The Will W. Alexander Library of Dillard University highlights Dean Irby, an alum
and former member of the Afro-American Students For Progress. Through this organization,
Mr. Irby and his fellows sought to expose African Americans to the various aspects
of the diaspora to better understand its diversity. Mr. Irby was instrumental in planning
various events for the organization, protest, and community engagement. He was also
a devout member of the university’s Drama Guild.
The HBCU Library Alliance works to transform and strengthen its membership by developing
leaders, preserving collections and planning for the future.
Transforming for Tomorrow while Preserving the Past.
The HBCU Library Alliance is a consortium that supports the collaboration of information
professionals dedicated to providing an array of resources designed to strengthen
Historically Black Colleges and Universities and their constituents.
Hosted by WDSU News Anchor, Christina Watkins, the hour-long special explores the
rich history of Dillard University. Known as “The Jewel of Gentilly,” Dillard is one
of the country’s oldest HBCUs and a staple of New Orleans for 150 years.
Through exclusive interviews with administrators, educators and alumni, WDSU News’ special presentation, Chronicle: Dillard Celebrating 150 Years and Beyond, takes an in-depth look at the university’s very beginnings, its greatest triumph
to return after Katrina, and how its alumni are impacting our region, state, country
“Dillard University is a cornerstone of New Orleans and an inspiration for education,”
said WDSU President and General Manager Joel Vilmenay. “Built to provide African Americans
with opportunities to grow, Dillard’s mission remains as relevant today as when it
began and WDSU is proud to join in their celebration of 150 years of excellence.”
DU Library Archivist, John Kennedy, on Fair Dillard's
Photo: The Henson Artifacts are the snowshoes, parka and sealskin boots
worn by Matthew Henson on his voyage to the North Pole in 1909.
Matthew Alexander Henson (August 8, 1866 – March 9, 1955) was the first African-AmericanArctic explorer, an associate of Robert Peary on seven voyages over a period of nearly 23 years. They made six voyages and spent
a total of 18 years in expeditions. Henson served as a navigator and craftsman, traded
with Inuit and learned their language, and was known as Peary's "first man" for these
The mission of the Archives and Special Collections is to support the University in
all endeavors of producing a quality educational experience. As the repository for
primary documents and artifacts of enduring value to the University, we are to preserve
and protect all materials under the archives care and supervision. We are to provide
regulated and efficient access to materials for the University community and researchers.
To that end, we:
Select, purchase, organize and maintain a quality archive and special collections
Anticipate information needs in an increasingly global society
Build and develop collections and provide access to information resources in support
of teaching, research and services
Ensure the long-term preservation, availability, and access to these resources
Provide physical environments conducive for study, research, and inquiry
Encourage, develop, and sustain in its staff the requisite knowledge, skills, commitment
and innovative spirit
ALL patrons requesting service MUST provide institutional or state ID. Failure to
provide proper identification will result in denial of archival access.
The use of ink pens or markers is prohibited. A pencil can be provided.
No food or drinks allowed unless properly sealed. Eating, drinking, and gum chewing
Researchers may be required to wear gloves at the archivist's discretion.
Photography is prohibited without permission from the archivist.
HOURS OF OPERATION
Monday-Thursday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
***Closed weekends and holidays***
The Archives are available by appointment. It is recommended that visitors call or
email for an appointment.
Carved in one piece from a mahogany tree felled in Kinshasa, Zaire (formerly called
Leopoldville, Congo) in West Africa. The sculptor (nicknamed “the Frog,” because he
moves around by sliding on his hindquarters due to his under-developed legs) along
with the male members of his immediate family, hacked out this superb carving of a
pygmy’s head, face, and neck using only their native axes, crude chisels, machetes,
and hand-made knives. All finishing was done without sandpaper, paid stain, varnish
or shellac. Select stones serve as abrasives and the only polish used was a can of
brown shoe polish. It was carved in 1963. Most of the carving and finishing work was
done in a quarter of Kinshasa named Cite Sector.
Donated to the Dillard University Library by: Preston and Rosa Edwards
Dr. Samuel DuBois Cook, Dillard University President 1974-1997
Founders' Day Exhibit in the Dillard University Library
October 22, 2017
Dr. Samuel DuBois Cook led Dillard University for 23 years. Within those years, Dr.
Cook exemplified a nurturing spirit that sought to help Dillard University's students
excel in academic excellence and appreciation for culture. More information about
Dr. Cook can be found @: https://www.dillard.edu/dillard-newsroom/campus-news/cook-dies.php.
In honor of the Dillard University Golden Graduates of 1968, our Archivist, Mr. John
Kennedy, created these awesome panels of pictures! Please visit the DU Alumni House
to view the panels in person!
By recording, preserving and sharing the life stories of thousands of African Americans,
from President Barack Obama to the oldest living black cowboy, The HistoryMakers is
a leader in helping to educate and enlighten millions worldwide through refashioning
a more inclusive record of American history.
Special Collections LibGuides: An Analysis of Uses and Accessibility
Jacquelyn Slater Reese, Cheryl McCain
Content management systems (CMS) such as SpringShare’s LibGuides have become a popular
method of creating online pathfinders or subject guides. At the same time, special
collections have explored new digital ways to reach their users. Ease of access and
simple navigation are key to reaching all types of users. Special collections have
explored different ways to use a traditional subject guide system to meet their unique
needs. This article investigates the navigation pathway to special collections LibGuides
at Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA) member institutions and analyzes the different
ways special collections are using this tool.
special collections; LibGuides; outreach; online guides; accessibility
DU Library Archives List of Special Collections
Will W. Alexander Papers - William Winton Alexander was a pivotal figure in race relations and poverty support.
He was a key component to the founding of the Commission on Interracial Cooperation
in 1919. Alexander also headed the Farm Security Administration from 1937 to 1940
and then became vice-president of the Rosenwald Fund from 1940 to 1948. Throughout
the 1940’s and 1950’s, he worked with the Edgar Stern Family Fund and in international
relations. He also served as acting President of Dillard University from 1935-36.
This collection is made up of three series containing Mr. Alexander’s works: writings,
speeches, addresses, lectures, reports, and administrative records. Its extent is
2.5 linear ft.
Clara Blanchet Collection - This collection contains three series. These series are important due to Straight
University’s significance amongst African Americans, and what they would eventually
accomplish due to a new education. Series are primarily comprised of materials centered
on Straight University: Straight University photographs, programs, booklets, catalogs,
student information, and meeting minutes. Extent is .5 linear foot.
Cook Family Collection - Cook’s experiences includes teaching positions at Atlanta University, Duke University,
and UCLA. Between 1953 and 1955, Cook served as Social Sciences Specialist to the
U.S. Army. In 1975, Dr. Cook became President of Dillard University. At Dillard, Cook
was responsible for increasing enrollment, instituting a Japanese Studies program
and a Center for Black Jewish Relations. His writings include articles on Martin Luther
King Jr. and the black revolution and political movements in the South. Cook’s affiliations
included the Southern Political Science Association, editorial board of the Journal
of Negro History and Pi Sigma Alpha. This collection is composed of nine series which
subjects include: photographs, programs, newspaper clippings, monograph and serial
publications and writings. Extent is 1 linear foot.
David J. Malarcher Collection - A student of New Orleans University, Malarcher would begin his famed baseball career.
Malarcher baseball career is varied over a few years with multiple teams, which included:
Indianapolis ABCs, Detroit Stars and the Chicago American Giants. Within nine years
leading the American Giants, Malarcher saw six playoff appearances, and two Negro
League World Series championships. This collection gives a better insight into Mr.
Malarcher’s poetic talents not just his baseball career. It is comprised of five series
that include: poems, player contracts, correspondence, photographs, and articles.
Extent is .5 linear foot.
Dent Family Collection - The Dent Family collection contains extensive material on Albert W. Dent, Jessie Covington
Dent, and their son, Tom Dent. For six years Mr. Dent worked as superintendent of
Flint-Goodridge Hospital, as well as, business manager for Dillard University. From
1941 – 1969, Albert Dent was Dillard University’s President. Tom Dent is a noteworthy
Freedom Writer, where his writing began while working for the Houston Informer and
the New York Age. He became a public information worker for the NAACP Legal Defense
and Educational Fund in 1961. Heavy involvement in the Civil Rights Movement and the
significance of its struggle was reflected greatly within Tom’s writings. The Dent
Family Collection contains three series, each dedicated to the respected Dents. The
details of the collection consist of: school publications, writings and addresses,
programs, correspondence, collected articles, collected publications, dedications,
newspaper clippings, and flyers. The extent is 1 linear foot.
Lucile L. Hutton Collection - Hutton is a product of Straight College’s Normal Department. She taught in the New
Orleans Public Schools immediately after her graduation. Ms. Hutton was a very versatile
individual, earning a Music degree from Oberlin and a Master’s in Music from Northwestern
University. Her collection is composed of three series made up of: programs, constitutions
and by-laws, publications and correspondence. The highlight of the collection include
an 1895 copy of Alice Ruth Moore’s Violets and Other Tales with handwritten notes
on the author by Ms. Hutton and a history of the United Church of Christ. Extent is
.5 linear foot.
George E. Haynes Collection - George E. Haynes was a devoted sociologist, race relations expert, and Urban League
founder. The collection consists of seven series mostly: writings produced in the
1930s and 1940s, awards, biographical information, correspondence, and a collection
of writings by W. Montague Cobb’s (the First African American to receive a Ph.D. in
Anthropology). Extent is 1 linear foot.
Gilbert D. Fletcher Collection - Mr. Fletcher is a Dillard University graduate, whom over time organized art activities
for preschool children as a teacher and was an art editor for R. R. Bowker Company
in New York. Mr. Fletcher’s paintings have appeared in published poems. The collection
contains works ranging from the 1970s to the 1980s. The collection is composed of
seven series featuring: announcements, invitations and programs, awards, as well as
correspondence. The extent of the collection is 1 linear foot.
James Hardy Dillard Collection – Mr. Dent is the philanthropist whom Dillard University is named after. While working
with the New Orleans Public Library, Child Welfare Association, and the Louisiana
State Board of Education, Mr. Dillard was able to drastically improve race relations
and education opportunities for African Americans. He was the first president and
director of the Negro Rural School Fund. The collection is comprised of Mr. Dillard’s
own materials and materials written about him. This is a five series collection composed
of: articles, addresses, and a report of the Phelps-Strokes Fund (A non-profit fund
catering to African and African American causes), photographs, newspaper clippings
and biographical information. The extent is 1 linear foot.
Stern Family Collection - A philanthropist and business man, who was made planning chairman of a drive to raise
funds to merge two African American schools , Straight College and New Orleans University,
which gave birth to Dillard University. He became the first president of its board.
The Stern Collection is composed of six series: materials regarding Stern and his
wife, letters, correspondence, articles, programs, memos, photographs, sound recordings,
a catalog of the Longview Foundation’s Arts Program, newspaper clippings, a copy of,
“A Survey for the Educational Facilities” and resources of Orleans Parish, a picture
album of President Johnson and his family. The extent is 1 linear foot.
George Longe Collection - George Longe was an educator and one who devoted himself to community service in New
Orleans. He served as a principal for many New Orleans schools and was involved greatly
in New Orleans’ groups focused on racial and community improvement. The collection
is arranged into three series featuring: public school materials, organizations, associations,
photos, booklets, and requisitions. The extent is 1.5 linear feet.
Sylvia Fannie Murray Collection - This collection provides a window into an active young woman’s life. She participated
in school events, community social clubs and Carnival. The collection is composed
of four series containing: programs, calendars, invitations, photographs, newsletters,
news clippings, cards, poems, and a painting. The extent is .5 linear foot.
McPherson Freedom Collection - The collection mainly consists of abolitionist literature spanning from 1769 to 1864.
Highlights of the collection include pamphlets published by the Loyal Publication
Society, minutes of the proceedings of abolition societies and an original letter
to Thomas W. Higginson, co-organizer of the 1857 Disunion Convention. The extent of
the collection is .5 linear foot.
Julius Rosenwald Fund Collection - This focuses on a fund established by philanthropist Julius Rosenwald in 1917. This
fund provided an incredible financial contribution toward improvements in African
American health, education, and welfare. It was concentrated in the South where it
developed education initiatives for African Americans, schools, libraries, and improvements
in race relations. The collection is made of four series containing: publications,
reports, agendas, correspondence, articles, poems, and a memorandum. The extent is
1.5 linear feet.
The Straight College Collection - Straight College was founded as Straight University in 1868, a predecessor to Dillard
University, where it served as a symbol of African American advancement in the South,
and throughout the post-Civil War era. It offered studies in elementary level education
to college level, music, law, and Normal classes. The Straight College Collection
is comprised of seven series featuring: university publications, programs, scrapbooks,
photographs and diplomas. The extent of the collection is 7 linear feet.
New Orleans University Collection - New Orleans University began operation in 1873. Like Straight College, New Orleans
University serves as a symbol of African American advancement and higher education
during a time African Americans were seeking to become literate. New Orleans University
merged with Straight College, and formed Dillard University. The New Orleans University
Collection consists of five series featuring: university publications, programs, photographs,
and diplomas. The extent of the collection is 2.5 linear feet.
Gilbert Academy Collection - Gilbert Academy received its name from William L. Gilbert, a farmer and businessman
who contributed to the education and welfare of African Americans in the South. Gilbert
Academy began with the Colored Orphan’s Home located on plantation lands of Bayou
Teche, which was established by the Freedman’s Bureau. The orphanage housed orphan
children of African American Union Soldiers. Gilbert Academy is the culmination of
this orphanage and a preparatory school called La Teche Seminary. From 1935 to 1949,
the Academy served as a diverse co-ed private high school for African Americans in
New Orleans. The Academy was reinstated in 2000, as Dillard University past President
Michael Lomax sought to create a summer enrichment programs for high school students
seeking a college education. The extent of the collection is 1.5 linear feet.
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