James Weldon Johnson Collection

Scope | Size | Marking | Classification | Special notes and tracings

Scope

This collection was founded in 1941 by Carl Van Vechten as a memorial to Dr. James Weldon Johnson and celebrates the accomplishments of African American writers and artists. This collection also includes examples of African Americana. It is considered a separate unit within the framework of YCAL. For more information consult the Guide to the Collections.

Size

Octavo:
up to 25 cm high
up to 23 cm wide
Quarto:
between 25 and 37 cm high
between 23 and 32 cm wide
Quartos shelving at 121 are given a "+" at the beginning of the last line of the call number with location code beinycal
Folio:
over 37 cm high
over 32 cm wide
Folios shelving at 121 are given Year/Number folio call numbers with location code beinycal
Broadsides:
Class in Year/Number broadsides with location code beinycal
See Broadsides: Marking Call Numbers on Items & Folders

Marking

The following guidelines are used when marking volumes in JWJ:

  1. Mark on Yale bookplate when there is one, generally in the upper left corner.
  2. Mark on back cover, lower right hand corner, when there is no Yale bookplate unless cover is too dark.
  3. Mark on verso of last page, lower right hand corner, when 1 or 2 don't apply. The lower left hand corner is the alternate location when the lower right hand corner is unusable.
  4. If the last page is unmarkable (e.g. too dark or shiny or filled with text or illustrations), mark the verso of the first usable page from the end.

Classification

Individual works by Black Authors | Collected works, translations, & works about individual Black Authors | Serials | Other Types of Materials

Classification of the James Weldon Johnson Collection basically follows the rules and principles described for YCAL.

Individual works by black authors

JWJ follows the pattern for YCAL classification of alphabetical by author and, under each author, chronological by date of first edition. (See Other Types of Materials for non-authorial classification.) The first line of the call number is "JWJ" to indicate material from the James Weldon Johnson Collection. The second line is from the "Old Yale" classification scheme where "Z" meant rare material. The letter "a" was chosen to represent American literature and the letter "n" material by Black or African American authors.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Book by Black author

The third line is the author's Cutter number, making exceptions when main entry rule changes introduced with AACR2 would result in a split author number (as in the case of Twain vs. Clemens). Generally, use three digits when constructing an author number, but expand the number as needed to distinguish authors and to place them correctly in the alphabetical sequence.

Examples

Steward, T. G. The Haitian revolution ..., 1914.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
St492 T.G. Steward's  author number

Stewart, Daniel Y. Black New Haven, c1977.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
St4925 Daniel Y. Stewart's author number

Stewart, John. Curving road, 1975.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
St493 John Stewart's author number

The fourth line is the last three digits of the date of the first edition followed by the initial letter of the title. Use "H" or "J" instead of "I" (which can be mistaken for the number one); use "N" or "P" instead of "O" (which can be mistaken for zero). If the letter for the title is already taken, use the subsequent letter in the alphabet. Lower case letters "b", "c", "d", etc. are added to signify a second, third, fourth, etc. edition or other subsequent editions. The addition of "a" is normally reserved for proof copies; proof copies of later editions add the letter "a" after the edition indicator. Beginning in 2000, for books first published after 1999, use all four digits of the date for the fourth line.

Examples

Wright, Richard. White man, listen!, 1957.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W936 Wright's author number
957W Year of publication of original ed. followed by initial letter of title

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W936 Wright's author number
957Wa Year of publication of original ed. followed by initial letter of title and "a" to indicate proof copy

Macmillan, Terry. [A book she will publish in 2010].

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
M2285 Macmillan's author number
2010B  Cutter for the original edition of [A book she will publish in 2010]

Pseudonymous works
Class all works by an author who writes under multiple names in one location. Use the existing author Cutter if the author has been classed previously in JWJ.
If the author is new to JWJ, choose a preferred name, if one exists, following instructions as given in RDA 9.2.2.6. If there is not an established name, use the name as it appears on the item. Class all new material by this author at this location.

Anonymous works
If a work is by an anonymous author, create a Cutter number using the first word of the title.

I just quit stirrin' when the tastin's good, 1986.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
I14 Cutter using first word of title
986J Date of publication followed by first letter of title (used "J" in place of "I", per usual procedure)

Correspondence

Class here both selections and collections of an author's correspondence that are edited by either the author or another individual.

Examples

Bontemps, Arna Wendell.
<Correspondence> Arna Bontemps-Langston Hughes letters, 1925-1967. -- New York, 1980.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
H874 Hughes' author number
980A Year of publication of first ed. followed by initial letter of title

If a work is to be classed with a person who is not the main entry for the bibliographic record and the work does not fall into any of the categories below, class the work as instructed by Beinecke. Follow the date in the fourth line with the first letter of the item's title.

Example

Nutt, Howard. Special laughter: poems / ... with an introduction by Richard Wright, c1940.
[Beinecke Library In-Process slip (BLIP) instructs to class with Wright]

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W936 Wright's author number.
940S Year of publication followed by initial letter of item's title

Collected works, translations of an author, and works associated with an author
Use the following table for collected works, translations, and works associated with an author. These and other categories are denoted by the initial letters listed below which are used at the beginning of the third line of the call number, followed by a three-digit date and the initial letter of the main entry, except where indicated otherwise. Use the system delineated above of a final "a" for proof copy, "b" for second edition, etc. Beginning in 2000, for books first published after 1999, use all four digits of the date for the third line.

A - Works of spurious or doubtful attribution
No letter follows the year of publication.

Example

Fictitious book, 1935. -- Attributed to Zora Neale Hurston.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
H946 Hurston's author number
A935 Year of publication preceded by "A" to indicate doubtful attribution

B - Complete works
Follow the year of publication with initial letter of title.

Example

Hammon, Jupiter. America's first Negro poet: the complete works of Jupiter Hammon ... , 1970.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
H184 Hammon's author number
B970A Year of publication preceded by "B" to indicate complete works and followed by initial letter of title

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C - Collections of an author's works
Use when a collection contains two or more items. Follow the year of publication with initial letter of title. Used for collections of previously published works compiled by someone other than the author. Class collections of an author's correspondencewith individual works by the author.

Example

Brown, Sterling Allen. The collected poems of Sterling A. Brown selected by Michael S. Harper, 1980.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
B815 Brown's author number
C980C Year of publication preceded by "C" to indicate collection and followed by initial letter of title

D - Extracts
Used for extracts from several works rather than compilations. Extracts from a single work class with other editions of that work. Follow the year of publication with initial letter of title.

Example

Douglass, Frederick. Frederick Douglass: selections from his writings edited ... by Philip S. Foner, c1945.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
D747 Douglass's author number
D945F Year of publication preceded by "D" to indicate extracts and followed by initial letter of title

E - Translations
Use in combination with the letter from the table below. [e.g. Eh = French, En = German, etc.] The letter combination is followed by date of first edition of the specific translation, and the initial letter for the translator when known, or the initial letter of the title proper if the translator is unknown. Class here translations of an author's work. Class works translated by the author with the individual works of the author. Class translations here even if they are translations of collections or extracts. Adjust translator or title cutter in case of conflict.

Example

Himes, Chester B. [Big gold dream. French] Tout pour plaire = The big gold dream / traduit de l'americain par Yves Malartic, 1959.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
H572 Himes's author number
Eh959M  Year of publication preceded by "Eh" to indicate translation into French and followed by initial letter of translator

f Polyglots, Latin
g English
h French, Provencal
j Italian
k Spanish, Catalan
L Portuguese, Romansh (Raeto-Romance), Romanian
n German
p Dutch, Flemish, Afrikaans
q Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Icelandic
r Greek
t Celtic, Gaelic, Irish, Breton, Welsh, etc.
u Lithuanian, Bohemian (Czech), Polish, Russian, modern Bulgarian, Uralic-Altaic, Finnish, Hungarian, Turkish, Croatian, Serbian, Basque, and other Eastern European languages not specified elsewhere
v Armenian, Albanian, Slovene
w Indo-Iranian, Sanskrit, Persian, Semitic, Chinese, Japanese, Hebrew, Yiddish, Arabic, Vietnamese, Thai, Burmese, Korean, Indian (incl. Malayan, Bengali, etc.)

F - Dramatizations

Example

Doe, Jane. Meridian the play ... based on a story by Alice Walker, 1994.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W15 Walker's author number
F994D Year of publication preceded by "F" to indicate dramatization and followed by initial letter of main entry

G - Scores/music
Use for librettos and works about music.

Exception: class sheet music and scores by individual author under JWJ V2 or JWJ V3. Class collections of music/lyrics by more than one author under JWJ V1.

H - Adaptations, parodies, etc.

Example

Poe, Joan. A satire on modern American authors, 1988. (Includes satire of works of Toni Morrison.)

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
M8338 Morrison's author number
H988P Year of publication preceded by "H" to indicate parody and followed by initial letter of main entry

J - Illustrations

K - Concordances, dictionaries, encyclopedias, indexes, etc.

Example

Mandelik, Peter. A concordance to the poetry of Langston Hughes, 1975.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
H874 Hughes's author number
+K975M Year of publication preceded by "K" to indicate concordance and followed by initial letter of main entry

L - Periodicals
Not used for new titles; used only for issues added to existing titles. Use JWJ A for new serial titles.

M - Miscellaneous material.

Example

Promotional material for "The color purple," the 1985 film of the Alice Walker novel

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W15 Alice Walker's author number
M985P Year of publication preceded by "M" to indicate miscellaneous material and followed by initial letter of main entry

N - Tributes, memorials, festivals, exhibitions

Example

To Gwen with love: an anthology dedicated to Gwendolyn Books, 1971.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
B791 Brooks's author number
N971T Year of publication preceded by "N" to indicate tribute and followed by initial letter of main entry

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Q - Bibliography, dealer's catalogs

Example

Parker, John W. A bibliography of the published writings of Benjamin Griffith Brawley, 1957.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
B739 Brawley's author number
Q957P Year of publication preceded by "Q" to indicate bibliography and followed by initial letter of main entry

R - Sources, prototypes

Example

Roe, Richard. Caribbean world. The sources of some of Jamaica Kincaid's stories, 1989.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
K574 Kincaid's author number
R989R Year of publication preceded by "R" to indicate source and followed by initial letter of main entry

S - Criticisms, commentaries (General)

Example

Rudwick, Elliott M. W.E.B. Du Bois, 1960.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
D853 Du Bois's author number
S960R Year of publication preceded by "S" to indicate general criticism and followed by initial letter of main entry

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Sz - Books containing critical contributions about the author
Obsolete as of  November 1998. Reclass to "S" when found.

T - Criticism of a specific work
Use with the initial letter of the work criticized.

Example

Joe, James. Life is easy. A criticism of Dorothy West's The living is easy, 1950.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
W746 West's author number
Tm950J Year of publication preceded by "Tm" to indicate criticism of specific work and initial letter of specific work and followed by initial letter of main entry

W - Biography
Note: Autobiography, memoirs, and similar works by the author class as individual works by the author.

Example

Holt, Rackham. Mary McLeod Bethune: a biography, 1964.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
B465 Bethune's author number
W964H Year of publication preceded by "W" to indicate biography and followed by initial letter of main entry

Y - Works by or about relatives and friends

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Z - Homes, towns and times (background)

Example

Boe, B en. Postwar Harlem. James Baldwin's Harlem, 1965.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
B193 Baldwin's author number
Z965B Year of publication preceded by "W" to indicate work about author's home and followed by first letter of main entry

Za - Poetry, drama, and fiction

Example

George, Emery Edward. Black Jesus, 1974. (Poem about Martin Luther King).

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
K588 King's author number
Za974G  Year of publication preceded by "Za" to indicate drama about author and followed by first letter of main entry

Zc - Special interests and activities

Zz - Association books
Used for books with dedications to the author, and books from the author's library. The three-digit date of the work in hand is followed by the initial letter of the main entry. Add one or more letters from the main entry to resolve conflicts. No attempt is made to collocate.
Note: The author of the work takes precedence over provenance when classing, unless instructed otherwise.

Example

Criticism in America by Irving Babbitt [and others], 1924. (Owned and annotated by Countee Cullen)

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan Black author
C897 Cullen's author number
Zz924C Year of publication preceded by "Zz" to indicate book from author's library and followed by first letter of main entry

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Serials

Classification for serials is based loosely on the Cutter tables. The number is adjusted so that the title is placed within correct alphabetic sequence. The first line of the call number is JWJ for the James Weldon Johnson Collection. The second line of the call number is A. The third line of the call number begins with the initial letter of the main entry (or the first two initial letters when the main entry begins with a vowel or an S), followed by a Cutter number for the first word.

Examples

Congo mission news

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
C7603 Cutter number for main entry

New theatre news

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
N446 Cutter number for main entry

On the track

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
On18 Cutter number for main entry

In general, when a serial changes title, the classification will remain the same.

Examples

Negro digest

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
N318 Cutter for main entry

Black world [continutes Negro digest]

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
N318 Cutter for original main entry

Indexes

An index for a serial that is published as part of the serial will be added to the bibliographic record for the serial and will be marked "Index" at the end of the call number. An index to a serial that is published by an outside entity will be classed with the serial as above with an "A" following the number for the serial.

Examples

Black world

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
V874A  Cutter for main entry and A to indicate Index

Miscellaneous material

Miscellaneous material, including prospectuses, promotions, letters, subscription notices, etc. is usually removed and put into vertical files in Beinecke. When miscellaneous material is kept with the serial, it will be classed with the serial, as above, with a "C" following the number for the serial. If an item is to be individually cataloged, the fourth line will a four digit date followed by a letter for the main entry.

Examples

McNamera, Robert. Prospectus for American writer, 1936.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
Am358C Cutter for main entry followed by C to indicate miscellaneous material
1936M Year of publication followed by first letter of main entry

Critical works about a serial
Works of criticism about specific serials are classed as above with an "X" following the number for the serial and the addition of a third line giving a Cutter number for the main entry.

Examples

Joost, Nicholas. The first ten years of equal opportunity.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
A Serial relating to Black or African American culture
Eq25X Cutter for main entry followed by X to indicate a critical work about a serial
J74 Cutter for main entry

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Other Types of Materials

V - Music

Music (except sheet music) by Black or African American composers/lyricists and about Black or African American culture. Also Phonograph record catalogs. Librettos and works about music do not class here but with the author.

V1 - Collections of anonymous authorship or collections by multiple composers and/or lyricists

Example

Harris, Leon R. I'm a railroad man, compiled and edited by Leon R. Harris. c1948.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
V1 Collections of anonymous authorship or by many composers
H24 Cutter for compiler or editor
+948 Year of publication

V2 - African American lyricist

Example

Vodery, William H. Jig walk, words by Henry Creamer ; music by Will Vodery. [c1945]

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
V2 Work by African American lyricist
C86 Cutter for lyricist
J5 Cutter for title

V3 - Collections of music by a single African American composer

Example

Cook, Will Marion. Rain-song ... [c1912]

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
V3 African American composer
C77 Cutter for composer
R13 Cutter for title

V4 - Collections of music about African Americans by non-African Americans

Example

Kelly, William A. Only a dream of that beautiful city ... c1903.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
V4 Music about African Americans by non-African Americans
K29 Cutter for composer
O5 Cutter for title

V6 - Record catalogs

Example

Gramophone Shop (New York). The Gramophone Shop encyclopedia of recorded music, 1936.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
V6 Record catalog
G7 Cutter for name of company
1936 Four digit date or volume number

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-V - Sheet music

Exception: Class in -V2 all works with lyrics by Langston Hughes and James Weldon Johnson. Additional exceptions to the list may be made by the curator.

Over the years, JWJ Sheet Music has been classed in various ways. In 2015 it was decided to revert to the classification used in Rae Linda Brown's Music, printed and manuscript, in the James Weldon Johnson Memorial Collection of Negro Arts and Letters: An annotated catalog, where it is explaned: "A dash before the V indicates sheet music that lies flat in the folio boxes. If the music is in hard cover, there is no dash before the V." Here it is also explained: "These classifications should be used only to locate material found in the Beinecke Library and not for accuracy in identifying the racial identity of the composers or lyricists." Use Bernard L. Peterson's Profiles of African American stage performers and theatre people, 1816-1960 as the primary reference source in determining ethnicity. When the ethnicity cannot be easily determined, use the -V4 designation.

-V1 - Anonymous sheet music

Example
Now I love Sukey dearly, ca. 1840.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
-V1 Anonymous work
N86 Cutter for title

-V2 - Sheet music by African American lyricists

Example
Franklin, Dave, 1895-1970. Buzz, Mirandy, words by Henry Creamer ; music by Dave Franklin, c1922

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
-V2 Work by an African American lyricist
C86 Cutter for lyricist
B989 Cutter for title

-V3 - Sheet music by African American composers

Example
Brooks, Shelton. Walkin' the dog, words and music by Shelton Brooks, c1916

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
-V3 Work by African American composer
B791 Cutter for composer
W15 Cutter for title

-V4 - Sheet music about African Americans

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
-V4 Work about African Americans
G323 Cutter for composer
I11 Cutter for title

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X413 - Bibliographies and catalogs

The third line is a three-digit date followed by the initial letter of the main entry. Beginning in 2000, for books first published after 1999, use all four digits of the date for the third line.

Example

Deodene, Frank.  Black American poetry since 1944; a preliminary checklist. 1971.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
X413 Bibliographies and catalogs
971D Year of publication followed by initial letter of main entry

Zzan1 C1 - Broadsides

OBSOLETE. Class as year/number and use bein,ycal for location.

Zan2 - Anthologies

The third line is a three-digit date. Beginning in 2000 for books first published after 1999, use all four digits of the date for the third line. The fourth line is a Cutter number for the first word of the title.

Note: If another edition is already established in the old scheme, use the old scheme and add a letter at the end for the appropriate edition.

Example of old form

Pereda Valdes, Ildefonso. Antologia de la poesia negra americana, 1936.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan2 Anthology
936P Year of publication followed by initial letter of main entry.

Example of new form

Book of recent African American poetry, 1998.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan2 Anthology
998 Year of publication
B644 Cutter for first word of title

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Zan3 - Collective biographies

The third line is a three-digit date followed by the initial letter of main entry. Beginning in 2000 for books first published after 1999, use all four digits of the date for the third line.

Example

Stull, Edith Gilbert. Unsung Black Americans, 1971.

JWJ James Weldon Johnson Collection
Zan3 Collective biographies
971S Year of publication followed by initial letter of main entry

Zan5 - Photography

Obsolete.

Zan6 - History and criticism of Black and African American literature

Obsolete.

Zan8 - Audio/Visual resources

Do not class phonograph records in Zan8; instead, follow the instructions on the Phonograph Records page.

The second line consists of one of the following initial letters followed by a four-digit date and the first letter of the title.

For serials, the second line of the call number consists of one of the following letters followed by a cutter for the main entry.

A Audio tapes
C Compact disks
D Digital video disks
F Films
V Video tapes

Special notes and tracings

Add subject headings relating to African Americans to works that would not normally have the tracings made.

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