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The Black Archives Research Center
 

   
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FACILITIES

Carrie Meek - James N. Eaton, Sr. Southeastern Regional Black Archives Research Center and Museum
The Black Archives Research Center and Museum is located in Carnegie Library, the oldest brick building on the campus of Florida A&M University. A fire in 1905 destroyed Duval Hall, which housed the school’s first library. The school, under the leadership of its second President, Nathan B. Young, solicited the help from the famous Andrew Carnegie, who donated $10,000 to assist in rebuilding a new library. Completed in 1907, the two-story building was the first Carnegie Library built on black land-grant college campus. It served as FAMU’s second library until 1947, when a larger resource center, Coleman Library, was constructed. In the 1950s and 1960s, Carnegie Library was used as an art gallery and for art classes. In the early 1970s, it was utilized as a religious center, and in 1976, FAMU President Benjamin L. Perry, Jr., designed Carnegie Library as the founding home of the Black Archives Research Center and Museum. In 1978, the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1991, the structure underwent exterior renovations. Interior renovations were started in 1996 and completed in 1998.

The Black Archives has an extension branch which features additional museum exhibitions.

Union Bank Building
The Union Bank was built in 1841 and served as a planter's bank during Florida's territorial period. From 1869-1874, it housed the National Freedmen's Savings and Trust Company. The facility is Florida's oldest surviving bank, and is on the National Register of Historic Places. It presently serves as the home of the Black Archives' Capitol Complex satellite facility.

Over the past twenty-five years, public demands for the center’s numerous services constantly grew. Equally impressive is the fact that members of the general public continue to donate all kinds of historical material. As a result, the Black Archives’ Carnegie Library facility became overcrowded. In 1996, in a joint endeavor with the State of Florida, the center opened an extension museum in the historic Union Bank building located in downtown Tallahassee. This extension branch focuses primarily on the African American experience in the State of Florida, and quickly became a popular tour site and education center. As people continued to donate materials, this facility also became overcrowded.