University Library at St. Cloud State University

Ethnic Studies (African Americans)

Library Resources for Research
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  Articles, journals, magazines and newspapers

Academic Search Premier Restricted Resource Some full text availablefindit elm database
Full-text articles in biology, chemistry, education, engineering, humanities, physics, psychology, religion and theology, sociology, etc. Tip: Click the check box to limit to Academic (Peer Reviewed) Journals.
African American Newspapers Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase
Searchable database of approximately 270 U.S. newspapers from more than 35 states chronicling a century and a half of the African American experience.
Encyclopedia of African American Education Restricted Resource Some full text availableeref ebook
A comprehensive overview of educational institutions at every level, from preschool through graduate and professional training, with special attention to historically and predominantly Black colleges and universities. The encyclopedia follows the struggle of African Americans to achieve equality in education—beginning among an enslaved population and evolving into the present—as the efforts of many remarkable individuals furthered this cause through court decisions and legislation.
Ethnic NewsWatch Restricted Resource Some full text availablefindit database
Articles from over 200 newspapers, magazines and journals of the ethnic, minority and native press. Provides in-depth coverage of a wide range of current and historical topics. Limit the Source Type to "Scholarly Journals" for peer-reviewed articles.
HuffPost Black Voices
Part of the Huffington Post News online news source.
Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder
A Minneapolis-based newspaper representing the viewpoint of African Americans.
Sociological Abstracts Restricted Resource findit database
The primary database for scholarly articles in sociology, anthropology, social work, and related topics of study.

  Biographies and quotations

African American Biographical Database Restricted Resource Some full text available
This extraordinary collection contains narratives of African American activists, business people, former slaves, performing artists, educators, lawyers, physicians, writers, church leaders, homemakers, religious workers, government workers, athletes, farmers, scientists, factory workers, and more--assembled from biographical dictionaries and other sources. Their stories are pivotal to an understanding of the Black American experience over the last two centuries. Coverage is from 1790 to 1950, so it does not include biographies of contemporary individuals.

Note: Access to this database will end on 28 February 2015. The subscription was cancelled.
African American Lives
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .A446 2004
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African American Lives offers up-to-date, authoritative biographies of some 600 noteworthy African Americans. Subjects include slaves and abolitionists, writers, politicians, and business people, musicians and dancers, artists and athletes, victims of injustice and the lawyers, journalists, and civil rights leaders who gave them a voice.
African American Voices
Print Location: Ref E185.A2573 1996
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African American Voices presents 35 full or excerpted speeches and other notable spoken words of African Americans. Each entry is accompanied by an introduction and boxes explaining terms and events to which the speech refers. The two-volume set contains pertinent black-and-white illustrations, a timeline, and a subject index.
African American Women: A Biographical Dictionary
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .A45 1993
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The nearly 300 biographical sketches in this dictionary focus on women who have made meaningful, although often unheralded, contributions to American history and culture. Although the collection concentrates on historical achievements, several women reflect contemporary accomplishments or historical firsts. The women represented have made significant contributions to social reform, politics, arts and entertainment, religion, business, education, and the professions.
African-American Orators: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook
Print Location: REF E185.96 .A447 1996
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A sourcebook on the major African-American Orators. Articles are substantial, ranging up to 5-7 pages in length. Each is followed by a list of Resources, Selected Critical Studies, Select Biographies, and a Chronology of major speeches. Volume has a general index.
Black Writers: A Selection of Sketches from Contemporary Authors
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .B545 1994
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Contains more than four hundred entries on twentieth-century black writers.
Contemporary Black Biography
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .C66
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This extraordinary reference series provides biographical profiles of important persons of African heritage whether they are personalities from the news, selected 20th-century notables, or individuals who are not yet household names. Each volume of Contemporary Black Biography contains 55 full-length biographies, Name, occupation, nationality and subject indexes are included in each volume.
Twentieth-Century African-American Writers and Artists
Print Location: Ref NX512.3.A35 H43 1990
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This is a source of essential biographical and critical information about contemporary black artists.
Voices of Multicultural America: Notable Speeches Delivered By African, Asian, Hispanic, and Native Americans, 1790-1995
Print Location: REF E184.A1 V64 1996x
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Alphabetically organized with cross-indexing by ethnic group, this reference source provides full reproduction of notable speeches. In the case of speeches that were not written, they are produced in the vernacular along with a standard American English translation. Each entry includes a substantial biographical portrait of the individual in question and includes a bibliography.
Who's Who Among African Americans
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .W52
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Short biographical sketches of prominent African Americans, in alphabetical order.

  Facts, definitions, and overviews

African American Almanac
Print Location: Ref E185.N385
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Completely updated, this new 8th edition provides a range of historical and current information on African American history, society and culture. Users will also find chronologies, texts of important documents and speeches, biographical profiles, legislation, essays, statistics and more than 800 illustrations to help them with their research.
African American Encyclopedia
Print Location: REF E185.A253 2001
10 vol. A-Z arrangement with index in Vol. 10. Entries include information on history, biography, culture, society, and current issues. Most entries are signed and include Suggested Readings for further research. Second Edition is the work of a great many hands; 346 scholars contributed the essays that appear in these pages.
African American History Month
A site devoted to "paying tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society." Hosted by the Library of Congress.
African American Years
Print Location: Ref E185.S797 2003
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"The African American Years" focuses specifically on the history of African Americans from pre-colonial times to the present. This timeline is enriched by overview essays, sidebars, and primary sources - poems, memoirs, legal documents - and more than two hundred images that chronicle the story of African Americans and create a portrait encompassing its struggles, triumphs, complexity, and exuberance. Features include a comprehensive index; sidebars spotlighting specific people and topics; approximately 250 images; and a bibliography.
African-American History
Print Location: Ref E 185.E545 1998
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The Compendium of African-American History is a compelling reference work providing an overview of the essential people, places, thoughts, ideas and statistics that constitute the African-American experience. This compendium presents a combination of biographies, historical essays, and thematic articles summarizing African-American history from 1619 to the present.
Atlas of African-American History and Politics: From the Slave Trade to Modern Times
Print Location: Ref E185.S574 1998
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The Atlas of African-American History and Politics consists of more than 150 originally produced maps which trace the African experience throughout the world and in America. The volume traces the complete history of African-Americans and their lives, employing artfully-conceived maps, and enhanced by sharply-written historic narratives, graphically reinforcing the facts.
Black Firsts: 4,000 Ground-Breaking and Pioneering Historical Events
Print Location: Ref E185.B574 2003
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Readers will revel and rejoice in the stories of barrier-breaking pioneers in all fields-arts, entertainment, business, civil rights, education, government, inventing, journalism, religion, science, sports, and more.
Black Women in America: An Historical Encyclopedia
Print Location: REF E185.86 .B542 2005
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A scholarly compilation of biographical and topical articles covering key issues and the lives of African American women, celebrated and unknown, through history (Diana Hacker, 2003).
Chronology of World Slavery
Print Location: Ref HT861 .R63 1999
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The Chronology of World Slavery traces the course of events, both great and small, that have defined the meaning of slavery throughout history. Unprecedented in scope and approach, the Chronology features seven separate chronologies covering major world regions and eras; 128 sidebars, each with its own bibliography, written by 44 eminent scholars; 80 primary source documents from diverse time periods; 120 black-and-white illustrations and 5 maps; and preface, introduction, and general index.
Encyclopedia Britannica Guide to Black History Some full text available
Encyclopedia Britannica provides this brief online encyclopedia of African-American history.
Encyclopedia of Africa South of the Sahara
Print Location: REF DT351 .E53 1997
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Summarizing current knowledge of the world's second largest continent,this 4-volume set covers its people, its culture, and its complex history. Intended for students and the general reader, the Encyclopedia provides current and accurate information in over 1,000 articles on the sub-Saharan region. The articles describe such topics as the intricate ties of family and kinship, the complex matrix of government, politics, and law, and the beauties of African arts, cultures, and languages. There are individual entries on each nation in modern sub-Saharan Africa
Encyclopedia of African American Civil Rights: From Emancipation to the Present
Print Location: E185.61 .E54 2003
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Dictionary of terms, events, and prominent people related to the civil rights movement
Encyclopedia of African American Society
Print Location: Restricted Resource
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Approaching the field from a "street level" perspective, these two volumes cover topics of universal interest in America: politics, sports, education, race relations, television and cinema, religion, literature, music (from jazz to rap to opera), and much more. The Encyclopedia of African American Society is also the first comprehensive yet accessible reference set in this field to give voice to turbulent historical trends - slavery, segregation, the "separate but equal" doctrine, implementation of fair housing laws and affirmative action - that have shaped the experience of African Americans.
Encyclopedia of African and African-American Religions
Print Location: REF BL2462.5 .E53 2001
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Encyclopedia of African, Sub-Saharan, and African American religions.Includes bibliographical references and index.
Encyclopedia of African-American Culture and History
Print Location: Restricted Resource
A-Z organization in 6 volumes.  Offers extensive articles on people, institutions, events, issues, and themes related to African Americans. Signed articles include bibliography for further reading.
Encyclopedia of Civil Rights in America
Print Location: Ref E185.61.E544 1998
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A comprehensive, well-organized reference source on the human rights and civil liberties that are legally recognized in the United States.
Encyclopedia of Minorities in American Politics
Print Location: REF E184 .A1 E574 2000
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This two volume set is organized in four parts to include: African, Asian, Hispanic and Native American contributions to American politics. Provides short 1-3 paragraph descriptions of major events and personages in American political history. In addition, each section includes three appendices with: 1) primary documents, 2) listings of organizations and contact information as well as 3)tables of U.S. House & Senate members.
Encyclopedia of the Great Black Migration
Print Location: Ref E185.6 E54 2006
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Describes the movement of Southern African Americans to the urban North and West in the broadest social, economic, cultural, and most importantly, political context. Entries provide students and researchers with information about the key people, places, organizations, and events that defined the era of the migration, from 1900 to the 1990s.
Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance
Print Location: Ref NX512.3.A35 E53 2004
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Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance takes a very broad view of the renaissance and the connection of this movement to the major social, political, and intellectual developments in early twentieth-century African American history. Consequenty, the encyclopedia not only addresses the artistic and cultural events directly related to the Harlem Renaissance but also examines the political, economic, and social environment in which the movement took place.
Harlem Renaissance: A Historical Dictionary for the Era
Print Location: REF NX511 .N4 H37 1984
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An extensive introduction by the editor, Bruce Kelner, contextualizes the entries on people, places, events, and organizations that are found in this volume. Includes a comprehensive glossary of abbreviations and acronyms as well as five appendices: chronology of significant events, Harlem Renaissance Library (publications, in chronological order, from that era), "plays by, about , or Feturing Afro-Americans, 1917-1935", serial publications from the Harlem Renaissance, and a glossary of Harlem Slang. Extensive bibliography and index.
note: 1917 - 1935
Historical Dictionary of the Civil Rights Movement
Print Location: Ref E185.61.L84 1997
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Provides over three hundred concise descriptions of the important people, organizations, events, and the multitude of executive orders, legislative acts, and judicial decisions which played crucial roles in the historic transformation of American society after World War II.
Library of Congress Digital Collections database
The gateway to the Library of Congress’s digitized American primary source materials including photographs, posters, maps, letters, diaries, sound recordings, films, books, pamphlets, and sheet music.

Minnesota Ethnic Resources Directory
Print Location: An older version is available in print at: F615 .A1 M545 1995x
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This internet edition of the Minnesota Ethnic Resources Directory contains over 700 total listings including descriptions of approximately 600 non-profit organizations providing ethnic or nationality services plus other institutional groupings. There is also information regarding citizenship and passport procedures as well as direct links to ethnic/nationality resources.
New York Public Library African American Desk Reference
Print Location: Ref E185.N49 1999
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In over 5,000 fascinating information capsules, this landmark reference captures the most vital people, places, organizations, movements, and creative works of a people, and provides a practical resource for everyday living. In its nineteen chapters, you will find: Timelines of African American History; Political and Civil Rights Leaders; African Contributions to the Making of the Americas; Holidays and Celebrations; Museums and Historical Sites; Religion and Spirituality; Health Tips and Recipes; Business Contacts and Professional Associations; Demographics and Population; Major Writers, Artists, and Musicians; Musical Forms; Sports; and more.
Notable Black American Men
Print Location: Ref E185.86 .N68 1998
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Notable Black American Men contains 500 one-to-five-page alphabetically arranged biographies that reflect a wide variety of areas of endeavor.
Notable Black American Women
Print Location: Ref E185.96 .N68 1992
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Narrative biographical essays, edited by noted scholar Jessie Carney Smith, discuss each woman's significant achievements and the public response to those achievements. Book I features approximately 425 entries; Book II provides approximately 300 additional entries.
Organizing Black America: An Encyclopedia of African American Associations
Print Location: REF E185.5 .O74 2001
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Organized alphabetically to provide easy access to information about associations established by African Americans, interracial organizations that served a predominantly black constituency, groups working in the interest of Afrian Americans, and associatoin activities in cities with significant black populations. Each entry traces the origins, goals, foundes, membership, staff, activities, achievements, failures, and demise of AA associations (Nina Mjagkij, editor).
Pan-African Chronology : A Comprehensive Reference to the Black Quest for Freedom in Africa, the Americas, Europe and Asia, 1400-1865
Print Location: REF DT17 .J46 1996
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Chronology of the Slave trade. Includes bibliographical references and index.
note: 1400-1865
Slavery in the United States: A Social, Political, and Historical Encyclopedia
Print Location: Ref E441.S635 2007
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Thematic essays, primary source documents, and a chronology enhance the alphabetically-arranged entries tracing the historical, social, and political aspects of slavery in the United States.


Africa: South of the Sahara
Selected Web sites organized by country and region and by topic. The site is edited and maintained for the African Studies Association by Karen Fung, deputy curator of the Africa collection at the Hoover Library at Stanford University.
African American Registry
"African American Registry trains educators, serves parents and inspires students of all ages every day with articles on Africans Americans and Africans from the continent." This resource includes streaming videos (Black Box) from African American elders, interactive blogs, and other resources to assist educators in being more culturally skilled. The Gateway to the Black World
Formerly known as " was launched in 1999 by the editors of the print Africana and Encarta Africana encyclopedia. Describing itself as the 'Digital Bridge,' this resource contains a wide variety of content and services, including e-mail, daily and archived news and feature stories from a variety of sources, interactive discussion, shopping, music, book and movie reviews, and a crossword puzzle. Feature stories are organized into 'channels' such as 'Black World' and 'Arts.' The Encarta Africana portion of the site links to articles featured on the Web page," (ALA, RUSA-MARS). Recently taken over by AOL - Black Voices
American Civil Liberties Union: Racial Justice
Website of the ACLU Racial Justice Program which aims to preserve and extend constitutionally guaranteed rights to people who have historically been denied their rights on the basis of race. 
Everything Black
A Web direcory focusing on African American interests. Topics include arts & humanities, business, education, news, entertainment, history & culture, organizations, and sports.
Facing History and Ourselves
A non-profit organization that provides teachers with professional development through institutes and seminars. "For more than 25 years, Facing History has engaged teachers and students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and antisemitism in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry,"(From Website).
Historical Text Archive
Offers more than 3,000 links to materials by country and region (with the United States receiving the strongest coverage) and by topic such as Native American, African American, movie history, and genealogy. Resources include both primary and secondary sources (Diana Hacker, 2003).
Stone Center Library for Black Culture and History's Guide to the Web
"Includes links and descriptions to over 300 scholarly and cultural web sites that are useful for researching African, African American, and African Diaspora history and culture."

  Research guides and manuals

Columbia Guide to Online Style
This site provides many examples for citing online resources in the bibliography of a humanities, social science or science research paper. See Preparing the Bibliographic Material once you have linked to this page.

  Laws, legislation, and government reports

Southern Poverty Law Center
A legal advocacy organization specializing in civil rights and public interest litigation. 

  Primary sources

Umbra Search
Umbra Search brings together more than 500,000 digitized materials of African American history and culture from over 1,000 libraries and archives across the US.  Materials include images, audio and video files, and texts.  Umbra Search continues to be developed and support by the Givens Collection of African American Literature and the University of Minnesota Libraries' Archives and Special Collections.

  Statistics and data

Black Americans: A Statistical Sourcebook & Guide to Government Data
Print Location: Ref E185.86 .B5238x 2008
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Statistical information of Black Americans in the areas of: Demographics and social characteristics; Vital statistics and health; Education; Government and elections; Crime, law enforcement and corrections; Labor, employment and unemployment; Earnings, income, poverty and wealth; Special topics.
Facts on Black/African American Population
"Provides statistics compiled from government data on the social and economic characteristics of the nation's Black/African American inhabitants, as well as links to various reports, news releases, and data from the 2000 Census. Data on social characterisitcs such as age, child care, educational attainmnet, foreign-born poulation, health insurance, marital status, mobility, and women can be found," (Choice, Sept. 2002).
U.S. Census Bureau
The Census Bureau's mission is to serve as the leading source of quality data about the nation's people and economy.
Subject Specialist
Picture: Melissa Prescott

Melissa Prescott
Professor, Research Librarian
MC 204E
(320) 308-4751

Multicultural Resource Center
The Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) is an academic center that supports those who are learning, researching or teaching about the experiences of people of color in the United States. Books in the MRC collection are on Miller Center 1st floor, near MC 137.

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