Library of Birmingham’s Black History Collection

In this week of the 50th anniversary of Enoch Powell’s ‘Rivers of Blood’ anti immigration speech we look at the Library of Birmingham’s ‘Black History’ collection as the West Midlands paved the way for immigrants and their children to make their mark on Britain with people like the late, lamented Cyrille Regis changing the face of football forever…..

The Iron Room

During the existence of Birmingham Libraries, the Library of Birmingham has, over the years amassed a large collection of books which has been given the designation of the Black History collection. As the name suggests this collection does indeed contain material relating to black history but it also includes other topics including Asian History, Culture, Arts, the Black and Asian experience in the UK, and other diverse topics such as the climate and topography of the Indian sub-continent. The collection currently contains over 9000 books.  The Black History collection has grown from previous collections held within past departments of the library including Central Lending, Information Services and Archives and Heritage, with the library continually adding material to the collection. The collection is currently housed within the Archives and Collections Department of the Library of Birmingham.

This collection covers diverse subject areas including the history of Black footballers, for example Colouring…

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