The Arabella Chapman Project website debuted on March 10, 2015, the latest phase in a multi-year initiative that utilizes Chapman’s photo albums to “explore the role of visual culture, especially photography, as a critical dimension of the everyday life and politics of black Americans at the end of the nineteenth century.” The website features digitized versions of the photo albums, the originals of which are preserved in the university’s William L. Clements Library.

The project was coordinated by undergraduate students in a DAAS-History-Women’s Studies course taught by Professor Martha S. Jones. The students added a third album, containing their tintype portraits, which is also houses at the Clements along with the Chapman albums. Jones is Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, Associate Professor of History and African Studies. Visit the project at

Arabella Chapman photo album, courtesy the University of Michigan William L. Clements Library. (photo: Darryl Marshke)