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Givens Collection


      Avenues to Black history

      What began in the early part of the 20th century as a week dedicated to studying the history of Black people in America by the 1960s was expanding to a month. Starting in the mid-1970s, U.S. Presidents have annually proclaimed February to be Black History Month. Yet people can explore Black history any month, taking online avenues through primary source materials and special collections available through the Libraries.
      All God's Dangers: The Life of Nate Shaw

      Racism, directly experienced

      Of all of the things that this time is — ”unprecedented,” heartbreaking, revealing, painful — it is also a time of proliferating lists. ... And here, another small list, from the Libraries’ Givens Collection of African American Literature, that means to provide some context for thinking about the consequences of founding a country on principles of white supremacy.

      Archives as tools for discussion

      Umbra: Search African American History brings together over 400,000 digitally available items that document African American cultural history from over 500 archives, libraries, and cultural heritage institutions in the United States. #MyUmbraSearches are digital exhibits narrated by students, professors, artists, and community members, and are illustrated with materials found in Umbra.
      umbra website screenshot

      Help improve ‘Umbra: Search African American History’

      Over 350,000 objects documenting more than 300 years of African American history and culture are now discoverable in Umbra: Search African American History, developed by the University of Minnesota Libraries in partnership with Penumbra Theatre Company. You can help improve Umbra by taking a brief online survey and sharing your feedback.

      Givens Exhibition at Hennepin County and on Cities97

        The Givens Collection of African American Literature celebrates Black History Month with "Bibliophilia: Collecting Black Books," now on display at the Hennepin County Government...

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