The Carol Mundy Collection has been acquired by the University of Central Florida Libraries. It is being curated and housed in Special Collections and University Archives.
The collection was assembled over a period of seventeen years of intensive research by Ms. Carol Mundy, an avid collector. She began collecting about 1993 with a purchase of a 1901 edition of the Complete Life of William McKinley and Story of His Assassination. Inside the book, she discovered a yellowed document from 1870. It was a correspondence from the U.S. Army to a soldier in the 10th Cavalry – known today as the “Buffalo Soldiers.” This discovery sparked a passion to preserve black culture and heritage which continues today, therefore the Collection shall continue to grow. Also, the Collection will be the cornerstone for building a larger collection of African American material.
Ms. Mundy’s collection consists of books and pamphlets, magazines and periodicals, photographs, and images, illustrations, and documents and papers. The pre-1800 papers and documents consist of noteworthy collections of images and documents from the slavery era, including pre-Civil War daguerreotypes and glass lantern slides; Civil War era illustrated covers; an assortment of lithographic images depicting scenes from the slavery era; published speeches and articles related to the political turmoil that the issue of slavery produced; more than two dozen vintage newspapers; and original legal documents related to slavery.
Issues of The London Magazine or Gentleman’s Monthly Intelligencer from the 18th century that cover the slave trade in the Americas and the Caribbean are also included. Late 19th Century materials include items related to military records for members of the 9th and 10th Cavalry. One of the rarest items is an 1873 muster roll from the 24th Infantry, known today as the Buffalo Soldiers, signed by the commander, Abner Doubleday. Also included are books and pamphlets produced by the American Colonization Society.
There is Florida primary source material, covering 1859-1960s, related to the black community of Apopka, near Orlando. Original papers and documents of particular interest are in the name of Ella Walls, a member of the Apopka community whose persona was adapted by Zora Neale Hurston for a character in Mules and Men.
The Collection is unusually rich in its visual images and includes more than 600 photographic portraits of average individuals and well-known personalities, workers, sheet music illustrations, stereotypic and derogatory images, postcards and signs, from the late 19th and early 20th century period. Laila Miletic-Vejzovic, Head of the UCF Libraries Special Collections and University Archives, considers this to be one of the strengths of the Mundy Collection.
One of the more interesting parts of the collection is a series of photographs related to William T. Vernon, a bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church and a missionary to South Africa during the 1920s.
There is also a fine collection of 20th Century printed materials related to black culture of the period and focuses on civil rights and black power movements.