Quakers of Color International Archives
This multi-media study-and-research collection is intended as the first centralized, comprehensive collection of videos, writings, films, and audio resources by and about Quakers of Color worldwide. We are beginning with a pilot project, interviewing 6-8 outstanding Quakers of Color in the spring and summer of 2019 in the USA, Africa, and the Middle East. Our first scheduled interview, with New England equal rights activist Greg Williams, ailing racial-equality activist in the New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, ended with Greg’s death on 14 February 2019. Other interview priorities include Palestinian Quaker leader Jean Zaru, who is now in the USA for medical treatment; Kenyan theologian Esther Mombo; as well as other activist African American Friends from New England and other parts of the USA, including Caroline Jordan, James Varner, Hal Weaver, Paula Rhodes of Rocky Mountain Yearly Meeting, and Dwight Wilson.
These archives will be a formal expansion of The BlackQuaker Project’s current informal collection, begun with the accumulation of written documents and audio-visual materials for the preparation of our pioneering publication, Black Fire: African American Quakers on Spirituality and Human Rights (2011), edited by Harold D. Weaver, Jr., Paul Kriese and Stephen Angell, with the assistance of Anne Steere Nash and the Preface by Emma Lapsansky-Werner.
The Quakers of Color International Archives (QCIA) will be accessible to scholars, educators, and students who wish a better understanding of the lives, achievements, and contributions of Quakers of Color to the Society of Friends and to the broader community. The Archives will be available to the public and to scholars in one or more of the major library archives—yet to be determined—housing significant Black-Quaker materials or Africana materials: Quaker Archives and Special Collections of the Haverford College Library, the Du Bois Library at UMass/Amherst (which already houses the Archives of the New England Yearly Meeting of Friends), and, perhaps, the Arturo Schomburg Center for Black Culture of the New York Public Library, where Hal’s aunt by marriage, Catherine A. Latimer, was the initiator.
Expertise in the selection and preservation processes, to complement the more than 50 years of experience of the Project director in Black history and culture, is already being utilized from the following experts in bibliography, preservation, Africana Studies, Quakerism, and Black Quaker Studies:
Robert Cox, Director of Special Collections, UMass/Amherst Library and Overseer, NEYM Archives, UMass/Amherst Library
Emma Lapsansky, Prof. of History and Curator of the Quaker Collection, Emerita, Haverford College
Mary Craudereuff, Current Curator of the Quaker Collection, Haverford College Library
Robert Cox Emma Lapsansky Mary Craudereuff