Marjorie A. Blackistone and Horace Ferguson Bradfield papers

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Marjorie A. Blackistone and Horace Ferguson Bradfield papers

The materials in this online repository form part of a larger Marjorie and Horace Bradfield record group held by the Bentley Historical Library. For a more complete index to the materials, please consult the collection's online finding aid.

For questions or more information, please contact the Bentley Historical Library's Division of Reference and Access Services

Marjorie Bradfield was the first African American librarian in Detroit, working for the Detroit Public Library and as head librarian for Detroit Public Schools. Horace Bradfield was an African American Physician at Providence and Hutzel hospitals, and out of offices on East Grand Boulevard in Detroit. The collection contains Marjorie Bradfield's autobiography, audio recordings of interviews with Horace Bradfield, and photographs of the Bradfields.

Marjorie Adele Blackistone Bradfield was born in Washington D.C. in 1911. She graduated from the University of Michigan in 1934 with a Bachelor of Arts in French. As an undergraduate, Bradfield was a member of Delta Sigma Theta, Nu chapter, the first Black sorority on campus. Following her graduation, Bradfield attended Columbia University where she graduated in 1936 with a Bachelor of Science in Library Services. Her first job out of graduate school was as a librarian at Roosevelt High School in Gary, Indiana. In 1938 Bradfield became the first African American librarian hired by the Detroit Public Library, where she played a role establishing a collection of books by and about African Americans. While employed by the Detroit Public Library, Bradfield returned to the University of Michigan, graduating with a Master of Library Science in 1940. Bradfield left the library in 1950 to raise her children, but came back in 1964. In 1968 she worked for Detroit Public Schools as the head librarian. Bradfield retired in 1980.

Horace Ferguson Bradfield was born in Denver, Colorado in 1913. In 1919 his family moved to Detroit, where Bradfield attended the College of the City of Detroit. Bradfield transferred to the University of Michigan and graduated with a Bachelor and Master of Science (both in Chemistry) in 1934 and 1935, respectively. Following his graduation, Bradfield taught adult education in Detroit, but returned to school in the mid-1940s. He graduated from Wayne State University in 1948 as a Doctor of Medicine. Bradfield became the fifth Black intern at Detroit Receiving Hospital before coming to Providence and Hutzel hospitals in Detroit to work as a physician. He eventually moved to an office on East Grand Boulevard, where he remained until his retirement in 1989. Bradfield also served on the board of Wayne County Community College, and the board of directors for the Detroit Urban League in the 1960s-1970s.

Please note:

Copyright has been transferred to the Regents of the University of Michigan.

Access to digitized sound recordings may be limited to the reading room of the Bentley Historical Library, located on the Ann Arbor campus of the University of Michigan.

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