These iron, hand-forged, 19th century slave ship shackles were purchased back in the early 1960’s out of a family estate in New Orleans, Louisiana, whose 18th and 19th century ancestors were involved in the slave trade. The shackles remain all-original and untouched with fifteen very heavy chain links that vary in size, measuring a total of 40 inches in length when positioned in a straight line. The cuff size is enormous with diameter measurements of 4.75 and 4.25 inches each; the heft and weight of each cuff is quite impressive. This very weighty set was designed to immobilize when the two circular links were attached to another locking shackle on the interior wall of the ship. An utterly horrible, tangible testament to the malevolence of slavery.
The anonymous museum benefactor from Georgia kept this particular set aside from those items he had planned to donate to the Middle Passage Museum due to the rarity in opportunity of acquiring slave ship shackles---the only set he acquired in his many years of collecting which began in the early 1950's before the collectible field of Black Americana was popular or even socially or politically acceptable.
Also currently offered for sale and priced separately are a rarely found, 19thC Slave Rattle Shackle out of the Charleston, South Carolina area and a set of early 19th century, child/young adolescent - size, Slave Crab Rattle Shackles. Please type the word "shackles" in the search box on our home page to find these sets of shackles.
The Middle Passage Museum was the dream of Jim and Mary Anne Petty of Mississippi as well as that of an anonymous Georgian benefactor who had together compiled a collection of slave artifacts numbering over 15,000 pieces and who had hoped to find a permanent site in Mobile, Alabama, for their museum. While they formed a non-profit organization to raise funds for their hoped-for museum, their dream was never realized.
In a 2003 statement, Jim Petty remarked, "The importance of the exhibit of these artifacts is to understand the harshness of what slavery and segregation was all about. The items in the exhibit remind us of the terrible heinousness of slavery. Viewing the collection can be very emotional, but it is a tool through which we can understand, honor and respect a great culture. We want to realize that out of slavery, a great culture emerged, and carried on, and continued to strive for a better life regardless of the adverse conditions that were placed upon them."
From 1901-1924, Bruckner produced this original, 12" Topsy Turvy doll for Horsman's Babyland Rag Doll line that features Caucasian, "Betty", on one end and African American, "Topsy", on the other. The inspiration for this doll is based on the character of Topsy in Harriet Beecher Stowe's classic 1852 novel, "Uncle Tom's Cabin".
The Bruckner Topsy Turvy doll was advertised in a 1907 Babyland Rag Doll catalog as follows:
"TOPSY-TURVY---What is this?
Looks like just a pretty miss.
But turn her over and you'll find,
She is quite another kind.
First she's White and then she's Black,
Turn her over and turn her back.
Topsy that side--Betty this--
Yet complete, each little Miss."
The detail on this hard to find classic doll is lovely. Both heads indeed have the pressed, molded mask faces with lithographed features. Topsy's face is in mint condition! Betty's face is also in excellent condition with no superficial rubs to the flesh-toned coating of her mask; her lithographed facial features remain just beautiful!! (Such rubs are not unexpected as these particular doll masks are, unfortunately, very prone to rubbing. To find one of these 100+ year old dolls without such rubbing is quite rare!)
Grinning Topsy has red bows tied to her black mohair braided pigtails which are tucked into her red headscarf. Her red blouse, which matches her head scarf, is trimmed with cream banding around the sleeve and neck edges. The cream scarf she wears around her shoulders tucks into her very full, red/cream checked, gingham skirt. Topsy’s cream banding is lightly soiled and there is also some subtle fading to her red head scarf, most notably in the back. Flip her over, and....
Betty's more subtle Anglo face and her hair are lithographed. She wears the same red/cream checked gingham fabric of which both her dress and ruffled bonnet are constructed. Over her very full gingham dress, Betty should also wear a sheer, ruffled, white pinafore, however, it has been lost over time. Betty’s cream banding around each sleeve is also lightly soiled as are her hands.
Both dolls have the typical "mitten" hands of the stuffed rag dolls of this era. There are no other difficulties to report other than some tiny, stray (original) glue spots here and there. No rips, tears, or odors, and she has been stored in a smoke-free home. The 1901 Patent Bruckner Topsy Turvy doll typically carries a $650+ dollar price tag, but deductions to price have been levied to account for the minor imperfections that are noted in this doll.
The photos show it all- these two girls are a charming pair! A very difficult to find doll in such wonderful condition!
Also offered for sale is a COMPLETE 1901 Patent Bruckner Topsy Turvy doll with absolutely no soiling or fading. To view, simply type Bruckner into the SEARCH box on our homepage.
Constructed with care and skill, Mammy's floral dress, white apron and white under-pantaloons were neatly machine stitched. Her facial features--- eye brows, eyes, nose, and lips --- are hand-stitched with embroidery thread. She has yarn-constructed black curls peeking out from under her red and white polka dot head scarf. Her arms, torso and head are stuffed with cotton or cloth scraps with the torso securely tucked over the top of the clothespin and into the pantaloons. Her black-painted clothespin legs are hidden under her long skirt.
A very sweet little doll in wonderful all-original condition-- no repairs, rips, stains or odor. Displays quite nicely!!
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 mirror front has a faded salmon colored border surrounding an image of a person's face with protruding tongue, about to swallow a "NR" (Nature's Remedy)tablet.
Imprinted around the circumference of the mirror is the following, "Take One Tonight - You'll feel Better In The Morning."
"Better Than Pills For Liver Ills - Get a 25 Cent Box"
Original mirrored backing is in very fine condition with just a few very minute, superficial scratches. Some fading of color around the very edge of the mirror as seen in photos.
Manufacturer name stamped on bottom edge: "Parisian Novelty Company, Chicago".
An interesting little advertising piece!
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.
Measuring about 3 inches square, this circa 1920s - 1930s vintage tin is an unusual find.
The condition of the tin is good, commensurate with its age. Unobtrusive wear and paint loss do not detract from this hard to find tin .
Great for your pharmacy collection!
The diminutive metal case with scale inside measures approximately 1.5" wide x 2.75" long x .75" deep and is in very nice, original condition. The scale's capacity is 1/2 to 20 grains. It was manufactured by the N.V. Randolph Paper Box Company, Richmond, VA.
****NOTE****There is no damage to the scale or case and no missing components! The original spatula, which is sometimes lost over the years, is present and completes this very handsome, visually-appealing piece!
Some history: Joseph Williamson Randolph (1815-1893) established his business as publisher, bookseller, and stationer in Richmond, Virginia, in 1831. By the early 1840s, he had formed a partnership with Joseph J. English, and the firm became one of the leading book dealers in the South by the time of the Civil War. After Randolph's death, his son, Norman Y. Randolph, operated the business until it passed into receivership. Norman Randolph was, at various times, president of the Randolph Paper Box Company, the Virginia State Insurance Company, and the Warwick Park Transportation Company. He also served as secretary-treasurer of the Virginia and North Carolina Wheel Company.
Each vial measures approximately 1.5 inches in length including the cork. The vials are nestled in the leather case, and each vial sports a small paper label. The fitted case measures 10.5" long x 2" wide x 3.5" high and shows wear commensurate with age and use. Modest wear and loss to the flap closure is noted with general wear and mild loss of material.
A wonderful representation of late 19th century homeopathic medicine!
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!
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.
Measuring 13.25 inches wide x 9.25 inches high x 1 inch thick, this wonderful piece patented February 16, 1886, is in very fine condition with a warm, rich patina and color as well as all 56 of its original wooden letters! To spell a word, one slides the letters along cut out tracks in the board.
Quite visually appealing!
Condition: three of the 1/8th inch thick, round, wooden letters suffered partial breakage at one point in time, but these letters continue to remain quite structurally sound and "readable". Some tiny edge chips to the wood- quite reasonable given its age.
A seldom found vintage, early School House item!
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!
While some photos may appear a bit blurry, this is a function of photography and not condition. All postcards are crisp and clear! The two comical cartoon postcards are much more brightly and vividly colored than the photos depict. The eight photo postcards also feature titles describing their subjects.
A delightful grouping that would be much-appreciated framed!
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.
The tubes bear the Stein's Trademark seal which is quite detailed and ornate and consists of a horseshoe labeled "Semper Fidelis" (Always Faithful), which encircles a stylized and entwined "M" and "S". Below the horseshoe is placed a Mortar and Pestle, all of which rests on a laurel wreath.
The tubes are labeled "Stein's Grease Paint" "Money Back for Unsatisfactory Purchases" "Manufactured By The M. Stein Cosmetic Company New York" "Made in U.S.A.". Each tube is labeled with the color code of the makeup - "No. 1 Pink", "No. 4 Medium Gray". The third tube's labeling is faded and difficult to read -"No.? ???Sallow Young Man???".
The grease paint makeup is contained in individual cardboard, push-up style tubes, they are all unused, and all three are 5 1/8" tall. Two of the tubes measure 1 1/8" in diameter and one, 5/8" in diameter.
The labeling on two of the tubes, while faded, is completely readable; one tube's labeling is rather faded and in some areas, completely unreadable.
The cardboard tubing of two of the makeup paints is, amazingly, completely intact; the No 1 Pink tube is also intact with the exception of the top cover which remains but is detached from the tube.
Interesting and early vintage finds for the theater enthusiast!
Although homeopathy has its roots in ancient Greek medicine and in the work of the 16th-century physician Paracelsus, modern homeopathy dates back 200 years to the work of the German doctor and chemist, Samuel Hahnemann. Hahnemann qualified as a physician but ceased to practice as a doctor because of what he saw as the barbaric medical practices of his day - which included bloodletting and the overuse of toxic medicines, leading to horrific side effects.
A brilliant linguist, he earned a living from translating books and was interested by a reference in a medical textbook of the use of China (Peruvian bark) as a cure for malaria. Intrigued to know why China worked, he took doses of the remedy until he himself began to exhibit malarial symptoms. He stopped taking the China and the symptoms went away. From this he deduced that the ancient principle of 'like cures like' actually worked.
His next step was to determine if there were safe levels at which toxic substances could be given - and still cure the type of symptoms that they might otherwise cause. His experiments with dilution led him to discover that the more a substance was diluted, the more potent it appeared to become.
Homeopathic medicine was born, but in practicing it, Hahnemann and his followers were subjected to ridicule and persecution by the medical establishment, despite the fact that they were seeing patients getting better on tiny doses of medicines, prescribed on the basis of 'like cures like'. Many European practitioners immigrated to the United States, where homeopathy flourished in the 19th century – until the medical establishment there systematically acted to remove its influence.
Hahnemann ended his days as a renowned and very busy practitioner in Paris, working into his 80's. He is interred at the Cimetière du Père Lachaise, where a large monument honors him and his discovery of Homeopathy.
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.