University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Acquires Massive Photographic Archival of Black History

The Wilson Special Collections Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has received the Roland L. Freeman Collection as a gift from the Kohler Foundation, a family foundation that supports the arts and education. The archive, which will be part of the university’s Southern Folklife Collection, will be available to researchers later this year.

Born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1936, Ronald Freeman was inspired to become a photographer after participating in the 1963 March on Washington. His career led him to photograph landmark events, such as the unrest following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s Poor People’s Campaign “Mule Train” March on Washington, and Nelson Mandela’s first visit to the United States.

The collection is a massive compilation of assignment and project work by Freeman from a career that spans more than 50 years of documenting Black communities, public figures, and folk art and artisans. It consists of nearly 24,000 slides, 10,000 photographic prints, 400,000 negatives, and 9,000 contact sheets. Also included are publications and an archive of Freeman’s papers.

“The Southern Folklife Collection is deeply honored and excited to preserve and provide access to Roland Freeman’s photographic archive,” said Steve Weiss, curator of the Southern Folklife Collection. “Freeman’s research and documentation of African American Folklife is innovative in its collaborative methodology and a landmark in the study of African American quilters. His collection will be an invaluable resource for students, historians, folklorists, documentary filmmakers, and many more groups.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Three African Americans Appointed to New Academic Positions

Leon Prieto, Kofi Afrifah, and Andrea Moore have been appointed to new academic positions at Clayton University, Bowie State University, and Savannah State University, respectively.

Historic HBCU Landmark Revitalized Through National Park Service Grant

Through three restoration grants totaling $2 million, the Rosenwald Practice School and Principal House will be fully restored, becoming the new home for the Northeastern North Carolina African American Research and Cultural Heritage Institute.

Five Black Leaders Appointed to Administrative Positions

Here is this week’s roundup of African American who have been appointed to new administrative positions at colleges and universities throughout the United States. If you have news for our appointments section, please email the information to contact@JBHE.com.

North Carolina A&T University Establishes Research Partnership with Collins Aerospace

“There are direct relations to the research we do in the College of Engineering and the mission purpose of Collins Aerospace,” said Stephanie Luster-Teasley, interim dean of the College of Engineering at North Carolina A&T State University. “Being able to partner with Collins really gives our students the opportunities for hands-on research at each level – undergraduate and graduate.”

Featured Jobs