Items owned by Tupac Shakur donated to Temple University
Items owned by Tupac Shakur have been donated to Temple University, including a bullet-dented golden medallion the rapper was wearing in 1994 when he was shot five times. The rapper's items will be on display at the school's main campus at the Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection. The collection consists of roughly 500,000 items detailing "the global black experience".
Dream come true
"For a hip-hop head, this is truly a dream come true," said Aaron Smith, a professor of Africology and African-American Studies who teaches a Shakur-focused class at Temple.
About a dozen items that belonged to Shakur were donated to the collection by Runnemede, New Jersey-based Goldin Auctions. Among the pieces are handwritten lyrics for famous tracks like It Ain't Easy and I Ain't Mad At Cha as well as handwritten track listings for unreleased albums Shakur was working on before his death in September 1996 from a still-unsolved drive-by shooting.
Also included in the donation is the diamond earring Shakur wore while pictured on the cover of the album All Eyez On Me.
According to Smith, Jewellery plays a significant role in Shakur's story, "There is a lot of mystery around Tupac and his jewellery. To have some of (it) here means a whole lot."
Diane Turner, the collection's curator, said on Thursday that the Blockson Collection would increase its focus on hip-hop culture with the addition of Shakur's items.
"This is just the beginning of a long journey to collect and preserve hip-hop culture," Turner said.