Post-Civil Rights Repositories Housed in SIUE’s Lovejoy Library
An idea germinated by Howard Rambsy, PhD, associate professor of English language and literature at SIUE, the Eugene B. Redmond Collection and Learning Center is named in honor of Redmond, SIUE emeritus professor in the Department of English language and literature, author, editor and poet laureate of East St. Louis.
Located in Lovejoy Library, the Center recently received the St. Louis Regional Chamber Arcus People’s Choice Award for its contributions toward making St. Louis a more attractive place to live, work and invest, and has attracted several national supporters, including Maya Angelou, Nikki Giovanni, Toni Morrison and Tavis Smiley.
Redmond’s collection is a unique historical record of African-American and multicultural arts movements and contains thousands of books, magazines, rare program booklets and flyers, audio/visual recordings and historic posters. It also holds more than 150,000 photographs that he has taken over the last four-and-a-half decades of literary artists, musicians, entertainers, scholars, dancers/choreographers, supporters of the arts and political activists.
Dr. Maya Angelou, the late legendary American author, poet, dancer, actress and personal friend of Redmond, wrote: “He has … amassed a one-of-a-kind collection that deserves to be placed under one roof and made available to scholars, teachers, the general public and especially children.”
The Collection and Learning Center contains a reading room which displays many of Redmond’s collections and artifacts, a special collections workroom and a teaching room equipped with 24 computers, a smart board and a state-of-the-art podium.