Collection 631 - Oliver Tambo Papers

Identity area

Reference code

US UCTDRC MR-MM-631

Title

Oliver Tambo Papers

Date(s)

  • 1960-1991 (Creation)

Level of description

Collection

Extent and medium

19 rolls microfilm

Context area

Name of creator

(27 October 1917-24 April 1993)

Biographical history

Lawyer, politician and anti-apartheid activist. Leading member of the ANC and founder member of the ANCYL. Co-founder, with Mandela, of South Africa’s only African legal practice in the 1950s. Became secretary general of the ANC after Walter Sisulu was banned, and deputy president of the ANC, 1958. Served with a five-year banning order, 1959. Left South Africa during the 1960s to manage the external activities of the ANC and to mobilise opposition against apartheid. Established military training camps outside South Africa. Initiated the Free Mandela Campaign in the 1980s. Acting president of the ANC, 1967, after the death of Chief Albert Luthuli. Was elected president in 1969 at the Morogoro Conference, a post he held until 1991 when he became the ANC’s national chairperson. Awarded the ANC’s highest honour, Isitwalandwe Seaparankoe, in 1992.

Name of creator

( 8 January 1912 - )

Administrative history


Established as the South African Native National Congress (SANNC) in 1912. Renamed African National Congress (ANC) in 1923. Following the Sharpeville Massacre in March 1960, the ANC was banned by the South African government and went underground until the ban was lifted in 1990. Its military wing, Umkhonto weSizwe (MK), was established in 1961, with Mandela as commander-in-chief. The ANC became South Africa’s governing party after the nation’s first democratic elections on 27 April 1994.

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Scope and content

A collection of Oliver Tambo Papers, 1960-1992, also at the University of Fort Hare, African National Congress Archives. The collection has correspondence with Nelson Mandela speeches on behalf of Mr. Nelson Mandela by Oliver Tambo receiving the Bolivar prize. In the collection there are campaigns such as the release Mandela campaign, Nelson Mandela reception committee, visits to various parts of the world, requests for interviews, invitations, statements and speeches.

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African National Congress

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