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 home >> Civil Rights History Project >> Survey of Collections and Repositories >> Collections >> Collection Record

The Civil Rights History Project: Survey of Collections and Repositories

Community Development Corporation oral history project

Repository: New York Public Library. Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

Collection Description (Extant): The tape recording collection is described as comprising approximately 240 recordings, including interviews, speeches, readings, recordings of meetings, and documentary recordings. The Pratt Center received the support and encouragement of the Ford Foundation to initiate an Oral History Project that would capture the rich history of the CDC movement from the perspective of some of its founding leaders. The Pratt Center has assisted in the creation of many CDCs, including one of the nation's first - the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. As part of the project, in-depth videotaped interviews with the founders, leaders and supporters of 19 CDCs across the country were conducted. These videotapes are available to researchers, scholars and other interested individuals as part of the permanent collection at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

The organizations included in the Oral History Project represent a broad cross section of the field, and demonstrate the diversity of the leadership styles, development strategies, and geographic, ethnic and racial base of CDCs. While they vary in terms of their goals and strategies for revitalizing the communities they serve, these CDCs share common roots in the civil rights and antipoverty movements of the 1960s.

From the USM Civil Rights Documentation Project website (

The following people associated with Mississippi are listed in the description: Ross R. Barnett, James Chaney, Thomas Dent, James Farmer, Fannie Lou Hamer, and James Meredith. Subjects listed include the Freedom Movement in Mississippi, the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, Deacons for Defense and Justice, White Citizens' Council, Freedom Schools, Mississippi Freedom Summer, and Fayette County. No further information was available during the site visit.

This project was initiated by the Pratt Institute Center for Community and Environmental Development (PICCED) with funding from the Ford Foundation. The intention was to record the history of the CDC movement. The principal interviewer was James Briggs Murray. Videotaped interviews were conducted with founders, leaders, and supporters of nineteen CDCs, including Mississippi Action for Community Education (MACE) in Greenville. Those videotapes are now part of the Schomburg Center's Moving Images and Recorded Sound Division.

Collection URL: External Link

Finding Aid: Catalog records for 35 interviews are available at the NYLP's online catalog.

Language: English

Interviewees: Herman Gallegos, Doris Koo, Otis Pitts, Henry Mestre, Arabella Martinez, Joe Eddie Lopez, Pete Garcia, Tommy Espinoza, Ronnie Lopez, A.J. McKnight, Marvin Beaulieu, Juan Patlan, Royce A. Mahula, Richmond Edward Stewart, Nathan Taylor Garrett, Esteban Torres, Betty Hyatt, Robert Giloth, Gilene Begay, Jon Colvin, Leon Finney, Arthur Brazier, Lauren E. Allen, Ron Shiffman, Leon Sullivan, James Dowdy, Ted Watkins, Carla Dartis, David Lizarraga, Larry Farmer, Franklin A. Thomas, Elsie Richardson, John Doar, Thomas Jones, Brenda Shockley

Rights (CRHP): Contact the repository which holds the collection for information on rights


Civil rights movements--Mississippi
Civil rights workers
Community development corporations
Community organization
Deacons for Defense and Justice
Mexican Americans
Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party
Mississippi Freedom Schools
White Citizens councils


Sound recordings


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 home >> Civil Rights History Project >> Survey of Collections and Repositories >> Collections >> Collection Record

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   May 15, 2015
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