Aaisha Haykal sorted through boxes of decades-old historical NAACP papers dealing with the Confederate flag, education and police brutality.
Haykal, 24, an archivist and scholar working at the College of Charleston’s Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture is organizing the papers of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and those of several other donated collections. The work she completes in a year-long fellowship will make it easier for people to search online and use the material.
Haykal is one of seven archival fellows selected by the Chicago-based The HistoryMakers to work on collections that preserve the history of blacks in America and to increase the number of black archivists.
Organization leaders estimate that less than 3 percent of the nation’s archivists are black, and they call that “a critical shortage.”