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Guide to the Cleveland Sellers Papers, 1960-2005 and undated

Summary

Cleveland Sellers is a veteran civil rights activist who helped lead the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. The Cleveland Sellers Papers consist of SNCC and other Civil Rights-era publications and correspondence, including items from the Holly Springs COFO office and the Virginia Students' Civil Rights Committee.

Collection Details

Collection Number
RL.11286
Title
Cleveland Sellers papers
Date
1960-2005 and undated
Extent
0.5 Linear Feet
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Language
Materials in English

Collection Overview

Collection contains assorted printed materials, publications, correspondence, and clippings related to the activities of SNCC and its affiliates during the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s. Materials have been sorted into series: Publications, Correspondence, Holly Springs Project, Virginia Students' Civil Rights Committee, Statements/Press Releases/Flyers, and Subject Files.

Much of the material is ephemeral and scattered; some authors are unknown. There are some items that have evidence of water damage or mold and are in poor physical condition.

More Biographical / Historical Info

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Collection is open for research.

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warning Use & Permissions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

More copyright and citation information

How to Cite

[Identification of item], Cleveland Sellers Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Contents of the Collection

1. Publications, 1960-1968

Published newsletters, newspapers, essays, and articles created by or about SNCC and the Black Power movement. Contains three issues of Key Mailing List, which was prepared by the San Francisco chapter of SNCC and includes reproductions (transcripts or copies) of various civil rights-era noteworthy articles and essays. Some of the articles were written by Cleveland Sellers. This series also contains several scattered issues of the SNCC newsletter The Student Voice. There is also one newsletter, the Freedom Fighter, written and circulated by the Ku Klux Klan.

Key Mailing List: Selected Documents of Current and Lasting Interest in the Civil Rights Movement: KLM 166-175, 1966 May 1
Box 1
Key Mailing List: Selected Documents of Current and Lasting Interest in the Civil Rights Movement: KLM 336-346, 1967 Feb. 5
Box 1
Key Mailing List: Selected Documents of Current and Lasting Interest in the Civil Rights Movement: KLM 427-434, 1967 June 25
Box 1
The Student Voice newsletter, Vol. 1 Number 4, 1960 Nov.
Box 1
The Student Voice newsletter, Vol. 2 Number 4-5, 1961 Apr.-May
Box 1
The Student Voice newsletter, Vol. 4 Number 9, 1963 Dec. 23

Special Section

Box 1
The Student Voice newsletter, Vol. 5 Number 23, 1965 Mar. 5
Box 1
The Student Voice newsletter, Vol. 6 Number 2, 1965 Apr. 30
Box 1
SNCC Newsletter Vol. 1 Number 5, 1967 Sept.-Oct.
Box 1
Danville, Virginia pamphlet, 1963 Aug.

Includes Official Record of Hospitalized Demonstrators, June 10 1963, Danville, Virginia. Text by Dorothy Miller. Photographs/layout by Danny Lyon.

Box 1
Is this the Party You Want? Or is This? Lowndes County Freedom Organization, undated
(2 copies)

Guide to voting, politics, political organizing

Box 1
Black Power newsletter, Black Awareness Coordinating Committee (BACC) South Carolina State College, undated
Box 1
Aframerican News Service: What's Happening with Black Students, undated

Includes updates on Duke University and California State College

Box 1
Aframerican News Service: Transcript of Stokely Carmichael speech to Citizens Conference on Education, Frogmore, South Carolina, 1968 Jan. 28

Photocopy

Box 1
Stokely Carmichael: Power and Racism, 1966
(3 copies)

Reprinted essay from New York Review of Books

Box 1
Stokely Carmichael: Power and Racism, undated

Typed essay

Box 1
Register, Vol. 31 Number 9, A T College, Greensboro, 1960 Feb. 5

Reprinted version, 1980 Feb. 1

Box 1
The Freedom Fighter, 1st edition (Ku Klux Klan), 1963 Dec.
Box 1

2. Holly Springs (Mississippi) Project, COFO, 1964 and undated

Assorted materials produced or collected by participants in the Holly Springs Project of Mississippi Freedom Summer in 1964. Many items are photocopies of original documents.

Mississippi Summer Project pamphlet, 1964

Photocopy

Box 1
Benton County Freedom Train newsletter, Vol. 2 Number 8, 1964 Nov. 29

Photocopy

Box 1
Office budget/expenses, undated

Photocopy

Box 1
St. Joseph Missionary Baptist Church rebuilding cost estimates, undated

Photocopy

Box 1
Freedom Registration Form, partially completed by Ruth Koenig, 1964 July 26

Photocopy

Box 1
Sworn written application for registration, undated

Photocopy

Box 1
"The gang" to "Fellow warriors," letter, undated

Photocopy of letter discussing Holly Springs Project

Box 1
WATS Report, 1964 Sept. 21-22

Photocopy

Box 1
Incident Summary, Mississippi, Oct. 1964, 1964 Nov. 1

Photocopy

Box 1
Newspaper clippings, 1964-1966
Box 1
Questionnaire re: SNCC members' arrests, legal cases, etc. (blank), undated
Box 1
Keith to Ruthie, letter, undated

Photocopy of a letter

Box 1

3. Virginia Students' Civil Rights Committee, 1965

Publications and an accompanying letter written by the Virginia Students' Civil Rights Committee documenting operating procedures for VSCRC and federal resources available for rural Virginians.

The New Virginia newsletter, Vol. 1 Number 1, 1965 July
Box 1
Butch to Bill letter, undated

Letter from "Butch" to "Bill" accompanying the VA Students' Civil Rights Committee publications

Box 1
Handbook for VS'CRC Project in Virginia's Black Belt, 1965 May

Publication Number 2

Box 1
Economic Opportunity and Freedom for the Negro and Other Related Federal Programs, 1965 July

Publication Number 3

Box 1
Federal Farm Programs, 1965 July

Publication Number 4

Box 1
Handbook for VS'CRC Project in Dinwiddie County, 1965 July

Publication Number 5

Box 1
Handbook for VS'CRC Project in Lunenburg County, 1965 July

Publication Number 6

Box 1

4. Correspondence, 1963-1972 and undated

Assorted letters to and from SNCC leadership, including Stokely Carmichael, Dorothy Miller, and Mary E. King, largely relating to SNCC's relationship with journalists and mainstream media.

Morris Rubin (The Progressive) to Dorothy Miller (SNCC), 1963 Feb. 12
Box 1
F.R. Ruskin (The New Republic) to Dorothy Miller (SNCC), 1963 Feb. 15
Box 1
John McGrath (The Progressive) to James Forman (SNCC), 1963 Mar. 20
Box 1
Mary E. King (SNCC) to/from John McGrath (The Progressive), 1964 Mar. 24-Jun. 1

Series of 6 letters.

Box 1
Sue (Washington Post) to Mary E. King (SNCC), 1964 July 4
Box 1
H. Julian Bond (SNCC) to Murray Kempton (The New Republic), 1964

Photocopy

Box 1
Mike Miller (Bay Area SNCC) to William Porter (Ad Hoc Conference Committee), 1965 Nov. 15
Box 1
Clarence Hyshaw to Stokely Carmichael, 1967 Feb. 16

Thank-you letter from Morris Brown College Student Government

Box 1
National Congress of Black Students at Lincoln University to Bill Mahoney, 1967 Apr. 14
Box 1
Owusu Sadaukai to Stokely Carmichael, 1972 Jun. 17

Photocopy

Box 1
Stokely Carmichael to Brother Howard (Owusu Sadaukai), 1972 Jul. 3

Photocopy

Box 1
Tom Cleaver (Colorado State College) to Cathy Archibald (SNCC), undated
Box 1

5. Statements/Press Releases/Flyers, 1965-1968 and undated

Circulated statements, letters, and flyers, largely printed by SNCC and its affiliates, including several from the Atlanta Committee to End the War in Vietnam. Several of these items are in very poor physical condition, with evidence of water and mold damage.

Public Declaration of Membership in National Congress of Black Students, 1967 Apr. 14
Box 1
Decisions of the Central Committee, 1967 May
(4 copies)
Box 1
Statement of Objectives Adopted by the SNCC at its Annual Meeting, 1968 Jun.
Box 1
The Story of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, by Lester G. McKinnie, Washington SNCC, 1967
Box 1
Johnny Wilson statement (draft), 1967
Box 1
Let Rap Rap! Flyer for H. Rap Brown Defense Fund, 1968
Box 1
Call to Vietnam Week flyer for Atlanta delegation's trip to New York, undated

From the Atlanta Committee to End the War in Vietnam

Box 1
Circulated letter/petition by Miriam Wasserman, 1967 Apr.

From the Atlanta Committee to End the War in Vietnam

Box 1
Steering Committee letter re: Morehouse College Conscientious Objectors, 1967 Apr. 6

From the Atlanta Committee to End the War in Vietnam

Box 1
"Uncle Sam Wants You Nigger" flyer, undated
Box 1
Yin Years poem, Bowery, New York, 1965

Typescript draft

Box 1

6. Subject Files, 1960s-2005 and undated

Assorted materials collected by Sellers relating to SNCC and the Civil Rights movement, including clippings, memorial programs, and other materials produced by veterans of the Civil Rights movement.

Clippings re: SNCC, etc., 1960s-1980s

Some photocopies, some original, some transcripts

Box 1
A Tribute to SNCC, fragment, undated

Typed essay

Box 1
Freedom Summer memorial programs, conference planning, 1994, 2005, and undated
Box 1
Clippings re: Freedom Summer, 1990s-2000s
Box 1
Address list (origin unknown), undated
Box 1
Book list, 1980s

Civil Rights literature

Box 1
Kwame Ture: "Malcolm X Shabazz and The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee" speech, 1990 May 19

Transcript of speech to Malcolm X Symposium, Havana, Cuba

Box 1
Kwame Ture: Report on Gadhafi Prize Committee, 1990 Jun. 8
Box 1
Kwame Ture: Report on Cuba Trip, 1990 Jun. 8
Box 1
Marshall's Training Manual: Let Freedom Ring Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Pilgrimage for Economic Justice and Jobs with Justice, prepared by Rev. James E. Orange, undated
Box 1
 

Historical Note

Cleveland Sellers (1944- ) is a civil rights activist who helped lead the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. He formally joined SNCC in 1963, leading voter registration drives. He served as head of the Holly Springs COFO office during 1964's Mississippi Freedom Summer, and participated in the 1966 March Across Mississippi. Sellers was arrested in 1968 in the aftermath of the Orangeburg Massacre at South Carolina State University; he was the only person convicted and served 7 months in jail. (He later received a full pardon.)

Sellers earned an MA in education from Harvard University in 1970 and an Ed.D. in History from University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 1987. He served as president of Voorhees College from 2008-2015.


Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.

Provenance

The Cleveland Sellers Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 2016.

Processing Information

Processed by Meghan Lyon, Aug. 2016

Accessions described in this collection guide: 2016-0215