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Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 archive

Identifier: 1989-004

Scope and Contents

The materials within the collection are predominantly the research materials and notes from various researchers. Other materials have been acquired from various sources between 1988 to present and includes photographs, photocopies of the local press coverage, articles and essays on the subject, an annotated map, a video recording and photographs of the riot and its aftermath. Also included is a video recording of the Weller Grossman production of "In Search of History: The Night Tulsa Burned" which aired on cable television's History Channel. In addition, there are 14 audiocassette recordings consisting of 13 interviews conducted by Scott Ellsworth (author of Death in a Promised Land: The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921) with witnesses to the riot. There is also a copy of The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921 by I. Marc Carlson, together with photocopies of journal articles from 1921 and after, and other research materials. Another addition to the collection is one cassette tape of a talk with extensive audience discussion, given October 18, 1989 at the Allen Chapman Activity Center by Wilhemina Howell and Mabel Little, two women who lived through the riot.

This is an artificial collection assembled from materials extracted from various accessions.


  • Creation: 1920 - 2007


Conditions Governing Access

These materials are open for research by any registered reader.

Conditions Governing Use

Unpublished manuscripts, tapes and photos are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured by the repository and the copyright holder. Some of the photos are in the public domain, others are not. Photocopies of articles and editorials published after 1923 may not be reproduced by this department. Many of these items are available on microfiche or microfilm in our periodicals department located on the Lower Level. For copies of items that are not available at McFarlin Library, please submit your request(s) through our Interlibrary Loan Department or visit your local library.

Biographical / Historical

The Tulsa race riot of 1921, also known as the Tulsa race war and the Greenwood riot occurred over the night of 31 May 1921 and the following morning. It left a disputed number of dead and wounded, and a large part of the African-American portion of the city was leveled by fire.


7 Linear Feet (4 legal-sized document boxes, 1 large phase box, 1 small document box, 2 photo albums, multiple audio media)

Language of Materials


Physical Location

Currently Shelved on the 5th Floor.

Immediate Source of Acquisition


Existence and Location of Originals

Originals of the Ellsworth interview tapes are located at: William R. Perkins Library, Manuscripts Department, Duke University Durham, North Carolina 27706.


It should be noted that the use of the term 'Riot' in this collection s based on archival best practices and historical precedent. It is generally considered to be a racial massacre.



Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 archive
Historically the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921 archive
Milissa Burkart; Marc Carlson.
2003-08; 2007
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • 2021-04-05: Changing the name of the collection.

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Tulsa, McFarlin Library, Department of Special Collections & University Archives Repository

McFarlin Library
University of Tulsa
2933 E. 6th St
Tulsa 74104-3123 USA
(918) 631-2496