The Verrona Williams Derr Collection was established in September 1969 by Dr. Gilbert Sims Derr, faculty in DePaul’s School of Education, as the initial step in the development of a research facility in the area of African-American Studies. Named in honor of his wife, the collection was originally envisioned as a means to promote better racial understanding through the availability of resources that specifically relate to African-American culture, life, history and racial experience. In 1969 there were 800 titles in the, then circulating, collection. In 1973, Gilbert Sims Derr established a fund to help perpetuate the collection. Selective titles have been moved to Special Collections.