Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Update: Moffitt Library is closed for seismic work, but most other libraries are open. Learn more.

Human Rights Resources: History and Archives

Human Rights Archives

Center for Human Rights Documentation and Research. From Columbia University.  Archives of organizations and of individuals who have played significant roles in human rights advocacy, education and research.  See especially their web archive

Center for Research Libraries.  Their Global Resources Human Rights Archives and Documentation Program (HRADP) supports the gathering, preservation and accessibility of archives and documentation regarding violations of human rights and legal proceedings in all world regions. 

Civil Rights in Mississippi Digital Archive. Internet-accessible, fully searchable database of digitized versions of rare and unique library and archival resources on race relations in Mississippi.

Civil Rights Digital Library.   Includes a digital video archive of historical news films of the Civil Rights Movement, a civil rights portal providing a  virtual library by connecting related digital collections, as well as stories, articles, and lesson plans.

Center for Human Rights Documentation and Research. From Columbia University.  Archives of organizations and of individuals who have played significant roles in human rights advocacy, education and research.  See especially their web archive

Duke University Library. Partners with the human rights community to preserve the history and legacy of human rights around the world.

Human Rights Documentation Initiative. Committed to the long-term preservation of fragile and vulnerable records of human rights struggles worldwide, the promotion and secure usage of human rights archival materials, and the advancement of human rights research and advocacy around the world.

Martin Luther King Papers Online  From the The Archive of The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change.

Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies.

Television News of the Civil Rights Era.  University of Virginia Library. Virginia Center for Digital History. “An archive containing film footage from the nightly news from two local television stations in Virginia. Included are clips of Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, Richard M. Nixon, the governors of the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

University of Minnesota Human Rights Library. Contains collection of many of the most important international human rights treaties and other instruments. These documents can be accessed by subject matter, instrument list, or by using one of the search mechanism.

Archives of the United States Government

Digital National Security Archive (DNSA). Indexes declassified documents spanning fifty years of US national security policy. Also includes a chronology, glossary of names, events, special terms, and a bibliography for each collection developed around a specific event, controversy, or policy decision.

  1. Early American Imprints, Series I (1639 - 1800). Thousands of searchable mages offering insight into every aspect of American life in the 17th and 18th centuries such as agriculture, auctions, foreign affairs, diplomacy, literature, music, religion, the Revolutionary War, temperance, and witchcraft. 

Early American Imprints, Series II (1801-1819). Indexes books, pamphlets, broadsides, state papers and other print genres published from 1801-1819. Covers all aspects of American life including taxation, public health and diseases, slavery, military law, Indians, Christianity, cosmology, etiquette, and much more.

Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports.  Information from foreign media sources, including political speeches, television and radio broadcasts, newspapers, periodicals, and more, translated into English.

ProQuest Congressional.  One stop shopping for U.S. congressional publications. Provides index and abstracts of congressional publications back to 1789.

US Declassified Documents Online. Declassified via the Freedom of Information Act and regular declassification requests. Nearly every major foreign and domestic event of these years is covered.

Historical Newspapers and Periodicals

19th Century British Newspapers. Contains regional and national papers in England as well as papers from Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Content comes from penny papers read by the working class and papers advocating political or social movements such as Reform, Chartism and Home Rule.

19th Century U.S. Newspapers. Images of both full pages and clipped articles for hundreds of 19th century U.S. newspapers. For each issue, the newspaper is captured from cover-to-cover, providing access to every article, advertisement and illustration.

African Newspapers from the World Newspaper Archive. Digitized historical collection of Sub-Saharan Africa newspapers. Includes over many full-text searchable historical newspapers published in Sub-Saharan Africa prior to 1923. Most titles are in English, with some coverage in African and other European languages.

HarpWeek. Full-image reproductions of Harper's Weekly from its beginning in 1857 to 1912. Provides access to information about 19th and early 20th century advertising, illustrations, culture, history, literature, and notable figures.

Historical Newspapers Online. Indexes newspapers covering all aspects of British life and world affairs in the 19th and 20th centuries. Contains four major historical resources: Palmer's Index to the Times which covers The Times (London, 1790-1905); The Official Index to the Times (1906-1980); The Historical Index to the New York Times (1863- 1922); and Palmer's Full Text Online (1785-1870).

Historical Newspapers (ProQuest).  Includes Chicago Defender (1910-1975). Chicago Tribune (1849-1988). Los Angeles Times (1881-1988). San Francisco Chronicle (1865-1922). New York Times (1851-1994) with Index (1851-1993). Wall Street Journal (1889-1994). Washington Post(1877-1995).

Irish Times (1859-2011) and Weekly Irish Times (1876-1958). Full-text of key Irish newspaper from 1859-2011. The historical Irish Times provides comprehensive news reporting as well as sports, business, arts, lifestyle coverage, and more. Each issue contains in-depth analysis and lively debate of current events.

Times Digital Archive.  Online access, fully searchable full text of over 200 years (1785 to 1985, with 1986 to 2003 added later this year) of The London Times, the "world's newspaper of record." [Note: "Sunday Times" is a distinct newspaper with no editorial connection to The Times London, and is not included in this database.]

Archives of Foreign Governments

Confidential Print: Africa, 1834-1966. Documents in this resource cover the whole of the modern period of European colonization of the continent. This collection originated out of a need to preserve the most important papers generated by the Foreign and Colonial Offices.

Confidential Print: Latin America, 1833-1969. Covers the South and Central America, plus the non-British islands of the Caribbean, from just after the final Spanish withdrawal from mainland America in the 1820s to the Cold War in the 1960s. Covering revolutions, territorial changes and political movements, foreign financial interests, and much more. 

Early English Books Online (EEBO). Indexes volumes of early works printed in England or in English constituting a significant portion of items included in the English Short Title Catalogue.

Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO). Contains items published in Great Britain and its colonies, including those in North America, during the 18th Century. This database complements the materials found in Early English Books Online (EEBO), which covers 1475-1700.

Foreign Office Files for China, 1919-1980. The complete British Foreign Office Files dealing with China, Hong Kong and Taiwan in this period from 1919 (the beginning of the Republic of China) to 1949 (when the Chinese Communist Party won power) to 1976 (the year of Mao Zedong's death) to 1990.

House of Commons Parliamentary Papers. Access to thousands of 18th, 19th and 20th Century Parliamentary Papers. Includes all the "sessional papers" of the British Parliament: bills, reports of committees, papers presented by Royal Commissions and government departments, treaties and international agreements, command papers, and statistics.