Center for Research Libraries - Global Resources Network

Timbuktu Manuscript Digitization Project


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A recent project rose out of the research of John Hunwick into a private collection at the Bibliothèque Commémorative Mama Haidara in Timbuktu, Mali, of 19th century manuscripts relating to slavery and manumission in Timbuktu. The materials, in Arabic, provide documentation on Africans in slavery in Muslim societies (a field much neglected in U.S. research). These are part of a larger collection of manuscripts in Arabic recently featured in a Chronicle of Higher Education article (Vol. 49, no. 2 ; Sept. 6, 2002; pages A26-A28) and highlighted by Henry Louis Gates in his recent PBS documentary on Africa. CAMP digitized these 200 faded and deteriorating manuscripts, paid for conservation, and sent them back to Africa.

Sample 1:

timbukC144_1.jpg (242211 bytes)

Sample 2:

timbukC50_1.jpg (256016 bytes)

Sample 3:

timbukC90_1.jpg (256271 bytes)

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Last updated 10/06/2009