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Williams Family Papers

Identifier: MSS-4278

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of materials related to the Williams family of Atlanta, Georgia. There are several types of education-related materials, including two notebooks, one while Barbara Adeline Williams attended nursing school and the other while she was earning her high school diploma. In addition to the notebooks, there are also several of graduation programs from various African American schools in the Atlanta area. The collection also includes church programs for special events at Atlanta-area churches, a few letters and postcards, a receipt for Thornhill Shaft Wagon, newspapers, magazines, a large number of family photographs, and other ephemera.


  • 1891 - 1999

Conditions Governing Access

Access to portions of this collection have been restricted by Archives and Special Collections in order to preserve the original materials. Contact University Libraries Special Collections at or 205.348.0500 for information on access to the restricted portions of this collection. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers are responsible for using the materials in conformance with United States copyright law as well as any donor restrictions accompanying the materials. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any copyright claimants in collection materials. Copyright for official University records is held by The University of Alabama. The library claims only physical ownership of many manuscript collections. Anyone wishing to broadcast or publish this material must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of literary property rights or copyrights. Please contact Special Collections ( with questions regarding specific manuscript collections.

For more information about copyright policy, please visit: Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals without the consent of those individuals may have legal implications, for which the University of Alabama assumes no responsibility.

Biographical / Historical

The Williams family appeared to be a middle-class African American family from Atlanta, Georgia. While not much information is known about other members, Barbara Adeline Williams, née McClarin, was born October 10, 1896, to Lewis and Mary Francis (née Liddell) McClarin in Cedartown, Georgia. Lewis McClarin served as a pastor at several African Methodist Episcopal (A. M. E.) churches in Georgia, while Mary Francis was a teacher, most likely at a country school, in Gwinnett County, Georgia. Adeline, as she preferred to be called, had three siblings, all of whom succumbed to either the measles or whooping cough while she was around three and a half years old, shortly after the passing of her father. As the only surviving child of Mary Francis, young Adeline was sent to Morris Brown College, where her teacher was Mrs. Mattie Ford. In 1904, Adeline lost her mother, and began to live with her grandmother, Adeline Liddell, a formerly enslaved person of Union F. Gholston in Gwinnett County. They attended both Saint Paul Episcopal and Big Bethel A. M. E. in Atlanta. On June 12, 1912, Adeline McClarin received a diploma from the Higher Normal Course at Morris Brown College, and on September 12 of the same year, she married William Walker. They had one son, Oswell Arthur Walker, born on December 30, 1913. The following year, her grandmother passed away, and she also lost her husband sometime between 1915 and 1924. Barbara married her second husband, W. G. Williams, on February 4, 1924. They moved to the west side of Atlanta in 1927, joining Flipper Temple A. M. E. Church, and Barabara began attending evening nursing school at B. W. H. (unknown initials), the same place she later earned her high school diploma in 1933.


1.0 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Papers related to the Williams family of Atlanta, Georgia. Of particular interest are two notebooks belonging to Barabara Adeline Williams, one of which she kept while in nursing school and the other while she was attaining her high school diploma.


The collection has been arranged by the type of material and then chronologically at the file level. No original order existed when The University of Alabama Libraries acquired these papers.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The University of Alabama Libraries acquired the Williams Family Papers in 2019.

Processing Information

Processed by Jessica Rayman, August 2020.
Guide to Williams Family Papers
Jessica Rayman
August 2020
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266