Africa and the African Diaspora
Schomburg Treasures: Writers' Program, New York City
Part of FDR's New Deal, the Works Progress/Projects Administration (WPA) was created in 1935 to provide paying jobs for the unemployed at every skill level. Workers built bridges, dams, roads, libraries, courthouses, schools, parks and gardens... they created art... and they wrote.
Now, newly available on NYPL's Digital Collections site, are biographical sketches, sociological studies, essays on history, economics, sports, theater, religion, and many other subjects that informed the world of blacks in New York City in the 1930s and '40s. Authors include Ralph Ellison, Abram Hill, and Ellen Tarry, among many others. Also in the collection are edited chapters of The Negro in New York: An Informal Social History, edited by Roi Ottley, which was originally prepared under the auspices of the Federal Writers' Project of New York City.