Monday, May 24, 2010

Hampton University's Peabody Collection

The Peabody Collection located at the William R. and Norma B. Harvey Library at Hampton University is one of the oldest African American library collections in the country. I have visited this facility on a few occasions to research the education of Mr. James A. Fields (1844-1903), whose home is now a historic landmark in my community. Mr. Fields was a part of the first graduating class in 1871 of Hampton Normal and Agriculture Institute (now Hampton University).

On my first visit, I used a copy of a rare book which was published in 1893. (Read more about this rare book). The book was falling apart due to age and I did not feel comfortable in using it or turning the pages of such a rare and fragile copy. The pages were in good condition, but part of the cover was separating from the book.

On my second visit, I used a photocopy of the same book and felt more comfortable in flipping through the pages and and using this book.

I look forward to having time to back to the Peabody Collection to continue my research on Mr. James A. Fields.

The Peabody Collection

1 comment:

Taneya said...


How great that you had a chance to use the book. I recently spent time looking at old college yearbooks and I too couldn't believe I was using these books that were falling apart! It is something else to hold that kind of history in your hand. :-)

Thank you for sharing.