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Elegant Abstract Background

Arturo "Arthur" Schomburg

Historian, Writer, Activist, and Collector

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Arturo Alfonso Schomburg, born January 24, 1874 in  Santurce, San Juan, Puerto Rico

to a Black mother and a father of German descent. This Afro-Puerto Rican historian, and writer, was an avid collector of various materials on Africa and its Diaspora. His personal collection amassed over 10,000 documents, with many being added to the Division of Negro Literature, History and Prints of the Harlem Branch of The New York Public Library. He served as curator from 1932 until his death in 1938. Schomburg, spent the majority of his time in Puerto Rico until moving to New York City at 17. 

He made it his personal mission and life’s work to collect and write about the African diasporic contributions to history and culture. Schomburg's influence on the Harlem Renaissance was enormous, and his masssive collection of intellectual, artistic, and cultural legacies of African and individuals of African descent forms the foundation for the present-day Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York.


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