In 1984, Blockson donated his personal collection of rare publications and artifacts related to African American history and culture to Temple University. The Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection, one of the nation’s leading research facilities for the study of the history and culture of people of African descent, now contains more than 500,000 books, documents, and photographs.
Blockson has also spearheaded efforts to have various State Historical Markers placed throughout Philadelphia as part of the commemoration of the some of the history and events that have shaped the African American experience in the Philadelphia region, including a marker placed along Penn’s Landing, which commemorates the lives of enslaved Africans brought to local ports during the Pennsylvania slave trade era.
Blockson is a 1956 graduate of the Pennsylvania State University and has three honorary doctorate degrees from Lincoln University, Holy Family University, and Villanova University. He retired from Temple in 2006 and continues to serve as Curator Emeritus of the university’s Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection.