Robert A. Hill Collection, 1890-2014
Using These Materials
- Original audiovisual materials are closed to use. Contact Research Services in advance to request production of use copies. Collection contains electronic records that may need to be reformatted. ...
- Hill, Robert A., 1943- and John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture
- The Robert A. Hill Collection covers the period of 1800 to 2014 and documents Hill's research, writing, and publications about Marcus Garvey's life and work and the founding of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), as well as Hill's many other projects. Items in the collection include research material assembled by Hill, writings by and about Garvey, manuscripts, correspondence, printed material, clippings, microfilm, photographs, video and sound recordings, and objects. Series 1-4 contain the production papers of the Marcus Garvey Papers Project: American Volumes (AM), African Volumes (AF), Caribbean Volumes (CA), and Project Administration (PA). Hill's other projects and writings are included in Series 5-6 as Other Works by Robert A. Hill (OW) and Hill Personal (HP). The remaining Series 7-10 consists of Microfilm (MF), Primary Sources (PS), Research (RE), and the unprocessed Jamaica (J). The collection was acquired by the John Hope Franklin Research Center in 2015.
- 755 Linear Feet
- Materials in English and French.
- Collection ID:
- Scope and Content:
The major emphasis of the Hill Collection is The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, a series of publications that Hill edited for over thirty years that compile more than 30,000 documents highlighting the influence and accomplishments of Garvey and the UNIA. The process of compiling the twelve volumes is reflected in Hill's collection of research materials from manuscripts, photocopies of microfilm and original sources, newspaper clippings, annotated printed materials, photographs, scholar's correspondence, FBI records, and annotated drafts from U.S. and international archives, universities, and libraries. The bulk of the research materials are reproductions. Original materials can be found in the Primary Sources (PS) series.
The Other Works series contains Hill's personal papers, university-related materials and correspondence, general research, presentations, and other writings. These documents include Hill's historical editions such as Marcus Garvey's The Black Man: A Monthly Magazine of Negro Thought and Opinion; Cyril V. Briggs' The Crusader; George S. Schuyler's Black Empire and Ethiopian Stories; and The FBI's RACON: Racial Conditions in the United States during World War II.
- Biographical / Historical:
Robert Abraham Henry Hill, a Jamaican by birth, upbringing and education, is Research Professor of History at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1977-1978. He was born in Jamaica on October 27, 1943 and was educated at the Jesuit high-school for boys in Jamaica, St. George's College. He is the editor in chief of The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Papers, a multi-volume letterpress edition of the papers of the largest organized movement of blacks in history. Today, he is renowned internationally as the preeminent scholar of Marcus Garvey and his movement. In addition, he is the literary executor of the Estate of C.L.R. James.
Professor Hill left Jamaica to study law at The London School of Economics, University of London, but switched to the study of politics. After leaving London, he moved to Canada, where he earned a B.A. in Political Science from University College, University of Toronto. During this time, Professor Hill was one of the founding members of the Committee on West Indian Affairs and the founder of the C.L.R. James Study Circle. Both organizations were to play an important part in the growth of political consciousness among young West Indian students; included among them were students such as Rosie Douglas, Anne Cools, Alfie Roberts, Tim Hector, Franklyn Harvey, and many others, several of whom went on to play a significant role in the political awakening in the Caribbean. Upon graduating in 1967, Professor Hill returned to Jamaica where he became involved in the movement for Black Power, serving as the editor of The Abeng, the main organ of the movement while studying at the University of the West Indies, Mona. It was here that he commenced his life-long scholarly pursuit of the story of Marcus Garvey and the UNIA, receiving a M.Sc. in Government for his thesis on Marcus Garvey and Crown Colony Government in Jamaica.
Professor Hill moved to America in 1970 to continue this research. Prior to his appointment at UCLA, Professor Hill served as a senior research fellow at the Institute of the Black World in Atlanta, Georgia, and taught at Dartmouth College and Northwestern University.
The University of California Press and Duke University Press have published fourteen volumes of The Marcus Garvey and UNIA Papers. In addition, Professor Hill has collected and published several other volumes of historical materials, including Cyril Valentine Briggs's The Crusader Magazine (1918-1921), Marcus Garvey's Black Man Magazine (1933-1939), and George Schuyler's Black Empire and Ethiopian Stories. One of the achievements of Professor Hill's research has been on the life of Leonard P. Howell, one of the prophets of the early Rastafari movement in the nineteen-thirties in Jamaica, as well as the lives of other key Rastafari and Back-to-Africa figures. In addition, Professor Hill has published influential essays on C.L.R. James, Walter Rodney, and George Beckford of Jamaica, in addition to essays on such pioneering Pan-African figures as W.E.B. DuBois, Dr. J. Albert Thorne of Guyana and Chief Charles Sam of the Gold Coast.
Chronology Date Event 1887 Marcus Garvey was born in Jamaica 1923 Marcus Garvey's mail fraud trial 1943 Robert Abraham Henry Hill born 1975 The Rastafari Bible: The Essential Collection of Sacred Writings That Inspired a Black Liberation Movement, Robert A. Hill, published Marcus Garvey: The Black Man; a Monthly Magazine of Negro Thought and Opinion: 1933 thru 1939 (1-4), edited by Marcus Garvey and Robert A. Hill, published 1978 Marcus Garvey and the Federal Prosecution Efforts, 1918—1927 (Paper presented at the National Archives Conference, Washington, D.C.) 1979 Afro-American Culture and society. A CAAS monograph series. Ed. Robert A. Hill, published 1983 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume I: 1826-August 1919 published The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume II: 27 August 1919--31 August 1920 published 1984 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume III: September 1920-August 1921 published 1985 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume IV: September 1921-September 1922 published The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume VI: September 1924-December 1927 published 1973 Editor, with Richard Small, "The Teachings of Robert E. Rumble: Jamaican Peasant Leader," in Education and Black Struggle: Notes from the Colonized World. Harvard Education Review Monograph, NO. 2 1987 Pan-African Biography published The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume V: September 1922-August 1924 published The Crusader, Cyril V. Briggs, editor, edited with a new introduction and index by Robert A. Hill published Marcus Garvey Life and Lessons: A Centennial Companion to the Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, by Marcus Garvey and Robert A. Hill published Marcus Garvey: The Centennial Exhibition, Schomburg Center 1991 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume VII: December 1927-August 1940 published Black Empire; George S. Schuyler, writing as Samuel I. Brooks ; foreword by John A. Williams ; edited, with an afterword, by Robert A. Hill & R. Kent Rasmussen published 1994 Ethiopian Stories; George S. Schuyler ; compiled and edited with an introduction by Robert A. Hill published 1995 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Vol. IX: Africa for the Africans June 1921-December 1922 published The FBI's RACON: Racial Conditions in the United States during World War II published 2001 Look For Me in the Whirlwind, by Firelight Media for PBS' series "American Experience" 2006 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Vol. X: Africa for the Africans, 1923-1945 published 2008 Marcus Garvey: The Centennial Exhibition, The Schomburg Center Traveling Exhibition Program 2011 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume XI: The Caribbean Diaspora, 1910–1920 published 2014 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume XII: The Caribbean Diaspora, 1920-1921 published 2016 The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, Volume XIII: The Caribbean Diaspora, 1921-1922 published
- Acquisition Information:
- The Robert Hill Collection was acquired by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book Manuscript Library as a purchase in 2015.
- Processing information:
Using the Collection:
The term 'facsimile' is used in the Robert A. Hill Collection to describe photographic reproductions.
Folders and documents related to the Garvey Volumes are often identified by an index number (e.g., Doc: 280911 refers to an article from September 11, 1928). These materials are described at the box level and are organized alphabetically and/or by subject.
The published volumes are referred to interchangeably throughout the collection by both Arabic and Roman numerals (e.g., 1-12 and I-XII). The materials relating to the Jamaican volumes (Vol. 8 or VIII) are referenced in documents found in the Caribbean Series, but were never published.
The audio cassettes featuring interviews of UNIA members and others, while utilized by Hill in putting together the volumes, do not include transcriptions.
Processed by: Leah M. Kerr, Meggan F. Cashwell, Bethany Lynch, and Jessica Stark, 2019.
Accessions described in this collection guide: 2015-0006, 2017-0104, 2017-0151, 2017-0155, 2019-0112.
Robert A. Hill Collection (RAHC) is arranged into 10 series: 1. American Volumes Subjects and Drafts. 2. African Volumes Subjects and Drafts. 3. Caribbean Volumes Subjects and Drafts. 4. Project Administration. 5. Other Works by Robert A. Hill. 6. Robert A. Hill Personal. 7. Microfilm. 8. Primary Sources. 9. Research. 10. Jamaica.
The records are arranged in ten series, each of which have been further arranged into subseries. The contents of each series or subseries are arranged hierarchically to reflect Hill's order, then alphabetically, chronologically or numerically. Each of these series may contain digital media as well.
- Rules or Conventions:
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Click on terms below to find related finding aids on this site. For other related materials in the Duke University Libraries, search for these terms in the Catalog.
African American intellectuals -- Correspondence
African American political activists
African American women -- Political activity
African Americans -- History
African diaspora -- 20th century
Racism -- United States -- History
Segregation -- United States -- History
Black nationalism -- United States -- History -- 20th century
Black separatism -- 20th century
Blacks -- 20th century
John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture
University of California, Los Angeles
African Methodist Episcopal Church
African Orthodox Church
Afro Athlican Constructive Church
National Endowment for the Humanities
United Fruit Company
Universal Negro Improvement Association
United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation
United States. National Historical Publications and Records Commission
International Peacemakers Association
Briggs, Cyril V. (Cyril Valentine)
Du Bois, W. E. B. (William Edward Burghardt), 1868-1963
Garvey, Amy Ashwood, approximately 1895-1969
Garvey, Marcus, 1887-1940
Garvey, Amy Jacques
Pickens, William, 1881-1954
Rogers, Robert Athlyi
Schuyler, George S. (George Samuel), 1895-1977
Sam, Alfred C. (Alfred Charles)
Africa -- History -- 20th century
England -- History -- 20th century
Jamaica -- History
United States -- Politics and government -- 20th century
Caribbean Area -- 20th century
Using These Materials
Original audiovisual materials are closed to use. Contact Research Services in advance to request production of use copies.
Collection contains electronic records that may need to be reformatted. Access copies of electronic records must be accessed in our reading room. Contact Research Services for access.
The African Volumes (AF) Series is closed to researcher access except by permission of the curator of the John Hope Franklin Research Center. Researchers can request permission to use this series through the Research Services Dept. Materials specifically related to the unpublished Volume 8 of the Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers (held within the African Volumes series) are restricted to reading room use only, with no reproductions. This restriction expires in 2025 or until the volume is published, whichever comes first.
- USE & PERMISSIONS:
The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
- BEFORE YOU VISIT:
- Register online to request material for use in our reading room and track the status of your requests. Requests for material must be made 2 full business days in advance of your visit. Most of our collections are stored at the Library Service Center, our off-site repository.
- PREFERRED CITATION:
[Identification of item], Robert A. Hill Collection, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University