African American Collection

The African American Special Collection consists of specialized materials by and about African Americans. The emphasis of the collection is on the African American Experience in Las Vegas, Nevada, and the West. The core collection consists of books, periodicals, government publications, videos, and other audiovisual materials. The collection also provides a file of pamphlets, newspaper clippings and photographs.

Purpose

West Las Vegas Library is the library of the historic West Las Vegas community. The District's objectives in developing and disseminating this Special Collection are to provide the materials necessary to empower members of the community to relive and rediscover the vibrancy of the West Las Vegas community and the development of the United States through the efforts and contributions of African Americans. Though the establishment of this Special Collection the Library works

  • to promote a sense of community in sharing this information by physical contact and via computer
  • to empower readers of this Collection, especially African Americans

"Knowledge is worthless, if it is not shared."
Tom Brooks, Historian, Gravenhurst, Ontario

Collection Overview

The African American Special Collection consists of specialized materials by and about African Americans. The emphasis of the collection is on the African American Experience in Las Vegas, Nevada and the West. The core collection consists of books, periodicals, government publications, videos and other audio-visual materials. The collection also provides a file of pamphlets, newspaper clippings and photographs.

In April 1999, the West Las Vegas Library applied for and received Nevada State funding for the creation of a community heritage preservation project. The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District established the African American Special Collection to gather and preserve the existing materials and to provide access to these materials to all residents of Las Vegas.

The Special Collection of African American material is comprised of three distinct collections:

  • Frederick Douglass Collection
    Established by the Frederick Douglass Scholarship Fund in 1999 to highlight the works by and about Frederick Douglass<
  • National Collection
    Books and materials by and about African Americans in the western states of the the United States of America
  • Nevada Collection
    Books, pamphlets and materials written by and about African Americans who have inhabited the State of Nevada and Las Vegas, past and present

The collections of African American materials (both National and Nevada) include items other than published books and videos. Members of the West Las Vegas community have graciously donated their photographs, newspaper clippings or articles and other memorabilia that document the ethos of the West Las Vegas community.

These web pages have been funded under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Nevada State Library and Archives.