Duke University has announced that it has acquired a vast archive of papers of John Hope Franklin. Professor Franklin was the James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of History at Duke University and one of the most prolific and respected historians of the twentieth century. He died of congestive heart failure on March 25, 2009 at Duke University Hospital. He was 94 years old.
The archive includes more than 300 boxes of materials that were donated to the university by his son and daughter-in-law. Included in the archive are diaries, correspondence, manuscripts, drafts of speeches, photographs, and video recordings. The collection will be housed at the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Duke. The collection will be made available to researchers once it has been preserved and cataloged.
John Hope Franklin was born in Rentiesville, Oklahoma, in 1915. His grandfather had been a slave. His father was one of the first black lawyers in Oklahoma. His mother was a schoolteacher. Franklin was named after John Hope, the former president of Morehouse College and Atlanta University.
Franklin attended racially segregated schools in Oklahoma. He was valedictorian of his high school class. He wanted to attend the University of Oklahoma but at that time, and for many years later, the state’s flagship university was closed to blacks. Continue reading “Duke University Acquires Papers Of Noted Historian John Hope Franklin”