In order to create a more secure environment for both students and staff, access to the Hatcher Graduate Library between midnight and 2 a.m. now requires a valid MCard.
Current Page Path
Joseph A. Labadie Collection
Hatcher Graduate Library
913 S. University Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
A collection documenting the history of social protest movements and marginalized political communities from the 19th century to the present
In the 1930s, the U-M Library’s Joseph A. Labadie Collection — the oldest such collection in America — was called “probably the most complete record of the social unrest of our times that has ever been assembled."
Since then, the collection has only grown, expanding from its original focus on anarchism to also encompass:
- anti-war movements
- civil rights
- workers’ rights
- second-wave feminism
- the New Left
- prison issues
- radical environmental movements
- Black liberation
- national liberation movements
- LGBT equality campaigns
- and many others
The collection is named for Detroit labor organizer and anarchist Joseph Antoine Labadie (1850-1933), who in 1911 donated the books, pamphlets, newspapers, magazines, manuscripts, and memorabilia he had assembled over the years.
Today, the Labadie Collection is the most widely used of all of the library’s special collections and serves as a unique and important resource for students and researchers at U-M and around the world.
“This is a collection that documents history from below,” says curator Julie Herrada. “We are preserving, and making available to the public, the activities of under-represented groups, people whose ideas are considered marginal or dangerous.”
Labadie Collection materials have been used in numerous publications and exhibits. A single poster from the collection, for example, was recently sought out for inclusion in an art book, as well as displayed in exhibits at Cornell University and the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, Georgia.
And new materials are being added to the collection all the time. “Not long ago we received a large donation of transgender rights research materials that greatly add to our existing strength in LGBT topics,” she adds.
Along with physical access to rare and unique archival materials, a host of materials are available digitally including scans of anarchist pamphlets, historic photographs and more than 1,000 political “pin-back” buttons on topics ranging from pacifism to sexual freedom, communism to student protest.
Because of the collection’s breadth and depth, several finding aids and guides to its holdings are available, including to many of the uncataloged manuscripts and letters.
"Melba Joyce Boyd, a well-known author and Wayne State University professor, says that an activist is a person with a certain level of consciousness who then incorporates that consciousness into what they do. So, I see my work as a curator as a kind of activism,” says Herrada, who has overseen the collection since 2000.
Follow us on Facebook.
Can a small group of students advocating for change really make things happen? One group of U-M students thinks so, and they hope to gather support for their cause by bringing Angela Davis to Ann Arbor for the 27th Martin Luther King, Jr. Symposium.
It's that time again. Time to get away from your noisy roommates and study for exams.
Dr. Nadezhda Kavrus-Hoffmann describes her project of cataloging Greek manuscripts in American Libraries and then focuses on the University of Michigan collection and the results of her research to date.
This two-day interdisciplinary symposium on the cultural history of cartography intends to facilitate discussion among scholars of history, art history, literary criticism, area studies, and architecture and urban planning. To develop comparative modes of inquiry, each panel will address specific concerns across geographical spaces and temporal periods.
- Date & Time
- October 25, 2012 - 9:00am to October 26, 2012 - 4:30pm
- Palmer Commons, Museum of Art, & Tisch Hall, Various
- Event Type
Last week it was announced that the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and Google have settled the copyright infringement lawsuit filed by the AAP in 2005 over Google’s library book scanning project.
Video portrait of Leyla Lau-Lamb, Senior Conservator of Books and Papyri at the University of Michigan Library.
Anna Ercoli Schnitzer, Disability Issues Librarian at the Taubman Health Sciences Library, has received the 2012 Michael E. DeBakey Library Services Outreach Award from the Friends of the National Library of Medicine.