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Ethnic Studies

100 linear feet of material from 1800 to 1980

Collections in this category illustrate the diversity of American society and focus on the contributions of minorities and marginal groups in forming a rich cultural history. The legal, educational, political, and personal experiences of the ethnic groups noted in this subject category portray perceptions and points of view outside the mainstream of society, and widen and deepen our sense of both the past and the present.

Prominent topics include the World War II importation of Mexican workers by the United States government, Native American history, and the evolution of the civil rights movement from the pre-Civil War period through modern times.

Although there are no geographical limitations, most of the material relates to the United States between 1800-1980. Related materials may be found in the Radical Pamphlets Collection; for materials focussing specifically on civil rights in the 1960’s and 1970’s, see the Contemporary Issues Collection. The archives of the Chicano Studies Department of the University of California at Davis may also yield significant materials.


  • Angel Island Oral History Collection

    The Pacific Regional Humanities Center at the University of California, Davis collected oral histories of immigrants who passed through the Angel Island Immigrant Station. This collection contains transcriptions of the fourteen oral histories as well as the original recordings.
  • Armenian Women’s Archives Collection

    These materials were collected under the auspices of the Armenian Women's Archives. The collection contains church flyers and newsletters, a three page handwritten holograph biography of Agnes Halajian, one audiocassette labeled "Nina Agabian," and one audiocassette by Marie-Rose Abousefian.
  • Askine, Sibyl E. Collection.

    Seven bills of sale and transfer of African slaves in New England.
  • Brantley, Cynthia. Papers.

    Collection contains research materials for Brantley's books, The Giriama and Colonial Resistance in Kenya, 1800-1920 and Feeding Families: African Realities and British Ideas of Nutrition and Development in Early Colonial Africa, as well as materials from the year Brantley spent in Nigeria (1966-1967). Professor of History, University of California, Davis
  • Clemmer, Richard O. Papers.

    Pamphlets, correspondence, newspapers, and organizational material relating to Clemmer's activities with the Friends of the Hopi and the Committee of Concern for Traditional Indian Land and Life. Topics include Black Mesa Mining and Power Plants, problems with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and land claims. Professor of Anthropology, University of Denver
  • Colvin, Jean and Crowley, Daniel J. Carnival of Salvador de Bahia, Brazil Videocassettes.

    Thirty-nine videocassettes (primarily U-Matic) documenting the Carnival of Salvador de Bahia, Brazil which were made during a field project led by Professor Daniel Crowley and Jean Colvin in February 1983. Jean Colvin served as Director of the University of California, Berkeley Research Expeditions Program (UREP). Professor Daniel J. Crowley (1921-1998) served as Professor of Art and Anthropology, University of California, Davis from 1961-1992.
  • Crowley, Daniel J. (1921-1998) Papers.

    Journals, newsletters, articles, reviews, correspondence, and research materials reflecting Crowley's interest in art and anthropology. Professor of Art and Anthropology, University of California, Davis (1961-1992).
  • Forbes, Jack D. (1934-2011). Collection.

    Articles, reports, monographs, serials, microfilm and photographs relating to Native American History, civil rights, ethnic studies and Native American education. Contains Native American serials from the 1970s and 1980s. There is also a small, but complete, photographic survey of electric railroad cars in Los Angeles, California, and the West Coast. Professor of Native American Studies and Anthropology, University of California, Davis.
  • Fujimoto, Isao. Papers

    Correspondence, journals, and publications related to alternative technology, development of the Northern California food movement, and community and rural development. Isao Fujimoto (1933-) is Senior Lecturer Emeritus of Asian American Studies and the UC Davis Graduate Program in Community Development. He joined UC Davis in 1967 as a founding member of the community development program and later founded the Asian-American Studies program. Fujimoto's many contributions to the Davis community include his work with the Davis Farmer's Market and the Davis Food Co-op, and development of the Alternative Agricultural Resources Project.
  • Higgins, Floyd Halleck (1886-1975). Photographs of Mexican Sugar Beet Workers.

    In 1942, Higgins took photographs of Mexicans entering the United States "brought in for the [sugar] beet harvest" for California Fields Crops, Inc. and as Higgins explains in a letter that he tried "to catch a lot of the social side in pictures." The photographs were taken mainly in the agricultural areas of the California communities of Woodland, Pleasanton, Manteca, and Salinas. News editor for Caterpillar Tractor Company (1927-1933); freelance agricultural journalist (1933-1971).