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Smith (Mary Perry) papers
BANC MSS 2016/195  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
The Mary Perry Smith papers document her career as an educator and advocate for Black filmmakers. The bulk of this collection consists of records from two organizations Smith co-founded, the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement Program (MESA) and the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame, but there are also materials related to her career as a teacher at Oakland Technical High School.
Background
Mary Perry Smith was born in Evansville, Indiana in 1926. She attended Ball State University as an undergraduate, earned a Master's from Purdue University, and began her teaching career in Texas. While in Texas, she met her husband, educator and community leader, Norvel L. Smith. The couple moved to the Bay Area and settled in Oakland, where Smith began her long career as an educator, community activist, philanthropist, and an advocate for Black filmmakers and African American cultural institutions. In 1969, while teaching geometry at Oakland Technical High School, she helped launch the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA) Program. Smith left teaching in 1977 to work on MESA full time, eventually becoming a board member. She co-founded the Black Filmmakers' Hall of Fame in Oakland in 1974 and served on the board of the Oakland Museum. Smith died in 2015.
Extent
13.1 Linear Feet (10 Cartons, 2 boxes)
Restrictions
Some materials in these collections may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition, the reproduction of some materials may be restricted by terms of University of California gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions, privacy and publicity rights, licensing and trademarks. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owner. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user. All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley 94720-6000. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html.
Availability
Cartons 1-9 and Boxes 1-2 are open for research. Carton 10 includes restricted personal information and is closed to researchers until 2053.