makes an unscheduled stop for lunch in Cape Town.

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