15 Years to the Day of His Death, Tupac's Papers are Available Today at Robert W. Woodruff Library

Following two years of extensive collection and categorization, the Atlanta University Center (AUC) Robert W. Woodruff Library announces the opening of the Tupac Amaru Shakur Collection on the fifteenth anniversary of the death of the platinum recording artist, actor and poet who remains one of the most influential writers and performers in the hip hop/rap genre.

Spanning a period from 1969 to 2008, this remarkable collection includes song lyrics, poems, track lists and video treatments, as well as manuscripts by Shakur family members and members of the rap groups Dramacydal and the Outlawz. Memorabilia, correspondence to and from Shakur, fan mail, media clippings and publicity materials are also included. Particularly noteworthy items within the collection are a handwritten video treatment for “Dear Mama,” his song that was inducted into the Library of Congress collection; a notebook of songs eventually recorded for Shakur’s immensely successful 2Pacalypse Now album; and handwritten drafts of poems included in The Rose That Grew from Concrete

The Shakur Collection represents a partnership between the AUC Woodruff Library and the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation to make available for scholarly research the manuscript writings and other papers of Shakur. The collection is extensive and comprises approximately 11 linear feet, with 30 boxes of materials, and has the distinction of being one of the few publicly available research collections of an individual hip hop artist.

Born in East Harlem, New York, Shakur first came to prominence in the early 1990s as a featured rapper for the vocal group Digital Underground and went on to become one of the most significant cultural icons of the hip hop generation. Prior to his untimely death at the age of 25, Shakur released five record albums and appeared in four motion pictures.

Ten albums, numerous compilations and four feature films have been released posthumously, including Tupac: Resurrection, which received an Academy Award nomination for “Best Documentary (Feature)” in 2005.

“We’re honored to have partnered with the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation to preserve the artistic legacy of Tupac Shakur through this collection,” said Loretta Parham, CEO and Library Director. “He transformed the landscape of hip hop culture and was one of the most compelling voices and talents of his generation. As an academic library, we feel privileged to be the stewards of the Shakur Collection and to promote for scholarly research.”

Vernal Cambridge, Executive Director of the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation adds, "We are excited about the centralization of Tupac's massive body of work and materials. The Tupac estate has done a great job at preserving his history. Similar to his albums, and documentary film, Tupac: Resurrection, this unique collection gives Tupac another opportunity to tell his story in his own words. The lessons that students, researchers, and fans can learn from this close and personal look at his writings are invaluable."

The collection is available for research in digital and original formats in the AUC Woodruff Library’s Archives Research Center Reading Room. For inquiries about researching the collection, e-mail the Archives Research Center at archives@auctr.edu or call 404-978-2052.

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About the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation

The Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation is home to the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts, just outside of Atlanta in Stone Mountain, Georgia. The Center is dedicated to providing youth and the community with educational programs in the arts. It is a fact that early arts education improves school grades, as well as offers invaluable life lessons while building self esteem and confidence. For nearly 10 years, the Center’s programs have served youth of all social and economic backgrounds, giving countless young people the courage to get off the streets and learn vital skills that have the potential to positively impact their communities. The Center is open to the public and hosts several noteworthy events throughout the year. For more information or to make a donation, visit www.TASF.org.

 

About the Robert W. Woodruff Library and Archives Research Center

Constructed in 1982, the Atlanta University Center (AUC) Robert W. Woodruff Library serves the collective research and information needs of Clark Atlanta University, the Interdenominational Theological Center, Morehouse College and Spelman College. The Woodruff Library’s Archives Research Center is the repository for historical materials documenting the AUC institutions, as well as manuscript collections and organizational records, including the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection and the Maynard Jackson Mayoral Administrative Records. To learn more about the Woodruff Library, visit www.auctr.edu. For inquiries about the Archives Research Center, e-mail archives@auctr.edu or call 404-978-2052.