The FBI has established a new electronic reading room containing more than 3,000 scanned documents detailing the Bureau’s surveillance of various individuals and groups throughout its history. Much of this material has been available to the public via Freedom of Information Act requests, although the Vault does contain some new and previously unreleased files.
Documents in the Vault span a wide range of categories and subjects from “Anti-war” to “Violent Crime.” The Vault section on “Civil Rights” is of particular interest, given the massive efforts of the Bureau to subvert and thwart any attempt by African Americans and others to confront and overthrow white supremacy and the American Apartheid system. In it you will find the FBI files on such notables as W.E.B. Du Bois, Malcolm X, Betty Shabazz, Fannie Lou Hamer, Paul Robeson, Fred Hampton, Claudia Jones, and Stokely Carmichael.
For a broad overview of the activities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation since its founding in 1908, the main portal to the Vault is available here.