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Prepared by Susan Walters, April 1995; Updated: September 2020; Last Updated: December 2022
Inclusive Dates: 1980-2002
Extent: 1.5 cubic feet (1 document case + 1 oversized folder filed in map case)
Physical Location: 11th floor
Biographical Note: Virginia Hamilton, born and raised in Yellow Springs, Ohio, was an internationally recognized writer of fiction for children and young adults. In 1975, she was the first African-American woman to win the Newbery Award, an award given for "the most distinguished contribution to the literature for children," for M.C. Higgins the Great, for which she also won the National Book Award and the Boston Globe Horn Book Award. Since then three other books written by Hamilton received the Newbery Award. In addition she received every major award and honor accorded American authors of literature for youth including the Coretta Scott King Award, also received three times, most recently for The People Could Fly, a collection of African American folktales. Hamilton was also awarded a "genius grant" in 1995 as a fellow of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Kent State University awarded Hamilton an honorary doctorate in humane letters in 1997. Virginia Hamilton died in February of 2002 after a 10-year battle with breast cancer.
Scope and Content: The collection of manuscripts once on deposit with Kent State University's Department of Special Collections and Archives has, at the request of Hamilton's family, been transferred to the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. for permanent housing. The remaining collection at Kent State contains biographical information about Hamilton, some essays and articles, selected correspondence and photographs, and a sampling of publishers' promotional materials.
Related Materials: The bulk of Virginia Hamilton's papers were transferred by Kent State University to the Library of Congress. The Department of Special Collections and Archives also houses an extensive collection of Hamilton's books. Search KentLINK for holdings information. The Virginia Hamilton Conference is coordinated by the School of Library and Information Science (now known as the iSchool). The records of the Conference, housed in Special Collections and Archives, are also available to researchers.
Folder -- Contents
Oversized Items (filed in map case)