Free Access FAQ for African institutions and HBCUs

Free Access FAQ for African institutions and HBCUs


Welcome! We’re glad you’ve found us. 

Africa Commons is a landmark project to help digitize, discover, and preserve African cultural materials. A full introduction is available on our website

The first module: History & Culture 

Our first module, Africa Commons: History & Culture, is the most comprehensive site for searching African historical and cultural materials. It indexes over 600 organizations, 2100 collections, and 300,000 documents from libraries and archives around the world. For the first time, these resources are cross-searchable and preserved on one site.

Full membership access to Africa Commons: History & Culture is free to institutions in Africa and HBCUs in the United States. 

How to Request Free Access 

  1. We use four authentication protocols described in this article. The most common is IP authentication. 
  2. As a precursor step, it’s helpful to update your IP ranges for free with Here’s more information about why we use
  3. Fill out this form to request free access. We’ll be back in touch within 48 hours.
  4. Reach out to with any questions. 

Editorial Board 

We thank our distinguished editorial board for their advice and assistance:
  • Dr. Buhle Mbambo-Thata, (Board Chair), University Librarian, University of Lesotho
  • Dr. Stephen Akintunde, Professor, University of Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria
  • Dr. Elisha Rufaro Chiware, Library Director, Cape Peninsula University of Technology
  • Dr. Perpetua S. Dadzie, Associate Professor, University of Ghana
  • Dr. Tandi Lwoga, Professor and Deputy Rector, College of Business Education, Tanzania
  • Ms. Blessing Mawire, Senior Consultant and Director, Integra Professional Services