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Major Primary Source Collections
Slavery and Anti-Slavery: A Transnational Archive
-Over 170 pro- and anti-slavery news publications from America, England, Spain and France.
-Over 12,000 primary source books and pamphlets.
-Over 370 Supreme Court Records (mainly transcripts) from cases relating to slavery.
-Over 70 major manuscript collections, including records of the American Colonization Society, American Missionary Association, Freedmen's Bureau Records, British Library Collections, much more.
Slavery and the Law
Comprehensive collection of state slavery statutes and slave petitions to southern country courts.
Wilson Anti-Slavery Collection
The collection is of particular importance for the study of the activities of the provincial philanthropic societies.
MCC 18th Century Dutch Slave Trade Archives
In 1730, the MCC became the principal Dutch slave trading company. The company was eventually liquidated in 1889. The entire archives should be available online by the end of 2015.
Slavery in America and the World: History, Culture & Law
Brings together essential legal material on slavery in the United States and the English-speaking world. This includes every statute passed by every colony and state on slavery, every federal statute dealing with slavery, and all reported state and federal cases on slavery. Cases go into the 20th century, because long after slavery was ended, there were still court cases based on issues emanating from slavery. The library has hundreds of pamphlets and books written about slavery, and every English-language legal commentary on slavery published before 1920.
American Slavery Debate: In the Context of Atlantic Slavery 1770-1865
The American Slavery Debate website is intended to support classroom teaching, faciliate primary source research, and encourage the development of new scholarship in the fields of American History, Atlantic History, and World History.
Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938
contains more than 2,300 first-person accounts of slavery and 500 black-and-white photographs of former slaves. These narratives were collected in the 1930s as part of the Federal Writers' Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and assembled and microfilmed in 1941 as the seventeen-volume Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States from Interviews with Former Slaves.
Antislavery in New England
From the University of Massachusetts. The holdings include speeches, sermons, proceedings and other publications of organizations such as the American Anti-Slavery Society and the American Colonization Society, and a small number of pro-slavery tracts.
Manuscripts Relating to Slavery: New York Historical Society
Consists of diaries, account books, letter books, ships' logs, indentures, bills of sale, personal papers, and records of institutions. Highlights include the records of the New York Manumission Society and the African Free School, the diaries and correspondence of English abolitionists Granville Sharp and John Clarkson, the papers of the Boston anti-slavery activist Lysander Spooner, the records of the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society.
African American Perspectives: Pamphlets from the Daniel A.P. Murray Collection, 1818-1907
Daniel A. P. Murray (1852-1925), an employee of the Library of Congress from 1871 to 1923, was charged with the task of gathering books and pamphlets for the Exhibit of Negro Authors at the 1900 Paris Exposition. The volumes he collected formed the nucleus of the Library's Collection of Books by Colored Authors. These volumes were added to the Colored Authors' Collection. Twenty-two volumes of bound pamphlets were transferred to the Rare Books and Special Collections Division; these volumes form the current Daniel A. P. Murray Pamphlet Collection.
Boston African Americana
Gathers visual and textual materials held by the Athenaeum, the Bostonian Society, Historic New England, and the Massachusetts Historical Society.
From Slavery to Freedom: The African-American Pamphlet Collection, 1822-1909
Presents 396 pamphlets from the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, published from 1822 through 1909, by African-American authors and others who wrote about slavery.
Samuel J. May Anti-Slavery Collection
Numbering over 10,000 titles, May's pamphlets and leaflets document the anti-slavery struggle at the local, regional, and national levels. Much of the May Anti-Slavery Collection was considered ephemeral or fugitive, and today many of these pamphlets are scarce. Sermons, position papers, offprints, local Anti-Slavery Society newsletters, poetry anthologies, freedmen's testimonies, broadsides, and Anti-Slavery Fair keepsakes all document the social and political implications of the abolitionist movement.
Slaves and the Courts, 1740-1860
The over 100 documents, most from the Law Library and the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, comprise an assortment of trials and cases, reports, arguments, accounts, etc.
The Antislavery Literature Project
Antislavery literature represents the origins of multicultural literature in the United States. It is the first body of American literature produced by writers of diverse racial origins. It encompasses slave narratives, lectures, travel accounts, political tracts, prose fiction, poetry, drama, religious and philosophical literature, compendia, journals, manifestoes and children's literature.
Black Abolitionists Archive
Collection of over 800 speeches by antebellum blacks and approximately 1,000 editorials from the period. These important documents provide a portrait of black involvement in the anti-slavery movement; scans of these documents are provided as images and PDF files.
North American Slave Narratives
Contains digitized books and articles that document the individual and collective story of African Americans struggling for freedom and human rights in the eighteenth, nineteenth, and early twentieth centuries. This collection includes all the existing autobiographical narratives of fugitive and former slaves published as broadsides, pamphlets, or books in English up to 1920. Also included are many of the biographies of fugitive and former slaves and some significant fictionalized slave narratives published in English before 1920.
Free People of Color in Louisiana
Digitized collections include entire collections of papers from families or individuals that were free people of color. Many of these extend beyond the end of slavery. Sources drawn from: Historical Center at the Louisiana State Museum, the Louisiana Division of the New Orleans Public Library, The Historic New Orleans Collection, and Tulane University's Louisiana Research Collection.