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Office of the President, Yale University, records concerning the May Day rally

Call Number: RU 16
Scope and Contents

The records include background materials on the Black Panther party, information on the trial, and a series of Strike Newspapers issued by Dwight Hall. Also included are materials documenting Yale's approach and efforts toward organizing peaceful co-existence during the weekend events, as well as published information chronicling each day and summarizing media coverage. Other materials describe the faculty meeting held to address the issue of suspending academic activities during the trial, as well reaction to President Kingman Brewster, Jr.'s, famous speech before that assembly. A significant number of letters detailing positive and negative feedback from Yale alumni and those unrelated to Yale comprise the correspondence files. May Day weekend took place 1-3 May 1970 as a rally to protest the Black Panther murder trial of party chairman Bobby Seale and seven other party members. Normal academic activities were suspended so that Yale students, faculty, and staff could assist in planning and organizing cautionary measures. Yale University opened its doors to demonstrators by offering shelter, food, day care, and first aid throughout the weekend. Approximately 15,000 people attended the first day of rallies without significant disruption or disorder. Fewer remained the following days, and academic activities resumed around campus by Monday 4 May.

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Original audiovisual materials, as well as preservation and duplicating masters, may not be played. Researchers must consult use copies, or if none exist must pay for a use copy, which is retained by the repository. Researchers wishing to obtain an additional copy for their personal use should consult Copying Services information on the Manuscripts and Archives web site.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The records were transferred from the Office of the President, 1973


The records are arranged alphabetically by subject and material type.

7.76 Linear Feet (11 boxes, 1 audiocassette)
Related Names
Yale University. President's Office
Language of Materials