AAMLO Study Guides


AAMLO Study Guides

AAMLO Archives: Research and Study Guides

The African American Museum and Library at Oakland (AAMLO) is dedicated to the discovery, preservation, interpretation, and sharing of historical and cultural experiences of African Americans in California and the West for present and future generations.

AAMLO's Archives has compiled research guides on the following topics to assist new researchers with finding primary and secondary sources. They are designed to serve entry level research and for researchers preparing to visit the archives.

Select a featured research guide, or browse the Alphabetical Index of Study Guides below.

AAMLO Study Guides - Alphabetical Index

See All AAMLO Study Guides

Cleveland Bellow standing until billboard with Untitled (Young Man) artwork

Visual Art

A guide to African American visual artists in AAMLO's archives.
Portrait of unidentified World War I soldier and Wallace Wright

World War I

Holdings at AAMLO related to World War I and the African American experience.
Reading a night letter from the Honorable Earl Warren, Governor of California, inviting the National Association of Colored Women's Clubs Convention to California (left-right): Margaret Nottage, Lillian M. Dixon, Gertrude Reese-Hicks, Mable Gray, Billie Ashby

Women’s Clubs

Learn more about African American Women's Clubs in California using collections at AAMLO.
Historic image of Saxophone players performing in nightclub

West Coast Blues

Celebrate Oakland's legendary West Coast Blues scene with these collections at AAMLO.
Laney College students Vickie Graves (left) and Lula Albert rehearse with director Adam David Miller for production of Ed Bullins' play "A son come home"


African American theater, playwrights, and actors, in AAMLO's collections.
Historic image of Alvin Aaron Coffey

Slavery in California

Uncover the hidden history of enslaved African Americans in California.

Seventh Street

Learn about West Oakland's Seventh Street, once known as "Harlem of the West."
Creator of the "Create-In" at the Oakland Museum, University of California instructor Sarah Fabio, artist-in-residence for the day, blends her voice in black poetry as her sone Leslie Fabio, Tennessee State student and purple heart veteran, beats congo drums and UC student Leon Williams plays "Old Black Magic" on flute


Discover African American poets and poetry in AAMLO's collections.
Photograph of Manuel Moreno

Pioneers and Early Residents

Research material on Alta California and California's earliest African American pioneers.
Carlton Goodlett reading newspaper in front of the Sun Reporter office building

Newspapers and Journalists

Materials at AAMLO related to the Black Press and African American journalists.
Historic image of N.A.A.C.P. parade float


Collections related to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Ophelia Knox Ford, prima donna in Struttin' Along Company, publicity still, inscribed: "To Mrs. Hackett lovingly yours Augusta petite Prima Donna Struttin Along Co. 1923

Music, Opera, and Singers

Items related to African American music, opera, and singers of the early 20th century (1900-1940).
Black seamen onboard ship

Maritime Heritage

Study material related to African Americans, maritime history, and the Black Pacific.
1924 meeting of Oakland Division No. 188 of Marcus Garvey's global black nationalist Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities' League (UNIA)

Marcus Garvey and the UNIA

Collections related to Marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association (U.N.I.A.)
Three images of drag queen The Fabulous Dokota posing


Library material and archival collections related to African American LGBTQ+ communities.
Municipal Workers Union, Local 390 on strike for higher wages outside Highland Hospital

Labor Unions

Resources related to African American labor history.
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