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National Grant Received to Organize Six Collections from Boston's Underrepresented Communities

Friday, July 1, 2005
Archives and Special Collections Department
archives [at]
(617) 373-2351
Archives and Special Collections

July 2005

National Grant Received to Organize Six Collections from Boston's Underrepresented Communities

The National Historical Publications and Records Commission has awarded Northeastern University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections Department $175,000 for its two-year project, Processing and Providing Access to Boston African American and Latino History. Support for the first year ($90,000) is guaranteed; the remainder of the award is pending NHPRC funding.

The purpose of the project is to make six historically important manuscript collections accessible for research. The Archives and Special Collections Department will arrange, describe, and make accessible 436 cubic feet of mainly 20th century historical records from six private, non-profit organizations relating to social justice in the African American and Latino communities in Boston.

The organizations are: Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción (IBA), United South End Settlements (USES), Roxbury Multi-Service Center (RMSC), Sociedad Latina, Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts (ULEM) and The Citywide Educational Coalition. When considered with the other African American and Latino collections already available in Northeastern's Archives, the body of material will comprise an invaluable historical resource.

The records of these organizations contain rich documentation of themes relating to school desegregation, public policy formation, public health issues, community relations, affordable housing, urban planning, social service delivery, cultural programming, violence prevention, and minority rights during the last decades of the 20th century. The records provide perspectives different from the information and opinions presented by conventional media and in the traditional historical documentation. Created by members of the African American and Latino communities, the records provide clues for understanding events that may have been ignored, misunderstood, or misrepresented in traditional sources. On both the local and national levels, this project will enhance research on a wide range of themes relating to the African American and Latino struggles for full inclusion into society.

For a list of the special collections that are available for research, with links to online finding aids, see: Boston History Collections.

This project demonstrates the Northeastern University Libraries' dedication to preserving the history of Boston's African American, Asian American, Latino, and gay and lesbian communities through preserving the historical records of Boston social justice organizations. View a list of special collections available for research in the NU Archives and Special Collections Department.

Archival Collections