Batman promoting civil rights

Secrets of the Archives: Comics once used to promote social messages

In the late 1940s through the early 1950s, social welfare agencies used comics – featuring famous comic book heroes like Batman and Superman – to promote their messages. Everything from mental health issues to civil rights to patriotism were subjects for the comics.

Many of those comics are housed in the Social Welfare History Archives at the University of Minnesota and the issue is the topic of this installment of “Secrets of the Archives” from the University of Minnesota Libraries.

Host Tim Johnson interviews Linnea Anderson, archivist for the University of Minnesota’s Social Welfare History Archives and they focus on two such comics. Johnson is the Curator for Rare Books and the Sherlock Holmes Collections at the University of Minnesota Libraries.


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