Cover

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Title Page, Copyright Page, Dedication

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

read more

Acknowledgments

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. ix-xiv

I would like to especially thank Raquel Von Cogell and Dr. Cherene Sherrard- Johnson, who enthusiastically supported this project during the entire journey. I began this journey as an assistant professor at University of California– Los Angeles (UCLA) Department of Information Studies. Crucial support...

read more

Introduction

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 1-13

While reading background literature for another project, I came across an article about the role of the 135th Street Branch of the New York Public Library (NYPL) in the lives of African Americans during the Harlem Renaissance.1 This essay mentioned that the Caucasian head librarian, the legendary Ernestine...

read more

1. Chicago: The Beginning

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 14-20

In 1923, when Regina, as a librarian, decided to remain in New York City, it seemed like the most obvious thing to do would be to seek employment at the largest library system in the city—the New York Public Library. Although Regina lived with family in Chicago and had a good job at the Chicago Public...

read more

2. Normal, Illinois; Chicago; Wilberforce, and Chicago Public Library

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 21-31

In 1911, after sixteen years of marriage, Regina’s parents divorced over allegations of infidelity against William. Margaret accused William of becoming intimate with a former client who obtained a divorce using William as her attorney. According to the Broad Axe newspaper, “this particular Colored lady...

read more

3. Harmlem Renaissance Women and 580 St. Nicholas Avenue

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 32-47

When Regina’s interviewer at the New York Public Library told her that she was not American, Regina recalled that she was “quite startled because I never had this confrontation in Chicago.” With fewer African Americans in Chicago than in New York City, the Chicago Public Library hired more...

read more

4. Marriage

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 48-60

Regina, like many young women in New York City, had a dating life that was complicated, diverse, and mysterious. She had more than one fiancé, a long distance relationship, a possible affair with a Jewish writer, and a secret lover—the author of a “Dear Reggie” letter who may have been the one she...

read more

5. The Harlem Experimental Theatre

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 61-86

Regina’s participation in the little theater movement began with her involvement with the theater company founded by her friend W. E. B. Du Bois. Sometime during 1924, Du Bois contacted Supervising Librarian Ernestine Rose and asked for permission to use the basement of the 135th Street Branch...

read more

6. The New York Public Library

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 87-99

All was not well in Regina’s professional life. For all that she was doing for the New York Public Library, Regina believed that she was neither being paid a wage that recognized her contributions nor being afforded the opportunities for promotion she deserved. Her relationship with Ernestine...

read more

7. International Flights

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 100-109

Regina gave a speech at a Korean high-school graduation and recalled, “[A]fter I stopped speaking they got up and dashed out and I was so disappointed. I said (to myself) ‘they didn’t even stop to say that they like it or enjoyed it.’ When I got outside they were all lined up in a long line all the...

read more

8. Mahopac, New York

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 110-118

“Last night . . . was free from gunshots,” Regina wrote in her own hand as an addendum to her typewritten letter to her friends Mr. and Mrs. J. Newton Hill, representing the African-American Institute in Lagos, Nigeria. She meant to reassure them after typing the following...

Notes

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 119-142

Index

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 143-148

About the Author, Publisher Notes

pdf iconDownload PDF