Mayor Edna Branch Jackson, members of City Council and County Commission, City officials, members of the W.W. Law Foundation, the NAACP, and other organizations held a news conference last Monday to announce the opening to the public of the first phase of the W.W. Law Collection.
A Photo Collection Open House followed in the Library & Archives Office in City Hall. The news conference kicked off an Open House during which the public can view a selection of photographs from the W.W. Law Photograph Collection. The entire collection can be accessed online through the City’s Digital Image Catalog at www.savannahga.gov/Law.
In March of this year, the City accepted the W.W. Law Collection as a donation from the W.W. Law Foundation in order to provide public access to this important community resource. The total collection represents the life and work of Westley Wallace “W.W.” Law (1923-2002), prominent Savannah Civil Rights leader, local historian, preservationist and community icon.
Phase I of the archival project included the cataloging and digitization of more than 1,000 visual items. The W.W. Law Photograph Collection includes photographs and images taken and collected by W.W. Law and his mother, Geneva Wallace Law. Highlights of the collection include: images of local NAACP meetings and events during the 1950s and 1960s; Views of historic local African American churches and structures; Documentation of restoration projects in Laurel Grove South Cemetery; Photographs documenting the establishment and activities of the Savannah-Yamacraw Branch of the Association for the Study of Afro-American Life and History (ASALH), the King-Tisdell Cottage Museum, the Beach Institute African American Cultural Center, the Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum, and the Negro Heritage Trail Tour; Images of African American families and community leaders of the Savannah area.
It is anticipated that the photograph collection will continue to grow as work on the larger collection continues.
For more information contact Luciana Spracher, Director of the Research Library & Municipal Archives, at (912) 651-6411 or Lspracher@savannahga. gov.