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Racial and Ethnic Ephemera Collection

Identifier: Mss 1.05

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

The racial and ethnic ephemera collection contains various materials regarding race, ethnicity, and racism in the United States. The collection includes papers and items that promote racial prejudice and propaganda. The collection also contains items and papers that exemplify the fight for civil and equal rights. African Americans are the most broadly represented group in the collection. Other ethnic groups include Native Americans, Asian Americans, Jewish Americans, Muslim Americans, and Cuban Americans. Ku Klux Klan pamphlets and anti-immigration publications are also included. Through this collection, the American struggle of racism and prejudice is realized.


  • Creation: 1778-2005

Language of Materials

English German

Conditions Governing Access:

Collection is open to all researchers. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, such as the Virginia Public Records Act (Code of Virginia. § 42.1-76-91); and the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (Code of Virginia § 2.2-3705.5). Confidential material may include, but is not limited to, educational, medical, and personnel records. If sensitive material is found in this collection, please contact a staff member immediately. The disclosure of personally identifiable information pertaining to a living individual may have legal consequences for which the College of William and Mary assumes no responsibility.

Conditions Governing Use:

Before reproducing or quoting from any materials, in whole or in part, permission must be obtained from the Special Collections Research Center, and the holder of the copyright, if not Swem Library.


4 Linear Feet

Arrangement of Materials:

The collection is divided into eight series by race and/or ethnicity. The series are African American, Native American, Asian American, Jewish American, Muslim American, Cuban American, Ku Klux Klan, and Immigration and Discrimination. The contents for each series are grouped by material type and ordered chronologically.

Acquisition Information:

Acc. 2007.80 was purchased 8/30/2007. Acc. 2007.81 was purchased 8/30/2007. Acc. 2008.32 was purchased 5/1/2008. Acc. 2008.46 was purchased 5/16/2008.   Acc. 2008.64 was purchased 6/9/2008. Acc. 2008.94 was purchased 9/10/2008. Acc. 2008.95 was purchased 9/10/20008. Acc. 2008.159 was purchased 12/19/2008. Acc. 2009.063 was purchased on 2/24/2009. Acc. 2009.036 was purchased on 1/19/2009. Acc. 2009.147 was purchased on 4/6/2009. Acc. 2009.151 was purchased on 3/30/2009. Acc. 2009.180 was purchased on 4/29/2009. Acc. 2009.181 was purchased on 4/29/2009. Acc. 2009.226 was purchased on 5/25/2009. Acc. 2009.235 was purchased on 5/31/2009. Acc. 2009.305 was purchased on 7/17/2009. Acquisition information for material received after 7/13/2009 is available by consulting a Special Collections Research Center staff member. Acc. 2014.123-Acc. 2014.125 purchased for Swem Library with support from the SCRC Donors Fund.


Additions are being made to this collection on an ongoing basis.

Related Materials:

Ingersol View Company Stereographs, Comic Series #2

Related materials, such as rare books, are recorded at the folder level.

See also: individual titles in the Manuscript Sheet Music Collection (Mss. 1.07), Box 48, and individual items in the Manuscript Artifact Collection.

For similar material relating to race, ethnicity, and racism outside of the United States, see the Ephemera Collection, Mss. 1.02.

Processing Information:

Acc. 2011.633, Acc. 2011.635, Acc. 2011.637 accessioned and minimally processed by Steven Bookman, University Archives Specialist, in October 2011. Full finding aid created in March 2015 and revised in December 2017 by Special Collections staff.

Karen King, SCRC Staff
January 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center Repository