Black Lives Matter — Black History Matters
Of all our studies, it is history that is best qualified to reward our research.
— Malcolm X
Ujima* Pan African Media Archives (UPAMA) is an organization of New York-based activists and historians seeking to preserve decades of Black history recorded in the late 20th century by the Sound Gatherers.
Ever attend a John Henrik Clarke presentation? Did you see one on YouTube? What about Dr. Ben? (No, not Carson.) We’re talking about historian Dr. Yosef Ben-Jochannan. Dr. Clarke’s and Dr. Ben’s forums have been attended and viewed by people all over the country, and we’ve all benefited from their scholarship. Have you ever been inspired by Regent Adelaide Sanford or heard Marta Vega, the founder of the Caribbean Cultural Center, speak? The Sound Gatherers recorded most of this material and so much more.
The Sound Gatherers have dedicated themselves to preserving the history of African people using audio and video production. They have accumulated political recordings documenting decades of civil rights and Black liberation movements. Their work has and continues to be featured on Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN) and Pacific Radio Station WBAI.
UPAMA’s mission is to organize, digitize, and preserve the vast trove of audio and visual materials recorded by the Sound Gatherers that capture the Pan-African struggle for freedom, justice, and equality.
The majority of this recorded material focuses on the contemporary theme that Black thought matters as well as Black Lives. These important moments in history will be lost forever if not preserved and made accessible for students, historians, and observers of history. Preserving them will enrich the lives of future generations.
Why We Need Your Support
As we’ve all witnessed recently, many Americans have acknowledged that racism and a double standard of justice have historically been imposed on the lives of people of color. The recent demonstrations across the national landscape attest to this emerging realization. UPAMA is attempting to add missing pages of history to this recognition. Restoring and preserving these audio and video recordings adds to the discussion and makes the material available for a better understanding of history. With this heightened understanding, and with your help, we can chart a more meaningful and equitable course for the future for us all.
These materials are crucial to global history and must be preserved, and this monumental task cannot be accomplished without the community’s support.
We need your help and your donations.
How the Money Will Be Used
Phase 1: Converting audio recordings from tape to digital
All recordings have a shelf life. Most of the time that the Sound Gatherers worked, recordings were done on magnetic reel-to-reel tape. Recordings were also made on cassettes and DATs (digital audio tapes). In time, if not properly cared for, they all deteriorate and become unusable. UPAMA’s library is not exempt from deterioration. Much of our material is in desperate need of restorative attention. Therefore, all revenue collected in this effort will be used to protect, preserve, and make available for public consumption this valuable collection. This list below details the equipment to be purchased, which is needed for the digitization and storage of the rescued materials.
G-Technology 4TB Hard Drive (2) - $238
Tascam CD-A580 Cassette Recorder - $499
Tascam 202 USB Dual Cassette Deck - $499
Sound Forge Software - $299
MacBook Pro - $1,999
Website - $1,500
After raising $5,000, additional donations will be used to acquire a safe, temperature-controlled environment for storing original audio and video material.
All donations are processed through our fiscal conduit, Citizens Against Recidivism, Inc., a nonprofit corporation exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations to the UPAMA Project are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
Donations by Check:
Payee: Citizens Against Recidivism, Inc,
Address: 137-58 Thurston Street
Lower Level Suite
Springfield Gardens, New York 11413
Memo: UPAMA Project
With your support, UPAMA will contribute to the preservation of Pan-African history and the struggle for human rights.
We cannot do this without your assistance!
*Ujima is a Swahili term meaning “collective work and responsibility.”