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Please Remember: The Collection of Avis & Eugene Robinson Sale 3075B


February 9, 2018



Please Remember: The Collection of Avis & Eugene Robinson


LaGina Austin 508.970.3225

Auction Information Auction 3075B


Absentee Bidding

Friday, February 9 4PM

Monday, February 5 12 to 5PM

T: 617.874.4318 F: 617.350.5429

63 Park Plaza Boston, MA

Tuesday, February 6 12 to 5PM

General Inquiries: 617.350.5400

Wednesday, February 7 12 to 5PM


Thursday, February 8 12 to 7PM Friday, February 9 10AM to 3:30PM

View all lots online at cover : 143 ; interior front cover : 1 ; interior back cover : 244 ; back cover : 258



Lot 104: Black Bottle Doll, 19th century, with stuffed cloth face and arms and sewn features.

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Please Note: All lots sold subject to our Conditions of Sale. Please refer to page 71 of this catalog for the full terms and conditions governing your purchase.

Copyright © Skinner, Inc. 2018 All rights reserved MA LIC. 2304

“Power to the Past” A Lecture by Eugene Robinson February 7, 2018 | 63 Park Plaza, Boston, MA Reception 5PM, Lecture 6PM In his nearly four decades at The Washington Post, Robinson has been city hall reporter, city editor, foreign correspondent in Buenos Aires and London, foreign editor and assistant managing editor in charge of the paper’s award-winning Style section. He has written books about race in Brazil and music in Cuba, covered a heavyweight championship fight, witnessed riots in Philadelphia and a murder trial in the deepest Amazon, sat with presidents and dictators and the Queen of England, thrusted and parried with hair-proud politicians from sea to shining sea, handicapped three editions of American Idol, acquired fluent Spanish and passable Portuguese and even, thanks to his two now-grown sons, come to an uneasy truce with hip-hop culture. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 2009 for his commentary on the 2008 presidential race that resulted in the election of America’s first African American president.

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Please Remember: The Collection of Avis & Eugene Robinson Avis and Eugene Robinson were both fortunate enough to grow up in families that took great pains to preserve their history, passing down property, documents and artifacts through the generations. From the stories our parents and grandparents told, we knew of the tremendous and essential contributions their African American and Native American ancestors had made to the building of the nation. We also knew that the epic story of African American history had been mostly overlooked by textbooks, museums and collectors, and that this blind spot had consequences: it left a gaping hole in America’s understanding of itself. Avis always liked going into antique stores, and she developed a good eye. She found and purchased a few striking pieces—a 19th century black doll, a document recording a slave sale, a set of shackles that once had been cruelly used to restrain a young boy or girl. Then she found a few more, and gradually what had begun as a weekend pastime became a mission to collect and preserve this overlooked history. Avis’s mother once told her that she hoped the contributions of her generation of African Americans would not be forgotten. “Please remember me,” she said. Our parents indeed were members of black America’s “Greatest Generation,” having lived through the Great Migration, the Great Depression, World War II, the Korean conflict and the civil rights movement. Avis’s father served in the Navy on an all-black ship, part of the armada that fought its way through the South Pacific under Gen. Douglas MacArthur. Eugene was a high school student in Orangeburg, South Carolina, when state troopers killed three unarmed black students during a 1968 demonstration over a segregated bowling alley. The collection became more than a group of objects. It became a narrative—the sweeping story of how African Americans survived and thrived over the centuries, from the horrors of the Middle Passage to the election of President Barack Obama and beyond. The collection celebrates the extraordinary “ordinary” men and women whose unpaid labor provided the economic foundation for a young nation, whose blood was shed in every American war, whose struggle and sacrifice have been essential to the American project. And the collection illustrates a simple fact: There is no American history without African American history. Men and women of African descent arrived on these shores well before the Mayflower, and on every day since they have played a central role in the making of America. We believe Avis’s mother would be proud. —Eugene Robinson

Avis Collins Robinson is an American artist, philanthropist, and environmentalist. She is best known for her quilts and paintings that explore America’s deep-seated, often unacknowledged tensions over race, gender, oppression and history. Robinson’s works depict aspects of family culture in a semiabstract collage and Cubist style. Her work is layered with images that reference culture, dignity, history, and human condition. Her artwork represents the historical struggles of her ancestors – Nottoway Indians, Africans, and Europeans. Her mixed-media paintings and quilts celebrate not only famous African Americans like Harriet Tubman and Malcolm X, but also anonymous workers whose ordinary lives bear witness to extraordinary courage and perseverance.


Born Avis Edna Collins, on July 26, 1953, in Baltimore, Maryland, she is the third of four children of Edward and Annie Collins. Her life and art encompass an exceptionally broad range of intellectual and artistic interests, including performing arts, history, economics, literature and world art. Avis moved to Silver Spring, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, DC, at the age of 4 when her mother, a cancer researcher, accepted a position at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. Avis attended Colesville Elementary School, White Oak Jr. High School, and the Academy of Holy Cross, in Maryland. Her teens and early twenties were spent as an artist, dancer and seamstress, experimenting with the forms she would later synthesize. In 1971, Avis enrolled at the University of Maryland. While majoring in economics and urban studies, she also took courses in dance and the visual arts. During this period, Avis also became involved in black activism. Her early realist paintings dealt with African American themes of family, poverty, civil rights, and black power. After graduating from UMd in three years she moved to San Francisco, where she embarked on her lifelong study of art, gathering inspiration from African sculpture, masks and textiles. She earned masters’ degrees in economic and finance at Golden Gate University and later at Harvard University. In the early 1980s, while in Washington working for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, she started experimenting with textile art and began collaboration with the women of the Freedom Quilting Bee in Alabama—later known as the renowned Gee’s Bend Quilters—that continues to this day. In 1988, her husband Euguene became South America correspondent for The Washington Post and the family moved to Buenos Aires, Argentina. For four years, Avis had the opportunity to travel throughout Latin America and absorb influences from artists in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Peru, and other countries. In 1992, she moved to London, England. She lived near Hampstead Heath, on a street named after the famous portrait artist Thomas Gainsborough.


It was on returning to Washington that Avis began to erase the line between painting and quilting, ultimately synthesizing the two into a technique and an aesthetic that are hers alone. Her quilts, with their bold colors and free-form lines and shapes, have been described as “painting with cloth.” Her paintings, which feature that same irrepressible sense of color, incorporate pieces of antique fabric in the picture plane, creating depth and texture. In 2017, Avis was commissioned to create four bronze relief statutes that will be permanently installed along the historical and sacred pathway that the four African American Stafford Middle School students took to desegregate the first public school in Virginia. Her work has been permanently installed in venues such as the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in New York City. In 2009, Ford’s Theatre permanently installed Avis Collins Robinson’s Mr. Lincoln in the lobby—the only prominent image of Lincoln in the historic theater where he was assassinated. Her works have been exhibited at the Nelson Gallery at the University of California at Davis, the Morningstar building in Chicago, the Adler School, The Studios of Key West, Arlington County Public Schools, the National Museum for Women in the Arts, Riverviews Artspace in Lynchburg, Virginia, Aon Building in Chicago, and other venues.


Eugene Robinson uses his twice-weekly column in The Washington Post to pick American society apart and then put it back together again in unexpected and revelatory new ways. To do the job, he relies on a large and varied tool kit: energy, curiosity, elegant writing and the wide-ranging experience of a life that took him from childhood in the segregated South—on what they called the “colored” side of the tracks—to the heights of American journalism. His remarkable story-telling ability has won him wide acclaim, most notably as the winner of the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for his commentary on the 2008 presidential race that resulted in the election of America’s first African American president. In his nearly four decades at The Washington Post, Robinson has been city hall reporter, city editor, foreign correspondent in Buenos Aires and London, foreign editor and assistant managing editor in charge of the paper’s award winning Style section. He has written books about race in Brazil and music in Cuba, covered a heavyweight championship fight, witnessed riots in Philadelphia and a murder trial in the deepest Amazon, sat with presidents and dictators and the Queen of England, thrusted and parried with hair-proud politicians from sea to shining sea, handicapped three editions of American Idol, acquired fluent Spanish and passable Portuguese and even, thanks to his two now-grown sons, come to an uneasy truce with hip-hop culture. Robinson was born and raised in Orangeburg, South Carolina. He remembers the culminating years of the Civil Rights Movement—the “Orangeburg Massacre,” a 1968 incident in which police fired on students protesting a segregated bowling alley and killed three unarmed young men, took place within sight of his house just a few hundred yards away. He was educated at Orangeburg High School, where he was one of a handful of black students on the previously all white campus; and the University of Michigan, where during his senior year he was the first black student to be named co-editor-in-chief of the award-winning student newspaper, The Michigan Daily. He began his journalism career at The San Francisco Chronicle, where he was one of two reporters assigned to cover the trial of kidnapped newspaper heiress Patricia Hearst, which arguably set the pattern for all the saturation-coverage celebrity trials that have followed. F. Lee Bailey, at the time the most celebrated lawyer in America, was lead counsel for the defense. He lost the case, which taught Robinson a valuable lesson he has never forgotten: Reputation and performance are two different things. Robinson joined The Washington Post in 1980 as city hall reporter, covering the first term of Washington’s larger-than-life mayor, Marion Barry. For the first time since Orangeburg, race became a dominant issue in Robinson’s life—as city hall reporter, he was the de facto emissary of a powerful white institution, The Washington Post, to an ambitious, race-conscious, black-run government of a majority-black city. There he learned another important lesson: Man-in-the-middle is never a comfortable role, but sometimes it’s a necessary one. Robinson became an assistant city editor in 1981, and in 1984 was promoted to city editor, in charge of the paper’s coverage of the District of Columbia. During the 1987-88 academic year, on leave from The Post, Robinson was a Nieman Fellow in Journalism at Harvard University. He began studying the Spanish language—he had always promised himself that if he ever had a year off he would learn Spanish, since that would be useful for any journalist in a nation where immigration from Latin America was already gathering steam. Study of the language quickly led to courses on Latin American literature, history and politics. On his return to the paper he was named The Post’s South America correspondent, based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, a post he held from 1988-1992 (which let him cover the trial in the Amazon and also research his first book, the one about Brazil, Coal to Cream: A Black Man’s Journey Beyond Color to and Affirmation of Race, published in 1999). For the subsequent two years, he was London bureau chief (affording him the opportunity to sit in one of the gilded state rooms of Buckingham Palace as Queen Elizabeth II committed the investiture of a new crop of knights and ladies). In February 1994, Robinson returned to Washington to become The Post’s foreign editor. That same year he was elected to the Council of Foreign Relations. In January 1999, Robinson became an assistant managing editor of The Post in charge of the Style section—where he learned that hip-hop and American Idol are as relevant to people’s lives, in their way, as the “serious” news that gets reported on the front page. His appointment as associate editor and columnist took place January 1, 2005. In 2010, Robinson was elected to the Pulitzer Prize Board. He is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and the NABJ Hall of Fame. His second book, Last Dance in Havana: The Final Days of Fidel and the Start of the New Cuban Revolution—an examination of contemporary Cuba, looking at the society through the vibrant music scene—was published in 2004. His latest book, Disintegration, was released in October 2010. In it, Robinson discusses the disintegration of the black community into four distinct sectors—and the implication for policies such as school reform, urban renewal and affirmative action.


The Triangle Trade The best way to understand the economies of Europe, the American colonies, West Africa, and the Caribbean during the 16th–19th centuries is to see them as part of an interdependent commercial network that moved people, manufactured goods, luxury items, foodstuffs, and currencies around the Atlantic Basin. During this period, European and North American ships carried 10–12 million enslaved Africans to the Americas (most to the West Indies and Brazil), where their labor produced the sugar, tobacco, rice, indigo, and, later, cotton that produced incredible wealth for their enslavers and landowners. New England ships provided most of the food for the West Indian enslaved population, trading fish and agricultural products for molasses, which they processed into rum, a highly desired product in the West Coast African slave-trading castles. While the North American colonists also provided iron and other raw materials to both Europe and Africa, Europeans provided most of the investment capital (much of it derived from sale of sugar and coffee), “slaver” ships, and manufactured goods, especially shackles, restraints, and firearms. Historian Ronald Bailey, seeking to capture the enormous range of industries (coopers, farmers, sail makers, etc.) dependent on the “Triangle Trade,” has described this network as the “slave(ry)” trade. The wealth produced for those who dominated this system transformed English and European society, providing much of the seed money for the industrial revolution in England and for economic growth in the American colonies, North and South. It’s impossible to overstate the devastation West and Central African societies faced because of the forced depopulation and societal disruption, and scholars are still working to understand the significance and legacy of African contributions to Caribbean and North American life and culture during this period. The Robinson collection provides a rare opportunity to see much of the scope and depth of that contribution, as well as the hardships these Africans, and then African Americans, faced as they sought to create homes and lives in the United States.


Additional information and photos at




1 Engraved Map of Africa, Johann Homann (16641724), unframed. $300-500

2 Fang Carved Guardian Figure, Ivory Coast, late 19th/early 20th century. $300-500

3 African Hardwood Low Chair, Ivory Coast, late 19th/early 20th century. $300-500

4 Copper Mask, West Africa, 19th century. Provenance: Estate of June Ide Ellison, Boston, Massachusetts. $400-600 5 Carved and Painted African Mask, late 19th/early 20th century. $200-400 6 Wooden Lip Plate, Africa, on brass stand. Provenance: Purchased at auction in Ohio. $150-250 4

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7 Kuba Wood Bellows, Central Africa, late 19th/early 20th century. $400-600 8 Carved African Female Figure, 20th century. $200-300 9 Senufo Hornbill Figure, Ivory Coast, depicting a bird atop a seated woman. $200-400

10 Carved Baule Heddle Pulley, Ivory Coast, 20th century. $200-300 11 Two Carved Baule Heddle Pulleys, Ivory Coast, 20th century. $200-250


Additional information and photos at


12 Mukonde Full Head Mask, carved wood with applied hair.

15 Engraved Map Morocco (Barbary Coast), Johann Homann (German, 1664-1724). $200-400

18 Three Maps of West Africa, 18th century, unframed. $200-400

Provenance: Hemingway Gallery, New York. $300-500

13 Sculptural Bronze Head of an African Woman, mounted on a stand. $300-500 14 Three Engravings, probably 18th century, Caffres, Hottentots, and De L’Afrique, Figure XIII, unframed. $200-300

16 Engraving Titled A Negro Pedlar and His Wife, 18th century, 12 x 18 in., framed. $200-250 17 1737 Homann Map of Africa and Colored Engraving Vue de la Cote Depuis Mina. $200-300

19 Georg Matthaus Seutter (German, 16781757), Recens Edita totius Novi Belgii in America Septentrionali, hand-colored copper plate engraving, c. 1730, 19 1/2 x 22 1/2 in., framed. $2,500-3,500 20 African Percussion Fowler, c. 19th century, carved walnut stock, iron fittings, with silver inlays and a woven cloth sling, barrel lg. 26 1/2, overall lg. 42 3/8 in. $200-400

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21 Article About Sugar Cane, 1764, discusses how sugar is made and characteristics of “Negroes,” with fold-out engraving of “The Sugar Cane from Its First Planting till its Arrival at Maturity.” $200-250

24 Brass Spyglass, with leather case, 19th century, reportedly passed down in a Barbary Coast family.

22 Middle Passage Iron Bilboes, 18th century.

25 Iron Scold’s Bridle, probably 18th century.

Note: Bilboes are iron restraints placed on the ankles or wrists, most notably used on slave ships to fasten two slaves together. The word bilboes is thought to be a derivation of Bilbao (Spain), where the device was reportedly invented. $700-900

Note: The scold’s bridle or Branks mask consists of an iron face cage with a protrusion into the mouth, making it painful for a person to speak. Most notably used as punishment or humiliation device for a vocal, nagging woman (a scold) in 16th century England, the device reportedly made its way to the American colonies and was used on slaves. $800-1,200

23 Spiked Collar, possibly Barbary Coast, probably early 18th century. $400-600


Provenance: Gonzales Antiques. $200-300

26 Wrought Iron Headpiece, 18th century, with pierced holes along the bottom ring and loops on either side, (separation and loss). $400-600

Additional information and photos at

27 Triangle Trade Merchant’s Shipping Record, 1818. $150-250

28 Small Iron Shackles, late 18th/early 19th century, forged iron, (corrosion). $700-900 29 Spanish Document Discussing the Sale of a Female Slave, 1644. Provenance: Leslie Hindman Auctioneers. $200-250 30 Insurance Document for the Ship John B. James, 1807, leaving Baltimore bound for St. Bartholomew, Haiti, Bermuda, and other islands. $200-300





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31 Insurance Document for the Slave Ship Betsey and Polly, 1798, for a trip to the West Indies. $500-700

32 Bill of Lading for the Ship Venus, 1801, printed and manuscript completed bill of lading for the shipment of cotton and slaves “total value $11,000�; dated at New York and signed by Captain Taber, with a ten cent federal embossed revenue stamp in upper left corner. $700-900

33 Middle Passage Iron Bilboes or Leg Irons, late 17th or 18th century. $1,000-1,500



Additional information and photos at

34 DeWolf Archive, 18th to 20th century. Note: Many scholars have argued that it is impossible to understand the wealth created in colonial and early national Rhode Island without understanding the state’s dominance of the North American transatlantic slave trade. Among the many Rhode Island families involved in the slave trade, Bristol’s DeWolf family was the most prominent. As a result of his extensive slave trading, James DeWolf (1764-1837), someone who represented Rhode Island in the US Senate, died as one of the wealthiest men in the country. Over three generations, the DeWolf family’s ships carried more than 12,000 enslaved Africans across the Middle Passage, and the family owned numerous plantations (in Cuba and elsewhere). Following a familiar pattern in Britain and New England, while the DeWolf family eventually diversified their investments to include manufacturing, banks, and insurance companies, the bulk of their fortune originated almost entirely in his family’s trading of enslaved Africans and the profits derived from their labor. (For more information, see the 2009 Emmy-nominated documentary Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North, which chronicles the details of the DeWolf family’s slave trading and the efforts of some members of the family to come to grips with the legacy of that history). $500-700


38 Captain’s Map of the Gulf of Mexico, 1783, unframed. $250-350

39 Providence Journal Newspaper, May 31, 1797, includes ads for slaves, ships, etc. $300-500

35 Approximately Ninety Pairs of Shackles, late 17th/18th century, found in West Africa, housed in a hardwood chest with turned legs. Provenance: Hemingway Gallery, New York. $8,000-10,000 36 Ship’s Log for the Brigs Effort and Mercator, 1826-27, sold by “E. and G.W. Blunt in New-York,” handwritten accounts of voyages from New York, Baltimore, and Salem, among others to Liverpool, St. Thomas, and Havana, and more; covered in sailcloth with inked block letters reading “JOURNAL BOOK.” $200-400 37 Four Documents Relating to the Vernon Brothers, Slave Traders of Newport, Rhode Island. $300-500


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40 Policy of Assurance, for the ship Industry, 1794, framed. $250-350 41 Indenture on Vellum of a Negro Man, 1640, Livezey Estate. $200-250 42 African American Indenture, 1856, Orangetown, Rockland, New York. $200-250 43 Indenture of a Negro Boy, Bath County, Virginia, 1841, printed and written, (toned and folded). $300-500

44 Universal Gazette Newspaper, Washington, DC, April 2, 1802, Samuel Harrison Smith, printer, includes ad for slaves and reward for a runaway slave. $200-400 45 Ankle or Wrist Restraint with Protrusion, 19th century. $200-300


46 Adjustable Iron Slave Collar, 19th century. $200-250



47 Archive of Documents from the Ship Ann Maria, Capt. Frances Brown of Newburyport, late 18th and 19th century. $200-300 48 “Public Sale of Negros by Richard Clagett,” slave broadside, “March 5th, 1833,” 11 x 8 1/2 in., (taped to paper; losses upper right and center; two vertical tears; creases; toning), unframed. $150-250

49 Iron Restraint, 19th century. $150-250 50 Two Wrought Iron Bell Collars, late 18th/ early 19th century. $800-1,200 51 Ship’s Pass for the Adeline of New Bedford, Signed by Martin Van Buren, October 1840, vellum with scalloped top, (toning, folds), 11 x 14 3/4 in. $300-500

52 John Dorr’s Maritime Insurance Account from 1813 to 1817, listing ships and voyages in which he had interest; dated at Boston, Massachusetts, September 24, 1817. $200-250

53 The Daily Picayune, November 6, 1847, New Orleans, front page includes advertisements for slaves, unframed. $400-600

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54 Onion Bottle, late 18th century, dark green glass. Provenance: Purchased at John McInnis Auctioneers, Amesbury, Massachusetts. $200-400

55 Map Drawn on Hide, probably late 17th century, Tionesta Township, Pennsylvania, on goatskin. $4,000-6,000

56 U.S. v. John Patterson Court Document, 1812-13, for payment of debt with slaves, framed. $300-500

57 Shackle and Chain, 18th century. $600-800


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58 Pottery Bowl, North Georgia, possibly slave made, incised decoration. Provenance: Purchased at John McInnis Auctioneers, Amesbury, Massachusetts. $300-500 59 Glazed Stoneware Jar with Lug Handles, Edgefield, South Carolina, 19th century, brown alkaline glaze, (glaze damage). $300-500 60 Will of George McNutt (1751-1823) Document, Knox County, Tennessee, handwritten copy dated March 1822, describes leaving his negro Judith to his wife Isabella and his negro man Joe to his son James, folded. Note: Born in Ireland, George McNutt was given a land grant in Nova Scotia, and eventually settled in Knoxville. He fought in the American Revolution. $100-150

61 Letter from John Edwards to George W. William, Esq., December 1824, regarding “hiring negro boys to make cigars.� Note: John Edwards (1748-1837) was an American planter and statesman who was instrumental in Kentucky statehood. He represented the state in the United States Senate and afterward served in both houses of the state legislature. He died on his plantation in Paris, Kentucky. $200-250 61, and left

62 Hand-forged Iron Shackles, 18th/19th century. $200-300

63 Leather Flail with Wooden Handle, 19th century. Provenance: A Sussex County, Virginia, family. $300-500 64 Letter from Robert Doak Describing the Will of Thomas Chambers, September 21, 1856, Shelby County, Kentucky, who in his will set his slaves free and left them $2,000. $200-250 63

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65 Hand-forged Iron Shackles, 18th/19th century. $300-500

68 “$100 REWARD” Broadside, for Isaac Churcher, “swarthy complexion,” framed. $800-1,200

72 Framed Bill of Sale for a “Negro Girl Mary,” 19th century. $700-900

66 Two Margaret McCoy Documents, Mississippi, 1825-26, listing household expenses, including slaves and cattle. $100-150

69 Stampless Letter from a Farmer in Jackson, Tennessee, to a Plantation Owner in South Carolina Regarding the Purchase of a Family of Negroes, 1835. $100-150

73 Three Wrought Iron Branding Irons. $300-500

67 Southern Patriot and Commercial Advertiser, Charleston, South Carolina, October 28, 1822, includes rewards for runaway slaves, framed. $200-300

70 Copper Slave Tag, front reads: “Charleston 24 Porter 1841.” $1,000-1,500 71 Handwritten Letter to “Rev. E.T. Perry, Manual L School, Shawnee Nation,” from the “Post Office for Indian Boys,” first half 19th century, listing “the names of the Creek Boys,” (toning, folds). $100-200


Additional information and photos at

74 Letter Concerning the “Sale of Grandmother’s Negroes,” Nicholasville, Kentucky, December 1841. $150-250 75 Mistress Whip, wooden handle with braided leather, (leather broken). $200-250




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76 Mop Cap and Embroidered Pillowcase, 19th century. $100-200 77 Young Girl’s Dress, mid-19th century, handmade, (scattered holes). $200-300 78 Stoneware Jug, Edgefield, South Carolina, alkaline glaze, slightly ovoid form with handle, ht. 16 1/4 in. Provenance: Purchased in Orangeburg, South Carolina. $300-500

79 Green-glazed Redware Stoneware Jar, 19th century. $300-500


80 Glazed Stoneware Jug, Edgefield, South Carolina, 19th century, alkaline glaze, straight sides, with handle.

83 Letter from Joseph Meek of Nashville to a C. Hayes, August 27, 1835, concerning an attempt to buy slaves.

Provenance: Purchased in Orangeburg, South Carolina. $300-500

Note: Joseph Meek was a known slave trader. $200-250

81 Hand-forged Leg Irons, 19th century. $200-250

84 Handmade Wooden Yoke, 19th century. $150-250

82 “Account of Sale of the Personal Property of Wm. G. Dekle Deceased and Hire of Negroes,” January 1842, the first four entries of the document describe the “hire” of one negro man and three negro boys for prices ranging from $45 to $20.

85 Iron Shackles and Chain, 19th century. $300-500

Note: William Grisson Dekle was born January 6, 1790, and died in December of 1841 in Thomas, Georgia. He was the sheriff of Thomas County and married a Bethany Hollingsworth. $200-300

Additional information and photos at

86 Iron Shackles, 19th century. $200-400 87 Iron Cuffs, 19th century. $200-250




88 Three Barrel-shaped Iron Locks, 19th century. Provenance: Horst Auctions, Ephrata, Pennsylvania. $150-250

89 Cased Ambrotype Depicting a Female Slave with White Infant in a Baby Carriage, 19th century. $400-600

90 Large Tintype Depicting a Black Coachman in a Carriage, 19th century. $200-250

91 Quarter-plate Tintype Depicting People Posing with a Horse-drawn Carriage in Front of a House, first half 19th century, in a hinged gutta percha case, (some bubbling and lifting lower right). $200-400

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96 partial



92 Carte-de-visite Depicting a Black Nanny Holding a White Baby, late 19th century, Pedro da Silveira, photographer, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. $200-250


93 Two Photographs Depicting African American Women, in one an older woman sits in a wicker chair holding an infant, mounted as a holiday card; the other depicts a barefoot woman standing in a studio near a painted chair, inscribed “J.S. Thompson, Photo.� $300-500

Additional information and photos at

94 Carte-de-visite Depicting a Black Woman and Her Child, with slave image on the reverse. $200-250

95 Tintype Depicting a Well-dressed African American Man and a White Man, both seated, 19th century. $200-400




96 Two Cabinet Cards Depicting White Infants with African American Female Caretakers, a young girl holding a baby taken in New Haven, Connecticut; the other an older woman with a baby taken in Orange, New Jersey, (cut corners and losses to corners). $200-400

97 Carte-de-visite Depicting a White Man and an African American Man, Rees & Co., Richmond, Virginia, 1868. $200-400 98 Two Mounted Photographs, an African American mother and son plowing a field, and one depicting three white men with two barefoot African Americans. $150-250

99 Composition Black Doll with Brown Dress, 19th century. $300-500

100 Black Papier-mâchÊ Boy Doll, 19h century. $400-600

101 Black Oilcloth Girl Doll with Red Dress, 19th century. $300-500 102 Two Cloth Dolls, 19th century, one in a red dress, the other wearing a blue suit and with painted facial features. $200-400 103 Large Stuffed Cloth Black Doll, 19th/20th century, with red-painted facial features, salmon-colored paisley dress, (damage to nose). $200-400

104 Black Bottle Doll, 19th century, with stuffed cloth face and arms and sewn features, in a pink calico dress. $200-250


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105 Thomas Clarkson, The History of the Rise, Progress, & Accomplishment of the Abolition of the African Slave-Trade by the British Parliament, vol. II, Philadelphia, James Parke, publisher, 1808, (wear, foxing, toning). Note: Thomas Clarkson (1760-1846) was an English abolitionist who was instrumental in the passage of the Slave Trade Act of 1807, which ended the British slave trade. $300-500

105, and right

106 Connecticut Legislature Calls for the Gradual End to the “Great National Evil� of Slavery, 1825, printed document signed by Oliver Wolcott and Thomas Day, transmitting to the Governor of Pennsylvania, (separation along folds, taped repairs, creases). $300-500



107 1814 “Slave Trade Abolished” Macaulay and Babington Bronze Token for Sierra Leone, inscribed “We Are All Brethren/Slave Trade Abolished By Great Britain/1807,” with similar motto in Arabic on the reverse. $75-125

108 Elleanor’s Second Book, 1839, B.T. Albro, printer, Providence, Rhode Island. $500-700 109 Memoir of Pierre Toussaint Born a Slave in St. Domingo, third edition, Boston, Crosby, Nichols and Company, 1854. $300-500 110 Five Signatures of Civil Rights Leaders or Notable Clergy, 19th century, including Julia Holmes Smith, Samuel Hopkins, and Belva Lockwood. Provenance: Purchased at RR Auction, Amherst, New Hampshire. $200-250

111 Small “Anti-Slavery Bazaar” Broadside, 19th century, (losses).


Note: Anti-slavery bazaars were the most important fundraising and community building events held by female anti-slavery societies in the mid-19th century. $200-250

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112 Anti-slave Traffic Association Roster, 1848, handwritten list of members who owe dues, (folded). $200-250 113 The Liberator, February 12, 1860, includes articles about Senate bills introduced to equalize the pay for all soldiers, even those of African descent. $500-700

114 The North Star, April 28, 1848, Rochester, New York, Frederick Douglass, publisher. Note: Frederick Douglass began life enslaved on a Maryland plantation, before he escaped to freedom and became one of the most important voices for freedom and equality in American history. He first attracted national attention in the 1830s with his powerful abolitionist speeches, and his autobiographies continue to provide readers with some of the best windows into the lives and minds of the enslaved. To further the abolitionist cause, Douglass founded The North Star in 1847 and continued to publish it through 1851. Its motto reveals much about Douglass’s fervent belief in abolition and the need for racial and gender equality: “Right is of no Sex-Truth is of no Color-God is the Father of us all, and we are all Brethren.” $8,000-12,000 115

115 Frederick Douglass’ Paper, Rochester, New York, Thursday, December 18, 1851, 26 1/2 x 17 1/2 in., framed. $4,000-6,000

116 Frederick Douglass Signed Deed, June 6, 1881, framed with a printed portrait of Douglass. $300-500 117 A Memorial of Frederick Douglass from the City of Boston, 1896, Rockwell & Churchill, Boston, cloth bound, preliminary leaf inscribed “to Daniel Murray Compliments of Stanley Ruffin,” (damage to cover, wear, pages loose in binding with taped repair). Note: Stanley Ruffin was the Boston politician who proposed the memorial. $300-500


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African American Soldiers in The Civil War After the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter, many African Americans rushed to Union recruitment offices, hoping to enlist in the U.S. Army. They were denied. By 1862, however, the U.S. government was changing laws and making plans so that if they could incorporate the thousands of black men who wanted to join the fight. Leaders such as Frederick Douglass served as lead recruiters, with Douglass writing that “once let the black man get upon his person the brass letter, U.S., let him get an eagle on his button, and a musket on his shoulder and bullets in his pocket, there is no power on earth that can deny that he has earned the right to citizenship.” While Douglass was unfortunately mistaken in his belief that military service would lead to full citizenship rights after the war, he and others were correct in their argument that black soldiers could help secure Union victory, even despite the soldiers originally being denied equal pay. Ultimately, African Americans constituted almost ten percent of Union forces (179,000 soldiers and 19,000 in the Navy), and, when permitted they distinguished themselves on numerous battlefields. By the end of the war, there were eighty black commissioned officers, and sixteen black soldiers had earned the Medal of Honor. Harvard historian John Stauffer estimates that between three and six thousand African Americans also served as combat soldiers for the Confederacy, with many thousands more serving, usually involuntarily, in support roles, working as laborers, servants, and teamsters. This number constituted less than one percent of the Confederate troops mobilized for combat. 118

118 Staffordshire Figure of John Brown with African American Children at His Side, c. 1860, ht. 11 in.

120 Cased Civil War Tintype Depicting an African American Confederate Soldier, 19th century, full length portrait.

Note: John Brown (1800-1859) was a leading American abolitionist who believed insurrection was the only way to rid the United States of slavery. $600-800

Provenance: Purchased at Cowan’s Auctions, January 21, 2010, Lot 160. $800-1,200

119 Framed Daguerreotype Depicting an African American Soldier, wearing an infantry uniform, c. 1864. $500-1,000


121 Tintype Depicting a Union Soldier, 1860s, possibly a mulatto or creole man, wearing a New York state infantry jacket. $500-700

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122 Daguerreotype Depicting a Union Soldier, c. 1860s, shown full-length, wearing a frock coat, with his hand on his hip. $500-700 123 U.S. Leather Cartridge Box, with a metal cartridge plate mounted on a partial belt. Provenance: Purchased at Cowan’s Auction, Cincinnati, Ohio. $200-300





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124 Civil War Sword Sash, America, 1864, scarlet fabric with tassels on each end. Provenance: Purchased at Cowan’s Auction, Cincinnati, Ohio. $150-250

125 United States Colored Troops, Company F 26th Regiment Muster Roll, clothing issue, October 1864, framed. $500-700

126 Military Discharge Paper for an African American Soldier, 1864, framed. $200-300 127 Carte-de-visite Depicting an African American Soldier, Thomas J. Wilson, 126th New York Infantry, enrolled August 15, 1862, framed. $200-300 125

128 Protection Document for African American Seaman Charles Radcliff, 1860, New Bedford, Massachusetts. $200-250

129 149th New York Volunteer Infantry Painted Bass Drum, military-themed bass drum with painted eagle on one side grasping a laurel branch and arrows; and a red banner overhead, dia. 24 1/2 in., (wear, repairs and repaint). Provenance: Cowan’s Auction, Cincinnati, Ohio. $700-900 130 Brass and Wood Fife, 19th century. $100-200 131 Brass Civil War Bugle, 19th century. $100-200 132 Discharge Document for an African American Soldier, December 1865, New York Cavalry. $200-250 126


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133 Abraham Lincoln 1864 Campaign Ferrotype Gem-size Badge, bust-length portrait, ht. 1, wd. 3/4 in. $600-800

134 Proclamation of Emancipation, lithograph, showing Abraham Lincoln surrounded by the states, 26 x 19 3/4 in., unframed, (conservation). $800-1,200 134

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135 Tennessee Amnesty Oath for Henry Young, Rhea County, October 1865, taken in the field. Note: In May 1865, following a similar action by President Lincoln in late 1863, President Johnson established procedures for the amnesty of former Confederates. Johnson’s proclamation demanded that applicants swear to defend the Constitution and the union of the states and to respect all laws regarding emancipation and slavery passed during the Civil War. While the offer of amnesty applied to most former Confederates, it excluded fourteen categories of people, including West Point graduates who had fought for the “pretended Confederate States,” political leaders of the rebellion, and those who had mistreated prisoners of war. Those granted amnesty had all of their property rights “except in slaves” restored. $250-350 136 Embroidered Naval Bib, 19th century, possibly for a child. $150-250 137 Two Books, Under Fire with the Tenth U.S. Cavalry, by Cashin, Alexander, et al., and A History of the Negro Troops in the War of the Rebellion 1861-1865, by George Washington Williams. $300-500

138 Two Cartes-de-visite, Newport, Rhode Island, and Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, a seated woman in a ruffled sleeve dress; the other a standing woman wearing traditional African dress. $200-400

139 Carte-de-visite “White and Black Slaves,” imprint on reverse reads: “The nett proceeds from the sale of these photographs will be devoted exclusively to the education of colored people in the Department of the Gulf, now under the command of Maj. Gen. Banks,” (trimmed at the bottom, loss at upper right corner). $150-250 140 Cased Daguerreotype Depicting a Seated Mixed Race Man with His Dog, 19th century. $400-600 135

141 Two Cartes-de-visite, 19th century, a seated older African American man in a militia uniform, inscribed “Black Jack” on the reverse; and a possibly mulatto Union soldier standing by a chair. $300-500


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142 Ambrotype Depicting a Seated African American Man, 19th century. $300-500

143 Cased Tintype Depicting African American Young Lady Reading, 19th century. $500-700

144 Tintype Depicting Two Black Women Seated on Logs, purportedly prostitutes. $200-300


145 Tintype Depicting Two Black Men Wearing Vests and Holding Buckets, late 19th/early 20th century. $300-500

146 Tintype Depicting a Black Woman and Child, 19th century, both fancily attired. $200-400

147 Tintype Depicting Two African American Women, 19th century. $200-250

148 Tintype Depicting an African American Couple, 19th century. $300-500

149 Cased Daguerreotype Depicting a Seated African American Man, 19th century. $200-250


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150 Cased Tintype Depicting Three African American Men, 19th century. $200-250

151 Tintype Depicting a Young African American Man, 19th century. $200-250

152 Tintype Depicting Two Freed Black Men, 1860s. $200-250

153 Tintype Depicting Three African American Gentlemen, 19th century. $200-250











154 Tintype Depicting an African American Woman Standing in a Landscape Setting, mid-19th century, in a pressed composition case. $300-500


155 Tintype Depicting a Finely Dressed African American Family, late 19th/early 20th century. $250-350

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156 Tintype Depicting Two Mulatto Sisters, 19th century, full length portrait. $200-400



161 Two Cased Tintypes Depicting Seated Black Gentlemen, 19th century. $200-250 162 Three Tintypes Depicting African Americans. $200-250 163 Three Tintypes Depicting Standing African American Men, 19th century. $200-250 164 Three Daguerreotypes Depicting African American Men. $200-300


157 Tintype Depicting Two Young African American Men, 19th century, holding their hats in their hands. $250-350 158 Three Tintypes Depicting Mulattoes, 19th century. $200-300

159 Five Tintypes Depicting African American Children, 19th century. $400-600 160 Three Tintypes Depicting Standing African American Women, 19th century. $250-350

165 Two Tintypes Depicting African Americans, late 19th century, depicting a woman standing, and a couple. $200-250 166 Three Tintypes Depicting African American Women. $200-250

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167 Two Cased Daguerreotypes, 19th century, depicting a mulatto man and a child with a doll. $300-500

178 175

168 Four Tintypes Depicting African Americans, 19th century, two of seated gentlemen, one of a lady holding a book, and one of child wearing a large lace collar. $200-300 169 Fifteen Cabinet Cards Depicting African American Men, Women, and Children, various studios including New York, Washington, DC, and Ohio, (fading, abrasions). $300-500 170 Thirteen Cabinet Cards and Two Small Photos Depicting African Americans. $100-200


171 Ceramic Humidor with Wooden Lid, 19th century, depicting a black woman with gold earrings, (partial loss to nose and chin). $300-500 172 Painted Bronze Figure of a Seated African American Man. $150-250 173 Two Cold-painted Bronze Blackamoor Figures, Austria, late 19th century. $150-250

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174 Five Small Majolica Vases Decorated with Images of African American Women. $150-250

175 Wedgwood Small Round Tray, 20th century, embossed “AM I NOT A MAN AND A BROTHER?,� commemorating the abolition of slavery in the British Empire, dia. 4 1/4 in. $75-125

176 Figure of a Banjo Player, painted bronze, on round marble base, (repaint). $200-300 177 Meerschaum Pipe in the Shape of the Head of an African American Man, early 19th century. $150-250

178 Standing Blackamoor Figure, on pedestal. Provenance: Purchased at Leslie Hindman Auctions, 2011. $1,500-2,500 179 Painted Plaster Head of Black Man. $100-150 180 Three Ceramic Humidors, probably France, in the form of black men, one with a red shirt and two with white shirts. $300-500 185

181 Victorian Carved Marble-top Blackamoor Table, late 19th century, (repaint). $300-500 182 Ceremonial Odd Fellows Negro Mask, painted wirework with fabric. $200-300 183 African American Clay Face Mold. $150-250 184 Rules for the Society of Negroes 1693 by Cotton Mather, 1888, New York, paperbound. $200-250

185 Framed Booker T. Washington Letter. $1,000-1,500

186 Booker T. Washington Tintype, standing, wearing a three-piece suit. $1,000-1,500 186

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187 Pullman Badge, “Trainman� Hat, and Photograph. $150-250

188 Photograph of African American Porters in Uniform. $500-700

189 Group of Pullman Car China and Flatware, blue and white transferware. $300-500 190 Puck Magazine with Pullman Porter Cover, September 4, 1901. $75-100

187, 188 below


Pullman Cars Pullman cars provided the gold-standard in train passenger comfort from the late 19th through the mid-20th century, when the “Pullman” name was synonymous with the sleeper cars that carried Americans across the nation’s expanding rail network. Most of the workers on these cars were African American men, workers who provided legendary service and who were also important carriers of African American culture to all parts of the nation. Pullman car porters were, for example, instrumental in recruiting Southern blacks to Northern industrial jobs during the Great Migration of the 1910s and 1920s. In 1925, A. Phillip Randolph founded the Brotherhood of Sleeper Car Porters (BSCP), creating the first African American labor union to become part of the American Federation of Labor (AFL). Sixteen years later, Randolph leveraged his moral and political authority to propose a massive March on Washington in order to pressure President Roosevelt to end racial discrimination in war-related industries. In 1963, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and others organized the “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom,” they recognized and honored Randolph’s leadership by asking him to provide the event’s opening remarks and to close it with the Pledge.

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191 B&O Railroad Segregated Restroom Sign, “White” and “Colored.” $200-400 193

192 Folk Art Five-string Banjo, the pot stamped 50. $400-600


193 Folk Art Cigar Box Guitar, 20th century, $200-250 194 Violin and Bow in Case. $100-200 195 Gourd Stringed Instrument or Kora, West Africa. $150-250 196 West African One-string Fiddle (or Goje), gourd body, lizard skin head. $200-300 197 Sam’l D. Davis Cigar Box Ukulele. $200-250 198 Down South by Rudolf Eickmeyer, Jr., and Joel Chandler Harris, 1900, New York, R.H. Russell, publisher, first edition, book containing a photographic representation of African American life in the Deep South at the turn of the century, (edge wear; moisture stain at top of cover). $300-500


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199 Leo Moss Crying Boy Doll, early 20th century, papier-mâché socket head with molded black curly hair, inset glass eyes, pouty mouth and crying expression with two molded tears, incised “LM,” cloth body with composition arms and legs, label sewn on chest that reads “REX 1912,” in a white sailor suit with blue shoes, ht. 17 in. Provenance: Collection of Lenon Hoyt, who was a doll collector and started Aunt Len’s Doll Museum in New York City that operated from 1970 to 1994; sold at Sotheby’s New York in 1994; and again at Morphy Auction in Pennsylvania in 2010. Note: Leo Moss (d. 1936) was an African American handyman from Macon, Georgia. In the 1890s he began making dolls from scrap materials he found on jobs and colored them black with soot. His wife made the clothes, and he purchased the bodies from a toy salesman. Legend has it that his wife left him for the toy salesman, which is why his dolls are sad. $8,000-10,000 200 Automaton Dancing Dolls, Edward Ives, Connecticut, late 19th century. $600-800 201 Small Wooden Doll, articulated, with calico dress. Provenance: Purchased at Skinner, Boston. $300-500 202 Small Black Bisque Doll. $200-300 203 Black “Babyland Rag” Doll, Horsman, early 20th century, bears “PAT’D JULY 8, 1901” at the edge of the head plate, in a red dress, shoes, and cap. (wear to face and nose, faded dress with some tears). $200-250 200

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204 Cloth Topsy-Turvy Doll, late 19th century. $150-250

208 Large Cloth Mulatto Marionette. Provenance: Purchased at Skinner, Boston. $300-500

205 Two Black Stockinette Male Dolls, dressed in striped overalls. $100-200 206 Three Carved and Painted Articulated Dancing Figures. $200-300 207 Black Cloth Girl Doll in a Red and White Jumper, 19th century, long braided hair; in a red calico dress with white pantaloons. $100-200

209 Jumeau Black Bisque Doll, 1909. $200-300

210 Ten Norah Wellings Black Felt Dolls, 1940s/1950s. Note: Norah Wellings (1893-1975) was a British toymaker and designer who worked for Chad Valley Co., and later went out on her own. She sold character dolls to raise money for the Royal Air Force during World War II and also sold sailor dolls as souvenirs on cruise ships. She closed her company in 1959. $1,500-2,500

211 Schoenhut “Negro Dude” Circus Figure, early 20th century. $200-250


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212 Heubach Koppelsdorf “South Sea” Baby Doll, bisque head on composition body; glass eyes and painted lips, wearing a grass skirt. $200-300 213 Mounted Photograph Depicting a Laundry Truck with an African American Driver, “John Roland Owen in the laundry truck he used to drive in Clinton, Md., between 1915 and 1919.” $150-200

214 Occupational Cabinet Card, early 20th century, appears to depict restaurant or hotel workers. $200-300

215 Three Mounted Photographs, late 19th/ early 20th century, one depicting a white family posing outside of a house with an African American female servant; the second a hunting party posing in front of a carriage with a two African American servants, the third a white family with child and African American servant posing on steps of house. $250-350 216 Photo Album, 1902, Belair, Louisiana, including images of African American male workers. $150-250 217 Framed Photograph of Integrated School Children, 4 x 7 in., framed. $250-350 218 Mounted Photograph of Integrated Faculty, late 19th/early 20th century, inscribed in the lower margin. $100-200



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Jim Crow In the years immediately following the conclusion of the Civil War and the ratification of the 13th Amendment, there was some reason to hope that the United States might repent its original sin of racial slavery and make significant progress toward becoming, to paraphrase Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, a government “of [all] the people, by [all] the people, and for [all] the people.” Unfortunately, despite the heroic efforts of Northern and Southern African Americans, the combination of Southern white resistance and Northern apathy had, by the end of the Reconstruction era, condemned the country to another century of both de facto and de jure segregation. Historians often refer to this period as the Jim Crow Era, naming the period and the laws that defined it after a popular minstrel show character. This is the era of separate water fountains and segregated schools, of blackface minstrels and ugly stereotypes. This is the era of the first and second Ku Klux Klan, “sundown towns,” and the assaults on black communities in Rosewood, Florida and Wilmington, North Carolina, among dozens of other places. Prominent scholars argue that this period, not the centuries of enslavement, marks the “nadir” of American race relations. At the same time, as the Robinsons’ forward to this catalog attests, extraordinary “ordinary” people went about their lives, forging opportunities and creating community. They protested lynchings, served in the military, started businesses, and worked the land. The artifacts offered in the next section document both the harsh atmosphere of this era as well as the dignity of those, both famous and anonymous, who suffered under Jim Crow while also working daily to bend the arc of justice toward freedom.

219 Ku Klux Klan Photograph, 10 x 8 in., unframed. $150-250

220 NAACP Sign, painted white with black letters, 4 ft. x 8 ft. Note: Found in Georgia and purportedly owned by a former Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan. $10,000-15,000 221 Letter from T.P. McStearns, August 30, 1868, McStearns, an Alabama farmer in Wisconsin writes to George F. Lowman of Eufaula, Alabama, mentioning the “darkies” and the “rads.” $200-250 222 Handwritten Racist Song, “Gal From the South.” $150-200 223 Twenty-two Stereo Cards, views include cotton, the South, prison and military scenes, and racist depictions of children. $150-250 219


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224 Four Photos of Characters in Blackface. $150-250

225 Six Postcards, late 19th/early 20th century, including a Halloween party with attendees in blackface, Franz Huld “Cake Walk,” and Coon Chicken Inn. $150-250

226 Four Framed Currier & Ives Darktown Series Prints, The Crowd that Scooped the Pools; The Sports Who Lost Their Tin; A Black Squall; and The Boss of the Road, all framed. $300-500

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225 partial 237

227 Thirteen Glass Magic Lantern Slides, late 19th century, Uncle Rastus and his mule. $100-200 228 Fourteen Stereo Cards Depicting African Americans. $100-200 229 Twelve Stereo Cards. $100-200 230 Twelve Postcards, late 19th/early 20th century, including prison scenes, the first Negro hotel, William Warfield, and “colored folks baptizing.” $200-300

231 Three Domestic Pieces, KC Eggs and Butter advertisement, an Aunt Jemima premium booklet, and Southern Cookbook, Philadelphia, James Parke, publisher. $100-200 232 Sunlight Soap Framed Advertisement, 1934, Bower Show Print, Fowler, Indiana, 21 1/2 x 9 in., (not examined out of frame). $150-250

235 Black Butler with Tray, carved and painted wood. $200-250 236 Little Black Sambo by Helen Bannerman, softcover, No. 656 revised edition, fourteen illustrated pages, card covers, (spine abrasions, wear, Scotch tape to back at lower right). $40-60

233 Stereoview Cards of the Cotton Industry, boxed. $200-250

237 Reed’s The Old Plantation—”The Five Jolly Darkies Way Down in Old Virginia,” lithographed paper on wood crank-action toy, (missing plain wood top), ht. 8 3/4 in.

234 Two Chalk Wall Hangings, depicting children eating watermelon. $100-200

Provenance: Noel Barrett Antiques, November 2012. $400-600 238 Black Male Figural Lawn Sprinkler, wood and polychrome paint, with rubber hose and nozzle. $200-300


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The Civil Rights Movement Often popularly imagined as Martin, Malcolm, and a March, the African-American Freedom Struggle was a much lengthier and more complex enterprise than the usual timeline suggests. Beginning as early as the 1940s, with organized protests for workplace equality and lawsuits to integrate graduate and professional schools, the Civil Rights movement matured in the 1950s as one of the most important social movements in American history. Following the Brown vs. Board of Education decision in 1954, organizations such as the NAACP, the SCLC, SNCC, CORE, the Urban League, and others utilized different approaches in pursuit of a legal, political, and cultural systems that that respected and protected the lives, rights, property, and contributions of all Americans. The search for the “beloved community� extended past the legislative achievements of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act, and we can see its legacy in later campaigns for prison reform and as black candidates have increasingly sought and won political office.

239 Two Martin Luther King, Jr., Press Photos. $200-250 240 Two Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Press Photographs, Chicago, 1965, one depicts a pensive King during a press conference announcing that his organization adopted a resolution for the U.S. to consider withdrawing troops from Vietnam; the other shows him marching to the courthouse in Montgomery with Rev. Ralph Abernathy, John Lewis, and James Foreman. $500-700

241 Martin Luther King, Jr., Mass Civil Rights Rally Flyer, 1966, with James Meredith, Philadelphia, on pink paper, (edge chipping on right side, two small holes lower right), 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. $200-250


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242 Two Associated Press Photographs of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., one of him arriving at Boston’s Logan International Airport, April 1965; and touring the Roxbury schools and housing facilities, 8 x 10 in., unframed. $400-600 243 Faith Ringgold (American, b. 1930), Letter from Martin Luther King, color silkscreen, signed, titled, dated, and editioned in the lower margin, unframed. Note: Born in Harlem, Faith Ringgold is an award-winning artist. Her work has been exhibited internationally and collected by major museums around the world including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Allentown Art Museum, and the Boise Art Museum, among others. $800-1,200 above: 242 partial


244 Martin Luther King, Jr., Mass Memorial Broadside. $200-300

245 Eight Civil Rights Press Photographs of Protesters. $400-600 246 Three Civil Rights Press Photographs. $200-300 247 Fringed Leather Vest with Peace Sign, United States, 1960s. $250-350 248 Ten Press Photos of 1960s Demonstrations. $200-250

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249 Six Civil Rights Press Photographs, Boston, 1974, depicting protesters and rallies. $500-700 250 Two Anti-segregation Press Photographs, 8 x 11 1/2 in., unframed. $200-300 251 Three Robert F. Kennedy Photographs, California, 1968. Provenance: The estate of Walter Zeboski (1929-2012), a retired Associated Press photographer who covered California politics. $300-500

252 Five Issues of The Crisis, including the Golden Jubilee issue, and an application for membership in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). $150-250

254 Seven Civil Rights Era Pinback Buttons and a Black Power Buckle, including two SNCC United We Shall Overcome; Political Prisoners of U.S.A. Fascism; Angela is Free; Poor People’s Campaign 1968; Make the Black Vote Count; and I Have a Dream, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. $200-250

253 Photograph of Rev. Ralph Abernathy Shortly Before His Arrest, April 1971. $75-150

245 partial

255 Thirty-seven Press Photographs of Willie Brown. Note: Willie Lewis Brown (b. 1934) was one of the most important and influential African American politicians of the 20th century. After moving to from Texas to California to escape segregation and to attend college, he stayed in San Francisco for law school and quickly established himself as a skillful attorney and politician. He first entered the California State Assembly in 1964, and he served from 19801995 as the legislative body’s first African American speaker. In 1996, he again broke racial barriers by building a diverse coalition to win the San Francisco mayoral race. He served as mayor of the city until 2004, and he has received much credit for the city’s flourishing economy and booming downtown. Provenance: The estate of Walter Zeboski (1929-2012), a retired Associated Press photographer who covered California politics. $200-250

251 partial

249 partial

The Black Panther Party The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was founded in 1966 in Oakland, California by Bobby Seale and Huey Newton, with the goal of empowering black people to control their own destiny through the principles of legal, armed self-defense. By the end of 1967, there were Black Panthers officially organized in Berkeley, San Francisco, and Richmond. Many of these Bay Area Panthers participated in “Black Panther Police Patrols,� where they would listen to police reports on the radio and then hurry to arrest sites (with legal documents in hand) to advise the accused about their constitutional rights. The Panther Patrols also conspicuously carried loaded weapons, but they were careful to stay at least ten feet away from the arresting officers, to avoid being accused of interfering with the arrests. These California-based Panthers earned international attention when Seale led a contingent of heavily armed Panthers into the Sacramento statehouse to protest a proposed law (the Mulford Bill) that sought to outlaw the carrying of non-concealed loaded weapons on public streets, effectively criminalizing the Panther Patrols. After dramatically trying to enter the main legislative chamber, the Panthers were forced to conclude their protest on the capitol lawn. Although California Governor Ronald Reagan signed the Mulford Bill into law, this public confrontation and exercise of their rights caused many around the nation to rally behind the Panthers and helped contribute to the creation of many new outposts by the end of 1968.

256 Eleven Black Panther Press Photos by Walter Zeboski, 1967, documenting the Sacramento protest and ensuing court case. Provenance: The estate of Walter Zeboski (1929-2012), a retired Associated Press photographer who covered California politics. $300-500



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257 Sixteen Huey P. Newton Press Photos. $200-400

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258 left and right, partial

258 The Black Panther: Black Community News Service, thirteen issues. $400-600

259 Huey P. Newton Printed Black Panther Party Poster. $200-250

260 Five Street Wall Journal Broadsides, 1970, Black Panthers. $500-700

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261 Five Black Panther Items, a Huey Newton handout, a Black Panther Party Platform handout, two Afro-American Solidarity prints, and an Eldridge Cleaver handout. $200-250 262 “We Demand: Strike” Protest Poster, 1970. $200-250 263 Two Attica Brigade/Black Panther Broadsides, April 8, 1968, San Francisco. $200-300 264 Four H. Rap Brown Items, three press photos and a copy of his 1969 autobiography, Die, Nigger, Die!. $200-250 265 Eldridge Cleaver Black Panther Movie Poster, 1970, advertising the French release of the documentary Eldridge Cleaver, Black Panther, directed by William Klein. $250-350

266 Elizabeth Catlett (American, 1915-2012), Negro es bello, artist proof III, lithograph, signed lower right, unframed. Note: Elizabeth Catlett was an African American artist and sculptor known for her depictions of the African American experience in the 20th century, often focusing on women. $1,500-2,500



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267 Angela Davis Broadside, “Declare Your Independence,” unframed. $150-250

268 partial


268 Ten Photographs Depicting African American Men in the Military, including World War I, World War II, and integrated troops. $300-500 269 World War II United States Army Uniform, 1940s. $200-300


270 World War II Recruitment Poster, “Pvt. Joe Louis says_ ‘We’re going to do our part…and we’ll win because we’re on God’s side,’” 24 1/4 x 17 in., framed. $600-800

271 Photograph of Father Divine (Rev. M.J. Divine), “Scurlock Wash. D.C.” printed lower right, 9 1/8 x 7 3/8 in. $150-250

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272 Two Shirley Chisholm Campaign Posters, 1972. Note: Shirley Anita Chisholm (1924-2005) was an American politician and educator. In 1968, she became the first African American woman elected to the United States Congress, representing New York’s Twelfth Congressional District for seven terms. In 1972, she became the first African American candidate for a major party’s nomination for President of the United States and the first woman to run for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination. $200-400

273 Ten Press Photos of Caribbean Farm Workers, 1940s. Note: In the midst of World War II, while much of the American workforce had been transferred to the military or to industries essential for the war, the United States still needed to be able to produce enough food to support its population and military. Recognizing this, the U.S. government negotiated with several nations, including Mexico and the Bahamas, for agricultural workers. Known as “the Contract,” between 1945-1965 this agreement attracted about 30,000 Bahamian workers to American agricultural regions and, in the process, transformed both Bahamian society and many American towns and counties. The predominately male workers signed short-term contracts and often lived in military-style barracks. $200-250

272 partial

273 partial


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276 partial

274 “Boycott Nestle” Poster, c. 1978, San Francisco Poster Brigade, 23 x 17 1/2 in., unframed. $200-400 275 Black and White Photograph of an African American Boy Scout Troop. $100-200

276 Photograph of Negro League Baseball Team, The Cubans.

277 Postcard of the Cincinnati Clowns Baseball Team.

Note: The Negro Leagues were a group of professional baseball leagues that featured African American, as well as some Latin American, baseball players from the 1920s through the early 1950s. Because the American League and the National League excluded black ballplayers until 1947, Hall of Famers such as Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige, and Cool Papa Bell spent some or all of their careers playing in the Negro Leagues. Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron, and Roy Campanella were just a few of the stars whose play exemplified the quality of the Negro Leagues when they got the chance to join the major leagues. $500-700

Note: According to Ohio History Central, the Cincinnati Clowns was a professional African American baseball team in Cincinnati, Ohio. The team played in the Negro American League. Established in 1942, the Cincinnati Clowns was originally known as the Cincinnati Buckeyes. That same year, team owners changed the club’s name to the Cincinnati Clowns. In 1944, the team became known as the Indianapolis-Cincinnati Clowns, playing some of its home games in Cincinnati and others in Indianapolis, Indiana. The next season, the Clowns returned exclusively to Cincinnati. In 1946, the team permanently relocated to Indianapolis and became known as the Indianapolis Clowns. The Indianapolis Clowns remained in the Negro American League until 1950. $100-150

Online bidding at


278 Four Ray Dandridge Autographed Photos and Postcard, (creases and losses). $100-200 279

279 Three Press Photos of the Minnesota Lakers. $200-250

280 Four Press Photographs of Heavyweight Champion Boxer George Foreman. Provenance: The estate of Walter Zeboski (1929-2012), a retired Associated Press photographer. $200-250



Additional information and photos at

281 Two African American Fraternal Photographs, 20th century. $150-250

282 Louis Armstrong and His Concert Group Program and Autographed Photo. $300-500 283 Duke Ellington Reel-to-Reel Recordings. $300-500 284 “Life is Real� Framed Movie Poster, charcoal on paper, depicting two miners, signed and dated lower right, 16 x 12 in., framed. $200-300 285 Framed Jimmy Hendrix Poster. $200-400 286 Seventeen Issues of Tuesday Magazine, 1968-71. Note: Founded by advertising executive W. Leonard Evans, Jr., in 1965, Tuesday Magazine appeared as a supplement to major metropolitan newspapers in nine cities and featured articles about positive contributions by African Americans. $100-200


Online bidding at




287 Mose Ernest Tolliver (American, 1919-2006) Oil on Board Depicting Three Figures in a Bus, on a triangular board.

288 Annie Mural Tolliver (American, b. 1950) Oil on Board Mother Going To Heaven, 24 x 60 in., framed.

Note: Self-taught artist Mose Tolliver was born in Alabama to sharecroppers and attended school until the third grade. He became disabled as an adult after a work accident and turned to painting to pass the time, using house paint and plywood. Museums such as the Birmingham Museum of Art, the Smithsonian, and the Corcoran Gallery have all exhibited his art. $200-250

Note: Annie Mural Tolliver was born in Alabama and is the daughter of noted folk artist Mose Tolliver. She signed his name to her paintings until around 1990, when she asked her father’s permission to sign her own name. While her father’s work certainly influences her art, she continues to paint and develop her own style. $500-700


Additional information and photos at

289 20th Century American School Oil on Board Depicting President Lincoln Holding the Emancipation Proclamation, a slave in broken shackles kneeling before him, signed “AMOS” lower right, 12 x 14 in., unframed. $300-500

290 Purvis Young (American, 1943-2010) Oil on Board Depicting a Figure on Horseback, label on reverse from Outsider Folk Art Gallery, Reading, Pennsylvania. Note: Purvis Young was a self-taught artist from Miami, who used found objects in his paintings and collages to tell the story of the Black South. His works can be seen at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the High Museum, among others. $500-700

291 Lonnie Holley (American, b. 1950) Sandstone Sculpture, initialed “LH” on base, ht. 8 1/2, lg. 11 in. Note: Born in Birmingham, Alabama, selftaught artist and musician Lonnie Holley is most well-known for his sculptures made of found materials; however he began his career making sandstone sculptures. His work is in included in museum collections including the Smithsonian American Museum of Art, the High Museum, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. $200-400


292 Carved Hardwood Head of a Woman, inscribed “Haiti, 1958, Purchased at Port au Prince, Roosen” on base. $400-600



Online bidding at


295 Floyd Gordon (American, 20th/21st Century) Watercolor on Paper Depicting a Man with a Guitar, signed and dated “’06,” 10 x 5 in., framed. Note: Floyd Gordon grew up in rural South Carolina in the 1950s and 60s. His paintings generally depict scenes from his childhood. $200-300 296 Bronzed Terra-cotta Figure The Slave, signed “Michel Ange.” $300-500 297 20th Century American School Oil on Board Depicting an African American Man Wearing a Hat, in a gilt frame. $200-250 298 20th Century Caribbean School Oil on Canvas Depicting a Woman with Fruit Basket on Her Head, signed “Gregory” lower right, 23 1/2 x 22 in., framed. $200-400 299 20th Century American School Oil on Canvas Depicting a Mammy with Roses, signed “Buck” lower right, 19 x 16 3/4 in., framed. $200-400


293 20th Century South African School Oil on Canvas Depicting a Black Man Sleeping, the figure fully clothed, 20 x 27 1/2 in., unframed. Provenance: Purchased in South Africa. $200-300

294 Eleanor Harrington (American, 19041992) Oil on Canvas Depicting an African American Cowboy with Red Shirt, 24 x 16 in., (stretcher and canvas detached from frame; scattered losses with the largest right under the nose, the result of a puncture; neck, kerchief, shirt, right eye), framed

Note: Only the first 200 were signed by the artist. $1,000-1,500

Provenance: Crescent City Auction, New Orleans.

Bidding continues in The Robinson Collection online, sale 3063T, at

Note: Eleanor Harrington was born in Bermuda at the start of the 20th century. She came to New York as a teenager and studied at the Art Students’ League. $200-250


300 Antar Dayal (American, 20th Century), 2008 Barack Obama Presidential Campaign “Yes We Can” Poster, limited edition lithograph, 194/5000, signed and dated lower right, 40 x 23 in., framed.

Additional information and photos at

End of Sale 3075B

The Robinson Collection online February 1—12, 2018 |


Museum of African American History Boston & Nantucket Boston Hours

Monday-Saturday 10:00am-4:00pm 46 Joy St. Beacon Hill, Boston

Nantucket Hours

Seasonal hours, see for details 29 York St. Five Corners, Nantucket

Currently on exhibit (Boston): Picturing Frederick Douglass: The Most Photographed American of the Nineteenth Century

CREDITS: 4-Smithsonian Institution; 5-Collection of Greg French; 6-New York Historical Society; 7-National Archives; 8-Library of Congress; 9-Douglass’ collection

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Upcoming Auction

American Furniture & Decorative Arts March 3, 2018


Boston, MA

For information contact: 508.970.3200 |

Pieced and Applique Folk Art Quilt “Scenes of American Life,� made by Mrs. Cecil White, Hartford, Connecticut, c. 1925-30, 77 x 66 in.

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Helen Frankenthaler (American, 1928-2011), Eve, 1995, color screenprint, sold for $9,840

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Please Remember: The Collection of Avis and Eugene Robinson | Skinner Auction 3075B  

A landmark collection of artifacts, documents, and photographs that chronicles the full scope of African-American history from enslavement t...

Please Remember: The Collection of Avis and Eugene Robinson | Skinner Auction 3075B  

A landmark collection of artifacts, documents, and photographs that chronicles the full scope of African-American history from enslavement t...