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Gwendolyn Midlo Hall papers, 1939-1998 (majority within 1968-1995)

5.5 linear feet

Professor of history, civil rights activist, scholar of African American history. Family and professional correspondence, newspaper clippings, articles, reviews, and printed material reflecting her political activism, her interest in black history, the case of Robert Williams, and her scholarly interests.

The Gwendolyn Midlo Hall Papers, 1939-1998, are comprised of materials documenting the professional and personal life of a historian and civil rights activist. The collection is divided into four series: Personal and Biographical, Academic Career, and Writings.


Peter R. Bloch collection, 1959-1960

1 folder

Art historian, writer, journalist, and expert of Puerto Rican music and art. Letters received from Robert F. Williams, African American civil rights activist and Bloch's friend.

This collection is comprised of letters received from friend Robert F. Williams, militant African American civil rights activist. In the letters Williams discusses his arrest at a student sit-in protest, his struggles as a civil rights leader in the South, his travel plans, and his appreciation of Bloch's writings.


Robert F. Williams papers, 1948-2014

14.5 linear feet — 1 oversize folder — 40.5 GB (online) — 6 digital audio files — 10 digital video files

African American civil rights activist and Black militant leader in Monroe County North Carolina who came to advocate armed self-defense in response to violence, left the United States in 1961 and lived in Cuba and China until 1969 when he settled in Baldwin Michigan. Papers include correspondence, newspaper clippings, audio-visual material, manuscripts, petitions, and government documents documenting the civil rights movement, black nationalism, radical politics in the United States and Williams's experiences in Cuba and China.

The Robert Williams papers, dating from 1951, include correspondence, notes, newspaper clippings, audio-visual material, manuscripts, petitions, and government documents. The collection documents a wide variety of subjects: the American civil rights movement, Black Nationalism, cold war politics, Castro's Cuba, Mao's China, and the radical left in the United States.

As Robert Williams continued to add to his collection following his initial donation in 1976, it was necessary to arrange and describe the materials based on groupings of dates of accessioning. Thus the bulk of the collection is divided into two subgroups: 1976-1979 Accessions and 1983-1997 Accessions with much overlapping of material. In addition, the collection contains a small series of papers collected by his son John C. Williams and a separate series of Audio-Visual Materials.