Mayme Agnew Clayton was a historian and librarian who founded the Western States Black Research and Education Center. It boasts that it is the largest collection of African American historical items in the world.
Mayme received her undergraduate degree from University of California, Berkeley. She went on to become a law librarian for UCLA and helped establish the school’s African-American Studies Center Library. It was around this time that she started collecting rare African-American artifacts and storing them at her home.
Her son saw to it that a museum to house his mother’s findings be built. Her entire collection, which took over 40 years to amass, stands in Culver City, CA in the site of a former city courthouse.