The 1943 Detroit Race Riot

(28602) Race Riots, Violence, Detroit, 1943

On June 20, 1943, a fight broke out between African American and white Detroiters spending their Sunday on Belle Isle, the city’s large park in the middle of the Detroit River. Fighting spread to the mainland, and rumors crisscrossed the city, stoking racial tensions that had been running high and threatening to boil over into violence for months. Rioting spread, with little attempt from the police to stop it (in fact, much evidence points to many white police facilitating and even participating in violence against African Americans), and by the time President Franklin Roosevelt sent in federal troops on the evening of June 21, hundreds had been injured, and 34 people had died: 25 African American (17 of whom were shot by police), and 9 white. Of the arrests made later, 85% were African American.  read more »

Collection Spotlight: Wayne State University Yearbooks

Detroit Junior College Yearbook Cover 1923

The first college yearbook produced by Wayne State University -- or, to be precise, by the Detroit College of Medicine (DCM) -- appeared in 1900: the Souvenir Annual, prepared by that year's junior class. The last, or latest, Wayne yearbook is 2005's The Warrior. In that 105-year span 131 yearbooks were published by the university, its predecessor institutions, and its departments and colleges. A complete collection of these annual volumes may be found in the Reading Room of the Walter P. Reuther Library.  read more »

Meet Louis Jones, Reuther Library Field Archivist

(28587) Louis Jones

The Walter P. Reuther Library is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Louis Jones as the new Field Archivist.

Originally from New York City, Louis received a Bachelor of Arts from Morehouse College and a master’s degree in Afro-American studies from Cornell University. Never content to stop learning, he earned a Master of History from the University of Delaware, while at the same time pursuing studies in archival management. More recently, Louis received a doctorate in American history from Wayne State University where his dissertation concerned the development of public sector unionism in metropolitan Detroit in the immediate post-World War II era.  read more »

Collection Spotlight: UFW Montreal Boycott Office Records

(303) Supporters of the Grape Boycott march through Toronto

In the Winter 2012 semester, the Reuther Library worked with students in the Graduate Certificate in Archival Administration program at the Wayne State School of Library and Information Science to produce a series of student-written, guest blog posts.

Timothy R. Borbely is a graduate student at Wayne State University. He is currently pursuing a joint MLIS/MA in History with a focus on Archival Administration and the French Revolution.

The United Farm Workers Grape Boycott in Montreal from 1969 to 1970 is one that involved a lot of important planning by activist Jessica Govea (pictured above, in glasses, marching in Toronto in 1968), who took charge of operations in Quebec during 1969 at the age of twenty-two.  read more »

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