Date: Wednesday, 17 March 2010 Time: 3:00 PM Location: Rare Book Room Contact Information: Janie Morris, 919-660-5819 or janie.morris(at)duke.edu
Dr. Andrew Kahrl will discuss the rise and demise of black beaches and coastal property ownership from the early 20th century to the present. Kahrl’s talk, titled “Losing the Land: African American Ownership of Coastal Property,” is based in part on his findings in the Behind the Veil oral history collection at the RBMSCL.
Kahrl is assistant professor of history at Marquette University and a former fellow at the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation/American Council of Learned Societies.
Sit-In Songs LP, 1962. From the Frederick Herzog Papers
The recent passing of historian, author, teacher, and activist John Hope Franklin has prompted all of us at the RBMSCL to consider the role of historical research and education in ending injustice, fear, and hatred. As Dr. Franklin wrote in a 3 June 2002 letter to fellow historian Nell Irvin Painter (on display in this exhibit), history’s responsibility is “to illuminate and interpret the past in order to ‘map’ what we think the future should be.”
Inspired by Dr. Franklin’s powerful words, this exhibit is a tribute to his legacy. The exhibit uses materials from the RBMSCL’s collections to explore four themes crucial to understanding the history of African Americans in the United States: African American enslavement, segregation and the Jim Crow era, the Civil Rights Movement, and the contributions of African American historians.
North Carolina Mutual past presidents (l to r) John Merrick, C.C. Spaulding, and Aaron Moore
The company’s archives includes thousands of business documents, newsletters, commercials, photography and books which chronicle the vitality of Durham’s “Black Wall Street” in the early 20th century. During the Jim Crow era, North Carolina Mutual allowed the black middle class access to home mortgages, small business loans, and insurance. The archives may be the largest assemblage of African American corporate material in the nation.
Blassingame’s path-breaking scholarship has had a profound impact on the American understanding of slavery and the African American experience. The collection includes correspondence, personal manuscripts and research files from Blassingame’s long academic career, and is particularly rich in materials drawn from his work on the Frederick Douglass Papers.