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Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MS-0104

Scope and Contents

Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation records, 1972-1996, consist of files from the Buffalo School desegregation case, from 1972 through 1995. The files include papers submitted to the court, orders of the court, hearing exhibits, transcripts of hearings and depositions, plaintiffs' notes and analyses of Board data and proposals, plaintiffs' and defendants' correspondence, Board of Education proposals, reports and data, and press clippings. Related materials are located in the Citizens Council for human Relations, Inc. (CCHR) files and the files of the Citizens Commission on School Desegregation housed in the University Archives, permanent records filed in federal court, records maintained by the Buffalo Branch of the NAACP, and records maintained by the other parties to the suit.


  • 1972-1996

Terms of Access and Use

Please note, this collection is stored off-site. Access to the collection requires at least 3 business days’ notice. Contact the University Archives to schedule an appointment, and for more information regarding access and restrictions for this collection.

This collection has been minimally processed. Privacy protected information (including but not limited to certain educational, medical, financial, criminal, attorney-client, and/or personnel records) may be revealed during use of archival collections, particularly in collections that are unprocessed or have been minimally processed. Researchers agree to make no notes or other recordation of privacy protected information if found within the archival collections, and further agree not to publish, publicize, or disclose such information to any other party for any purpose if found within the archival collections.


Pursuant to the University Archives Restricted Records Policy on privacy protected information and legal cases, access is RESTRICTED until 75 years from the date of creation. During embargo, case and client files may be accessed only if the client or the client’s legal representatives consent to disclosure.

During embargo, access to the following boxes is RESTRICTED: 7, 8, 10, 14, 17, 18, 19, 21.

During embargo, portions of the following boxes are RESTRICTED: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 11, 13, 12, 20.


Copyright of papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and University Archives before requesting photocopies and/or publishing quotations from materials in the collection. Once permission is obtained, most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.

Historical Note

The Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation records concern the court proceedings, decisions, outcomes, and implementation of decisions relating to the desegregation of the Buffalo Public School System. The case, Arthur v. Nyquist, is a school desegregation case initiated in federal court in 1972 by plaintiffs George Arthur, Norman Goldfarb, William and Wilhelmina P. Seales, John Medige, the Citizens Council for Human Relations, Inc., and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Buffalo Branch, alleging that defendants Ewald P. Nyquist, Commissioner of Education of the State of New York, Joseph Manch, Superintendent of Schools of the City of Buffalo, and the Board of Education of the City of Buffalo had created, maintained, permitted, condoned, and perpetuated racially segregated schools in the City of Buffalo and the Buffalo Metropolitan area. The City of Buffalo was later added as a named defendant. Intervenors in the case included Buffalo Teacher's Federation, handicapped students, bilingual students, and the Buffalo Municipal Civil Service Commission. The case was assigned to John T. Curtain, Chief Judge for the Western District of New York.


21 Linear Feet (21 record cartons)

Language of Materials



The Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation Records, 1972-1996, consist of reports, statistical data and analyses, correspondence, and court documents created by or received by the Board of Education or their counsel related to the desegregation case Arthur V. Nyquist and other similar cases.


The collection is arranged by subject.

Acquisition Information

The Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation records were gifted to University Archives by David G. Jay.

Accruals and Additions

No further accruals are expected.

Processing Information

Unprocessed records; finding aid encoded by Rebecca Cobb, August, 2018. Finding aid updated by Jessica Hollister, October, 2022.


Finding Aid for the Buffalo Public Schools Desegregation records
Minimally Processed
Finding aid prepared by Rebecca Cobb
03 August 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • October 2022: Box-folder list created by Jessica Hollister for easier access and more insight into restricted materials.

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository

420 Capen Hall
Buffalo New York 14260-1674 US
716-645-3714 (Fax)