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African American History Project (AAHP)

SPOHP AAHP LogoThe African American History Project (AAHP) is an archive of over 600+ oral history interviews conducted with African Americans throughout Alachua County, wider Florida, and the American South. 

The collection includes memories of many facets of Black life in Florida, and is the one of the largest public African American history collections anywhere. 


African American man near the Public Market/Former Slave Market, c. before 1882, St. Augustine, Florida State Library and Archives (Research in 2012 article on this image by SCAD art history professor Holly Markovitz Goldstein)

Archival Collections

  • Oral history interviews for the African American History Project are currently undergoing processing but 500 transcripts will be on UF Digital Collections by the end of 2018. Interview audio is available to access through the UFDC, and the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program offices. Please contact us for more information.
  • Digital media resources, including podcasts, educational booklets, and other materials, are now online!

Ongoing Research

The African American History Project is committed to collecting and archiving narratives of the African American life and history in Florida, developing meaningful relationships with community partners, stimulating ongoing discussions on the value of history as revealed through narrative storytelling.

Research topics include life under Jim Crow, highlighting institution building, alternative educational techniques, food security, community-­based healthcare, support and service organizations, displacement and dispossession, labor, armed self-­defense, and tactics of resistance; Civil Rights activism, voter registration, the Tallahassee Bus Boycott movement, the 1964 St. Augustine movement, Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), and more.

Link to information about Sitiki, an enslaved man known as Jack Smith, who left the only known first-person slave narrative from Florida. 


june 2015 aahp1

African American History Project Events and Research News

  • Dr. Ortiz is teaching an intro to oral history course…
    SPOHP Director Dr. Paul Ortiz is teaching a course this spring on oral history! This interdisciplinary seminar is an intensive introduction to the theory and practice of oral history. Students will have access to the resources of the award-winning Samuel Proctor Oral History Program. We will learn the craft of oral history interviewing and digital production. We will study the ...
  • Civil Rights Attorney John Due Awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters
    Dear SPOHP’ers, Today is a great day in the state of Florida! I’m writing to inform you that the University of Florida Academic Senate has just voted unanimously to award Attorney John Due the Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters. The faculty voted unanimously in support of the nomination at the UF Senate meeting today. The presenters emphasized Mr. Due‘s exceptional work on behalf of human rights ...
  • UF African American Studies Program Celebrating 50 years
    In 2019, the University of Florida’s African American Studies Program will celebrate its 50th anniversary. The program began in 1969 and selected its first director in 1970. The late Dr. Ronald Foreman was a tireless advocate for the program from 1970 until his retirement in 2000. We will host a number of programs this year ...
  • Historic Haile Homestead Discussion: “Emancipation Betrayed” by Paul Ortiz
    Sunday, February 10, 2019 at 4:00 – 5:00 PM EST Historic Haile Homestead at Kanapaha Plantation 8500 SW Archer Rd, Gainesville, Florida 32608 Read more "Historic Haile Homestead Discussion: “Emancipation Betrayed” by Paul Ortiz"
  • From Segregation to Black Lives Matter Symposium: free registration available now!
    Event Dates: Thursday, March 21, 2019 to Saturday, March 23rd Location: George A. Smathers Libraries, Harn Museum of Art, University of Florida & Locations yet to be decided Free registration is available by clicking THIS LINK: 2019 marks the 10th anniversary of the African American History Project at the University of Florida. Funded by the UF Office of ...
  • New Course Offered: A Black and Latinx History of the Gator Nation
    For the Spring Semester 2019, SPOHP and African American Studies will be offering a course titled “A Black and Latinx History of the Gator Nation.” Students will be able to draw on hundreds of interviews about UF history, as well as correspondence and other documents archived both with SPOHP and with the Smathers Libraries. Students ...
  • Video of Dr. Ortiz Book Talk
    Click this photo for a videotaped version (87 min.) of the 8/28 book talk presented at Smathers Library East by Dr. Paul Ortiz, Director of SPOHP, on his recent book: An African and Latinx History of the United States. It was kindly co-sponsored and hosted by the Smathers Libraries’ Latin American and Caribbean Collection. YouTube ...
  • SPOHP Contributes Travel Support for OHA Conference Attendees from Hurricane-Affected Areas
    The OHA’s Day of Giving last year raised money for scholarships to fund travel to the Annual OHA Conference for those in hurricane-affected areas. With matching funds provided by the Chao Center for Asian Studies at Rice University and the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program at the University of Florida, the OHA was able to ...
  • Check Out Our Students’ Reflections On Our Annual Mississippi Freedom Trip
    Our students just got back from another successful and exciting trip doing oral history fieldwork in the Mississippi Delta as part of our Mississippi Freedom Project! The Mississippi Freedom Project (MFP) is an award-winning archive of 200+ oral history interviews conducted with veterans of the civil rights movement and notable residents of the Mississippi Delta. The ...
  • Commemorating Black and Brown Wednesday
    As we work diligently on our documentary project on the history of Institute of Black Culture and Institute of Hispanic and Latino Affairs, today we commemorate the one-year anniversary of Black and Brown Wednesday, a historical moment at the University of Florida. On July 12, 2017, No La IBCita and their supporters, protested the proposal made ...

Contact African American History Project Coordinator

African American History Project Coordinators include UF alumni and current graduate students in History, Anthropology, and English organizing interviews, scheduling research trips, and processing collections.

Funding and Research Sponsorship

The Alachua County African American History Project is funded by the UF Office of the Provost and builds on the pioneering oral history work of Joel Buchanan, who conducted original interviews with community leaders in the Fifth Avenue area of Gainesville in the 1980s.

For additional information, contact SPOHP, call the offices at (352) 392-7168, and connect with us online today. Banner images from State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory items,58154931154922132524.