MARMIA will shout via whatever platforms we can to our followers and supporters: BLACK LIVES MATTER. We commit to dismantling white supremacy and systemic racism in our profession, local communities, region, and in the United States. We stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and all protesting police brutality against Black people. We condemn anti-Black violence and violence against all people’s right to peaceably assemble.
As our nonprofit mission is to preserve and provide access to Mid-Atlantic regional audiovisual archival materials, MARMIA would like to act first by sharing some local BIPOC-led (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) archival projects and organizations. Please visit these websites, learn more about each, and support them in any way you can, particularly financially if you are able. We would like to grow this list to highlight regularly via our various outreach platforms, so please email email@example.com to add suggestions.
- Umbra Search: brings together hundreds of thousands of digitized materials from over 1,000 libraries and archives across the country to make African American history more broadly accessible.
- Diggs Johnson Museum: telling the untold stories of African Americans and the communities they’ve built throughout Baltimore County, MD.
- African American Home Movie Archive: an online resource for researchers, educators, students, archive and library professionals, and other interested parties. The main feature of the website is the Black Home Movie Index, an aggregate of African American home movie collections from the early 1920s through the mid-1980s.
- Chesapeake Heartland: Developed at Washington College’s Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, and with a broad array of community partners, Chesapeake Heartland will launch a three-year initiative to digitize, share, and curate more than three centuries of African American history while developing a new model of public history that can eventually serve other communities around the Chesapeake region and beyond. This innovative project also collaborates with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), whose Community Curation Project will travel to Kent County, Maryland, and give county residents unprecedented resources to preserve their history, ranging from family photographs and letters to recordings of oral histories and musical performances.
- True Laurels: True Laurels is a media platform dedicated to highlighting Baltimore + The DMV’s most captivating music, visual arts, and the surrounding culture that informs both—all of which is done through a variety of mediums. True Laurels also serves as a digital space for people to absorb archival footage of Black Baltimore’s past, especially in areas related to the arts called Laurels History.
- We Here: a supportive community for BIPOC library and archive workers (this is a national organization, but their work is so important that we have to mention it and this work is very much needed in every region!) We Here seeks to provide a safe and supportive community for Black and Indigenous folks, and People of Color (BIPOC) in library and information science professions and educational programs and to recognize, discuss, and intervene in systemic social issues that have plagued these professions both historically and continue through present time. Check out their Pride Month Resource List.
- Archives for Black Lives in Philly (A4BLiP), is a loose association of archivists, librarians, and allied professionals in the area responding to the issues raised by the Black Lives Matter movement. The group was inspired by Jarrett Drake, formerly Digital Archivist at Princeton University, and his work to end archives’ erasure of Black lives.
- The Afro Black History Archives: an extensive collection of digitally archived issues of the AFRO American Newspapers spanning over 100 years of 20th century Black history.
- Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society: AAHGS was founded in 1977 in Washington, DC by a small group of historians and genealogists who felt a need to share resources and methodology for pursuing historical and genealogical research.
- Baltimore Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society chapter started in 1989: a non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging study and research in history and genealogy.
- The Gates Preserve: The mission of The Gates Preserve Archive is to collect, organize, preserve, and provide access to non-current hip-hop documents stored in both a physical and digital repository. Based in New York City and founded by Syreeta Gates.
MARMIA would like to highlight three videos from our WJZ-TV Collection that document systemic racism in housing in Baltimore, Maryland. These racist practices happened in cities nationwide and are only one part of the institutional and systemic racism that exists to this day.
- Focal Point: The Middle Way, 1962: starting halfway through this episode that focuses on urban renewal in Harlem Park, since that is when they begin to discuss racist practices that are prevalent. WARNING: this video contains outdated, offensive language.
- Investigative Report: Blockbusting in Baltimore, 1970: All five parts of WJZ’s investigative report into racial discrimination in housing in Baltimore, focusing on the Montebello area (parts are separated with minutes of blank tape). WARNING: this video includes outdated terminology and racial slurs.
- City Line: Hell in the High-rises, 1983: An episode of Baltimore’s Black public affairs program, City Line, that shows the conditions of public housing high-rise projects in Baltimore City and interviews residents.
Lastly, MARMIA would like to encourage anti-racist reading and learning. The Baltimore Racial Justice Action (BRJA) has a list of books, articles, and websites here. Baltimore County Public Library has an anti-racist book list here. DC Public Library has published resources for conversations about race for all age-levels here, including unlimited free ebook copies of titles such as “Unapologetic: A Black, Queer and Feminist Mandate for Our Movement” by Charlene Carruthers; “Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor,” by Layla F. Saad; and “White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism” by Robin DiAngelo.)