In fabulous condition with 90+ years of all original surface patina, this phenomenal piece is very highly detailed and displays wonderfully! It authentically depicts the highly fashionable Art Nouveau styling which was so wildly popular at the turn of the 20th century. This brass ashtray promotes the English settlement of the CONGO on the African continent, and thus, the words "CONGO" are impressed across the native's chest. The earliest version of this ashtray was crafted in BRONZE did not feature the Congo label across the native's chest.
A must-have piece for the sophisticated Black Americana collector!
Constructed of cardboard with black printing, this circa 1930-40's sign reads: " Coleman's Hotel Colored. Special Attention to Tourists. Ashland Virginia".
The sign remains in all-original condition inclusive of minor discoloration as noted in photos and small chips to the upper right and lower left corners. Print source is noted: "Herald-Progress Print, Ashland, VA".
This is NOT a reproduction, but rather a fortunate preservation. It is quite amazing that this sign has survived the many years being constructed out of cardboard. It was clearly stored away in such a manner that preserved its original condition.
Travel for African Americans during the Jim Crow period was difficult and complicated, with limited options for eating, sleeping, even procuring gasoline for the car. As a result, black-owned hotels and motels placed signs such as this one prominently in their windows. There were even special travel-guides to help African Americans plan their trips, hopefully, without incident. Victor Green's "Green Guide" provided state by state lists of colored hotels, motels and other travel-related businesses that catered to African-Americans.
Quite possibly the ONLY sign remaining extant from this particular, racially segregated establishment. An historically significant piece!
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!
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!
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!
This is a partial document missing its beginning and end pages, therefore, the name of the deceased slave owner and the date of the document is not known. HOWEVER, the document remains EXTRAORDINARILY RARE AND UNUSUAL as it proceeds to, first, categorize the 40 slaves using the word SLAVES instead of Negroes, and secondly, proceeds to list the male slaves BY NAME, ALONG WITH NAMES OF THEIR WIVES AND THEIR CHILDREN, with monetary value listed in the right column of the document!!!! In two instances, the number of years married is also listed! Children are labeled "Girl, "Boy", or "Infant". Total value of these 40 slaves was calculated at $24,200.00
Such documents listing ENTIRE SLAVE FAMILIES BY NAME is simply not found, as slaves were viewed as property, not individuals with rights and privileges who had wives and children, the whole of which, constituted a family. It would indeed be a phenomenal piece of history to be able to identify the plantation and/or deceased slave owner as such an estate listing speaks to an uncommon, albeit, rare and unique perspective of slave ownership. Such a listing makes this particular document all the more heart-wrenching, and it certainly begs the very sad question of whether or not these slave families were allowed to remain united and intact once the final estate disposition was conducted.
The document measures approximately 8 1/2 inches wide x 14 1/8 inches long, is double-sided and is in good condition, with fold lines evident along with some age-related foxing at top and bottom fold lines. 1 3/4 tear along the fold line of the top fold at right edge. The ink color is sepia toned (likely as a result of some fading over time) on a pale blue, vertically-ruled, heavy paper. This phenomenal piece of cultural ephemera is ready for appropriate archival preservation/framing.
The listing of slaves is on the back side of the document with the front side listing farm animals, equipment and supplies along with values- "The following property set apart for the use and benefit of the farm".
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."
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!
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!
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 in what was once an inexpensive penny game!. 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 child’s head nods back and forth by pivoting on a tiny metal bar inserted through her neck .
Condition is mint, and the piece is signed on the bottom of her right foot: “Hand Painted Lenwile China Ardalt Japan 6529”.
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 companion matching Ardalt Black Nodder pieces also available (pictured here as well) - the Black Girl Child Nodder and the Black Boy Clown Nodder!!
Author: Heyward, DuBose.
Title: JASBO BROWN AND SELECTED POEMS.
Subject: African-American Experience and Culture of Charleston, South Carolina Publication: New York: Farrar & Rinehart, (1931)
Edition: First Edition
Description: First edition. Hardcover, gilt-stamped brown cloth. First printing. 96 pages. A tight very good plus copy with a partial, former ownership bookplate with minor writing, some tiny chipping to the spine ends. No dust jacket.
Farrar & Rinehart, Inc. indicated their First Editions by the small oval logo forming the letters F an R immediately above the copyright line on the back of the title page.
The 1924 date is for the copyright date of the poetry, the 1931 is the date of first publication in book form.
Edwin DuBose Heyward (August 31, 1885 – June 16, 1940) was an American author who was born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina. He is best known for his 1925 novel Porgy. He and his wife Dorothy, a playwright, adapted it as a 1927 play of the same name. The couple worked with composer George Gershwin to adapt the work as the 1935 opera Porgy and Bess. It was later adapted as a 1959 film of the same name. Heyward also wrote poetry and other novels and plays, and this book of selected poems reflected his observations of and experiences with black culture in Charleston during his childhood.
Painted in 1934, the framed piece measures 20" x 26.5"; the watercolor, 13” x 19.5 “. Completed in various subtle tones of blue, gray, green, and brown. The watercolor was reframed in 1987 by the previous owner.
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!
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!
Marked "Pat Applied For" on its base, this darling match holder features two small black boys playing around a rather large cotton bale (the bale is labeled "COTTON").
Well-executed detail! A lovely piece seldom found in today's collectible market!