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Ruth Simms Hamilton papers

 Record Group
Identifier: UA-17.269

Scope and Contents

The Ruth Simms Hamilton papers consist of subject files and research materials on African American issues, including civil rights and affirmative action at MSU and other universities. The collection includes case studies of MSU conflicts and protests, newspaper clippings, files about other countries, files about university programs, and papers written by Hamilton and others.

Also included are files about MSU student organizations which include Akers Black Caucus, Associated Black Students of Sociology, Black Brothers of Emmons, Black Brothers of Shaw, Black Liberation Front, Black Caucus, Black Med Students, Black Pre-Med (WAGANGA), Black Sisters of Rather, Black Student Alliance, Black Students of Engineering, Black United Front, Coalition of Black Athletes, Minority Pre Law, Pan African Students Organization of the Americas, United Blacks of Wonders Hall, and Office of Black Affairs. The collection retains the original subject divisions assigned by Hamilton.


  • Creation: 1968 - 1982


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

Biographical Note

Ruth Simms Hamilton was born in 1937 in Savannah, Georgia. She received her B.A. in Sociology in 1958 from Talladega College and her M.A. (1962) and Ph.D. (1966) in Sociology from Northwestern University.

Prior to coming to Michigan State University, Hamilton worked as a Social Worker for the City of Savannah, Georgia and taught at Iowa State University. She arrived at MSU in 1968 as a visiting professor in the Department of Sociology and African Studies Center. The following year she was appointed assistant professor. She was promoted to professor of Sociology and of Urban Affairs in 2002.

Hamilton was a core faculty member in the African Studies Center, the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies and the Center for Advanced Study of International Development. She served as the Assistant Director of the Center for Urban Affairs and Ethnic studies. Hamilton was also the director of the African Diaspora Research project from 1987 until her death. In 2000, she was awarded the A. Wade Smith Award for Outstanding Teaching, Mentoring and Service by the Association of Black Sociologists. He received the Ralph M. Smuckler Award for Advancing International Studies and Program at MSU in 1995.

Hamilton died on November 10, 2003.


2.4 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Legal Status

Donor(s) have transferred any applicable copyright to Michigan State University but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright was not transferred. Copyright restrictions may apply. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Ruth Simms Hamilton Papers
4 Published And Cataloged
November 2008
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives and Historical Collections Repository

Conrad Hall
943 Conrad Road, Room 101
East Lansing MI 48824 US