February 2014

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In This Issue
From the Director

Financial Donors

Archives and Library Donors

Foundation Support Funds Digital Outreach

Student Assistance Furthers Preservation and Access

Free Southern Theater Exhibition

Fannie Lou Hamer Papers Digitized

Amistad to Participate in GiveNOLA Day

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From the Director

This special edition of e-Amistad Reports features the Annual Honor Roll of Donors.  With this Honor Roll, the Amistad Research Center gratefully acknowledges and proudly celebrates the generosity and support of members, corporate partners, foundations, and friends for their philanthropic contributions in 2013. It also recognizes donors for their sustaining gifts of material for new collections and addenda to existing collections. 


The support of honor roll donors touches every area of the Center's operations, and provides the foundation necessary to achieve excellence and success.  Their investments and active participation furnish the resources that allow us to maximize current opportunities and take advantage of emerging possibilities. They also enhance research value of the collections, and maintain a competitive rate of progress with peer institutions.


Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of the donor lists.  Despite our best efforts to avoid errors, we realize that occasional mistakes will occur in producing the donor honor roll.  We apologize in advance for inaccurate spellings, omissions, and other errors.  If there are questions about any listing, please email reference@amistadresearchcenter.org  or contact Amistad at (504) 862-3222.    


Executive Director
Lee Hampton
Financial Donors

Individual Donor Recognition


Clifton H. Johnson Club



Cinque Club


Edgar John Bullard III

Lucius P. Gregg, Jr.

Paul J. Leaman, Jr.

Bradley T. Sheares

Charles Teamer, Sr.


Harriet Tubman Club


Kim Boyle

Karen Burgess

Larry L. Earvin

Robert P. Johnson

Robert L. Polk

Ora Myles Sheares

Tom Weissinger


Carter G. Woodson Club


William & Gloria Armstrong

Carl Baloney

Dolores M. Franklin

Lee Hampton

Beverly Wade Hogan

Christopher Harter & Elisabeth McMahon

Sybil H. Morial


Frederick Douglass Club


Rosanne Adderley

Benjamin Dent

Wendell Dupuy

Irene Ellens

Marvin E. Ellis

Nathan & Susan Lipsett

Charles C. Marr

Catherine Michna

Stevens E. Moore

Doris J. Newton

Rodney Page

M. Danita Bailey-Perry

Lance D. Query

Joe Richardson

Michael Sartisky

Margaret Stevens

Jerry W. Ward, Jr.

Shirley Porter Washington

Cleotha Wilbekin

Sojourner Truth Club



Jenny M. Bailey

James J. & Rudine S. Bishop

Earnestine Jenkins

Carolyn Long

Janet Morris

David Bell & Katherine Newman

Olivia Travitt


Phillis Wheatley

$49 and under

Brenda Flora

Clarence Hunter

Mary V. Jackson-Rogers

Susan V. Opotow

Andrew Salinas

Ori Spiegel

Eleanor Strickland

Susanne Trenka


Corporate Partner Recognition


Lewis Tappan

$50,000 +

Patrick F. Taylor Foundation

Tulane University

United Church of Christ Local Church Ministries


John Quincy Adams


Chicago Friends of Amistad

Institute of Museum and Library Services

RosaMary Foundation


La Amistad

$999 and under

Carriere & Dunn Tax and Accounting Services

Central St. Matthew UCC


Greater St. John Baptist Church, Meridian, MS

Historic New Orleans Collection (In-kind)

IBM International Foundation

Links Inc.-New Orleans Chapter

Schexnider & Associates, LLC


Memorial and Honor Gifts


*Robert P. Johnson in memory of Clifton H. Johnson

*Doris Newton in memory of Eleanor Harris

Archives and Library Donors
The Carol J.L. Collins papers was just one of the important new collections received in 2013.
Archives and Manuscripts Donors


Gloria Jackson Bacon papers (1984-2011), 4.4 linear feet

donated by Gloria Jackson Bacon


Carol J.L. Collins papers (1974-2003), 23 linear feet

donated by Steve Askin


Peggy Fleming scrapbook (1961-2003), 5 folders

donated by Peggy Fleming


Kenneth Hansen letters (undated), 1 folder

donated by Caroline Potapa


Arthur Hardy collection (1955-2012), 1 linear foot

donated by Arthur Hardy


Belmont F. Haydel papers (1975-2013), 1.2 linear feet

donated by Belmont F. Haydel


David D. Jones, Sr. papers (1928-1949), 2.4 linear feet

donated by Martha Jones


Ellis Marsalis Sr. oral history interview (1988), 1 item

donated by Lawrence Powell


Caroline W. Marvin American Home Missionary Society membership certificate (1886), 1 item

donated by Martha Marvin


Sybil H. Morial papers (1975-2013), 10 linear feet

donated by Sybil H. Morial


NOLA Hiphop Archive Project collection (2012), 32 items

donated by Holly Hobbs


Harold R. Perry papers (1917-1991), 1.33 linear feet

donated by James Perry


Merlin L. Taylor papers (1963-2009), 3 linear feet

donated by Merlin L. Taylor


Margaret R. Vendryes collection (1949-2008), 2.8 linear feet

donated by Margaret R. Vendryes


Helen Hamilton Washington papers (1923-2013), 0.4 linear feet
donated by Helen Hamilton Washington


Where They At collection (2008-2010), 0.6 linear feet

donated by Alison Fensterstock


Elias Williams bill of sale (1846), 1 item

donated by The Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation


Archives and Manuscripts Donors for Existing Collections


James Blackwell papers (2002-2013), 0.2 linear feet

donated by James Blackwell


Marvin Ellis papers (2010-2011), 2 folders

donated by Marvin Ellis


Arthur D. Gray papers (1936), 1 item

donated by Clarice Gray


Larney Goodkind collection (1949-1967), 1.6 linear feet

donated by Rob Goodkind


Antoinette Harrell-Miller Family papers (1879-2012), 2 linear feet

donated by Antoinette Harrell


Ellis Marsalis Sr. papers (1965), 1 folder

donated by Yvette Marsalis


Ronald E. Mickens papers (1976-2013), 6 linear feet

donated by Ronald Mickens


M. W. Prince Hall Grand Lodge, F.&A.M. of Louisiana records (1870-2003), 3 linear feet

donated by Grand Master, Ralph Slaughter


National Association of Bar and Bench Spouses collection (2008-2013), 0.2 linear feet

donated by Cleota Proctor Wilbekin


National Bar Association collection (2008-2013), 0.2 linear feet

donated by Cleota Proctor Wilbekin


New Orleans Chapter of The Links, Inc records (2009-2013), 0.2 linear feet

donated by Andrea Jefferson


Robert Polk papers (1950-2010), 2 linear feet

donated by Robert Polk


Alvin J. Schexnider papers (1995-2011), 0.4 linear feet

donated by Alvin J. Schexnider


United Church Board for Homeland Ministries records (1992-2000), 1 linear foot

donated by Jan Resseger, Minister for Public Education and Witness

Library Donors

Thomas M. Armstrong
Osa Atoe
Gloria Jackson Bacon
Thi Bui
Winston De Ville
Michael L. Downey
Larry L. Earvin
Peggy Fleming
Lee Hampton
Christopher Harter
Belmont F. Haydel
Nina J. Haydel
Curtis J. Johnson
Alice-Anne Krishnan
Vikki Law
Richard J. Lee
Library of America
Jonathan Matthews
Louis Mayer
Marianetta Porter
Gilbert Raiford
Andrew Salinas
H.G. Scanlan
Alvin J. Schexnider
Norman R. Smith
Shawnta Smith
H. Paul Thompson
University of Chicago Press
Elaine W. Vigne
Edward West


Foundation Support Funds Digitial Outreach
Detail from a circular used to raise money for the legal defense of the Amistad Captives. It is one of the earliest documents on the Amistad Case in the records of the American Missionary Association.
In our December 2013 newsletter, we reported on a recent grant from the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation, which will allow Amistad to digitize more of its holdings to expand outreach to K-12 students and educators across the country.  The impetus for this project was in large part from increased requests from students nationwide for programs such as National History Day. 


Recent communication from a student in Indiana offers a good example of these types of queries from young scholars and the need for Amistad to bolster outreach through digital projects.


"Thank you for sending me the papers in the mail for my History Day project in my sixth grade class.  My project is on student protests during the Civil Rights Movement.  I am focusing on the demonstration at Dillard University on March 8, 1960.  My grandfather, Ernest Kinchen, participated in the demonstration.   So it was important for me to learn more about it.  Not very much has been written about the demonstration.  So, primary research was necessary for me to complete my project.  The Amistad Center's archives of the Louisiana Weekly helped my project."


This work began in earnest earlier this month, when Center staff began digitizing original resources pertaining to the historical Amistad revolt of 1839.  In anticipation of the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Center in 2016, this project will include the complete digitization of records related to the Amistad Case, and will provide unprecedented access to what historians describe as the most important United States court case regarding slavery prior to the Dred Scott Case of 1857.


Other digital projects to be conducted under the Taylor Foundation grant will center on the Civil Rights Movement, the 1960 desegregation of New Orleans public schools, American Missionary Association schools, and a commemoration of the Emancipation Proclamation. 
Student Assistance Furthers Preservation and Access
Maher Judah (left) and Tiera Shana Harris (right) organize archival documents at the Center.

This semester, the Amistad Research Center is taking advantage of some extra helping hands, while providing experience and service opportunities to a number of local college students. Student interns from three area universities, as well as a class undertaking a service-learning component to a Yoruba language class, are greatly assisting the Center while gaining exposure to unique primary source collections.


Two interns are assisting the processing department as part of Amistad's Young Archivists Mentoring Program, which gives our archivists an opportunity to train undergraduate and graduate students in the fields of library and archival work and help Amistad to complete the archival arrangement of priority collections. In addition, two students are completing service-learning internships as part of their graduation requirements at Tulane University.


Tiera Shana Harris, a senior at Xavier University with dual majors in biology and history, is assisting the processing team on the archival arrangement, description, and preservation of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons of Louisiana records. Work on the Louisiana Masons records was started in the fall of 2012 with the assistance of two Xavier interns, so it is fitting that the final stage and completion of this project will end with the assistance of another Xavier intern.


Maher Judeh is a graduate candidate in the International and Global Studies Masters program at the University of New Orleans (UNO). Maher's research focus is on the relationship between the United States and Algeria during the 1960s. He is assisting Amistad with the archival processing of the papers of international labor activist Maida Springer Kemp. In addition to the arrangement and preservation of the Kemp papers, Maher will be selecting items for digitization from the collection for Amistad's new thematic collections digital initiative.


Morgan Wolfe, a senior political science major with an interest in slavery and race relations, is currently digitizing correspondence, pamphlets, and other documents related to the Supreme Court case United States v. Libellants and Claimants of the Schooner Amistad, commonly known as the Amistad Case. The result of this digitization initiative will be a new thematic digital collection available through the Louisiana Digital Library and Tulane University Digital Library.


Tulane junior Jake Patterson is undertaking an inventory of approximately 85 boxes of ephemera long held at the Center but inaccessible by researchers. This collection contains all manner of materials related to civil rights, race relations, housing discrimination, school integration, and an assortment of topics. Jake and Amistad's staff have already uncovered a trove of little known documents that will soon be added to the Center's online finding aid database.


Students from Dr. Olanike-Ola Orie's Diaspora Yoruba class work to translate Yoruba texts collected by linguist Lorenzo Dow Turner.
A Yoruba language class taught by Dr. Olanike-Ola Orie of Tulane's Anthropology Department is putting their language skills to the test by assisting the Center with texts and recordings of Yoruba, a West African language. These materials are housed in the papers of linguist Lorenzo Dow Turner. Students are analyzing Yoruba texts collected by Turner to aid in the description of these texts, as well as inventorying and rehousing recordings made by Turner on wire reels and metal phonograph discs during the 1930s to the 1950s.  

Each year the Center attracts an increasing number of applicants for a very limited number of intern experiences. Increasing also is the number of applicants who come from outside of the local area. Amistad was a recent grant recipient of support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services that was designed to encourage mentoring and partnering with persons interested in archives and archival projects. One of the goals of the program is to increase the number of individuals from underrepresented populations gaining experience in such settings in order to encourage professional interest.  

Free Southern Theater and Black Arts Movement Exhibition Open Through April
Photograph by Tom Wakayama of John O'Neal and Denise Nicholas as Purlie Victorious and Missy in Ossie Davis' play Purlie Victorious, 1965.
If you haven't taken the opportunity to visit the Center to view "The Free Southern Theater and the Black Arts Movement" exhibition, the display runs through April 25th.

Originating as a community theater group based in Jackson, Mississippi, in 1963, the Free Southern Theater (FST) became a cultural arm of the Civil Rights Movement. Upon moving to New Orleans in 1965, the FST became a major influence on Black Theater, both locally and nationally. This exhibition highlights the struggles and triumphs of the Theater and its place within the Black Arts Movement of the 1960/70s. The FST story, as well as that of the Black Arts Movement, is told through photographs, play scripts, programs, books, literary magazines, flyers, and more.  

An online checklist is available and Amistad staff are currently working on the digital version of the exhibition, which will remain accessible past the closing date of the exhibition. More information on upcoming exhibitions can be found here.
Fannie Lou Hamer Papers Now Available Through New Digital Resource
Flyer for an October 1968 talk by Fannie Lou Hamer. From the Hamer papers.
One of Amistad's most popular manuscript collections is now accessible by researchers worldwide. The Fannie Lou Hamer papers were recently added to the Archives Unbound digital resource produced by Cengage Learning. 

Archives Unbound is a subscription-based resource that presents topically-focused digital collections of historical documents to support the research and study needs of scholars and students. Collections in Archives Unbound are chosen based on requests by scholars, students, and archivists, and cover a broad range of topics from the Middle Ages to twentieth-century political history.    
Fannie Lou Hamer was an voting rights activist and civil rights leader. She was instrumental in organizing the Mississippi Freedom Summer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and later became the Vice-Chair of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, attending the 1964 Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in that capacity. Her plain-spoken manner and fervent belief in the Biblical righteousness of her cause gained her a reputation as an electrifying speaker and constant activist for civil rights.

The Fannie Lou Hamer papers contain more than three thousand pieces of correspondence plus financial records, programs, photographs, newspaper articles, invitations, and other printed items. The papers are arranged in the following series: Personal, Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, Freedom Farms Corporation, Delta Ministry, Mississippians United to Elect Negro Candidates, Delta Opportunities Corporation, and Collected Materials.

Access to the digital version of the Hamer papers is available at the Amistad Research Center and Tulane University or you can contact your local institution about acquiring subscription access via the Cengage website
Stretch Your Giving Dollars to the Amistad Research Center
The Amistad Research Center needs your help as we participate in GiveNOLA Day, a 24-hour online giving event organized by the Greater New Orleans Foundation to ignite the giving community in Southeast Louisiana and beyond. Part of a larger national campaign organized by Give Local America, this unique community fundraising event offers a rare opportunity to match individual donations from a "lagniappe fund," a pool of money donated from area businesses and community philanthropists.  

Please bookmark Amistad's GiveNOLA page to donate online during this May 6, 2014, event.  We will send another reminder as we get closer to this event and will have periodic updates through our social media platforms.