From the first black graduate in 1894 to a 2010 exhibit of a former Purdue professor, an online timeline provides insight to black history at Purdue.
"... Or the Fire Next Time" is a project Purdue Libraries, the Black Cultural Center and Digital Initiative collaborated on to digitize black student experiences on campus over the years.
Summarizing years' worth of information proved to be a rich history lesson and provided a window into the past for those who worked on it.
Shauna Borger, digital collections coordinator for Purdue Libraries, worked on the timeline, compiling information and putting it online. She said the most memorable part of the time for her is the entry that the timeline is named after.
"It was a protest in response to the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. and the violence that was going on in the country," she said. "I think the most interesting thing is that it was a peaceful response to that violence."
Borger said the timeline reflects personal goals and those of Purdue Archives.
"One of my goals and one of Archives' initiatives last year was to document some minority cultures on campus," she said.
The Black Cultural Center contributed content, including old documents and event programs, to the cause. Working on the timeline proved to be insightful and educational to those involved.
Lindsay Taylor, a senior in the College of Engineering, worked on the project over the summer. She, like other Black Cultural Center staff members who worked on the timeline, was assigned a binder full of old documents that covered two to three years worth of information.
"Each binder was roughly two to three, sometimes a five-year frame, and basically our job was to go through and summarize each article," she said.
Taylor said she enjoyed learning about the different things that took place on campus and seeing the change in Black Cultural Center performance groups over time.
"I think (the timeline) is a good thing because ... people will be able to see things about Purdue they might not have known before," she said.