May 1, 2023

Delaware Historical Society Releases African American History Resource Guide

The Delaware Historical Society announced the release of a new tool to direct researchers, teachers and interested parties toward resources surrounding African American history in the state and region.

The research guide is meant to provide access to materials related to African American history held at the Delaware Historical Society. It provides collection-level descriptions from the manuscript, photograph and periodical collections, and various African American genealogical resources for Delaware families.

Delaware Historical Society Executive Director Ivan Henderson said, “[It is] a sorely needed resource which should invite new learners to locate and explore some of the most-requested items in DHS’s collections.”

Chief Curator Leigh Rifenburg said this is an important addition to DHS’s existing research tools, making it easier than ever for new audiences to discover and access resources essential to understanding the African American experience in Delaware. The resource guide is free to download on the society’s website at

The scope of materials ranges from the 17th century to the present day, covering topics including slavery and the Civil War, school desegregation, the Civil Rights Movement, and African American social, religious and political life in Delaware. The resource guide will be updated as the society acquires new collections from across the state and can be used alongside its existing online catalogs and digital collections site.

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