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African American Museum in Philadelphia small collections

circa 1850-2014, 45 linear feet

01

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the African American Museum in Philadelphia. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
African American Museum in Philadelphia
Creator:
African American Museum in Philadelphia
Title:
African American Museum in Philadelphia small collections
Date:
circa 1850-2014
Call Number:
01
Extent:
45 Linear feet
Language:
English
Abstract:
Founded in 1976 in celebration of the nation's Bicentennial, the African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP) is the first institution funded and built by a major municipality to preserve, interpret and exhibit the heritage of African Americans. The museum is committed to telling the story of African Americans in all its permutations: family life, the Civil Rights movement, arts and entertainment, sports, medicine, architecture, politics, religion, law, and technology. The African American Museum in Philadelphia small collections, circa 1850-2014, consist of various small accumulations (less than one linear foot) of archival materials acquired from a variety of sources at various times. The collection focuses on, but is not limited to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, touching on all aspects of African American life and culture. It features a great variety of document types, such as correspondence, minute books, ephemera, photographs, clippings, scrapbooks, film reels, and much more.
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Biography/History

"Founded in 1976 in celebration of the nation's Bicentennial, the African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP) is the first institution funded and built by a major municipality to preserve, interpret and exhibit the heritage of African Americans. Throughout its evolution, the museum has objectively interpreted and presented the achievements and aspirations of African Americans from pre-colonial times to the current day.

"The museum is committed to telling the story of African Americans in all its permutations: family life, the Civil Rights movement, arts and entertainment, sports, medicine, architecture, politics, religion, law and technology."

Bibliography:

The African American museum in Philadelphia. "Museum History." Accessed February 18, 2014. http://www.aampmuseum.org/about-us.html.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of various small accumulations (less than one linear foot) of archival materials acquired from a variety of sources at various times. It touches on all aspects of African American life and culture, from business and politics, to arts and sports, to family life and personal experiences. The focus is Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, although not all the materials are limited to this region. The collection features a great variety of document types, such as correspondence, minute books, ephemera, photographs, clippings, scrapbooks, film reels, and much more. Most of the collection is organized into sub-collections by donor or creator name. There is also a segment of "Small Collections Arranged by Subject," and loose and special format materials.

The named sub-collections, listed here in alphabetical order by donor or creator, are as follows:

  • Aeltesten Trustees (in German), 1897-1915
  • [Ancient Order of Foresters of America] A.O.F. of A. minute book, 1889-1891
  • [Ancient Order of Foresters of America] Foresters of America minute book, 1949-1950
  • Anderson, Bert memorabilia of Charles Dawson
  • Anderson, Gwendolyn, papers
  • Barkely, Lillian, collection
  • Barnes, Harry W., Jr., photo from a program of National Medical Association
  • Batteaste, Irene, photographs and newspaper clippings
  • Baylor, Owen, collection of Philadelphia Orchestra programs and press releases
  • Bowers, Carnella, film reels of John Heinz
  • Brewer, Delores, documents and photographs of Mercy Douglas Hospital and Frederick Douglass Hospital
  • Carmen, Charles, Ghanian stamp collection
  • Churn, Charlotte, collection on classical music and theater
  • Clyde Pelzer Funeral Home ephemera and financial records
  • Collection on MOVE
  • Collections of Citizens / Greater Philadelphia Enterprises Development Corporation (GPEDC)
  • Colvard, Alberta, collection
  • Contino, Francis, collection on politics and civil rights
  • Daniels, Arthur and Edith, papers
  • Dixie Hummingbirds photographs and clippings
  • Ferguson, May, papers
  • Gray, Brooks E., papers, booklets, and programs on African Americans in the military, including World War II
  • Haines, Walter Sr., photos and patents for necktie designs
  • Harris, Lillian, photograph collection of performing artists
  • Hightower, Dorothy, scrapbooks and documents of Roland Johnson
  • Holder, Oscar Elliott and Cora Elizabeth, scrapbooks
  • Hopkins, Dr. Frederick M., clippings and photographs scrapbooks (includes Niagara Falls vacation), circa 1915-1950
  • Hughes, Madelyn, photos, diplomas, programs, and scrapbook
  • Hull, Alma, collection (including correspondence with Marian Anderson, James and Ethel DePreist)
  • Jackson, Judge Ricardo, family photographs
  • Jefferson, Bernice A., papers
  • Jenkins, Leroy, programs, newspapers, and bulletins
  • Johnson, Judy, memorabilia
  • Junior Service League plaques, awards, and programs
  • Kennard, Mary, materials on Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church
  • Lindsey, Grace collection
  • Lloyd, Theophilus J. "Sonny," materials on basketball history
  • Logan, Floyd, papers, photos, and awards (educator's roundtable)
  • Marks, D. H., collection
  • McCabe, J. Grant, III, records of St. John's Settlement House
  • McCalla, John Moore, scrapbook of trip to Liberia, 1860
  • McKnight, Lucille, collection
  • Mills, Maude Frisby, collection
  • Mitchell, Janice and Louis D., collection
  • Nix, Robert N. C., papers
  • Randleman, Irene, photo album and diploma
  • Reeder, Samuel and Bessie, film reel, programs, and documents
  • Smith, Arthur C., photographs
  • Smith, Kathryn B., Claflin College year book and family photos
  • Smith, Marie Steward, papers
  • Stemons, Arizona Cleaver, papers
  • Trent, Raymond F., collection
  • Twyford sheet music collection
  • Unidentified membership ledger, 1878-1880
  • Upshur, William A., Jr., binder, scrapbook, and photographs
  • Vance, Gertrude, collection on Charles McCabe
  • Walton, George Everett, collection on Philadelphia Concert Orchestra
  • Wesley, Dr. Charles, papers, correspondence, reports
  • Wood, A.R. Maynor, papers
  • Zamsky ephemera collection

The segment "Small Collections Arranged by Subjects" is described in an item-level inventory, available on-site. It consists mostly of printed ephemera such as programs, booklets, postcards, and similar materials. There are also some photographs, correspondence, certificates, and various other original documents. This segment is organized into the following subjects:

  • African and Caribbean
  • Arts
  • Black historiography
  • Education
  • Family
  • Business, fraternal, and charitable organizations
  • Media
  • Medical
  • Military
  • Museum-related
  • Music
  • Politics and civil rights, pre 1960
  • Politics and civil rights, post 1960
  • Religion
  • Sports
  • Small artifacts (postcards, cased photographs, buttons, and medallions)

Lastly, the collection consists of various loose materials and special format documents (most of which are stored together by format) assembled by the African American Museum in Philadelphia. These include accumulated photographs, postage stamps, stereographic cards, postcards, posters, large-format designs and plans, and other materials.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

African American Museum in Philadelphia

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Celia Caust-Ellenbogen and Faith Charlton through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories

Sponsor

This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Access Restrictions

Contact African American Museum in Philadelphia for information about accessing this collection.

Immediate Source of Acquisition Note

Materials collected at various times from various sources by the African American Museum in Philadelphia.

Processing Information Note

Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2012-2014 as part of a project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.

In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact African American Museum in Philadelphia directly for more information.

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Controlled Access Headings

Geographic Name(s)
  • Philadelphia (Pa.)
Subject(s)
  • African American athletes
  • African American churches
  • African American entertainers
  • African American fraternal organizations
  • African American musicians
  • African American soldiers
  • African Americans
  • African Americans in medicine
  • Civil rights
  • Local history

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