Oaksterdam University and the Oaksterdam Cannabis and Hemp Museum were raided by federal officials in April. Soon after the owner, Richard Lee, gave up ownership of the school and museum.
Now, officials from the University and Museum have announced that they will be relocating the entire collection. The relocation was sparked by the City of Oakland, as officials were concerned about having the museum in a shared space with a dispensary. Since the museum is a public space and a dispensary is meant for patients only, the city made it clear that the two institutions could not be connected any longer. The museum must relocate by June 30th.
There have been a number of new locations discussed, but it is expected that the museum will be moving one block from its current location to the Oaksterdam University Auditorium.
Staff and volunteers are working to document and package the museum’s large collection of paraphernalia and memorabilia to prepare for the move. Those who are volunteering are being trained in the safe handling of historical collections.
The museum’s collection includes historic and modern pieces relating to cannabis prohibition and the marijuana movement. Chris Conrad, museum Curator, is hoping that the museum will be able to find a new home in Oakland’s business district with the help of sponsorships of specific exhibits, or of the entire museum.
Conrad said, “The outpouring of moral and political support coming our way since the notorious raid on Oaksterdam is very gratifying, demonstrating not only the effectiveness of Richard Lee’s brave example as an instigator of social change, but also the desperate need for more education about this necessary social justice effort.”
Oaksterdam was opened in 2007 in Oakland, CA to provide training and education for individuals in the medical marijuana industry. The museum has remained closed since the DEA raid.