Archives and Special Collections
Chicago State University’s Archives and Special Collections
is responsible for preserving historical materials from the University’s
past and present. We are located on the 3rd floor of the
University Library. Students and researchers are encouraged to use
the collections to enliven their coursework and explore new interests.
Our Special Collections encompass four major areas:
- The Progressive Education Collection contains materials on the
early history of Chicago State (first known as the Cook County
Normal School), including writings by some of the early leaders—Francis
W. Parker, Arnold Tompkins, and Ella Flagg Young—who made
the school an internationally renowned center of progressive education.
- The Illinois Leadership Collection features the papers of the
Illinois Legislative Black Caucus and several of its members who
served in the Illinois General Assembly.
- Our Rare Books section contains the Thomas H. Wirth Collection
of 18th and 19th century African-Americana. Included are rare
first editions by authors like Phillis Wheatley, John Marrant,
David Walker, Frederick Douglass, William Wells Brown, Henry O.
Flipper, Sojourner Truth, and many others. Also in rare books
are ex-Senator Paul Douglas’ personal library and the Raeburn
Flerlage book collection.
- The Neighborhood History Collection includes material of interest
to social historians, sociologists, and anyone interested in Chicago’s
past. Some highlights are records from the CSC Oral History Project
records, The Book Circle (a reading group), and the Illinois Commission
on the 50th Anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education.
Guide to Special Collections
at Chicago State University (PDF)
- The Book Circle Records
- Cook County Normal
- Chicago Normal School
- Chicago Normal College
- CSC oral history research program
- Illinois Legislative Black
Commission on the 50th Anniversary of Brown v. Board
of Education [related site]
- Guide to
the Thomas H. Wirth Collection (PDF)
- Phi Delta Kappa,