Founded in 1909, the NAACP celebrates its centennial in 2009. In honor of the occasion, this year’s theme for African American History Month, which is celebrated in February, is “The Quest for Black Citizenship in the Americas.” The Library joins in the celebration with a special Web site topic page featuring its black history resources, along with information from its partners, including the National Archives and Records Administration, the National Park Service, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
The NAACP waged a long struggle to eliminate racial discrimination and segregation from American life. By the middle of the 20th century, its focus was on legal challenges to public-school segregation. On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court issued a decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, declaring "separate educational facilities are inherently unequal." This decision was pivotal to the struggle for racial desegregation in the United States. The Library’s exhibition, With an Even Hand, celebrated the 50th anniversary of the landmark judicial case.
The exhibition Voices of Civil Rights documents events during the Civil Rights Movement in the United States. This exhibition draws from the thousands of personal stories, oral histories and photographs collected by the "Voices of Civil Rights" project, a collaborative effort of AARP, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR) and the Library of Congress, and marks the arrival of these materials in the Library's collection.
The Library is acknowledged as a leading resource for the study of the African American experience from the colonial period to the present. The Library's collections include the plays of Zora Neale Hurston, pamphlets from such notables as Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington and the audio recordings of former slaves.
A. The NAACP is people, join. Between 1965 and 1980. Prints and Photographs Division. Reproduction Information: Reproduction No.: LC-USZ62-100309 (b&w film copy neg.); Call No.: POS 6 - U.S., no. 862 (C size) <P&P>[P&P]
B. Civil rights march on Washington, D.C. Aug. 28, 1963. Prints and Photographs Division. SUMMARY: Photograph shows a procession of African Americans carrying signs for equal rights, integrated schools, decent housing, and an end to bias. Reproduction Information: Reproduction No.: LC-DIG-ppmsca-03128 (digital file from original); Call No.: LC-U9- 10364-37 [P&P]