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Related Collections

Below is a list of collections with relevant Watts uprising related materials. When doing research on the 1965 events, it is important to consider the fact that they did not happen in a vacuum, but instead were the result of a long history of systematic racism and resulted in an aftermath that arguably still continues. Therefore, strictly focusing on materials about the uprising does not provide all of the necessary contextual information. To find other Watts materials, we recommend searching the Online Archive of California (OAC). 

Digital Collections

Calisphere hosts digital collections from many of California's libraries, archives, and museums. The collections contain numerous photos related to the Watts neighborhood and the Watts uprising.

The Civil Rights Digital Library hosts numerous primary sources and other educational materials from libraries, archives, museums, public broadcasters, and others on a national scale that focus on the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Watts and the Watts uprising are among the many topics covered.

The Los Angeles Public Library's Photo Collection contains images of historical Los Angeles, including early African American residents and Watts and surrounding neighborhoods pre-uprising, during the uprising, and post uprising.

Physical Collections

The Governor's Commission on the Los Angeles Riots Collection, housed at the University of California Berkeley, is a collection primarily containing photographs taken by police of the uprising and aftermath. Subjects include police activity, fire fighting, and arrests made during the riots. 

The Governor's Commission on the Los Angeles Riots Records 1965 (August-December) Collection, housed at the University of California Berkeley, contains records of the Governor's Commission (also known as the McCone Report), which examined the events and causes of the uprising.

The Kendall O. Price Los Angeles Riots Records Collection, housed at the University of Southern California, contains reports derived from two seminars and a conference related to a critique of the Governor's Commission on the uprising.

The L.A. Watts Times newspapers and ephemera (1987-2010) Collection, housed at the University of California Los Angeles, was founded following the 1965 uprising and covers Los Angeles’ entire African American community.

The Los Angeles Watts Riot Collection (1963-1970) Collection, housed at California State University Northridge, primarily contains newspaper clippings from the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, Los Angeles Herald-Dispatch, Los Angeles Sentinel and several smaller local papers.

The Southern California Library (SCL) has many Watts related materials that go well beyond this digital collection. Some of the Library's collections are described on the OAC and many others are not. If you are interested in doing research at the SCL, it is best to contact them for a consultation.

The Watts Riots Records 1965 Collection, housed at the University of Southern California, contains the Governor's Commission report on the uprising and numerous documents that include transcripts of testimony that come from people directly involved and indirectly involved in the uprising and reports concerning arrests, damages, and employment.