Leandre Jackson photographs of Black student life at Swarthmore College
Held at: Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College [Contact Us]500 College Avenue, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
Leandre Jackson, a professional photographer, graduated from Swarthmore College in 1975 and served as Director of Swarthmore's Black Cultural Center 1975-1977 (full time from 1975-1976 and part time from 1976-1977. This collection consist of photographs taken by Leandre Jackson and displayed in a February 2015 exhibition at the Swarthmore College Library entitled "Proof of Black Life."
Introduction to the Exhibition, by Allison Dorsey, Professor of History at Swarthmore College: "It was as if blacks were invisible"—Swarthmore Alumna. Proof of life makes the "invisible" visible and bears witness to black student life at Swarthmore College beyond the 1968-1972 black student protests. Jackson's photographs stand as evidence of the rich community life black students created for themselves. These images capture black students engaged in the academic, social, and sport life of the College. The photographs also reveal intimate moments of connections among black students as they studied together, ate together, created dance and music together. These photographs were selected from a vast collection of images for their historic value, their beauty, and their warmth. Together, the exhibit reframes the conversation about the past. It was not so much that black students were invisible as it was that many others at the college experienced a failure of sight."
This collection consists of digital prints of photographs by Leandre Jackson. The original negatives and/or prints were retained by Jackson. Most of the photographs date from from the 1970s, when Leandre Jackson was a student at Swarthmore (1970-1975) and Director of the Black Cultural Center (1977). There are also some photographs of reunions in the 1990s. The photographs depict the lives of African and African American students at Swarthmore College, including the Black Cultural Center (BCC), Swarthmore African American Student Society (SASS), Gospel Choir, and more.
Three enlargements have been removed to oversize "Student Life." The framed prints used in the exhibition were given to the Black Cultural Center.
- Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College
- Finding Aid Author
- Zoe Peyton Jones
- Finding Aid Date
- Access Restrictions
This collection is available for research use.
- Use Restrictions
Copyright is retained by Leandre Jackson. SWARTHMORE COLLEGE is free to enter into separate license agreements with third parties interested in using the photographs as long as a photo credit is attached to each image and all third parties are informed that the original copyright for the image remains with the photographer and copyright owner LEANDRE JACKSON.