The collection of newspapers and posters was donated to the Charles Evens Inniss Memorial Library Archives by Mr. Brian Brown in November 2013. The collection is dedicated to the memory of Aynn Elizabeth Brown and Patrick Alan Clay Brown.
This online exhibit displays digitized issues of the newspaper The Black Panther Intercommunal News Service from 1969-1973 and the party’s propaganda posters. The items are presented as blog entries (1 issue = 1 entry) and are shown in reversed chronological order.
Brian Brown describes the origin of the collection.
During the late 1960’s to early 1970’s a program was initiated by Civil Rights activist groups in Nassau County. Its Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) was comprised of college students from Hofstra and Adelphi and local community members. After the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Joint Coordinating Committee patrolled the neighborhood streets of Hempstead asking residents to remain calm. The aim was to prevent the chaos to sweep our nation during this time. The JCC founding members were Rupert (Butch) Jammott, Cheryl Larrier, Gloria Benford, Ann Brown, Annie Vashti Brown (my mother), Steven Lloyd, Ray Boyce, Dalia Dixon, Frank Robinson, Bruce Lattimer and Lee Reed. After the first year, new members joined and they were Pam (Wendy) Tillman, Gwen Edwards, Linda Boyce and Alan Dunkley.
In response to the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the JCC and the Town of Hempstead sponsored a summer and, later, a winter (Saturday) program that brought African-American children ages 6-18 by bus to the college campuses of Hofstra, Adelphi, and Nassau Community College. Conceived by college students and community members, this program provided academic enrichment, cultural awareness classes such as African dance and culture, seminars, art, and weekly field trips. Each session serviced 1,500 children in the Five Towns of Hempstead.
Pam Tillman was a member of the Black Panther Party; Aynn Brown (my sister) was an associate of the Black Panther Party. Members of the Black Panther Party brought newspapers and posters out to Long Island as a means to finance the party activities. It was a great example of “one hand washing the other”. Aynn Brown was instrumental in distributing information selling newspapers, buttons, posters and other memorabilia.
Aynn Brown died in 1993. While inventorying her possessions I discovered quite a bit of Black Panther memorabilia. I knew this was historical material that mainstream America’s media and news outlets would ignore. I donated the Black Panther memorabilia to Medgar Evers College so the party can live on forever.