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!
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!
Marked "Copyright 1924", in the lower left hand corner, this extremely hard-to-find advertising piece measures 10.5 inches wide x 13.5 inches high. Colorful and visually interesting, the heavy cardboard diecut depicts an engaging Uncle Wabash serenely strumming his banjo on his front porch! Guess the message to the consumer was, "Eat one of Uncle Wabash's cupcakes to experience your own little slice of heaven and serenity!"
Condition of this charming piece of Black Historical ephemera is quite good given its 80+ years of age!! Old water staining to bottom of the diecut does little to detract from the piece. Crease line to one cupcake edge. Appropriate age foxing to back.
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!
This 1920-30s, hinged, wooden game piece box features an original, hand-executed, ink-on-paper drawing of a black figure in a tuxedo that has been pasted to the box cover. The drawing has been preserved with a shellac covering.
The box contains fifty, sequentially numbered 1-50, wooden game pieces painted red and white. The game pieces are in mint condition and appear to have only been lightly used. They remain firmly in place within the box with the support of non-stick, archival tape which may be easily removed without damage to the game pieces, if desired.
The game box measures 5.25 inches wide x 10.50 inches long x 1 inch high.
Truly a one-of-a-kind piece of vintage Black Memorabilia! Displays wonderfully!
ENTIRELY hand-stitched, this gent is dressed in fancy striped pants, straw shoes and hat, green belt, and in a navy blue and white polka dot shirt with a tiny breast pocket that holds a teeny pack of CAMEL cigarettes, labeled with a "C"! His outfit is topped off with a red tie that is held in place by a bean tie tack!
His face is hand-stitched with careful attention noted to the creation of his molded, 3-D nose. The weather must be warm as he wearily wipes his hot neck with a red and tan checked handkerchief!
A delightful African-American Southern character doll!
No chips, cracks, or repairs with only minor, subtle paint loss as noted in photos. Retains its original notepad but is missing its pencil.
Please see our other Aunt Jemima items!
Manufactured by FOSTA Products, this highly sought after piece of Black Memorabilia is in lovely, all-original condition with very light, superficial surface wear as seen in photos; this wear is reflective of less-than-typical use. A bonus--the original recipe cards remain inside! Fabulous color and condition contribute to the wonderful visual appeal of this delightful and essential, vintage piece of early 50’s Black Americana!
Please see the YELLOW Aunt Jemima Fosta Recipe Box available as separate purchase.
These signs have a very colorful, folk-art appeal and certainly are utterly unique! They very much fit into the American, Southern "Outsider Art" collecting genre, a genre which highlights the work of self-taught, rural area artists who create fabulous and highly expressive art using the media and materials that they have at hand and which reflects the world that they know and live in.
The signs are quite heavy as each is made from a solid wood board. The signs are nearly identical in size and measure approximately 25 1/2 inches wide x 14 5/8 high x 3/4ths of an inch thick. One of the signs has very, very slight warping, but the warpage is not readily evident as seen by pictures. Each sign has 2 holes from which to hang them, and the old rusted hanging wire which is seen in the photos has been replaced by new hanging wire.
The book tells the infamous story of ten little African-American boys who are gradually eliminated in number via one circumstance after another--most utterly horrid-- choking to death, chopping himself in half, being crushed by a bear, being swallowed by a red herring, etc, ending with the last boy sadly living all alone, a circumstance he happily remedies by getting married.
Originally published in 1868 under the Title of “The Ten Little Indians,” this poem was used during minstrel shows, which oftentimes were traveling acts, performed by white actors in blackface following the Civil War. The following year, the poem was adapted to this overtly horrid, racist rendition, replacing the word Indians with “Nigger” in both minstrel shows, printed sheet music, and children’s nursery rhyme books. This version married the stereotypes of violence and ignorance within the African-American population with the intent of "villain-izing" freed, black males while simultaneously allowing violent acts to befall the black characters portrayed in the rhyme.
This 113 year old book remains in all-original, very good condition with no alterations or repairs. Original binding and stitching remain quite tight and intact. Illustrated by R. J. (James) Williams, the interior illustrations remain very brightly colored. Pages present varying degrees of very light soiling, light foxing, and yellowing of linen, commensurate with age. Some pages also show subtle water staining that has not impacted cloth integrity. No tears or rips to fabric.
This book is in truly remarkable condition for its age and in consideration of its all-cloth construction. This title is very RARELY found in today's market and is an absolute cornerstone piece in any serious Black Memorabilia collection!
To view other versions of this book presently available for separate purchase, please type the words "ten little" into the SEARCH box on our home page.
The CZAR Baking Powder card is SOLD. It was printed by the Empire Lithography Company, Pearl Street, New York, and is so marked at the bottom of the front side. This card is brilliantly colored with a phenomenal graphic of a Mammy and her son admiring an utterly huge loaf of bread which presumably owes its immense size to CZAR Baking Powder. The reverse side carries a testimony by a Yale College professor attesting to the wonder of the CZAR product which is manufactured by Steele and Emery Company of New Haven, Connecticut. The card measures 3 inches x 4.75 inches.
The MISFIT Clothing Company card is copyrighted 1898 by J.H. Bufford Company in the lower right front corner. In the upper left corner, the card is entitled "In the Land of Cotton" and features a wonderfully detailed scene of African-American families working the cotton fields with a large cotton gin looming in the background. The card measures 2.75 inches x 4.50 inches. The reverse side is an advertisement for Misfit Clothing sold by the J. Bamott & Company of Washington Street, Boston.
The Welcome Soap advertising card also measures 2.75 inches x 4.50 inches and is entitled "Photography Under a Cloud". It features a fabulous litho of 5 African-American boys with exaggerated facial features who are attempting to take a photograph using an early camera. The litho is marked in the lower right corner "Bufford, Boston". The reverse side further advertises WELCOME SOAP and features two shaking hands.
All three trade cards are in very fine condition with nice color and some very subtle evidence of age staining as seen in photos. The cards have no rips, bends, or fading. The back sides of the Czar card and the MISFIT CLOTHING card have glue stains.
These rare trade cards would be stunning matted and framed as a group!
As each is priced separately (see photos for pricing), please email us stating which item you wish to purchase so that we can customize your order form.
This never-used tote bears the original paper tag which states, "Handmade by African Cripple; Ematupeni / Zimele Cripple Care Centers; Durban, England".
The artistry of the wool felt, hand-appliqued cut-outs featuring a mother and her three children is further enhanced by colorful bead work which was carefully placed for symmetry in design and form! A gorgeous piece of vintage African Artwork!
Measuring 14 long x 14 wide x 2 deep, the bag retains a "brand-new" appearance with no fading, rips, stains, or other blemishes.
Please see the companion "tea cozy" offered for sale and priced separately.
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!
In 1912, in a stroke of advertising genius, Mayo's Tobacco Company packaged their cut plug tobacco in round tins with a lithographed character. Each held 1 pound of tobacco. It was opened by removing the head!
These "Roly-Polys" were a unique shape that distinguished them from the rectangular and lunch box-shaped tins that surrounded them on store shelves. There were a number of different characters that were available, and smokers were encouraged to collect the entire set. The six original tins were the Satisfied Customer, the Storekeeper, the Singing Waiter, the Dutchman, Scotland Yard....and Mammy!
Mayo called this packaging a "Brownie" tin...apparently the company suggested that the tins be used as brownie containers after the tobacco was used, and designed them accordingly. They were never a plentiful tin, and today, are becoming increasingly more and more difficult to find.
The Mayo tobacco tins were distinguished by little packages of Mayo Cut Plug tobacco shown somewhere on the character. Notice that the Mammy tin has a tiny tobacco tin tucked into her front pocket.
Mammy's dimensions are 7"x7". She is in good condition, as evidenced by the photos which clearly detail the flaws she has acquired over her 100+ years of existence. The body of the tin has minor paint loss to the litho as seen in photos, minor and subtle surface scratching (see photos), and small areas of denting to the top of mammy's head (see photo) and to her base near the cigarette pack protruding from her pocket (see photo). The body has some light soiling and has the appropriate wear at contact points. The tin has no repaint but does have some light, interior rusting to the interior of the base as well as a couple of tiny size holes which can be seen in the 12th photo (tiny holes show up as white spots in the photo). The base was held up to the bright, outdoor light to illuminate the holes- which actually make them appear more prominent than they actually are!
The base of the tin is labeled "made in factory # 42, in the 2nd District of Virginia".
**The depth of color is better viewed "in person" as opposed to what I was able to capture in a photo.**
A must-have addition to any SERIOUS Black Americana collection! A note on the rarity of this item....this is only the second Mayo Cut Plug tin that I have had the pleasure of offering for sale in my 20+ years specializing in Black Americana! The tin displays beautifully!!
The label is unused and is in excellent condition with wonderful, even coloring (any appearance of fading is due to light reflection only).
Approximate measurements: the oval label measures 4.50 x 3.50 inches.
Would look wonderful framed!!
Please take a moment to view my other grouping of vintage French rum labels!
Constructed of tin with a cardboard lithographed image and a glass cover, this game is backed with its original mirror. The puzzle is in all-original condition with the lithographed graphic remaining free of scratches and abrasions. The glass is rippled but is not damaged as it remains smooth to the touch. A "defective" piece of glass was likely just simply chosen for use. The mirror shows some tiny bits of loss to silvering 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 String Holder is stamped "JAPAN" on the back side, and it has a hole in the center of her mouth to accommodate the string! This wonderful piece has expected and typical glaze crazing and even comes complete with vintage string! On the upper right hand side of her forehead, these is a small white spot about 1/4 of an inch long where the face paint was not applied prior to factory glazing (see photo)- a tiny, insignificant manufacturer imperfection that does not detract from this rare piece! The entire piece is glazed with the exception of Mammy's lips which are cold-painted (meaning that the paint was applied after firing). As such, this area of paint would be the most vulnerable to wear, and Mammy does have 2 microscopically-sized specks on her upper lip where the paint has come off. Too tiny to be picked up in a photo!
Please note that photos were taken with a flash, so any white markings on the piece are flash reflections only and not imperfections.
Pepsodent product users would collect box tops and along with a small sum for shipping, would mail all into the Pepsodent Company in return for Amos n Andy's "Eagle's Eye View of Weber City, Inc." lithograph map!
The litho itself is just extraordinary---very brightly colored, original and mint condition, measuring 20 inches wide x 15 inches long. No rips, bends, or creases. This has been stored for years inside two clear plastic bag-type casings using a 16" x 20" art canvas for support. The litho is not attached to the canvas. The original fold creases which occurred when the litho was first mailed out in the 1930s remain. This litho would be absolutely fabulous framed given all of its bright, visually-striking detailing!
Also included are the Amos n Andy mailing envelope and promo letter from them that accompanied the litho asking their fans to buy Pepsodent products. The aforementioned, 9 x 12 inch, complete, all original, Amos n Andy sheet music package additionally comes with this offering. The cover features a fabulous, visually-appealing graphic of Amos n Andy and their dog that also would look wonderful framed right beside this fabulous litho!
All pieces are in absolutely amazing condition! I have not seen this litho before in my many years collecting and selling Black Americana. Its scarcity and superb condition make this offering a Black Memorabilia must-have!
Please note: some photos show shadows. These are a function of lighting conditions and NOT any discrepancy in lithograph coloring.
In lovely condition with age crackling to the backside of the seashell, this stunning piece appears to have never been used for its original purpose as a hanging wall planter. The black paint is in impeccable condition and any white dots that appear in photos are the result of light reflection off of teeny glaze imperfections and are NOT chips, rubs or scratches to the surface. The gold stippling to the seashell is perfect!
The piece has a hole in the back to facilitate wall-mounting or it may be easily displayed on a shelf.
A very seldom found piece of vintage Black Memorabilia that is truly stunning in appearance!
The smaller print featuring a little baby sitting in a pie, measures 7.25 inches wide x 9.50 inches long. It is complete with original black wooden frame, glass, and paper backing. Copyright by Morris & Benden NY is noted without a date. The phrase, "If you could lub like I lub pie - oh me, oh my - oh me, oh my!" is printed at the bottom. Very nice condition and ready to hang!
The larger print featuring a teeny black baby tucked between pillows in a very large fluffy bed bears a penciled inscription on the paper backing indicating that the piece was given as a gift in 1925! Measuring 7 6/8 inches wide x 10.50 inches long, this print retains its original black wooden frame and paper backing but requires replacement glass, an inexpensive investment for this small frame. These two sweet prints would look lovely hanging together given their common sweet black baby theme and with their coordinating black frames!
This darling, all-glass piece remains in superb condition-other than its missing front label. It does, however, retain its wonderful, original paper label at the base of the bottle that reads, “ Made in France, Fluid Cont oz 13”. Underneath the label, the base of the clear glass bottle is impressed, “Bottle Made in France”. Additionally, the perfume retains one half of its original and rarely-found, pink-satin-lined, cardboard box which is also labeled "Vigny, Paris" on one of its panels.
The Golliwogg’s head is the perfume stopper (which presently is quite securely affixed in place), and the facial enameling/painting remains as clear and crisp as the day it was applied! Even his black furry hair retains its vibrant, original, dark tones! The Golly’s glass collar is enameled/painted white with black polka dots and his feet are accented in black.
Along with photos of the Golliwog perfume is a photo of an original 1920’s magazine advertisement for Vigny Perfumes including “Le Golliwogg”. The magazine advertisement is not available for sale and is only presented to serve as an historical reference.
A very, very special piece of Black Memorabilia that has appeal to Black Americana, perfume bottle, and Golliwog collectors alike!
Also pictured here and available for sale separately--- coming from the same estate--- is a 2.50 inch, Vigny, France, Golliwogg Perfume in Satin Camphor Glass dating post-WWI and priced at $425.00, as well as a second, 2.25 inch clear glass, 1920's, Golliwogg Perfume bottle complete with all paper labels (but without the box) and priced at $375.00. The satin camphor glass bottle was the VERY FIRST version of the Vigny "Le Golliwogg" perfume, and is much less-frequently found. The "Golly" brand continued to be sold through the 1920-30's. Type "Vigny" in the SEARCH box on our homepage to see all French Golliwogg Perfume bottles!
Protected in an antique gold wooden frame with gold matting, this magazine sheet has retained all of the brilliance of its original color, making it a rather striking piece of wall art! Seldom located in such fine condition!
A striking piece that would be a colorful centerpiece to any Black Americana 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!
The graphic showing an African American woman picking cotton with her little girl at her side retains its vivid coloring and is in near mint condition with only one tiny speck of paint loss at the base of the little girl’s apron. Very minor wear is visible along the front edge of the tray rim as well as along the base edge as seen in photos. Overall condition is quite exceptional!
The front of the tray bears the advertisement, “ The Source of Cottolene- ‘Nature’s Gift From the Sunny South’”, and obviously refers to the cotton plant as the source of Cottolene Lard or shortening which was manufactured by the N.K. Fairbanks Company.
In extraordinarily microscopic-size lettering on the bottom front of the tray at the base of the cotton-picking scene can be read (with a super-magnifying glass), the name of the manufacturer of this metal tip tray: " Passaic Metal Ware Co. Litho. Passaic NJ".
The tray underside depicts a can of Cottolene lard which provides the backdrop for the Fairbanks Company product advertising. It advertising reads, “ ‘Way Down South in the Land of Cotton’ If you could see cotton growing in the fields in all its purity, could observe the skill and care used in extracting and refining the oil, you would appreciate while COTTOLENE- the perfect shortening- is so much purer and more healthful than lard could ever be. COTTOLENE is pure and wholesome as the finest olive oil; makes food palatable, digestible, healthful. COTTOLENE shortens your food- lengthens your life.” Wow, quite a testimony!!
A wonderful crossover piece equally appropriate for one’s Advertising, Black Memorabilia, or Tip Tray collection!
Poster reads further: "Benefit- Pals Bible Club-Elm Street Baptist Church". "Directed by Churchill Traylor". Features a very sweet Black Minstrel caricature graphic! It is believed that this event took place in the Petersburg, Virginia area.
Fine condition with very subtle age-related edge tears that do not interfere with image. Would look just wonderful framed!!
This particular piece is in very fine condition, with cold-paint flaking on the spout and lid edge decoration noted as this piece's only readily-visualized flaws. (Cold paint refers to paint applied AFTER a piece has been painted, glazed, and fired in a kiln. Because this after-paint is not glazed and fired, it is easily subjected to flaking and disintegration.)
The teapot remains in fabulous, all-original condition with its twisted-wire, original, bail handle intact and in fine condition. The tea pot measures 5.5 inches wide from the edge of its spout and across the body to the opposite side. With its handle upright, the pot measures 7.75 inches tall. The teapot with lid, absent the handle, measures 5.25 inches tall. It is 5.75 inches wide.
As noted previously, the teapot spout presents flaking of its green paint, with two tiny flea bites present on the tip of the spout detected only via touch versus the eye. The pot has no chips, cracks, repairs or repaint. There are very teeny surface rubs on the left cheek, but these are paint flaws which occurred prior to glaze application and firing. There are also two teeny "dots"-- one on the forehead and one just to the inside corner of the right eye that are also flaws created either right before or during firing.
This fabulously RARE piece displays just wonderfully and would be a prized asset in the collection of any advanced collector! And its diminutive size makes it easy for one to display in one's collection!
The graphics on the cover of this box feature a smiling, happy, young African-American boy (the company's trademark) who is peering through a rip in the paper, unknowingly about to be pounced down upon by a very ugly and venomous-looking spider!
The box is in amazingly near-perfect condition despite its 100+ years of age with very insignificant soiling present as well as rubs and abrasions to box edges, all of which are more than perfectly reasonable given the age of the piece.
A very seldom-seen advertising piece featuring a Black Americana theme! The first that I have had from this company! is in excellent, all-original, perfect condition!
A brief history of the Negro League:
African Americans first began to play baseball in the late 1800s on military teams, college teams, and company teams, eventually finding their way to the established professional baseball teams of white players. However, racism and “Jim Crow” laws would force African Americans from these teams by 1900, with black players left to form their own teams.
In 1920, an organized league structure was formed under the guidance of Andrew “Rube” Foster, a former player, manager, and owner for the Chicago American Giants. In a meeting held at the Paseo YMCA in Kansas City, Mo., Foster and several other Midwestern team owners joined to form the Negro National League. Soon, rival leagues formed in Eastern and Southern states, which brought black baseball to major urban centers and to rural countrysides in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. The Leagues maintained a high level of professional skill and inspired economic development in many black communities.
In 1945, when Major League Baseball’s Brooklyn Dodgers recruited Jackie Robinson from the Kansas City Monarchs, Robinson became the first African American in the modern era to play on a Major League roster. While this historic event was a key moment in baseball and civil rights history, it marked the decline of the Negro Leagues. The best black players began to be recruited for the Major Leagues with their black fans following them, and the last Negro Leagues teams folded in the early 1960s.
Prominent facial features- eyes and brows, nose, cheekbones, lips and teeth -and tight curly hair rise from the surface of the bowl. The bowl is rather heavy for its diminutive size and has no markings. Measures 4 inches in diameter and 1.5 inches high. Condition is excellent with some tarnishing that may be cleaned if desired; our preference was to offer this 140+ year old piece in as found condition.
An outstanding and highly collectible offering to add to one's advanced Black Memorabilia collection!
This wonderful Depression Era piece features a whimsical 10 inch long cutout figure of a little wooden black girl with hand-painted smiling mouth and eyes! She is dressed in a hand-stitched cotton costume that has been stuffed with scrap fabric.
Her feet feature two brass-finish hooks, presumably to either hang keys or pot holders from. Her ears each have a punched out hole--whether this is functional or purely decorative remains a mystery. A small brass hoop threaded through a piece of fabric which was then tacked to the back of the girl's head facilitates hanging on a wall. Overall condition is fine with age-related soiling to the dress and minor paint wear typical of a 70 year-old-piece.
One of my favorite hand-made pieces with true folk art appeal!
This fabulous game features a brightly colored lithograph target depicting the dapper, banjo-playing, "Jolly Darkie" with a gigantic mouth.
The target box remains in very fine condition, appearing to have seen little, if any, use. It has four openings through which one was to toss the four wooden balls that the game originally came with, but which are no longer present. It measures 13 inches tall x 6 3/4 inches wide x 1.5 inches deep.
As evident in the photos, the box cover shows expected wear given its 100+ years of age, with some pencil writing in the mouth and some surface soiling.
As indicated earlier, the extant game pieces do not retain a copyright year or maker name; however, this game is very similar to two other Milton Bradley Jolly Darkie Target games that were manufactured from 1890-1910, suggesting that this game was also manufactured during this era by Springfield, Massachusetts' Milton Bradley Company. The directions to this game are not present, and it is quite possible that the manufacturer and manufacture date both appeared on the direction card-- as has been found to be the case on other Milton Bradley games of this era.
The game cover as well as the JOLLY DARKIE target box display absolutely wonderfully and would be a colorful asset to one's vintage black Americana game collection!
Manufactured by FOSTA Products, this highly sought after piece of Black Memorabilia shows some wear to the gold lettered word, “RECIPES”, although the majority of the paint remains intact. Small paint rubs are present here and there on Aunt Jemima’s face as seen in photos. The tiny plastic knob on the left side of the box that acts as a hinge for the cover is missing, but this minor imperfection detracts little from the fabulous color contrast and visual appeal of this delightful and essential, vintage piece of early 50’s Black Americana!
Please see the RED Aunt Jemima Fosta Recipe Box available for purchase separately.
Unmarked, this toy is in very good condition with tiny superficial surface scratches wherever metal rubs metal during toy movement. To operate the toy, one simply squeezes the metal lever on the back, which causes the clown to hit poor Golly on the head with a mallet!
A brief history of the Golliwog doll: The Golliwog is based on a Black minstrel doll that the Victorian era illustrator, Florence Kate Upton, born in 1873, had played with as a small child in New York. Upton's Golliwog character was first introduced to the world in her 1895 book entitled The Adventures of Two Dutch Dolls. Like the rag doll that inspired it, the Golliwog in her book was an ugly creature with very dark, jet black skin, large white-rimmed eyes, red clown lips, and wild, frizzy hair. Golliwogs are typically male and are generally dressed in a jacket, trousers, bow tie, and stand-up collar in a combination of red, white, blue, black, and occasionally yellow colors.
The doll clad in all black depicts the rarely-found, black country preacher out for an afternoon stroll with his wooden walking stick in one hand and the Holy Bible clutched in the other. The preacher wears a machine-stitched suit thoughtfully detailed with white shirt cuffs poking out of his sleeves and the white reverend's collar at his neck. His left shoe reveals a hole with a sock-covered toe poking through! The preacher's stove pipe style hat is placed snugly on his head covering most of his gray hair although his full gray facial beard features prominently. His embroidered facial features, characteristic of these dolls, are further accented with "steel-rimmed" style eye glasses. The 1.5 square inch bible actually has real pages! Also characteristic of this type of doll is a small square of asphalt shingle glued to the feet to serve as a stand. The doll's body is well-stuffed with cotton batting.
The gray-hair and bearded, chicken-toting black country gent doll is also attired in machine-stitched clothing and additionally shares a cotton-bating stuffed body, embroidered facial features, and an asphalt shingle tile stand. He wears cotton britches detailed with double knee patches and suspenders along with a blue and cream striped cotton shirt and a red and white polka dot kerchief around his neck. His hat is constructed of black-colored felt. This country gent holds a finely crafted and detailed brown chicken under his right arm, while his left hand clutches a wooden walking stick.
Two very special dolls that represent a snapshot of history, capturing the lives of poor southern black folk of the Depression era.
The dolls are priced at $255.00 each.
While mourning jewelry in general is not at all prolific on the antiques market today, coming upon a Mourning Brooch immortalizing a Black American is truly a RARE find!
This brass brooch is in fine original condition and celebrates the memory of a smiling black woman clutching a bouquet of flowers. This brooch is further enhanced with a delicate twisted braid around its circumference.
The photograph is gray/black toned and is in fine condition!
A truly RARE piece of Black Americana!
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!
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.
A wonderful and rarely found piece of Black Americana!
Little Jasper was created by George Pal, a cartoonist who worked for Paramount Studios and who created the Puppetoons, a popular cartoon series played in movie theaters of the era prior to the screening of the feature film.
Push or pull him along, and he twirls around while the two present wooden flowers spin along with him! (One wooden flower top is, unfortunately, missing--the only imperfection to this fabulous toy!)
Overall condition is rated as excellent, barely-used condition! There is very insignificant edge wear to paint here and there, but the four wheels don't show even the tiniest trace of wear from use, suggesting that this toy quite likely sat either in a display cabinet or was packed away for its entire existence! Even the original, paper manufacturing sticker remains intact and in pristine condition!
"Little Jasper" is very RARELY found, and the opportunity to acquire him should not be overlooked!
This seldom found copy was originally published in 1932 by Rand McNally & Company of New York.
This copy has superficial scratches to the front and back covers, as well as surface soiling, and wear on book cover edges.(see photos). The front cover has a slight tear at the crease that does not effect strength or integrity of the cover board. A couple of pages have minor staining. The binding is super-tight and all pages remain present.
Topsy's adventures are divided into three chapters in length, approximately 59 numbered pages. Book is filled with a variety of black-ink and black and red illustrations as represented in photos. The story of Topsy was likely inspired by the Little Black Sambo stories which originated at the turn of the 20th century. PLEASE NOTE: in the photos, the printing seems light and faded- not so! It is merely the function of over-lighting or light reflection.
A wonderful and truly RARE book not to be missed!
Please see the other Topsy Turvy book available for separate purchase, a 1938 copy of Topsy Turvy's PigTails.
A brief history of the Golliwog doll: The Golliwog is based on a Black minstrel doll that the Victorian era illustrator, Florence Kate Upton, born in 1873 of English parents, had played with as a small child in New York. Upton's Golliwog character was first introduced to the world in her 1895 book entitled The Adventures of Two Dutch Dolls. Like the rag doll that inspired it, the Golliwog in her book was an ugly creature with very dark, jet black skin, large white-rimmed eyes, red clown lips, and wild, frizzy hair. Golliwogs are typically male and are generally dressed in a jacket, trousers, bow tie, and stand-up collar in a combination of red, white, blue, black, and occasionally yellow colors.
Measuring 21.5 inches long, this delightful and appealing cloth Golli is unmarked and is thought, by his original and quite elderly owner, to have been made in the mid 1940's! (She speculates that he could even be a bit older than that, but she remembers not acquiring him until after the end of WWII.)
His nose and mouth are hand-stitched and he has round, cloth covered button eyes- the pupils were hand-colored using black ink! His nicely coiffed, black hair appears to have been styled from soft, "stuffed animal-type" fur! Rather interesting and ingenious! He has a machine-stitched, cotton batting stuffed, black sock cloth body. His colorful wardrobe is also machine stitched- green wool mourning coat, gold vest, and red and white polka-dotted cotton pants and matching bow tie!
He is in wonderful condition with the exception of some tiny moth holes to the back of his mourning coat (see photos) as well as another tiny moth hole to the back of his right arm and back right pants leg. The polka dot clothing shows the slightest hint of fading. His dark black fur hair also shows some age-related color change to brown at the roots. Hmm...then again...perhaps he's simply overdue for another hair coloring appointment at the Salon!
A very sweet addition to one's Black Memorabilia or Golliwogg collection!
The needlework measures approximately 15 by 14 inches and is in good condition overall, given its 120+ years of age! The central design is superb with no problems, but the two upper corners show evidence of some unraveling, particularly the upper right, which has a small hole. This little hole could be repaired, or if the piece was framed, it could be visually eliminated; however, it truly does little to detract from the central focal point of the children on the seesaw, when viewed in its entirety. The piece does show subtle evidence of typical, age-related discoloration.
An utterly wonderful and scarce example of 19th century Black Americana themed Needlework!
Remaining in its original frame with original wooden and paper backing, this watercolor retains its framer's identifying sticker which reads, "Staton's Art Shop 5409 Germantown Ave." Perhaps this Germantown address indicates Philadelphia area origin? In the interests of proper conservation, the new owner should re-frame this lovely piece with appropriate acid-free materials.
Please ignore any white streaks seen in photos; these are the result of light reflection off of the glass.
A lovely watercolor- nicely executed!
The stories were written by Elizabeth Gordon and are whimsically illustrated in color by Clara Powers Wilson.
In fine condition with light wear to exterior boards. An early owners name appears inscribed on the title page. A small folio size measuring 5.25 inches x 6.75 inches.
The folder is undated and was never mailed. Some edge wear evident at corners and some slight separation at the seams of individual cards. 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 of "Dixieland" and 18 full color scenes of industry common in the South during this period: cotton picking and production, tapping pine trees for turpentine production, watermelon farming, Razorback Hog farming and sugarcaning. All photos feature African-American laborers.
Her cute face is completely hand-stitched and is accented by original celluloid hoop earrings. She wears a flowered bandanna, a cream colored flowered shawl, and an off white apron over her green and black mini-checked dress. She even has a cream colored petticoat underneath all! Her machine-stitched clothes are odor free and are nicely constructed, although her apron does have tiny age holes!
Although her bottle frame is covered by a black stocking, the stocking has risen up revealing her sand-filled milk bottle with red lettering from R.W. Tripp's Dairy, established 1889. The milk bottle lettering is in great shape and even features a graphic of a school boy and girl! Among milk bottle collectors, this particular milk bottle is quite rarely found and quite highly sought after, adding further collectible value to this sweet doll!
This great, early bottle doll is one of 3 currently offered bottle dolls --- all priced separately.
Great condition with some corner wear, but please note that all pages have completely separated from the center seam so are no longer in "booklet" form. No missing pages though!
A difficult item to find in today's market!
The child’s head nods up and down in a "yes" motion by pivoting on a tiny metal bar inserted through her neck (see photos).
Condition is mint, and the piece is signed on the bottom of her right foot: “Hand Painted Lenwile China Ardalt Japan 6530 B”.
Black nodders are quite difficult to come by and have become an interesting sub-collecting category in the field of Black Americana! Not to be missed!
Please see the equally-difficult-to-find companion piece also available - the Black Boy Child Clown Nodder by Ardalt, Japan!!!
A stunning and very visually striking piece, it is labeled on back, "Fredericksburg Art Pottery USA", a pottery once located in Fredericksburg, Ohio, manufacturing between 1939-49. The back has 2 original hanging holes for placement on a wall.
Truly in wonderful, vintage condition with no cracks, chips, repairs or repaint! A fabulous addition to one's Black Americana collection!
Please note that the natural outdoor lighting used to photograph this piece has amplified the white paint flecking --the teeny white spots really show up more in these photos than on the actual piece in an indoor setting--- photo number one gives an accurate depiction of appearance.
Measuring just 6 ½ inches tall with a skirt circumference of 4 ½ inches, her head, torso, and arms are constructed of fabric with an inverted basket serving as her skirt. Her clothing is machine-stitched with attention paid to detail: teeny gold fabric braiding serves as earrings and necklace; delicate lace accents her skirt hem; her red shawl features zig zag stitching accents; her face is finely hand-painted.
A sweet addition to one’s Black Memorabilia or Doll collection!
Condition of the litho is considered very good given the rich coloration that remains. Some minor wear does exist: 2 small tears measuring less than 1/2 inch each on either side border edge-- one in the trees on the right side and the other on the left side in the water. There are several teeny holes in the sky to the right of the bearded gentleman's fishing pole as well as one single hole in the black gentleman's hair. (Please see photos.) Some wear to the border at top as shown in photos.
Despite the noted imperfections, this lithograph displays beautifully, with rich color and crisp lines. It presently resides in an early 1920's frame without glass; it requires appropriate re-framing with acid-free materials to continue to preserve its historic importance.
This circa 1920-30's Johnny Griffin tie rack is constructed in solid brass. It remains functional for such use today; however, only two of the five original tie hooks remain.
It is in all original condition with fabulous patina- not a reproduction- no replaced parts- and measures 13 inches long.
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.
Ready to be framed, the puzzle has retained all of the brilliance of its original colors and also sports the artist signature of Fern Bisel Peat in the upper right hand corner. Slight and subtle edge wear to some puzzle pieces as noted in photo. A nice addition to one’s Little Black Sambo collection!
Colors are extraordinarily vivid, a fabulous display piece -retains original cardboard backing and original stand, but, alas, no game darts! The darts are extraordinarily rare and are seldom found!
Present are minor surface blemishes, surface scratches, some surface rust specks, as well as minor edge crimps that one would expect of a 90+ year old toy -all of which fail to detract from the fabulously bold visual imagery of this piece! (The most prominent scratch is on Sambo's target.)
To see all of the Little Black Sambo items currently available for sale, simply type “Sambo” into the search box on our website homepage.
The oddly-shaped, hand-wrought shackles each have two lateral "pockets" that contain pieces of metal or balls that “rattle” as the wearer moves about, thus indicating the wearer's location. This type of shackle is noted in historical references as a Crab Rattler Shackle due to its visual similarity to that sea animal. Each shackle has a pair of small chain links attached at the top. One shackle would have been placed on each leg, and a metal chain would have then been threaded through the attached rings and secured with a lock.
The age of these shackles is formally listed as 19th century, but could very well be older, dating to the last quarter of the 18th century. Condition is quite good given age and use. Please note the small hole present on the side of one shackle as noted in photo. All original and untouched, an utterly horrible, tangible testament to the malevolence of slavery. A VERY RARE form of rattle shackle, even more particularly so due to its small size!
Also currently offered for sale and priced separately is a very diminutive child rattle shackle in an unusual form out of a South Carolina estate. Additionally, de-accessioned from the Middle Passage Museum is an ultra-rare set of 19th Century Slave Ship Shackles from a New Orleans, Louisiana, former slave trader estate! Please type the word "shackles" in the search box on our home page to find all sets of shackles currently being offered.
This pleasant diecut is in excellent condition and comes protected in an attractive, walnut-tone, oval decorative frame! The frame bears some minor veneer loss that does not impact the frame integrity, nor is it immediately noticeable.
A sweet piece!
Measuring 18 inches tall, Mammy is constructed of black, machine-stitched, vintage 1930-1940's, polished cotton which has been stuffed with cotton batting. Facial features have been hand-embroidered, are quite expressive, and are exceedingly well done. Her hair has been styled in six pigtails adorned with bows.
Mammy's red, machine-stitched dress is also vintage 1930-40's fabric and features the classic Grecian Key design in white.
A delightful piece of Black Memorabilia Folk Art! This wonderful, 1940's-vintage-look, one-of-a-kind, Artisan Doll was constructed in the 1990's by a Maine Folk Art crafts-person who is now deceased.
Please take a moment to view her little brother by typing the words "Maine Doll" into the SEARCH box.