Researchers at work in the Division of Negro Literature, History and Prints at the 135th Street library in 1938. (Photo: The New York Public Library, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Photographs and Prints Division)
Lucindy Lawrence Jurdon, Age 79. Taken between 1936 and 1938. Federal Writer's Project, United States Work Projects Administration (USWPA). Library of Congress Manuscript Division
The Manuscript Division has one of the nation's most valuable collections for the study of African-American history and culture. The Library's holdings include information about slavery and the slave trade as well as other aspects of plantation life. Papers of slaveholders provide one view of slavery, and slave narratives give another. Diaries and journals further illuminate lives spent in slavery and freedom.