The John Hope and Aurelia E. Franklin Library Receives Grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources to Digitize The University’s Fiskiana Collection


The Fisk University John Hope and Aurelia E. Franklin Library has received $180,000.00 from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) to digitize, describe, and make the Fiskiana Collection publicly available online. This project will bring the digitized content from the Fiskiana Collection together into a single, centralized site or portal, via the Special Collections or Franklin Library website with full search capabilities and finding aids for students, faculty, researchers, and scholars.

Director of Library Services Dr. Brandon Owens said, “The proposed project will draw thousands of visitors and researchers interested in the unique history and culture of Fisk University, but it will also attract historians and genealogists of both notable and lesser-known African Americans in American history and culture.”

The Fiskiana Collection contains all materials by and about Fisk University, its faculty, students, alumni, and friends. More specifically, the collection includes university catalogs and yearbooks, faculty and student handbooks, commencement, festival, and convocation programs, reports of conventions and conferences, student and alumni publications, artifacts, and oral histories.

Dr. Laura Wilson, Fisk University’s CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow said, “The Fiskiana Collection informs not only institutional memory, but global history, genealogical history, and African American history. The documents and materials related to the Fisk Jubilee Singers© alone emphasize the study of global contacts and cultural confluence.”

Digitizing materials by and about Fisk University is a two-year project for the John Hope and Aurelia E. Franklin Library staff. Once completed, this sustainable project will connect the world to primary resources for scholarly production about Fisk University’s unique culture and heritage from its founding in 1866 until forever.


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