TITLE: Rosa Parks Collection: Telling Her Story at the Library of Congress
EVENT DATE: 2016/02/04
RUNNING TIME: 33 minutes
TRANSCRIPT: View Transcript (link will open in a new window)
Highlights of the collection of Rosa Parks, a seminal figure of the Civil Rights Movement, on loan to the Library from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation for 10 years.
Howard Buffett decided to purchase this special collection in 2014, when he learned that it was languishing in an auction warehouse. He wanted to bring these rare items into public view and ensure their preservation. The Rosa Parks Collection reveals how deeply she believed in a moral imperative to oppose discrimination and the denial of individual rights. That belief most famously resulted in her decision to challenge the bus segregation laws in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955. But her autobiographical writings reveal numerous times in her life when that conviction motivated her to act.
The collection documents many aspects of her private life as well as her public work on behalf of civil rights for African Americans. While the 7,500 manuscripts and 2,500 photographs span 140 years, the content focuses on the 1950s through the 1990s and includes Mrs. Parks’ own writings, letters from presidents, her Congressional Gold Medal and Presidential Medal of Freedom, and hand-drawn cards of appreciation from scores of schoolchildren.
This video contains highlights from the collection and a look behind the scenes at how the Library’s team of experts in cataloging, preservation, digitization, exhibition and teacher training are making the legacy of Rosa Parks available to the world. Items from the Rosa Parks Collection will be available online later this month.