Primary Sources: Independent Voices

cover of Berkeley Barb issue

Independent Voices is a digital collection of magazines, journals, newspapers, and newsletters housed in the alternative and small press archives of participating libraries and historical institutions.

The focus is on materials published during the 1960s-1980s that stem primarily from the second wave of feminism, LGBT activism, GI and student protest movements, and the Black, Chicano(a), and Native American movements.


Primary Sources: American West and American Indian Histories and Cultures

Key collections of the Newberry Library have been digitized by Adam Matthew Digital. The descriptions below come from their website.

American West is a wide-ranging digital resource presenting a unique insight into the history of the development of the West as well as its enduring legacies. From the earliest, pioneering expeditions that discovered and mapped the West to the growth of industry and settlements, through a range of rare and important documents it is possible to explore the commercial, cultural and social factors that made the West what it was and is. Through items such as maps, manuscripts, journals, rare printed books, periodicals, photographs and more, the appeal of the ‘wild’ West to explorers, emigrants and workers is brought to life, as shifting epochs brought new opportunities and challenges in a rapidly changing country. The development of the popular image of the West can be charted with material depicting the ‘Wild West’ shows, famous outlaws and pioneer personalities, while the clash of cultures that was often a feature of life in the burgeoning United States is represented through a wealth of documents relating to the Mormon exodus and Native American contact.


American Indian Histories and Cultures presents material from the Newberry Library’s Edward E. Ayer Collection, an extensive archival collection on American Indian history. The content ranges from early contacts with European settlers through the expanded occupation of the American west, up through the Indian political movements of the mid-20th century. The collection covers a wide geographic area with a primary focus on North America and Mexico.

The American West and American Indian Histories and Cultures collections are fully cross-searchable.


Trial: Digital resources related to Civil Rights, Japanese-American Relocation, Farm Workers, and Native Americans

The Library has set up trial access to evaluate four digital collections:

Ralph J. Bunche Oral Histories Collection on the Civil Rights Movement
National Farm Worker Ministry: Mobilizing Support for Migrant Workers, 1939-1985
Fight for Racial Justice and the Civil Rights Congress
Japanese-American Relocation Camp Newspapers: Perspectives on Day-to-Day Life

These are all part of a resource called Archives Unbound from Gale Cengage. The company was not able to set up a trial for just these four resources, so all of the collections are available to view.

Available via the same link is another trial resource, Indigenous Peoples: North America, which covers the history of American Indian tribes and supporting organizations. The collection includes sources from American and Canadian institutions, tribal newspapers, and Indian-related organizations. The collection also features Indigenous language materials, including dictionaries, Bibles, and primers.

I am particularly interested in your feedback on the resources listed above, but if you see other collections of interest, let me know and I’ll put them on my wish list.
Trial access ends 3/17/16.


Primary Sources: American Indians and the American West, 1809-1971

A newly acquired ProQuest History Vault module, American Indians and the American West, 1809-1971, includes collections from the U.S. National Archives, the Chicago History Museum, and selected first-hand accounts on Indian Wars and westward migration. While a significant amount of 19th century material is included, this resource also provides access to records from the first half of the 20th century.  For more detail about each of the collections listed below, see the ProQuest guide.

  • American Indians and the U.S. Army: Department of Columbia, 1876-April 1878
  • American Indians and the U.S. Army: Department of New Mexico, 1853-1866
  • American Indians and the U.S. Army: Department of Oregon, 1858-1860
  • American Indians and the U.S. Army: Department of the Northwest, 1862-1865
  • American Indians and the U.S. Army: Records of the Yellowstone Expedition, and U.S. Army District of Yellowstone and Yellowstone Command, 1872-1881
  • American West: Overland Journeys, 1841-1880
  • Apache Campaign of 1886: Records of the U.S. Army Continental Commands, Department of Arizona
  • Chicago History Museum Collections on American Indians and the American West
  • Indian Removal to the West, 1832-1840: Files of the Office of the Commissary General of Subsistence
  • Indian Wars of the West and Frontier Army Life, 1862-1898: Official Histories and Personal Narratives
  • Lake Mohonk Conference of Friends of the Indian
  • Letters Received by the Attorney General, 1809-1870: Western Law and Order
  • Letters Received by the Attorney General, 1871-1884: Western Law and Order
  • Major Council Meetings of American Indian Tribes, Part 1, Section 1: Navajo, Five Civilized Tribes, Pueblo, Cheyenne and Arapaho, and Ute, 1914-1956
  • Major Council Meetings of American Indian Tribes, Part 1, Section 2: Chippewa, Klamath, and Sioux (Standing Rock, Rosebud, Pine Ridge, and Cheyenne River), 1911-1956
  • Major Council Meetings of American Indian Tribes, Part 2, Section 1: Navajo, Five Civilized Tribes, Ute, Pueblo, and Cheyenne and Arapaho, 1957-1971
  • Major Council Meetings of American Indian Tribes, Part 2, Section 2: Sioux (Standing Rock, Rosebud, Pine Ridge, and Cheyenne River), Chippewa, and Klamath, 1957-1971
  • Native Americans and the New Deal: The Office Files of John Collier, 1933-1945
  • Native Americans Reference Collection: Documents Collected by the Office of Indian Affairs, Part 1: 1840-1900
  • Native Americans Reference Collection: Documents Collected by the Office of Indian Affairs, Part 2: 1901-1948
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series A: Indian Delegations to Washington
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series B: Indian Customs and Social Relations
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series C: Indian Health and Medical Affairs, Part 1: Reports on Medical and Nursing Activities
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series C: Indian Health and Medical Affairs, Part 2: Diseases
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series D: Education, Part 1: General Organization, Regulations, and Types of Schools
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series D: Education, Part 2: Correspondence and Reports on Reservation Day and Boarding Schools, Section A: Albuquerque through Pima
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Classified Files, 1907-1939, Series D: Education, Part 2: Correspondence and Reports on Reservation Day and Boarding Schools, Section B: Pine Ridge through Zuni
  • Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Law and Order Section: Alcohol and Peyote Use by American Indians, 1908-1933
  • Records of the Indian Division, Office of the Secretary of the Interior: Special Files, 1848-1907
  • Records of the U.S. Army Continental Commands: Department of the West, 1853-1861
  • Records of the U.S. Army Continental Commands: Division of West Mississippi, 1864-1865
  • Reports of the Commissioner to the Five Civilized Tribes
  • Survey of Conditions of the Indians in the United States
  • Survey of Indian Reservations
  • U.S. Army in the Era of Indian Removal: Case Files of Military Courts and Commissions
  • U.S. Army in the Era of Indian Removal: Papers of Quartermaster General Thomas S. Jesup, 1818-1852

Primary Sources: American Indian Histories & Cultures

American Indian Histories and Cultures is a collection of digitized material from the Edward E. Ayer Collection at the Newberry Library, focusing on material relating to American Indian history in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Document types, digitized in full colour, include:

  • An extensive collection of manuscripts ranging from the early 16th to the mid-20th centuries
  • A striking collection of artwork including rare American Indian ledger art
  • Speeches and petitions written by American Indians
  • Diaries, essays, travel journals and ledger books from early European expeditions
  • Correspondence, notes and minutes relating to important treaties
  • Early linguistic studies and ethnographic accounts of American Indian life
  • Thousands of photographs
  • Historic maps and atlases
  • Rare printed books
  • American Indian newspapers from the 1960s-1990s

American Indian Histories and Cultures is fully cross-searchable with the American West collection, another collection on Western Americana sourced from the Newberry Library’s prestigious Everett D. Graff Collection.


Event: Bancroft Round Table

We are pleased to announce a special, supplemental lecture, sponsored jointly by the Bancroft Library and the Department of History.  Sherry Smith, Dedman Family Distinguished Professor of History and Associate Director, Clements Center for Southwest Studies, Southern Methodist University will speak about her latest book, Hippies, Indians and the Fight for Red Power (Oxford, 2012).  The talk will take place at noon on Tuesday, April 9 in room 3335 Dwinelle Hall.

Throughout much of the 20th century, federal policy toward Indians sought to extinguish all remnants of native life and culture. That policy was dramatically confronted in the late 1960s when a loose coalition of hippies, civil rights advocates, Black Panthers, unions, Mexican-Americans, Quakers and other Christians, celebrities, and others joined with Red Power activists to fight for Indian rights. In Hippies, Indians and the Fight for Red Power, Sherry Smith offers the first full account of this remarkable story.

The entire community is invited to join us for this talk to learn more about the initial formation of the coalition of the disenfranchised which has continued to play a major role in many aspects of American cultural and political life.  We are happy to be able to take advantage of Professor Smith’s presence in our area to offer this unusual opportunity to hear her speak.

In peace,
David Kessler
Baiba Strads