Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection
Please note: This collection contains strong language, references to police brutality, and violent imagery. The Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection consists of posters, banners, clothing, photographs, and ephemeral objects attached to the Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence (BLM Fence) surrounding Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C, from June 2020 to January 2021. The artifacts were attached to the fence to protest the treatment of Black and Brown communities by police and address various social issues, including racism, LGBTQIA+ rights, women's rights, immigration, international human rights violations, nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court, the 2020 presidential campaign, politicians, and elections. Activists turned the fence into a memorial, an art project, and an outpouring of grief. The BLM Fence suffered vandalism, including near destruction on October 30, 2020. The surviving artifacts were collected by activists and reattached to the new BLM Fence, which remained standing until January 30, 2021. People came from all over D.C. and the United States to add artifacts to the BLM Fence and pay their respects to victims of police brutality. The artifacts were curated and cared for by activists Nadine Seiler and Karen Irwin. Librarian and archivist Aliza Leventhal assisted Ms. Seiler and Ms. Irwin in collecting and inventorying the artifacts from the BLM Fence.
- Creation: 2020 or 2021
Conditions Governing Access
There are no restrictions to accessing this collection.
Conditions Governing Use
The collection donors have made this collection material available for educational use. The collection materials should not be used for commercial activities and derivative works should not be made.
Language of Materials
Haitian; Haitian Creole
North American Indian languages
Romanian; Moldavian; Moldovan
Metadata Rights Declarations
- License: This record is made available under an Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International Creative Commons license. The collection donors have made this collection material available for educational use. The collection materials should not be used for commercial activities and derivative works should not be made.
The artifacts in this finding aid are arranged by identifier. The digital collection is arranged by title in alphabetical order. Original spellings and capitalizations have been retained in the descriptions of the artifacts. Some artifacts contain content on both the front and the back. Those artifacts are grouped, and both items are reflected in the title (example: Black lives matter / Enough ).
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection is a partnership between DC Public Library, Enoch Pratt Free Library, The Library of Congress, and Howard University. The artifacts were collected and donated by Nadine Seiler and Karen Irwin with assistance from Aliza Leventhal. Enoch Pratt Free Library completed the digitization of the artifacts. Metadata of the artifacts was completed by staff at the DC Public Library and members of the public. A portion of the artifacts are housed at Howard University and may be viewed through Digital Howard.
- Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection
- An inventory of the Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection at DC Public Library.
- Laura Farley
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note