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SJSU Special Collections & Archives

SJSU Special Collections & Archives acquires, preserves, arranges, describes, and provides access to its rich, diverse holdings of rare and unique books, manuscript collections, institutional records, and other primary sources to support the diverse teaching and research needs of students, faculty, staff, and the larger SJSU community. The Department is the central repository for the history of San José State University and has a large collection of university, faculty, and student publications, administrative records, photographs, and ephemera. Of particular interest are materials of archival value pertaining to California State Politics, Social Activism, Chicano History and Culture, Women’s Studies, LGBTQ Studies, California and U.S. History, and other holdings of local, regional, and national significance.


Black Spartans (1907-1948)

Black Spartans

We invite you to explore our new exhibit “Black Spartans (1907-1948).” “Black Spartans” is a first look at an ongoing research project in SJSU Special Collections & Archives to discover documentation of Black experiences in university history. Learn the stories of the earliest Black SJSU students through 19 individual digital portraits created by student artist Yeab Kebede, ‘22 Digital Media Arts.

Black students have been a central part of SJSU’s history – as scholars, athletes, artists, and activists – yet there has not been enough intentional effort to document these experiences and accomplishments and make them available to researchers. “Black Spartans” will serve to highlight some of these obscured stories, and identify the people, organizations, and events we hope to seek more information and records about. 

You can visit the exhibit virtually or in person on the second floor of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library’s DiNapoli Gallery from February 9 to April 1, 2022.  The physical exhibit is now closed, but you can still see it virtually

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