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Krueger-Scott Mansion Cultural Center: African-American Oral History Project, 1995 - 1999

Identifier: MG KSMCC-OH (Main)

Scope and Contents

Organized in 5 Hollinger boxes: Box #1: contains background materials on the project; notes and interview excerpts compiled by Charles Cummings; clippings and publicity materials; lists of volunteers and of potential interviewees; budget materials; correspondence; and black and white photographs of project personnel, interviewees, and training sessions. Additional project material, including background documents, photographs, and 28 transcripts are stored in electronic form. NOTE: Some of these digital copies of documents and photographs may duplicate material held in hard copy at the New Jersey Historical Society. Boxes #2-#5: contain interview transcripts. Interviews: The Newark Public Library's set of original audiotapes produced by this project has been digitized by the American Studies Department at Rutgers University-Newark; the Newark Public Library-CFC NJIC has digital copies of the audio tapes, consult staff for access to the digital copies. Large plastic storage container with audio tapes of interviews kept in New Jersey room near window air conditioners. The following is a complete list of interviews in the collection. Fewer than half of the interviews were transcribed; interviews that have transcripts are indicated by "Tr" and a notation as to their content. Franklin Arthur Banks (Tr, funeral director, realtor) Elma Bateman Pearl Beatty (Tr, secretary, Housing Authority; Democratic Party activist, County Freeholder) Vivian Berry Katheryn Bethea Mrs. Willie Bradwell (Tr, factory worker) George Branch (Tr, Councilman; Housing Authority Worker, boxer) Lurline Byass Mae A. Byrd James E. Churchman (Tr, funeral director, medical investigator) Ida Clark Joseph L. Clark (Tr, educator; Director-Essex County Juvenile Detention Center) Willa B. Coleman Geri Coles Alvin Conyers Richard Cooke Mary Cosby Edward Albert Crawford (Tr, probation officer, counselor at half-way houses) Mildred Crump (Tr, educator; Councilwoman) Barbara Duke Elsie Eatman Louise Epperson (Tr, political activist; community liaison with UMDNJ) Martha Faulkner E. Alma Flagg Martha Gaynor Daniel Gibson Thelma W. Gillis Danita Henderson Elton Hill Willie Bell Hooper (Tr, teacher) Veronice Horne Frank Hutchins Queen Elizabeth James (Tr, beautician; worked with Louise Scott) Sharpe James (Tr, educator; Mayor) Thomas and Queen James Annie Rose Johnson Bernice Johnson Jessie Johnson (Tr, music teacher; musician) Reather Johnson Coyt Leroy Jones (Tr, postal worker; father of Amiri Baraka) James F. "Chops" Jones (Tr, fireman; musician; Newark Division of Recreation) Edward Kerr (Tr, cab driver; policeman) Wynona Lipman (Tr, Doctor of Romance Languages, educator; former French teacher of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; State Senator) Clara Little Mageline Little Matthew Little Ronald Marshall (Tr, medical doctor) John Martin Pauline Mathis Zaundria Mapson May Erma McLurkin Lemora Means (Tr, Licensed Practical Nurse; clerk, federal government) Virginia Morton John E. Moses Joy Odesumola Oluokua Remay Pearce (Tr, beautician; Department of Health) T. D. Pearson Larry Pendleton Nathaniel L. Potts Hortense Williams Powell (Tr, Registered Nurse; officer, NAACP) Robert Calvin "Bob" Queen (Tr, journalist; musician) Ella Rainey Willa Rawlins Alberta F. Reynolds Ronald Rice, Sr. Ethel Richards Mary Roberts Henry Robinson Rosia Wright John B. Ross Mary Ross Bernice Rountree Bev Scott Harvey Slaten Bill Stubbs Marzell Swain Shirley Sylvan Kitty Taylor Edna Ray Thomas (Tr, Director of SOL House, a drug rehabilitation facility; community activist) Isaac Thomas Eugene H. Thompson (Tr, lawyer; State Assemblyman) Rose M. Tucker Lewis Turner Carolyn Wallace James Wallace (Tr, Central Ward Chair, Democractic Party; a director of the International Youth Organization) Lucille Wapples Andrew Washington (Tr, teacher; activist with Congress of Racial Equality [CORE]) Franotie Auston Washington (Tr, art educator; Director of Art Education in Newark) Clara Watkins Owen Wilkerson (Tr, legislative analyst, City Clerk's office; journalist; editor) Marion Williams Robert Woods A.Zachary Yamba (Tr, Ph.D.; President of Essex County College)


  • 1995 - 1999

Biographical / Historical

The Krueger Scott Mansion Cultural Center African-American Oral History Project was initiated (in the mid-1990s) and supervised by Catherine J. Lenix-Hooker, Executive Director of the Cultural Center, who had extensive experience working on African-American oral history projects for the Schomberg Center of the New York Public library. The idea for the project had been suggested to Lenix-Hooker by Newark radio personality and local historian Bernice Bass, who became an important resource person and link with potential interviewees. Giles Wright and Clement Price, both distinguished scholars of New Jersey African-American history, acted as consultants to the project. The first meeting of the Project was held at City Hall under the auspices of the Municipal Council Oral History Committee on March 17, 1995. The first training session for interviewers took place in June 1995. Mrs. Mageline E. Little, a retired Newark Public School Librarian, coordinated the work of ca. fifteen volunteer interviewers, many of them long-time Newark residents who had deep roots in the community. As the work went on, many interviewees, volunteers, and project events were photographed by Bill May. During the period of roughly four years over 100 individuals were interviewed, in some cases in more than one session. In 1998 a grant-funded professional transcriber was hired for the Project, but unfortunately the work of transcribing had to be halted in 1999, before all the interviews could be done. The interviews were initially intended to become part of an oral history archive located at the Center, but in 1998-1999, when funding to assure the future of the Center became uncertain, it was decided to deposit the tapes and other project materials at the New Jersey Information Center of the Newark Public Library. Another set of interview tapes and additional Project administrative files on paper were deposited at the New Jersey Historical Society.


2.09 Linear Feet (5 Hollinger boxes and audio tapes with digital copies)

Language of Materials



Repository Details

Part of the Charles F. Cummings New Jersey Information Center, Newark Public Library Repository

3rd Floor
Newark Public Library
5 Washington St.
Newark NJ 07102 United States