The exhibition attempts to capture the duality of the struggle faced by farmworkers: hope for a better economic future for themselves and their families by creating a strong union, and dignity in their quest for being recognized as human beings and citizens. The exhibition focuses on the early years of the farmworkers’ struggle, marked by the grape strike, the boycott, the first march/pilgrimage from Delano to Sacramento, the early efforts to organize workers in Texas, and César Chávez’s fasting calling for nonviolence and sacrifice.
Curators: Dr. Kent Kirkton and Joseph Silva
We are excited to announce the recent release of videos in The Black Power Archives Oral History Project, a collection of oral histories documenting the experiences of Black Power activists in Los Angeles. We invite you to explore The Black Power Archives.
The Tom & Ethel Bradley Center has over one million images produced by Los Angeles-based photographers that document the social, cultural and political lives of the diverse communities of Los Angeles and the Southern California region between the 1910s and the present. The archives contain one of the largest collections of African American photographers west of the Mississippi and the most extensive collection in Southern California.
In addition are the collections of Edward Alfano; David Blumenkrantz, documenting various regions of Africa; Herb Carleton, covering the San Fernando Valley; Emmon Clarke, containing extensive documentation of the United Farmworkers organization and César Chávez, Dolores Huerta, Gibert Padilla, Luis Valdez and other leaders of the union and its members; and Richard Cross, that documents the wars in El Salvador and Honduras, the Afro-Columbian community Palenque de San Basilio (near Cartagena), Cuba, the Masai and the Maya refugee camps in Mexico.
The Bradley Center has a Border Studies Collection that examines the issues surrounding the border between the United States and Mexico. Through photographic collections, oral histories, manuscripts, videos, newspaper archives and guest lectures issues such as immigration, human rights, globalization, and economic violence are examined.
Photographer Charles "Chuck" Williams worked for the Los Angeles Sentinel, California Eagle and other publications. His career spans from the mid-1940s to 1980s. Williams covered people and event in the African American community, Civil Rights Movement, and night clubs including The Plantation, The Down Beat, The Cobra Room and many others. He established and taught at The California School of Photography and employed young professions of all backgrounds. Councilman Gordon Hahn appointed Williams as his field deputy and he became the official photographer of Hahn. Due to his involvement with Hahn and Councilman Gilbert Lindsay, his documentation of the City Council, council members, and activities is especially rich. Later, Williams opened the first black advertising agency on the West Coast and added the "Charm Centre," a fashion and model school.
The Bradley Center is completing a three-year grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, digitizing over 17,000 images from photographers Charles Williams, Harry Adams, and Guy Crowder. The images document the African American community in post-World War II Los Angeles and will be made available online through the CSUN University Library’s Digital Collections.
Los Angeles: Displacement in Utopia
This mini documentary examines the history of how racial restrictive covenants developed, who fought against them, and how they were legally struck down in Los Angeles California and eventually the nation.
Featured Oral History Clip:
Clip from interview with Civil Rights activist and former executive secretary for the Western Christian Leadership Conference Gwen Green. Mrs. Green worked with Dr. King, Hosea Williams, Harry Belafonte, Andrew Young and Sammy Davis Jr. In this segment she discusses the power of nonviolent protest and the fear that accompanies it.
As part of our NEH grant to digitize the collection, the Bradley Center is conducting interviews with community members about growing up and living in Los Angeles during the Civil Rights Movement. We will be posting clips from these interviews as they are available.
The Tom & Ethel Bradley Center receives support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and, under the University Library, has made over 30,000 digital images available online. Images are added regularly to these collections.
Confronting a Pandemic Within a Pandemic: 2020 BLM Protests in LA
This digital exhibition provides a glimpse into the events that unfolded in the summer of 2020 as viewed through the lenses of various photographers, including Keith Rice, historian/archivist at CSUN, and Nicholas Soracco. Depicted in the videos and photographs are protestors occupying intersections; marching in the streets; delivering valiant and inspiring speeches; and displaying thought-provoking signs that collectively demanded equality for the lives of Black people. The protests also highlight the divisions and the differences in attitudes towards some of the nation’s citizens, with supporters of President Trump's actions receiving little resistance from police during their counter protests,
Curation by Keith Rice and Claire Gordon, Photography by Keith Rice and Taylor Walker Additional photographs provided by Nicholas Soracco and Raquel Natalicchio.
It is with a great deal of both concern and hope for the future of the U.S.A. that we announce the launch of the Bradley Digital History Project, a set of on-line lessons and other resources featuring photographs of Los Angeles' African-American community from the 1940s to the 1990s.