American Beach was established in 1935 on Florida's east coast under the leadership of Abraham Lincoln Lewis, one of seven co-founders of the Afro-American Life Insurance Company, and one of Florida's first black millionaires. His vision was to create a beach resort as a benefit for company executives and as an incentive for employees.
In the era of Jim Crow segregation laws, few public places in Florida or the rest of the South were open to African Americans. From the Depression until well into the 1960's, American Beach served as a holiday and vacation destination for thousands of African Americans, and was a magnet for black celebrities such as entertainers Cab Calloway and Ray Charles, heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis and writer Zora Neale Hurston.
But in 1964, the area began to decline. Hurricane Dora destroyed much of the beach, and passage of the Civil Rights Act meant that blacks were, finally, no longer restricted to segregated beaches and the businesses that catered to them.
A fabulous and historically relevant piece of Black Americana!
Offered is a wonderful, all-vintage, 1940's and 1950's offering of SIXTEEN, predominantly Made-in-Japan, Black Americana, ceramic pieces: A fabulous Elephant teapot with Native perched on top, multiple salt and peppers ranging from 2 inches high to approximately 4 inches high, a pair of adorable Kissing Boy and Girl pen holders, a mint mini 1950's Aunt Jemima recipe and menu booklet, and a reclining nude native figurine wearing metal hoop earrings!
ALL are in wonderful, barely-used condition!
1) A white-aproned, matched Aunt Jemima and Uncle Mose Salt & Pepper Set, 3 inches high, Japan, 1940's. Excellent Condition.
2)A diminutive "Souvenir of St Louis, Mo.", Aunt Jemima and Uncle Mose Salt & Pepper Set, 2 inches high, Japan, 1940's. Excellent Condition.
3)A highly-valued and sought-after, Pearl China Company, Japan, matched Salt & Pepper set, 4 inches high, PERSONALIZED in 22KT GOLD SCRIPT, 1940's Aunt Jemima and Uncle Mose. Excellent Condition.
4)Matched Male & Female African Nubian Busts Salt & Pepper Set, 3 inches high, Japan, some paint wear, a tiny pre-firing nip to female's head dress, 1940’s.
5)TWO 1950 Uncle Mose Peppers made by F & F Mold & Die Works of Dayton, Ohio. One of the two is impressed "Uncle Mose" on his back. Excellent Condition.
6) ONE white-aproned, red-kerchief, Aunt Jemima Pepper, 3 inches high, Japan, 1940's. Excellent Condition.
7)An absolutely adorable matched set of Kissing Boy & Girl Pen/Pencil Holders, 4.75 inches high, accented with 22K Gold detailing, perfect condition.
8)A reclining, naked, Native figure, 4.5 inches long wearing metal hoop earrings, perfect condition.
9) One 1950's Official Quaker Oats, Aunt Jemima's "New Temptilatin' Menus and Recipes" 18 page Booklet, complete, unused, perfect condition!
10) A 1930's, Japan, colorfully decorated, Black Americana African Native Riding an Elephant Tea Pot in pristine condition! The elephant proudly points its trunk upward, awarding "Good Luck" (according to superstition) to anyone who displays it (or drinks their tea from it)! Cleverly designed, the elephant serves as the body of the tea pot, while the turbaned Black Native lifts off the elephant's back revealing its function as a tea pot lid, The elegantly curved elephant tail serves as the tea pot handle. The base is marked "MADE IN JAPAN" with a "T" inserted inside of each of two double diamonds. The tea pot measures 7 inches high by 9.5 inches long by 4.25 inches wide; the height measurement is taken from the top of the native's head, downward. Condition is excellent! This is a beautifully painted piece, with the copper and gold paint adding to its luminosity!
A wonderful collection of Kitchen-Black-Memorabilia, all being sold as one single grouping, coming out of the estate of the decades-old collection of a former Black Memorabilia dealer. A great purchasing opportunity!
”Black Topsy” is dressed in a striking pink, green, orange, and black cotton, geometric-patterned dress- very Art Deco! Her mouth and nostrils are stitched in red thread and she has white pearl button eyes.
The Caucasian doll is dressed in a cotton lavender dress- also with a geometric, Art Deco pattern in black, green and yellow. Her blouse and bandanna are lavender sateen. Her entire face has been finely stitched. She has pink nostrils and mouth, black eyebrows, and her black stitched eyes have pretty lashes that highlight her silvery gray irises! She has the very palest of staining to her face above her nostrils, but it is barely noticeable, and there is some light fading to her sateen bandanna.
Condition and detailing of both sides of this Topsy Turvy is really quite extraordinary, setting her apart from other Topsy’s!! A wonderful addition to one’s doll or Black Memorabilia collection!
The 3 dolls were grouped together in a creative display that supported the sale of Aunt Jemima Pancake products! Their costumes are all identical and were hand-stitched and made especially for the planned Aunt Jemima display.
Each of the dolls remain intact inside an encasement of glue and paper wrapping and are attached to home-made, plaster-of-Paris-based, rectangular platforms. The platforms were created in 1958 as is written on the bottom of each base, and the dolls remained in place until the store closed in the early 1980s.
The large doll is 11 inches tall and evidences age-crackling to her composition face and hands; her right hand is actually missing a small piece of composition (see photo). Black hair peeks out from inside her checkered head scarf framing her sweet face!
The doll on the left side is the shortest, measuring 5 3/4 inches high. She is in fine condition and her eyes are placed in an interesting sideward glance.
The doll on the right measures 6 1/4 inches tall. Her composition is in fine condition with the exception to some small loss at the very top of her head (see photo).
Certainly a very visually appealing trio, sold all together as a group of three!
The paper package contains nearly all of its original powder, having never been opened; however, as noted in the second photo, the corner edge wear has resulted in some minor leakage of the powder. Because of this, the package has been shrink-wrapped to preserve the remainder of the product.
The shrink wrapping makes the package very difficult to photograph; additionally, some minor leakage of the powder under the shrink wrap also obscures viewing. The first two photos are of the actual package currently offered for sale--with shrink wrap on and minor leakage of powder under the shrink-wrap. The remaining photos clearly show the details of the Zoulou packaging using an undamaged, unshrink-wrapped package that has already been sold, no longer available for purchase. These photos are offered purely for the convenience of the viewer so that the details of the Zoulou package can be readily seen without the encumbrance of the shrink wrap blocking package details; these photos do not represent the condition of the package currently being offered for sale. The first two photos represent the condition of the actual Zoulou package currently offered for sale, with the pricing reflecting condition.
The manufacturers of the Zoulou powder claimed that healing properties were associated with the powder.
A well-detailed, rarely-found example of turn-of-the-century use of graphics in advertising!
One plate depicts the sale of Uncle Tom while the other plate depicts the death of little Eva. The text on each plate is in German: "Evas Todt" or in English, "The Death of Eva", and "Slavel Tom Von LeGree Gekauft" or in English, "The Slave Tom Purchased by (Simon} LeGree".
Produced for use by children as subtle educational tools, the plates measure 7 5/8 inches in diameter and are decorated with black transfer, printed, Uncle Tom vignettes.
The condition of both plates is quite superb with subtle crazing lightly evident on the backs of plates only. Also on the backs of each plate are tiny, factory-flaw imperfections where glazing failed to bind to the earthenware (represented in close-up photo). The "Sale of Uncle Tom" plate has three such imperfections on its back side along with a tiny area of bleeding of transfer color under the glaze (see close-up photo). The "Death of Eva" plate displays more evident crazing on the back as compared to the "Sale of Tom" plate along with three factory-flaw imperfections, as described above. The "Eva" plate also appears to have three, extremely fine, light, scratch lines running across the front of the plate that are most readily noticeable only in close-up photos; when one runs a finger along the lines, the imperfections are so fine that they cannot be felt and certainly represent no threat to structural integrity.
The plates were produced by the Schramberg Pottery of Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany, founded in 1820 by stoneware expert, Isidor Faist. The plate featuring the sale of Uncle Tom is impressed "Schramberg" while the other plate has no marking. It is evident, however, that both plates were manufactured by the Schramberg factory.
In utterly excellent condition with the only flaws noted being subtle wear to the paper dust jacket and a past owner's name and address, this version of the Little Black Sambo story is highly collectible as any item produced by its publisher, Platt & Munk, is aggressively sought-after due to the company’s reputation for use of extraordinarily vivid graphics.
This mini book is sixty-two pages long with 29 vividly colored illustrations designed and executed by the author, Frank Ver Beck.
A must have edition for the collector of Little Black Sambo books!
As a doll collector myself, I just LOVE this doll. I love it as his composition head is in just flawless condition. I love it as he is completely original including the light soiling to and single broken button on his machine-stitched, renowned Stifel-Brand denim overalls! (see photo---the overall's bib is stamped with the trademark cowboy boot logo encasing the word "STIFEL" and the words, "Reg US Pat Office" above the boot.). I love it as his compo hands are in nearly perfect condition with the exception of the tip of his pointer finger on his right hand. And I love it as he has three tiny little holes in his left black sock! He obviously was very well cared for over these past 99 years!
In addition to his overalls, he wears a cream-colored, machine-stitched cotton shirt that comes complete with two button holes, but no buttons. His shirt has been carefully and competently sewn via both machine and hand. His black cotton stockings travel all the way up to his hip where they meet a pair of cream-colored silk underwear! He has no shoes!
His body, arms and legs are stuffed with cotton batting and covered in muslin. With the exception of his stamped Stifel overalls, this sweet boy is unmarked.
This pleasant diecut is in excellent condition and comes protected in an attractive, walnut-tone decorative frame!
A sweet piece!
Both dolls retain their 3 original pigtails, all tied off with tiny pieces of string. Their hand-painted lips and eyes remain in excellent condition as is the dark brown paint which covers the bisque bodies which were originally white when manufactured (the white bisque coloring is visible at the joints).
Both dolls have jointed arms and legs which allow them to assume different positions. The string holding the larger doll's legs in place has stretched over these many years resulting in looser leg joints. (This can be repaired if so desired by the new owner.)
The larger doll is dressed in a hand-made outfit consisting of an ivory, yarn-knitted petticoat under a yellow crocheted dress while the smaller doll remains au naturalle! A darling, teeny tiny pair that display quite nicely!
Detailing in construction sets this mammy doll apart! Her creation was very carefully executed through a combination of hand and machine stitching. Mammy was lovingly dressed in clothing made from old, red, black, and white-patterned handkerchiefs, while both her body and her interesting pair of black pantaloons were constructed of old, black stockings. Detailing was clearly important to the creator--an additional and elegant surprise is the cream-colored, cotton petticoat edged with lace!
Mammy's face is hand-embroidered, and she wears brass-colored, plain, hoop earrings. Her body is machine-stitched together and is stuffed with cotton batting.
Mammy is in near perfect condition with the exception of minor wear (not holes) to her stocking-constructed left foot as well as the underside of her right, stocking-constructed hand. (This wear to the fabric may well be the very reason the stockings were used to construct Mammy as they may have been discarded from personal use. Please refer to photos to view wear.)
Mammy is simply full of charm with lovely and creative detailing! A quite difficult-to-find-in-this condition, 80+-year-old, cloth mammy doll!
Measuring 9 by 11 inches framed, this litho retains its vibrant colors!
A delightful piece which features the accompanying text on the reverse side.
The frame is a temporary and inexpensive one to allow the potential buyer to view the story on the backside, but the piece should be properly framed to enable its continued conservation once purchased.
Please ignore any white streaks seen in photos; these are the result of light reflection off of the glass.
This circa 1920-30's Johnny Griffin inkwell is constructed in solid brass and has a hole for both placement of pen and glass insert for ink. This piece is offered without the pen and glass ink insert.
It is in all original condition with delightful patina- not a reproduction- no replaced parts- and measures 6 inches long x 3.25 inches wide and 2 1/2 inches high. It does not retain any marking other than a mold number 4557.
Johnny Griffin Black Americana collectibles should form the cornerstone of any serious Black Memorabilia collection!
To see all of the Johnny Griffin items currently available for sale, simply type “Johnny Griffin” into the search box on our web home page.
In very nice condition with minor scratches to paint here and there as seen in photos, this wind-up toy works, but can be a little fussy. Given its 100+ years of age, a bit of fussiness in the mechanism is not atypical or unexpected. Marked "TOMBO" Alabama Coon Jigger Trademark Strauss Mfg Co New York USA; US Patent May 24, 1910. The figure, itself, is 8.25 inches high.
This fabulous toy is a CLASSIC MUST-HAVE for the avid Black Memorabilia Toy collector!
All cloth and done in a great, red paisley fabric, this darling Black Mammy bag features an interesting, smiling face! Due to its small size, this bag would have held undies or stockings or also may have been placed on one's bed and used to hold one's nightie during the day!
Very sweet and displays nicely!
Following the conclusion of World War II, the American Tobacco Company of Virginia changed its product name from Nigger Hair to Bigger Hair, seeking to broaden the product's marketing appeal as well as viewing the latter label as the more-socially acceptable one. (The earlier Nigger Hair moniker was used by the American Tobacco Company from the 1890's through the early, pre-WWII 1940s; the lithographed can was manufactured by the B. Leidersdorf Company, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.) Interestingly, the company DID NOT change the image of the African woman, but merely added the words Fiji Islander to the left of her face in its indifferent and weak attempt to move further away from the earlier, severely derogatory label.
Measuring 7 inches high x 5 3/4 inches wide, the container is in good condition, perhaps a 7 out of 10, with one side exhibiting minor surface scuffing, while on the other side more scuffs and rubs are evident. Some minor wear around the edge of the top of the container likely occurred from simply taking the cover on and off; however, this is completely concealed by the cover. The original cardboard cover was lost with the passage of time; the replacement tin cover shown was in place when this container was acquired.
The original brownish orange color of the container remains consistent throughout, and the structural integrity of the cardboard is quite sturdy. Superficial rust is evident on the inside and outside of the metal base; this rust does not impact integrity of the tin base. The container retains partial remnants of its paper Federal Revenue Tobacco seal on both sides.
This very rare tobacco container is just a wonderful example of latter Black Americana advertising. The container looks better "in person" than in the photos as the camera actually accentuated the appearance of the scuffing, especially on the "better" side!
If the Nigger Hair Tobacco container is currently in your collection, the addition of the Bigger Hair container will complete your collection from both a cultural and historical perspective!
Constructed of tin with a cardboard lithographed image and a glass cover, this game has a mirrored back. The puzzle is in all-original condition with the Dandy graphic remaining free of scratches and abrasions. The mirrored back shows evidence of 2 tiny areas of subtle, minor chipping along the perimeter edge, and the glass front has a small surface chip at the base of the Dandy's shirt. (Please disregard any light or shiny spots in photos which are due to flash reflection off of the glass.)
An interesting image and a delightful piece of early Black Memorabilia!
The folder was mailed, but remains in fine condition given its age. Some edge wear evident at corners. While some photos may appear a bit blurry, this is a function of photography and not condition. All postcards are crisp and clear!
The Real Photo postcard folder features the lyrics and music of "Dixieland" and 18 full color scenes of the industries common in the South during this period: cotton picking and production, tapping pine trees for turpentine production, watermelon farming, and sugarcaning. Of cultural and historical interest are the numerous scenes of African-American life including less-flattering stereotypical scenes. Some very politically incorrect and derogatory captioning including use of "dialect".
Constructed of hand-cut, ¼ inch wide, black painted wood, this darling little black girl has hand-painted eyes and smiling lips, and is dressed in a hand and machine stitched, cloth-stuffed, one piece, black, tan and green dress! She has a hole in each ear, a metal hanging loop atop her head and one metal hook on each shoe for hanging keys or potholders!
She is in fine condition given her 70+ years of age and has great “patina”. Some minor paint loss, a few teeny holes in her outfit, but very visually appealing Black Americana Folk Art, none the less!
In excellent condition with the exception of some minor wear to the gilt rim and scripted banner, the cup or mug features two gentleman sharing a tub bath- one Caucasian and one African-American. The African-American gent is surrounded by musical notes indicating that he is doing quite a bit of whistling, while the Caucasian gent covers his ears in annoyance. The scripted banner above their heads reads, "Whistling Rufus." "There's music in the air."
The mug is signed in the lower right corner of the tub, "Copyright Sid Smith". The base bears the black crown and banner stamp of Allertons, England as well as the printed, red-inked number "2089".
This circa 1940's (perhaps even earlier!) Mammy has a polished cotton half body firmly stuffed with cotton batting which is attached to a fabric-covered, cardboard platform that enables her to sit. Such a doll is often referred to as a platform or toaster doll as her voluminous skirt was designed to cover unsightly kitchen appliances - most commonly the toaster!
Most notable is this Mammy's exquisitely executed, hand-embroidered face, and her elaborate dangling beaded hoop earrings!
Mammy's clothing is machine stitched and is absent of holes, rips or repairs. While all her patterned clothing retains its original and uniform coloring, all of the purple cloth has faded- obviously a less stable dye used there. When one opens the folds of the cloth, one sees the rich, deep purple it once was!
An unusually well-detailed doll for its type!
Given away by the Merrick Thread Company as a free advertising premium to encourage the purchase of its product, this mirror depicts a rather confident black boy hanging from a single strand of Merrick thread while dangling above the open jaws of a hungry alligator! At the base of the mirror the caption reads, "Fooled Dis Time Cully Dis Cotton Aint Gwine To Break".
A delightful Black Americana Advertising piece!
Her composition face is in impeccable condition with sharp, well-drawn painted facial features. Her face is further accented by 3 darling curls peaking out from under her brightly colored cloth bandanna!
Her body is machine-stitched cotton fabric stuffed with sawdust. On the back of her right thigh, her place of origin is stamped: "POLAND". Her little flowered skirt is also machine stitched and is the only piece of clothing that may be removed.
Condition is superb with the exception of a hand-stitched repair to the seam line of her left foot where the foot is joined to the leg. Does not detract.
These two folk art pieces came straight from the 93 year old great grandma who played with them as a child!
While the heads were constructed from dried apples painted black, the bodies were cut from various pieces of sponge which were then hand-sewn together. Hands were cut from pink--- and not brown or black felt--very interesting---while the teeth were formed from tiny white beads, and the white fuzzy hair fashioned from nothing more than small, cotton batting pieces. Eyes are glued-on googly eyes.
The homemade clothing is nicely constructed via a combination of hand and machine sewing. Mammy's green, teal and rust flowered dress is embellished with a bit of lace at the sleeves, and she also wears a fancy, white eyelet petticoat and a soft pink crocheted shawl. She is barefoot. Pappy's light blue shirt features 3 button detailing, and he wears denim pants and black felt shoes and hat with a red felt vest.
Condition is quite fine with no observable issues! No odors, rips, stains or missing parts. A very sweet pair!
This piece is very much reminiscent of Johnny Griffin items with the exception of the intact, broad-rimmed hat on this piece versus the torn rim typically seen on all "named" Johnny Griffin pieces.
This circa 1920-30's novelty piece is constructed in solid brass, is hefty in weight, and was likely used as an ash tray given its tobacco leaf design/theme. The "Johnny Griffin-like" head of the young African-American boy that serves as the centerpiece of this wonderful piece, was molded separately and screwed into place. The screw is concealed under an original brass cap, done purely for esthetics.
The piece is in all original condition with the delightful, warm, rich, golden patina of old brass- not a reproduction- no replaced parts- and measures 7 inches long x 4 1/2 inches wide. It does not retain any markings, and country of origin is unknown, although likely of European origin.
A very seldom found Tobacciana piece of Black Memorabilia, that indeed pairs well with Johnny Griffin items!
To view all of the Johnny Griffin items currently available for sale, simply type “Johnny Griffin” into the search box on our web home page.
Mammy's wonderful, smiling face is hand-stitched and her clothes are machine sewn. Her blouse is seersucker, and her head, arms, skirt, apron, and cap are cotton. Her head, arms, and upper torso are stuffed with cotton batting. The natural bristle broom fills out both Mammy's torso and skirt & the wooden broom handle extends upward through her neck and head.
Mammy is in all original condition with no mends or repairs. The structural integrity of the broom remains quite sound, and Mammy, herself, is free of holes and tears. Her once-red skirt has now faded to pink. Her white cotton apron and cap have been cleaned removing nearly all traces of old stains, dirt, and dust. Photo number 2 shows her outfit BEFORE cleaning; all other photos reflect her appearance after cleaning.
A fabulous piece of vintage Black Americana, and a seldom seen form of the Black Mammy Doll!
Constructed of tin with tin back and a cardboard lithographed image and a glass cover, the puzzle is in all-original condition with some tiny crimps to the edges as noted in photos. (Please disregard any light or shiny spots in photos which are due to flash reflection off of the glass.)
An interesting image and a delightful piece of early Black Memorabilia!
The walking stick is constructed of a single piece of wood. The staff is painted with black stripes, and at the very top, the stripes switch to polka dots to simulate the man's shirt. A handle has also been carved out which apparently represents the man's arm, painted with the same polka dots.
The head carving features distinctive full lips and a strong, protruding chin. A mustache and goatee are painted in black under the nose and bottom lip. The hair is also simply painted in black with a crude nose drawn in. The eyes are also hand-done and feature pupils and numerous full eyelashes. The left eye is slightly faded while the right eye is quite distinct.
The carver/artisan is unknown as is the walking stick's origin. A unique Folk Art Black Americana piece!
As the backside paper label displays a 5 digit zip code, this product was produced in 1963 or later. I purchased this piece from a Texas collector of Black Memorabilia for my own personal collection in about 2007. The seller stated that at one time this product was readily and prolifically available in her area, up until the late 1960s - early 1970s.
The bottle is in very fine condition with age-related creasing to the front paper label as evidenced in the photos.
While newer in age than pieces I typically collect and/or sell, I found this piece to be culturally unique enough to be worthy to collect and then offer for sale. I have never seen another!!!!
The character of Rastus was based on an actual person- a black waiter from Chicago- who was paid $5 for the use of his image by Colonel Mapes, the General Manager of the Nabisco Company, the owner of Cream of Wheat. The company began using the waiter’s image in the early 1900’s, replacing the original woodcut of a black chef that appeared on the packaging from 1894 until that time. Interestingly from a social and historical perspective, the depiction of the ever-pleasant, always-smiling Rastus was both a subtle yet positive departure from the extremely derogatory advertising much more typical of the era- advertising that nearly always featured blacks with wildly contorted and exaggerated features most often in very undignified poses and predicaments.
This beautiful, scarcely-found puzzle, which is in excellent condition, is attractively framed in a hardwood molding colored in walnut, ebony and gold. The puzzle frame is original to the puzzle, and it is contemporary to the production date of the puzzle as it still retains its original wood panel backing, a framing technique not typically found after 1910. The puzzle pieces, themselves, are very finely and delicately cut, and are of a much smaller size than what is typically found in puzzles dating from the 1920’s and beyond.
A phenomenal piece that would be a centerpiece to any serious Black Americana, Advertising, or Cream of Wheat collection!
PLEASE NOTE: Any discoloration, white spots, or other unnatural variances in color are due to the unavoidable light reflections caused by the glass in the framing. The presence of the glass made photography quite a challenge!
Mammy's head and body are actually constructed of a single wooden clothespin that was then inserted into her cotton-batting-padded skirt. Her face is hand-painted, she has a tuft of white cotton batting hair peeking out from her kerchief, and her apron is stamped in black ink "Souvenir of New Orleans".
A very sweet piece to add to one's sewing or doll collection!