Dr. Sara Dunlap Jackson: Federal Archivist Extraordinaire

0 Posted by - October 31, 2017 - LATEST POSTS

Dr. Sara Dunlap Jackson was one of the first African-American professionals hired by the National Archives in Washington, DC, she specialized in western, military, social and African-American topics. During her 46-year career, she came to be called “Archivist Exraordinaire” by her peers, authors and those she mentored.

Dr. Jackson was born in 1919 in Columbia, however, she was orphaned shortly after being born. Jackson was adopted and raised by Reverend C. W. Dunlap and his wife, Ella Fair Dunlap. She graduated from Columbia’s Booker T. Washington High School in 1939, attended Allen University, and then earned her Bachelors Degree in Sociology form Johnson C. Smith University in 1943. She later did graduate work at the American University and The Catholic University of America. A lifetime of research assistance and scholarly pursuit was acknowledged in 1976 when the University of Toledo, Ohio, awarded her an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters.

Hundreds of historians were taken under her wing and she is fondly remembered through the acknowledgments of many publications and in the hearts of many scholars. Dr. Jackson was born in 1919 in Columbia.

She later did graduate work at the American University and The Catholic University of America. A lifetime of research assistance and scholarly pursuit was acknowledged in 1976 when the University of Toledo, Ohio, awarded her an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. Initially, Dr. Jackson started out as a teacher at Robert Smalls High School in Beaufort, but the meager rewards for African-American teachers in South Carolina at the time compelled her to look for work in Washington, then a mecca for African-Americans seeking employment during World War II. She obtained a clerical position in the War Department in

She obtained a clerical position in the War Department in 1943, and joined the National Archives in 1944. In 1968, she transferred to the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, which oversees publications of papers of prominent Americans, like Andrew Jackson, Frederick Douglas, Emma Goldman, and Thomas Jefferson. Her efforts contributed greatly to many dissertations and historical volumes. In 1990 the Houston Civil War Round Table awarded her the Frank E. Vandiver Award of Merit for outstanding contributions to Civil War scholarship.

 

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Sara Dunlap Jackson: Archivist Extraordinaire

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