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Lillian S. Williams

Associate Professor of Africana and American Studies
University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences


U.S. social and urban history; African American history in the U.S. and Western New York; women’s history

Head shot of Lillian S. Williams, University at Buffalo U.S. social and urban history expert.

Lillian S. Williams is an expert on U.S. social and urban history. Her research is in the areas of institutions, ethnicity, biography and women’s history, and much of her scholarship has worked to preserve the history and records of women and African Americans.

Williams has studied the Young Men’s and Young Women’s Christian Associations; the National Urban League; and Jewish club women. She edited the microfilm edition of the papers of the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs. She has also consulted on historical projects for museums, corporations and nonprofit organizations. Government agencies also have sought her advice regarding urban planning and public policy issues.

Closer to home, Williams is an expert on the history of African Americans in Western New York, having authored, “Strangers in the Land of Paradise: Creation of an African American Community in Buffalo, New York, 1900-1940.” She is writing a biography on Mary Burnett Talbert, an early 20th century reformer and suffragist who spent much of her life in Buffalo.


Lillian S. Williams, PhD
Associate Professor of Africana and American Studies
University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences