African American Police League (Chicago, Ill.) records

Descriptive Summary

African American Police League (Chicago, Ill.) records
Predominant Dates
bulk 1968-1980
Robinson, Renault, Byrne, Jane,1933-2014-, Clements, George,1930-, Coleman, Kermit B.,1925-1979, Conlisk, James B, Marshall, Prentice H.,1926-2004, Metcalfe, Ralph,1910-1978, Saffold, Howard,1941-
African American Police League (Chicago, Ill.)
Afro-American Patrolmen's League (Chicago, Ill.), Afro-American Police League (Chicago, Ill.), Chicago Housing Authority, Chicago (Ill.).Police Department, Committee to Elect Harold Washington Mayor of Chicago, League to Improve the Community (Chicago, Ill.), National Black Police Association
213.75 linear ft.
(332 boxes processed).
1 oversize folder.
1 sound cassette.
Film reels.
Material is in English unless otherwise noted.

Conditions for Access

A small portion of originals from the collection are closed until 2050, including personnel files, resumes, and membership cards. Redacted copies of materials from boxes 29-36 and 178 have access copies in box 243. Additional closed files can be requested to be redacted, but we cannot guarantee immediate availability. A small portion of the collection is stored off site. Advance appointment is required to view these materials. For listening and viewing purposes, it is necessary to use a copy, not the original (and to have a listening copy made if one is not available).

Conditions Governing Use

Contact the archives for more information on licensing and permissions for use and reproduction.

Preferred Citation

A common citation for archives is as follows: Item, Folder number and/or title, Box number, Collection title, ID number, Repository name, location.

Custodial History

The main body of the AAPL records were donated by the AAPL through the offices of Renault Robinson beginning in 1970 (accession#: M1970.0061, M1971.0015, M1971.0032, M1982.0027, M1984.0128). Papers relating to the Chicago Housing Authority were the gift of Renault Robinson.

Biography or History

In 1968, five Black Chicago police officers founded the Afro-American Patrolmen's League (AAPL; renamed the Afro-American Police League in 1979 and later, the African American Police League), with the stated purpose of establishing a greater degree of professionalism in law enforcement, to elevate the image of the African American police person in the African American community, and to eliminate police brutality in law enforcement. It was the first African American police organization of its kind. The original members were all fellow graduates of the Chicago Police Academy Class of 1965. Renault Robinson was its first president; Harold Saffold was its second president.

Scope and Content

Annual reports, court files, fundraising items, historical information, minutes, reports, correspondence, clippings, topical files, newsletters, police brutality report files, and publications and flyers relative to the ongoing work of the Afro-American Police League (AAPL) and its education and action arm, the League to Improve the Community (LIC). The collection also contains items on numerous law enforcement and civil rights organizations across the country; materials on the suspension of AAPL executive director Renault Robinson from the Chicago Police Department and related lawsuits; and materials pertaining to the National Black Police Association (NBPA).

Scope and Content

The collection also contains Renault Robinson's working files about his service as a commissioner and board chairman of the Chicago Housing Authority (1979-1987); and Robinson's working files about his involvement in political campaigns, including those of Ralph Metcalf, Mayor Jane Byrne, and Mayor Harold Washington.

Alternate Format Available

This material has been digitized by ProQuest and is available to subscribers to the History Vault collection, Civil Rights and the Black Freedom Struggle.

Descriptive inventory available online for a portion of the collection.

Indexed Terms

Exhibits Note

Exhibited in: "Curators' Choice," Chicago Historical Society, October 1993-January 8, 1994.Report to parents from Father George Clements and other priests of Holy Angels School, 1970 June 10.