Mr. Layton was a skilled pitcher with a strong bat who had a four-year career in the Negro Leagues, playing for the Indianapolis Clowns, the New York Black Yankees and the Raleigh Tigers. One of his teammates was a promising infielder by the name of Hank Aaron, who signed with the Boston Braves in 1952, and eventually became a Hall of Famer. Layton received an invitation in 1951 to try out for the Brooklyn Dodgers, but by then his shoulder was troubling him so he declined, hoping it would heal and another opportunity would present, which unfortunately never came. As of 2016, Mr. Layton, at the age of 87, was enjoying retirement as an associate pastor in a North Carolina ministry.
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.
This handsome sign measures 24 inches long x 6 inches high and 3/8 inches thick. There are 2 unobtrusive small holes on either side which were used when hanging the sign. Other than the expected scuff marks, surface mars, and minor stains, this sign is well preserved.
Would complement any decor or collection. PERFECT for the BEACH!
The origin of this sign is unknown, but given its very substantial size and weight, it likely once hung as a directional sign in a major bus or railroad station, designating the "WHITES ONLY" area where African-Americans were required to sit or stand.
The subtly convex sign has had no restoration and remains in all-original condition. It bears areas of paint loss, scratching and superficial rusting (some areas larger in scope than others) typical for its age and use as noted in photos. Please view photos for further assessment of the sign's condition. The age and use-related signs of wear do not impact the physical integrity of the sign and are more than appropriate to the age and purpose of the piece.
An utterly phenomenal, extremely RARE, one-of-a-kind, museum-worthy piece of Black American history!
Please take a moment to view the other "Jim Crow" Segregationist Era signs that I currently have the pleasure of offering.
This advertising gem was once used at the Island Pharmacy, City Island, New York, and was acquired directly from the family.
This display box measures 11"H x 9.25"W x 4.25"D, is in very good condition and sports the "WESTERN UNION TELEGRAPH" cardboard label on its front. Both the display box and label exhibit age appropriate wear as noted: a few, small, top edge chips to the wood, some staining to the label as seen in photos, and the "N" in the word "BLANKS" is damaged.
This graphically appealing, vintage, advertising piece comes with a wide variety of very interesting and historic associated ephemera that serves to define the vast scope of service that Western Union provided: a 1962 CIPHER (Encoding and Decoding Card) for use with money order messages, a guideline card defining the delivery of Military Casualty telegrams, a 1949 guide card defining the Priority Order of Messages, a Standard Abbreviations Guide card, 2 cards notating New York City and Albany addresses of the main Western Union Offices in the state of New York, numerous contracts spanning multiple decades confirming the continued authorization of the pharmacy as a Western Union provider, as well as 15 colorful and unused, telegraph and cable THANKSGIVING blanks and over 40 Christmas HOLIDAY GREETINGS blanks. Also included is a 1950's, 17 page, company history given to Western Union services providers entitled, The Story of Western Union.
The City Island Pharmacy contracted with Western Union as an agent for the delivery and acceptance of telegrams and cable services from 1939 through 1972!
What a delightful advertising piece with wonderful provenance, filled with historic Western Union ephemera!
Featuring a delightful, cartoon-like caricature of a black man, this board is in very good condition with minor edge wear, slight age-discoloration and a teeny missing piece of the front rim of the hat.
An interesting, seldom-found piece of Black Memorabilia!
Please disregard reflections in photos that are due to the presence of protective plastic wrap.
A treasure of early signage designed in the Art Nouveau style, this sign measures 46 inches long by 7 inches wide. The sign weighs at least 25 pounds and sports cast detailing seldom found!
The sign features a delightful and mellow patina with an old painted surface retaining traces of old blue coloring beneath the exterior battleship gray tones. Scattered areas of unobtrusive surface rust add to the wonderful appeal of this vintage sign.
Visually appealing and artfully designed, this vintage piece of signage would make an interesting addition to one's Medical Memorabilia Collection!
This neat sign measures 14 inches high by 11.5 inches wide, and the frame is approximately 16.5 x 12.5 inches.
The condition of the sign is good, noting clear, crisp lettering with light foxing, mild edge wear and a few tiny blemishes commensurate with age. The frame sports an old, light green, crackled and worn painted surface and pairs well with the barber's sign.
Found in Georgia outside of Savannah, this sign likely was the creation of a small town barber or his associate since it was less expensive to hand-craft a sign like this rather than to formerly commission the creation of one.
Ready to hang!
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.