A Guide to the Timothy O'Brien Lightnin' Hopkins Research Collection [ca. 1960s]-2011.
Born to Francis X. and Margaret M. O’Brien in 1962, Timothy O’Brien was raised in State College, Pennsylvania. He graduated from Penn State in 1995, and after working various odd jobs, and then moved to Korea to teach English. There he met his wife Kyong Mi, with whom he had one daughter. After working as a paralegal in Houston, O’Brien enrolled in an African American history Ph. D. program at the University of Houston (UH). He earned his master’s in 2006 with a thesis entitled “Lightnin’ Hopkins: Houston Bluesman, 1912-1960,” which was the basis for a manuscript he submitted to the University of Texas Press. He then completed a Ph.D in African American History in May 2010. While at UH, O’Brien was well-known for his activism, advocating that free trade coffee to be served at the university, and suing the university several times as well as fighting for the rights of the poor in Houston. O’Brien passed away in 2011 after a battle with cancer.
Lomax, John Nova. "O'Brien's Song."Houston Press. Published December 9, 2009. Accessed November 2, 2011.
Composed of scholarly articles, newspaper articles, bibliographies, newsletters and magazines, audio recordings as well as assorted other research materials, the Timothy O’Brien Lightnin’ Hopkins Research Collection, [ca. 1960s]-2011, chronicles the materials used by O’Brien for his master’s thesis and book manuscript on Houston bluesman Lightnin’ Hopkins. Both academic and newspaper articles concern the history of blues as well as the history of African Americans in Houston, while other research materials consist of biographical information, photocopied primary source documents, the thesis, notes, and bibliographies. Additionally, the collection includes audio and video recordings of Lightnin’ Hopkins performing as well as interviews with him and various other blues musicians and two posters promoting his performances.
This collection is open for research use.
Timothy O'Brien Lightnin' Hopkins Research Collection, [ca. 1960s]-2011, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by Ryder Kouba, November 2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers