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Alex Haley papers


Scope and Contents

Subject Terms

Adminstrative Information

Detailed Description

Personal Papers

Printed Materials




Miscellaneous Objects

Alex Haley papers, 1960-1992 | Broward County Library African-American Research Library and Cultural Center

By Don Fred, Myrka

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Collection Overview

Title: Alex Haley papers, 1960-1992View associated digital content.

Predominant Dates:1980s

ID: BCL0901

Creator: Alex Haley (1921-1992)

Extent: 70.0 Boxes

Arrangement: The collection is arranged into six subject related series, in addtiton three  dimensional objects listed as items.

Date Acquired: 09/26/2001

Formats/Genres: Clippings, Correspondence, Magazines, Manuscripts, Photographs, Record album

Languages: English


Alex Haley papers consist of manuscripts: some unfinished, others  from his time with the Saturday Evening Post, Boy's Life Magazine and  Kiwanis Magazine; correspondence, photographs, record albums, and other materials documenting Alex Haley's literary career. Of particular interest are drafts relating to Alex Haley's writings for the Saturday Evening Post, fan mail  during the  popularity of ROOTS and the subsequent television series, handwritten notes for various projects, a copy of the first edition of the Seafearer (Coart Guard) and photographs in Gambia.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The collection contains correspondence between the author, friends, colleagues and contemporaries in the literary and publishing industries; the movie industry, celebrities and fans; ephemera and documents relating to ROOTS, eleven unfinished manuscripts; business files including contracts for speaking engagements and photographs.

Subject/Index Terms

African American authors
Alexander, Lamar (1940-)
Allen, Woody
Angelou, Maya (1928-)
Carson, Johnnie (1925-2005)
Diller, Phillis
Dole, Elizabeth
Feellings, Tom
Gossett, Jr., Louis (1936-)
Haley, Alex (1921-1992)
Jennings, Charles
Jones, Quincy (1933-)
Juffure -- Gambia -- Africa
King, Coretta Scott (1927-2006)
Kunta Kinte
McWherter, Ned (1930-2011)
Morrison, Toni
Pryor, Richard (1940-2005)
Shabbaz, Att'allah (1958-)
Shields, Brooke (1965-)
Slavery -- United States
Slave trade -- United States -- History
Steel, Danielle (1947-)
Tennessee-- Genealogy
Tennessee-- History
Wonder, Stevie

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions: Alex Haley is open for research.

Use Restrictions: ©2012 Broward County Library African-American Research Library and Cultural Center. All rights reserved.

Acquisition Source: Heritage Book Shop, Inc. Heritage Bindery

Acquisition Method: Alex Haley was purchased by Broward County Library System  from Heritage Book Shop, Inc. Heritage  Bindery who acquired it when Haley's estate was auctioned in 1992.

Related Materials: Alex Haley Papers, MS.1888. University of Tennessee Libraries, Knoxville, Special Collections. For more information please see

Preferred Citation: The Alex Haley papers, Special Collections and Archives, African-American Research Library and Cultural Center Broward County Library.

Processing Information: The Alex Haley papers were processed using the More Product Less Process Method. Papers are sorted into subject areas, but  not on an item by item level.

Other Note: The Earl Chesler collection includes a  first edition signed copy of ROOTS.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Personal Papers],
[[information restricted]],
[Series 3: Manuscripts],
[Series 4: Correspondence, 1960s-1990s],
[Series 5: ROOTS],
[Series 6: Miscellaneous Objects],

Series 4: Correspondence, 1960s-1990sAdd to your cart.

The series is divided by letters sent by Haley and letters sent to Haley. A large portion of the correspondence is fan mail regarding  ROOTS, genealogy and family reunions.

Notable names:

Lamar Alexander (U.S. Senator from Tennessee)

Woddy Allen

Maya Angelou

Phillis Diller

Elizabeth Dole

Tom Feelings (author illustrator of the Middle passage)

Danny Glover

Louis Gossett, Jr.

Charles Jennings

Quincy Jones

Ned McWherter (Governor of Tennessee)

Toni Morrison

Richard Pryor

Att'allah Shabbaz (Malcolm X's eldest daughter)

Danielle Steel

Sub-Series 4.1: Correspondence to HaleyAdd to your cart.
Boxes 55-62: Contains correspondence sent to Alex Haley, this includes, fan mail, request for appearances, requests for autographs, requests for copies of ROOTS  with a check enclosed; letters of invitations to family reunions, letters from school children etc. Many of the letters come from overseas and are written in languages other than English.
Sub-Series 4.2: Correspondence from HaleyAdd to your cart.
Boxes 63-68: Contains correspondence sent by Alex Haley, or responses through his executive assistant Jackie Naipo. Responses are copies of the original letter, some are the original draft that were never mailed out.  In addition there are many addressed envelopes with no content.

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