February 2015

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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 2014. 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.
Interim Executive Director
Lance Query
Financial Donors

Individual Donor Recognition


Clifton H. Johnson Club


Edgar John Bullard III

Tiffany Gautier Chase

Piper D. Griffin


Cinque Club


Kim M. Boyle

Bradley Sheares

Janice Sumler-Edmond


Harriet Tubman Club


Edward Dees

Edgar Chase III

Lee Hampton

Holly H. Hobbs

Andrea G. Jefferson

Bernette J. Johnson

Robert Johnson*

   *in memory of Clifton H. Johnson

Sybil Haydel Morial

Robert L. Polk

Ronald L. Wilson


Carter G. Woodson Club


Kenneth and Gwen Carter

Rachel Devlin

Larry Earvin

Christopher Harter

Charles Molesworth

Cora Presley

Felipe Smith

Mark C. Surprenant

Ellie Tweedy

Thomas Weissinger


Frederick Douglass Club


Rosanne Adderley

Chris Albers


Adam Beauchamp

Jacynta Brewton

Bob Brown

Randall Cole

Benjamin Dent

George Dupuy

Patty Ferguson-Bohnee

Joshua Guild

Betty J. Hale

Martha Harris

Belmont F. Haydel

Veronica E. Henry

Sunni and Darrick LeBeouf

Terri Love

Sally McKee

Charles Marr

Ed Marshall

Doris J. Newton*

   *in memory of William and Haley Newton

Olanike Orie

Rodney Page

Joe Richardson

Paul Sohi

Stephanie Spottswood

Anne Fausto Sterling

Margaret Stevens

Patricia Thomas-Clemons

Laura Thomson

Shirley Porter Washington

Robert Williams

Vernon J. Williams Jr.

Lorraine P. Wilson



Corporate Partner Recognition


Lewis Tappan

$50,000 +

Patrick F. Taylor Foundation

Pitts Family Foundation

Tulane University

United Church of Christ Local Church Ministries


John Quincy Adams


Chicago Friends of Amistad

Links, Inc., New Orleans Chapter

National Film Preservation Foundation

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation


La Amistad

$999 and under

Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, New Orleans        Alumnae Chapter

Louisiana Creole Research Association



Sojourner Truth Club


Rene Arnold

David Bell and Katherine Newman

Cheryllyn M. Branche

Hattie M. Broussard

Barbara J. Carmon

Raphael Cassimere Jr.

Michael Cunningham

Pamela Davis-Clarke

Joyce Douglas

Royce Duplessis

Charles Fenimore

Brenda Flora

James Flora

Charlotte S. Fulton

Susan L. Hall

Rebecca Hankins

Sara J. Hollis

Mary V. Jackson-Rogers

Yolanda S. Johnson

Catrice Johnson-Reid

Theresa Lee-Whiting

Jana Lipman

Carolyn Long

Elisabeth McMahon

Ronald E. Mickens

Mary Ann Millaud

Edna R. Moore

Ed Ochsenschlager

Jeffrey Thomas

Sam Wilen

Faye Williams-Penny


Phillis Wheatley

$49 and under

Steve Askin

Kenneth Barnett

Wanda Bergeron

Dale Bonds

Tyrone Brackens

Renard Bridgewater

Matthew Brillinger

Sharon Cannon

Emily Clark

Robert Dell

Chianta Dorsey

Kimberly Embery

Sylvia Frey

Diane Galatowitsch

Ruth Harter

Karissa Haugeberg

Mary L. Fritz-Hines

Cory R. Hartman

Mary N. Hill

Karla Jones

Dionne L. Kurtti

Marva Lewis

Steven Montgomery

Supriya Nair

John and Ellen Pecoul

Jennifer Quezergue

Felicia Render

Andrew Salinas

Hilairie Schackai

Christi Smith

Beretta Smith-Shomade

Eleanor Strickland

Carolyn Ware

Jerald L. White

G. Leslie Wilson

Justin Wolfe










Archives, Library, and Fine Arts Donors
Archives and Manuscripts Donors


James Edward Bates photographs (2008-2013), 2 items 

donated by the New Orleans Loving Festival


Black Caucus of the Society for Research in Child Development records (1974-1993), 4 linear feet

donated by Diana Slaughter Kotzin


Rebecca Cureau papers (1954-2000), 1 linear foot 

donated by Rebecca T. Cureau


Photograph of Thomy Lafon (undated), 1 item

donated by Gilbert and Leslie Wilson


Gerald R. Norwood collection on Booker T. Washington (1904-1956), 3 items 

donated by Gerald Norwood


Harold Sylvester papers (1965-2012), 33 linear feet 
donated by Harold Sylvester Jr. 


Archives and Manuscripts Donors for Existing Collections


American Home Missionary Society records (1822-1865, 1941), 0.2 linear feet 

donated by Evan Boyd, Chicago Theological Seminary


James E. Blackwell papers (2011-2014), 1 linear foot 

donated by James E. Blackwell


Elizabeth Catlett papers (1991-2011), 2 linear feet 

donated by Francisco Mora


Central Congregational United Church of Christ records (1986-2009), 0.2 linear feet 

donated by Leslie Wilson


Harold G. Cureau papers (1966-1996), 1.4 linear feet 

donated by Rebecca T. Cureau


Albert and Jessie Dent Family papers (1948-2010), 1 linear foot 

donated by Walter Dent


Larney Goodkind papers (1950-1993), 6.2 linear feet 

donated by Robert Goodkind


James Hargett papers (2013-2014), 0.2 linear feet

donated by Louilyn Hargett


Belmont F. Haydel papers (1957-2013), 0.8 linear feet 

donated by Belmont F. Haydel


William J. Jefferson papers (1991-2009), 55 linear feet 

donated by Andrea G. Jefferson


Louisiana Coalition against Racism and Nazism records (circa 1980-1990), 2 items 

donated by Lawrence N. Powell


Maurice M. Martinez papers (2007-2014), 4 items 

donated by Maurice M. Martinez


Marc H. Morial papers (1993-2014), 2 linear feet 

donated by Marc H. Morial


National Association of Bar and Bench Spouses collection (2014), .2 linear feet 

donated by Cleota Proctor Wilbekin


National Bar Association collection (2014), .2 linear feet 

donated by Cleota Proctor Wilbekin


NOLA Hip Hop Archive collection (2014), 14 items 

donated by Holly Hobbs


Robert L. Polk papers (2014), .2 linear feet 

donated by Robert L. Polk


Hale Smith papers (1949-2010), 7 linear feet 

donated by Juanita Smith


Albert F. Sperath collection (1952-2001), .4 linear feet 

donated by Albert F. Sperath


Dorothy Sterling papers (1964-1994), .4 linear feet 

donated by Anne Fausto-Sterling


Philip Sterling papers (1962-1977), .4 linear feet 

donated by Anne Fausto-Sterling


The Links, Inc. (New Orleans Chapter) records (1994-2014), .6 linear feet 

donated by Andrea G. Jefferson


Vernon J. Williams papers (1988-2013), 2 linear feet 
donated by Vernon J. Williams
Library Donors

Alpha Kappa Alpha, Alpha Beta Omega Chapter

Howard Breckenridge

Michelle Duster

Charlotte S. Fulton

Larry S. Gibson

Christopher Harter

Philip Kaisary

Ann Lee

Marva L. Lewis

Louisiana State University Museum of Art

Katherine Newman

Per Oldaeus

Helen Hoban Rogers

Andrew Salinas

Juanita Smith

Lindsay Twa

Shana Weinberg

Thomas Weissinger

Jerald White



Fine Arts Donors


Painting of John W. Hoffman (undated)

donated by Gilbert and Leslie Wilson

Center Completing Three Year Project to Organize Africana Collections
The ACOA and Africa Fund records are on the shelves and ready for researchers.
The Amistad Research Center is pleased to report on the final stages of a three-year project to provide access to 520 linear feet of records that document anti-apartheid and anti-colonial efforts across the African continent. Amistad received funding assistance from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) in 2011 for the project, "Access to Africana Collections: The American Committee on Africa and The Africa Fund Records." The organization of records pertaining to the American Committee on Africa (ACOA) was completed during the first year of the project and Amistad's archival processing staff has spent the last two years working to complete the arrangement, description, and preservation of approximately 350 linear feet of records generated by The Africa Fund. Both organizations worked to educate Americans on the legitimacy of African liberation movements and the emergence of independent African nations, as well as assisting the victims of colonial governments in Africa.


In organizing the records of The Africa Fund, staff discovered a set of records pertaining to a third, related organization, the Campaign to Oppose Bank Loans to South Africa (COBLSA). The Campaign was initially organized in 1977 as the Committee to Oppose Bank Loans to South Africa and was sponsored by the American Committee on Africa and the Clergy and Laity Concerned (CALC), but become an independent organization soon after. It's purpose was to link the efforts of national and local anti-apartheid groups, churches, unions, university and colleges, and community groups in pressuring United States banks to end all loans to the South African government, its agencies, and corporations doing business there.


One of the many book and periodical titles now cataloged in Amistad's library.

Those interested in learning more about these organizations can do so at the following links: American Committee on AfricaThe Africa Fund, and the Campaign to Oppose Bank Loans to South Africa. In addition, two online finding aids for the American Committee on Africa Records are available and finding aids for The Africa Fund and COBLSA records will be live next month. 


In addition, the Center has cataloged over 2,300 book and periodical titles as part of the CLIR grant. These include monographs, pamphlets, newspapers, newsletters, and magazines, collected by ACOA and African Fund staff from across the world. A significant portion of these titles are not held by libraries elsewhere in the United States, but are now cataloged and available to researchers.These works cover areas of divestment campaigns, activism throughout Africa and abroad, human rights, development in Africa, women's and children's issues, education, and more.


The Center and its staff would like to thank the Council on Library and Information Resources for its support of Amistad's efforts to increase access to these important Africana collections.Questions regarding these collections can be directed to Amistad's Reference Department via email or by calling (504) 862-3222.

Elizabeth Catlett Focus of Current Exhibition and Student Internship
Elizabeth Catlett in Mexico City, circa 1962.

This April marks the centennial of the birth of artist and activist Elizabeth Catlett, who was born on April 15, 1915, in Washington, D.C. The Amistad Research Center is proud to be the repository of Catlett's personal papers, as well as 13 works of art by the artist. To commemorate Catlett's life and career, the Center is currently hosting the exhibition "Art in Service to Her People: Celebrating Elizabeth Catlett," which includes numerous photographs of the artist at work, letters with fellow artists, sketchbooks, exhibition catalogs, and more, as well as selections from Amistad's fine arts collection. The exhibition is on view through April 24, 2015. 


In addition to the exhibition, the Center is pleased to welcome Shelby Santiago, a student intern from Xavier University in New Orleans, who is currently organizing the most recent addition to the Elizabeth Catlett papers, which was received in November of 2014 from the Catlett family. The addition to the papers consists of photographs, exhibition and event ephemera, and certificates. Events covered within the materials include the creation and installation of commissioned Catlett sculptures at Terrell Place in Washington, D.C. (2003); presentation of The Sharecropper print to the University of Iowa Museum of Art (2002); Elizabeth Catlett's birthday weekend exhibition celebration at the Stella Jones Gallery in New Orleans, Louisiana (2003); photographs by Roy Lewis for a Catlett exhibition at the Washington, D.C. Public Library (undated); and Catlett's receipt of an honorary doctorate from Howard University (1996). Of interest is a photograph album of the Cultures exhibition, highlighting the works of Elizabeth Catlett and Francisco Mora. Also included is print documentation for Catlett's Three Women in America by Workshop, Inc. (1990).


In addition to her personal papers, Amistad has also received a small collection of books and catalogues owned by Catlett, which detail her interest in art and includes many signed and inscribed works by artists and writers such as Amiri Baraka, Toni Morrison, Sonia Sanchez, and Faith Ringgold.

Television Station Profiles Amistad for Black History Month

New Orleans television station WGNO recently filmed a news segment on the Center and featured materials from its collections in the profile. Journalist LeBron Joseph interviewed Christopher Harter, Amistad's Director of Library and Reference Services, and discussed the history of the Center, our collections, and some of our most cherished possessions. Mr. Joseph was familiar with the mission of the Center as an institution dedicated to preserving African American history and chose to showcase Amistad on that station's weekly Black History Month series this February. 


The news crew filmed at the Center, during which they were given access to our reading room, exhibit space, and our closed stacks. Some of the items highlighted were our oldest documents, 1718 and 1722 French-language decrees regarding slavery in the French colonies; the oldest dated photograph held by the Center, an 1860 daguerreotype of Barnabas Root, a student from the Mende Mission in Sierra Leone; and correspondence and books from Harlem Renaissance figures Countee Cullen and Zora Neale Hurston. 


It is always exciting to publicize the Center's collections, educate the public about the resources available to them, and detail how the Center continues to fit into the local and national historical scene. We are thankful that our activities are drawing the attention of the press. It means that we are fulfilling our goals of being a premier research institution to patrons across the country. The segment has been posted on the Center's Facebook and Twitter accounts and can also be found on WGNO's website

New Staff Member Organizing Papers of Physicist Ronald E. Mickens
Ron Mickens notes
Dr. Ronald Mickens' notes for a presentation at Florida A&M University in 1985.

Jessica Perkins Smith began work as a Project Archivist at Amistad on January 5, 2015. Smith was hired as part of the Center's Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) grant to process African American STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) collections. She received her Master's in Library and Information Science, with an Archives concentration, from Louisiana State University, and previously worked as the archivist and records manager for the City of Decatur in Georgia. She completed internships at Auburn Avenue Research Library and Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Atlanta, and has experience processing large archival collections. Smith's undergraduate and graduate history studies focused on Civil Rights in Mississippi, and she is excited to have the opportunity to work at a place with such a rich history and focus on African American and minority collections. She is from New Orleans, previously taught at Lusher Charter School, and is a member of Beta Phi Mu library honor society.


As part of Amistad's IMLS grant to process African American STEM collections, Amistad is excited to announce that the papers of physicist Dr. Ronald E. Mickens are currently in process. Mickens donated his papers over a period of several years and has been a long-time supporter of Amistad. Mickens is currently a Distinguished Professor of Physics at Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, where he has taught for over thirty years. Mickens received his B.A. in physics from Fisk University in Nashville, and his PhD from Vanderbilt University. He won a National Science Foundation postdoctoral fellowship, and spent the two year fellowship studying at the Massachusetts Center for Technology's Center for Theoretical Physics. He has served as scholar in residence/visiting lecturer at many universities, participated in numerous summer physics institutes, and presented papers at hundreds of national and international conferences. Mickens has published over 200 scholarly articles and several books in the areas of difference equations, mathematical epidemiology, and nonlinear oscillations. He has also conducted extensive research on African American PhDs, and published a history book, Edward Bouchet: The First African-American Doctorate.


Mickens' papers include correspondence with scientists from around the world; conference papers; book manuscripts; papers documenting his teaching, committee, and other university responsibilities; scientific calculations; and photographs. In addition to his extensive research and prolific publishing in areas of physics and mathematics, Mickens' collection documents his commitment to encouraging African American students to pursue further education and careers in STEM related fields. From his leadership in the National Society of Black Physicists, to his work in the 1970s and 80s compiling a directory of African Americans with PhDs in the sciences, to his mentorship of undergraduate and graduate students, to his correspondence with school age children focused on African American contributions to science, Mickens' career shows his dedication to furthering African American achievements in the sciences. Once the Ronald E. Mickens Papers are complete and open to the public, researchers will find a wide variety of rich topics of interest within the collection.

New Book Documents Women's Role in Mississippi Civil Rights
A new book has been published by The University of Georgia Press  that examines the influence of Clarie Collins Harvey and an organization known as Womanpower Unlimited on the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi. 

Womanpower Unlimited and the Black Freedom Struggle in Mississippi, authored by Tiyi M. Morris, an assistant professor in the Department of African-American and Africa Studies at Ohio State University, provides the first comprehensive examination of the Jackson, Mississippi, based women's organization Womanpower Unlimited. Founded in 1961 by Clarie Collins Harvey, the organization was created initially to provide aid to the Freedom Riders. However, the group expanded its activism to include programs such as voter registration drives, youth education, and participation in Women Strike for Peace. Womanpower Unlimited was instrumental in civil rights activism in Mississippi, but also helped to revitalize women's social and political activism in the state.

Dr. Morris conducted much of her research in the Clarie Collins Harvey Papers at Amistad and we are excited to see the fruits of her time in the archives. Congratulations, Dr. Morris!
Student Project Explores Canada's Antislavery Past

The Amistad Research Center is pleased to include this report from Dr. Nina Reid-Maroney, Associate Professor in the Department of History at Huron University College in Ontario:


Records of the American Missionary Association (AMA) are at the center of a community-based research project exploring Canada's antislavery past, led by students in American History at Huron University College in London, Ontario. The class began the project with a search for information about London's African Methodist Episcopal Church (British Methodist Episcopal after 1856.) The church was central to London's black community, and had ties to antislavery communities across the Great Lakes region.


The signatures of Chambers' congregation, April 1861.

One starting point for a recovery of the church's early history is the correspondence of  the Reverend Lewis C. Chambers, who ministered to the congregation in London in 1860-61, with support from the AMA. His letters offer important new perspectives on the religious, social, and political life of Canada's black communities on the eve of the American Civil War.  The document, "Presentation and Address of the B.M.E. Church Sabbath School, London" written to Chambers in April, 1861, has been particularly useful because it was signed by 18 members of Chambers' congregation. Using the names from this document, student researchers have been able to map new information about London's black community through census records, city directories, and cemetery records. 


The class has connected its research to the current Beth Emmanuel BME congregation in London, led by the Reverend Delta McNeish, and to the members of the Fugitive Slave Chapel Preservation Project, a group that recently saved the original church building (circa 1848) from demolition.  As History student Travis Hubble notes, "the research project has given me a chance to not only learn about the history of slavery, but to see how it impacted the black community that lived in my local area. I have had the opportunity to see and learn about the B.M.E. church and it's early founding, as well as hear more about the members of the church and some of the stories surrounding their lives. This project has tied slavery to our everyday life, and showed the impact it had both internationally and nationally. This project has put the scope of slavery into perspective."


The work on Lewis Chambers is the second community-based research project in which Huron History students have benefitted from access to AMA records.  In 2013, funded by a grant from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Huron students completed a two-year effort to digitize letters of the AMA missionary Hiram Wilson.  The project results include transcriptions of Wilson's letters held in the AMA collections, and a group of Wilson letters held at the Oberlin College Archives.  


To learn more about the project and to view the transcriptions produced by Dr. Reid-Maroney's students, visit the Hiram Wilson Project blog.