Harlem's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture has scooped up a huge prize in the world of academia by acquiring the archive of Maya Angelou.
The price paid for more than 343 boxes of Angelou's personal papers, including letters from Malcolm X, James Baldwin, Coretta Scott King, has not been disclosed and was paid for with private donations.
But for lovers of poetry and researchers seeking insights into the works of one of America's greatest living writers, the price paid to get the papers housed at Schomburg means little. All that matters is that they are there for generations to enjoy.
Angelou, 82, said the rich history preserved at Schomburg and her personal connections to the center as Schomburg's national membership chairwoman were motivating factors for her decision to send her work there.
"I'd better make sure that my papers and books are taken care of, they are somewhere people can see them and read them," Angelou told the New York Times in an interview.
Angelou may be best remembered for for reciting her poem "On the Pulse of Morning" at the 1993 inauguration of President Bill Clinton.
Her most enduring works include her 1970 "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings", which retold her story of childhood sexual abuse, and her poems "Phenomenal Woman" and "Still I Rise."
Angelou has won three Grammy Awards for her spoken word albums.
Located at 135th Street in Harlem, Schomburg is akin to the Smithsonian Institution for black America. It houses many of the most important works produced by black writers and activists, including the original edit of Richard Wright's Native Son.
Anyone with even a remote interest in black America owes themselves a visit to the Schomburg when in New York.
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