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<Photographers, Photographs>

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20th-Century Photos of Ex-Slaves
Start Year : 1929
End Year : 1939
This is a flickr site by beeskep that contains photograph images of former slaves who were interviewed for the Slave Narratives. Documenting the lives of former slaves began in 1929 at Fisk College [now Fisk University] and at Southern [now Southern University and A&M College]. The work was continued by Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] in 1934. The narratives were part of the Federal Writer's Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA).

Subjects: Freedom, Photographers, Photographs, Works Progress Administration (WPA) / Work Projects Adminstration (WPA)
Geographic Region: Unites States

African American Boxers in Kentucky, Photographs
Start Year : 1945
End Year : 1950
Within the John C. Wyatt Lexington Herald-Leader Collection are photographs of many competitive African American boxers who participated in the Herald-Leader (Lexington, KY) Golden Gloves tournaments, including Pierre Jackson and other Kentucky State University boxers. The photographs are of the late 1940s-1950 tournaments. There are 460 images from the Golden Gloves series, 1948-1950 and around 100 other Golden Gloves-related photos through the 1950s. Many of these images are of African American boxers. Contact the Special Collections Research Center at (859) 257-8611 for an appointment to view the collection, for copies of the photographs and copyright information, or to learn more about the photographic collection.

 

 

See the 1950 Lexington Herald-Leader Golden Gloves Tourney Champions in UKnowledge. Photo from the John C. Wyatt Lexington Herald-Leader photographs.

 
Subjects: Boxers, Boxing, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Schools and Students in Kentucky (Photographs), Kentucky Digital Library
Start Year : 1901
Photographs of "Colored" and "Negro" schools and students are available online within the Kentucky Digital Library - Images section. Student body photographs include Bracktown 1901, Briar Hill 1901, and Burdine 1921. For more see the Kentucky Digital Library - Images. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Photographers, Photographs, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Bracktown and Briar Hill, Fayette County, Kentucky / Burdine (Jenkins), Letcher County, Kentucky

African American Schools in Madison County, KY
Start Year : 1825
End Year : 1956
In his master's thesis, History of Education in Madison County, Robert E. Little wrote that in the first quarter of the 1800s, slave owner Green Clay taught his Negro overseers to read and write [p.42]. Also according to Little, it was around 1850 that slave owner Cabell Chenault built a school on his property for his slaves [p.42]. Chenault and his daughter taught at the school. It was in 1866 that the first public colored school was held in Madison County with as many as 34 students [sources: History of Education in Madison County, p.43; the Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Education in Kentucky; and the NKAA entry African American Schools - Kentucky, 1866]. According to author Richard D. Sears, John H. Jackson taught a school class in Madison County in 1868, and Cornelius C. Vaughn taught at a freedmen's school in Richmond in 1870 [source: A Utopian Experiment in Kentucky by R. D. Sears, p.91]. There were several colored schools in Madison County that were supported by the U.S. Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands [see NKAA entry Freedmen Schools, Kentucky]. In 1880, the teachers in Madison County were William Crawford, Elizabeth Crawford, Mary E. Crawford, and Milley Crawford, all in Glade, KY; Belle Bleston in Richmond; and  John Harper in Kirksville [source: U.S. Federal Census]. From 1880 to 1881, there were 14 colored schools and 14 teachers [Little, p.44], the schools were taught in churches and rented buildings, and there were only two or three colored school buildings [Little, p.45]. In 1882, the Kentucky Legislature approved the Act that would allow Samuel Watts, Sydney Campbell, and Madison Tevis to build a school house for colored children in District 12, on land given to them by W. C. Peyton, which was less than a mile from the white school Silver Creek Academy also known as the Blythe School [source: Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Regular Session - November 1881, v.II, Chapter 1327, p.878]. According to Little, in 1886, there were 27 colored schools [Little, p.172]. In 1888, there were still 27 colored school districts in Madison County, KY [source: Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky for the school year ending June 30, 1886 and for the school year ending June 30, 1887]. There were as many as 34 colored schools in 1893 and in 1897 [Little, p.172], and the highest attendance was during the 1893-94 school term with 975 students [Little, p.174]. In 1903, there was a colored school in Berea [source: "Berea and vicinity," The Citizen, 11/26/1903, p.6; and the Joshua Crenshaw Report on the Berea Colored School 1905-06]. Within the Black American Series title, Berea and Madison County by J. G. Burnside, there are pictures of former students, teachers, and principals at Madison County colored schools. The pictures were taken prior to school desegregation in Bobtown, Farristown, Middletown, Peytontown, and Richmond. Also included are students and faculty at Berea College prior to segregation in 1904. Other Colored schools in Madison County in 1912 were Concord School, Richmond City School, Valley View School, and Calloway Creek School [source: "Graduation Diplomas," Richmond Climax, 02/07/1912, p.4]. During the school year 1932-33, there were 14 colored schools in Madison County [Little, p.172-173]. The Madison County Board of Education paid $4 per month, per county high school student who attended Richmond Colored High School; there was not a colored high school in the county. In 1940, the teachers in Madison County were Elizabeth Baten, Robert Blythe, Lena Blythe, Willie Campbell, Warfield B. Campbell, Bessie Cavington, Millie Embry, Mcgustar Estell, Margaret Fletcher, Jarman Haynes, Bessie Irvine, Charles M. Irvine, R. H. Jackson, R. L. Johnson, Roanna Maupin, Cabal Merritt, Andrew Miller, Jarnie Moran, George W. Parks, Rev. F. H. Shipes, Katherine Taylor, Anna Turner, Georgie Walker, Julien A. Walker, Alitha White, Dorothy White, Hazel White, Maggie B. Wilson, and Estilla Yates [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The first schools to be listed as integrated in the Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, p.440, were Central High School, and Foundation School (Private), and Madison-Model High School was listed as white & integrated. The Madison County schools were fully integrated in 1963.

  • Green Clay Slave School
  • Chenault Slave School
  • Colored Schools (34)
  • Berea School [also referred to as Pasco School, records at Berea College Archives]
  • Berea Freedmen School
  • Bobtown School
  • Brassfield School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p.876]
  • Calloway Creek School
  • Concord School
  • Farristown School
  • Glade School
  • Grapevine School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p.876]
  • Kingston American Missionary Association School supported by the Bureau
  • Kirksville School
  • Middletown School
  • Peytontown School
  • Richmond American Missionary Association School supported by the Bureau
  • Richmond Freedmen School
  • Richmond High School
  • Valley View School 

Subjects: Education and Educators, Photographers, Photographs, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Madison County, Kentucky

African American Schools in Woodford County, KY
Start Year : 1866
End Year : 1956
A Colored School in Midway, KY, had its exhibition attacked by a mob on July 31, 1868 [source: Index to the Miscellaneous Documents of the Senate of the United States, 1871, p. 49]. The school may have been one of the two Freedmen Schools in Woodford County established between 1866 and 1870 [see NKAA entry Freedmen Schools, Kentucky]. In the Kentucky superintendent's reports for the years 1881-1886, there were 16 colored school districts; the Versailles Colored School was said to be a model school [source: Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, 1881-1886]. In 1880, the teachers in Woodford County included Jason Jefferson, Mary Taylor, P. Bronham, J. C. Hawkins, and George Jackson, all in Versailles, and Wallace Lewis in Midway [source: U.S. Federal Census]. According to the Simmons Elementary School website [no longer available], the Simmons School existed in the late 1890s along with the Woolridgetown School and 17 other colored schools in Woodford County. When the Woolridgetown School burned, students attended school at a church in Big Spring Bottom. Within the Hifner Photo Collection are pictures of all the Colored schools in Woodford County in 1892, including Simmons and Big Spring. The collection was created for the educational exhibit at the World's Fair and is available online via the Hifner Collection at the Kentucky Historical Society Digital Collections web page. During the 1895-97 school terms, there were as many as 18 colored schools, and the average attendance was 525, 1895-96, and 628, 1896-97 [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1895-97, pp.739-742]. There were 20 teachers in the colored schools, and the average monthly pay for male teachers was $55.82, 1895-96, and $41.78, 1896-97. For the female teachers, the average monthly pay was $48.19, 1895-96, and $27.57, 1896-97. Various colored schools in Woodford County are mentioned in issues of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, available full-text in the Kentucky Digital Library - Journals. In 1916, the teachers listed in the journal were Emma D. Hale and Katie Hancock in Midway; and Pearl E. Arnold in Versailles [source: Proceedings of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association, April 25-28, 1916, pp.24-29]  In 1925, the Simmons Street School in Versailles had a Class 1 high school with J. L. Bean as principal, and the high school had 2 teachers and 59 students [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p.41]. There was no colored high school in the county among the 9 elementary schools taught by 11 teachers [p.68]. In Versailles, there were 5 elementary teachers and two high school teachers [p.69]. In 1940, the Negro teachers in Woodford County were Jennie A. Bean, Gladys Carter, W. J. Christy, Ada B. Crawford, Elene Jackson, Rose I. Johnson, Ethelbert McClesky, Emma Minnie, Lula Rowland, Ada Scruggs, and Robin Stepp [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The first schools to be listed as integrated are Versailles High School, St. Leo, and Midway Independent Schools, all on p.449 in the Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57. See also the KHS to Dedicate Historical Marker to Honor Midway Colored School, a Kentucky.gov website.

  • Colored Schools (19)
  • Big Spring Bottom School (church)
  • Davistown School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Elm Bend School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Fermantown School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Fort Spring School
  • Frazier School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Jacksontown School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Midway School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Midway School (Hadensville, 1911-1958)
  • Midway Freedmen School
  • Milville School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Mortonsville School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Mount Vernon School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Nashville School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Simmons School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Versailles School [photo in Hifner Collection]
  • Versailles Freemen School
  • Woolridgetown School

Subjects: Communities, Education and Educators, Photographers, Photographs, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Woodford County, Kentucky

Biggerstaff, William
Birth Year : 1854
Death Year : 1886
William Biggerstaff was born a slave in Lexington, KY. He moved to the western U.S., where he was executed for killing Dick Johnson. Biggerstaff claimed self defense; nonetheless, he was hanged in Helena, Montana. His death was captured by African American photographer James P. Ball. For more see Representing Death; and Relections in black, by D. Willis-Thomas.
Subjects: Executions, Migration West, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Helena, Montana

Caufield and Shook Studio Photographs
Start Year : 1903
End Year : 1978
Lin Caufield and Frank W. Shook Studio photographs are housed at the University of Louisville Library. The collections include work for Louisville architects, builders, banks and financial houses, wholesale and retail merchants, advertisers, government agencies, public utilities, and private individuals. Michael Lesy's Real Life: Louisville in the Twenties (1976) was illustrated entirely with Caufield and Shook photographs. Both collections include many photographs of African Americans. Available at the University of Louisville Libraries Photographic Archives.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Community Memories: A Glimpse of African American Life in Frankfort, KY Project [Kentucky Historical Society - oral histories]
The "Community Memories" project is one of the KHS Digital Collections [Kentucky Historical Society] available online. The photographs and the oral history collection features a glance at the life of African Americans in Frankfort, Kentucky. The community's families, neighborhoods, and occupations, as well as religious and educational traditions are revealed in this collection of photographed and oral history interviews shared by local residents in 1995.
Subjects: Communities, Photographers, Photographs, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Fite, Samuel "Sam"
Birth Year : 1864
Owner of Fite's Studio in Owensboro, KY, he was considered the best photographer in the city. Fite, who was thought to be from Kentucky, was born in Canada. His wife was Georgia Fite, she was born in 1868 in Tennessee, and the couple lived on Elm Street in Owensboro, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. For more see Evidences of Progress Among Colored People, p. 511, by G. F. Richings at the Documenting the American South website.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs, Migration South
Geographic Region: Canada / Tennessee / Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Ford, Raymond
Birth Year : 1944
Death Year : 1966
Raymond Ford was the first soldier from Bardstown, KY, to be killed in Vietnam. He died February 20, 1966 -- his name is included on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on Coffee Tree Road in Frankfort, KY. The familiar photograph of Ford's mother holding his Purple Heart is included in the ProQuest Black Studies Center database.

See photo images concerning Raymond Ford at the Magnum Photos website.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Furbush, William H.
Birth Year : 1839
Death Year : 1902
Thought to be born in Kentucky, Furbush was the first sheriff of Lee County, Arkansas, and also a member of the Arkansas General Assembly. He was a photographer in Ohio, then fought in the Civil War, later moved to Liberia, returning to the U.S. in less than a year. In 1874 he survived an assassination attempt. He may have been the first African American Democrat in the Arkansas General Assembly. For more see B. Wintory, "William Hines Furbush: African-American Carpetbagger, Republican, Fusionist, and Democrat," The Arkansas Historical Quarterly, vol. 63 (Summer 2004), pp. 107-165.
Subjects: Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Migration West, Military & Veterans, Photographers, Photographs, Corrections and Police, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Legislators (Outside Kentucky)
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Lee County, Arkansas / Liberia, Africa

Galbreath, Haywood
Birth Year : 1956
Haywood Galbreath was born in Mayfield, KY, oldest of six children. When he was 13 years old, he was adopted by a white family. In 1977 he hosted a weekly affairs radio program in Mayfield. Galbreath would become a photojournalist, an actor, and a stuntman. In 1986 he established the H. G. Star-1 Production Co. and H. G. Star-1 News Photos. In 1997 the H. G. Star Company was the first African American-owned news photo service to record the Emmy awards from inside the auditorium. Galbreath is the author of The O. J. Simpson Murder Trial: the complete photo journal of the trial of the century. For more see O. J. Simpson Facts and Fictions, by D. M. Hunt; Minority Photo - Journalism Institute (MPJI); and Anatomy of a Trial, by J. Hayslett.

See photo image of Haywood Galbreath at the MPJI website.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Authors, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Photographers, Photographs, Radio
Geographic Region: Mayfield, Graves County, Kentucky

Harriford, Robert L., Sr.
Birth Year : 1927
Death Year : 2009
Robert L. Harriford, Sr. was born in Nobob, KY, the son of Willie and Grace Harriford. In 1930, the family lived on Upper Glasglow and Thompkinsville Road in Union (Monroe County) KY. In 1969, Robert Harriford became the first African American appointed to the Paducah City School Board, holding the post for 13 years. Harriford was also the first African American to serve on the executive board of the Kentucky School Board Association. He was president of Harriford Reproductions, located in Paducah, for 15 years. For more see Kentucky Black Elected Officials Directory [1970], p. 6, col. B, published by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights; Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton; and B. Bartleman, "Harriford eulogized for work with youth," The Paducah Sun, 07/07/2009, State & Regional section.

See photo image and additional information about Robert L. Harriford, Sr. at the Woodlawn Memorial Gardens & Mausoleum website.
Subjects: Businesses, First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Photographers, Photographs, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Nobob, Metcalfe County, Kentucky / Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Higgins, Chester A., Jr.
Birth Year : 1946
Chester Higgins, Jr. was born in Lexington, KY, and grew up in New Brockton, AL. He is a graduate of Tuskegee Institute [now Tuskegee University]. A staff photographer with the New York Times, he also wrote The Black Woman, Drums of Life and a number of other books. He appeared in the documentary film, BrotherMen. His photographs have appeared in Look, Life, Time and numerous other publications. Higgins resides in New York, he is the son of Veridee Young Smith and award winning journalist Chester A. Higgins, Sr. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, and Current Biography (2002).

See photo image and additional information about Chester Higgins, Jr. at the Kentucky Educational Television, BrotherMen website.

See photo image and additional information about Chester Higgins at The HistoryMakers website. [Higgins was born in Lexington, KY according to the Kentucky Birth Index. Original data at the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives.]
Subjects: Authors, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Photographers, Photographs, Migration South, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / New Brockton, Alabama / New York

Husbands, Harvey
Husbands was a photographer in Louisville, KY. He is listed in the 1884 city directory as a porter at the J. H. Doerr studio, located at 435 11th Street. He is also listed in the 1886 city directory as the photographer of his own studio at 267 West Jefferson Street. In 1887 his studio was located at 706 Hancock Street. Husbands is mentioned on p. 703 in J. C. Anderson, "Photography," The Encyclopedia of Louisville, ed. by J. E. Kleber.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

John C. Wyatt Lexington Herald-Leader Collection
Start Year : 1939
End Year : 1990
The collection contains approximately 1.5 million photographic negatives dating from 1939-1990. The negatives were received from the Lexington Herald-Leader newspaper by the University of Kentucky Libraries' Special Collections. It is the largest single collection of 20th Century visual documentation of Central Kentucky life. Included are a fairly large number of photographs that cover African American events, schools, and activities. In July 2006, a nearly 50,000-item database describing the first processed portion of the collection, 1939-1953, and approximately 500 digitized images, became accessible online via the Kentucky Digital Library. As more images are processed, they will become available online and be searchable using terms such as African American, Charles Young Community Center, Dunbar School, Lyric Theater, etc. Access to the remainder of the collection is available via the database at the University of Kentucky Libraries' Special Collections. Call (859) 257-1742 or email SCLREF@LSV.UKY.EDU for an appointment, for reproduction and copyright information, or to learn more about the photographic collection.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Kentucky Digital Library Images Collection
There are over 50,000 digital images in the Kentucky Digital Library (KDL) collection, including images of African American individuals, gatherings, and buildings. Some of the images can be retrieved by entering the following search terms (including the * will pick up singular or plural entries): Negro* or African American*.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Lawson, William H.
Birth Year : 1840
Death Year : 1913
Lawson was born in Maysville, KY, the son of Robert Lawson. He attended school in Ripley, OH. His family moved to Louisville in 1856 and was listed as free in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census. The family included William; his mother, M. Lawson, who was employed as a wash woman; and two other children. William was training to become a painter, decorator, and photographer. In 1872 he ran unsuccessfully for Marshall of the City Court. From 1879-1886, he operated a photography studio at 319 W. Walnut Street. He was later a U.S. store-keeper and an artist. William Lawson served with the 122nd Regiment of the U. S. Colored Troops; he was a quartermaster sergeant. He helped organize the United Brothers of Friendship and served as a state and national Grand Master. He was also a published poet. William Lawson was married to Emeline Lawson, who was born in 1857 in Tennessee. He was later married to Elizabeth [Lizzie] Lawson. For more see the "W. H. Lawson" entry in Weeden's History of the Colored People of Louisville, by H. C. Weeden; and J. C. Anderson, "Photography," p. 703, middle column, in The Encyclopedia of Louisville, edited by J. E. Kleber.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Businesses, Military & Veterans, Photographers, Photographs, Poets
Geographic Region: Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Louisville Defender Photographs
This collection contains photographs from the files of the Louisville Defender, an African American newspaper published in Louisville, KY, beginning in 1933. The collection covers local activities, persons, places, politicians, the newspaper's annual Black Expo, and national figures such as Martin Luther King. It is housed at the University of Louisville Libraries' Photographic Archives.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Louisville Free Public Library Photograph Collection
Particularly notable in this collection are the photographs of the Louisville Orchestra in the late 1940s with conductor Robert Whitney (see also Robert S. Whitney Papers) at the library's recording studio, and views of activities at the Western Branch, a segregated library which was also home of the first training program in the United States for African American librarians. Available at the University of Louisville Libraries Photographic Archives.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Louisville Municipal College Photographs and Records
The collection includes photo negatives and prints of Municipal College students, faculty and deans, as well as the grounds and buildings. Among the records are those from the dean of the college, as well as faculty minutes, annual reports, development files, budget papers, student records, and ephemera documenting the 20 year existence of this school. The collection is available at the University of Louisville Libraries Photographic Archives.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Negro Hamlets (photography)
Start Year : 2001
While working on a horse racing research project, photographer Sarah Hoskins learned of the Negro Hamlets in the Bluegrass area of Kentucky. Since 2001, she has been photographing the hamlets around Lexington, Kentucky. The hamlets were developed after the Civil War and the emancipation of Kentucky slaves; a track of land would be divided into lots that were sold or given to former slaves who were employed by the land owner. For some, the land owner was also the former slave owner. By Hoskins earlier count, there are 29 remaining hamlets. She had taken about 11,000 black and white photographs of the area and the people who lived in the hamlets. By 2010, Hoskins was at the end of the project. For more about Hoskins' project see C. Gibson, "A very living past," American Legacy, 2005, vol. 11, issue 2, pp. 34-36, 40, 42; and Photographer finds kinship with a Black homeplace at NPR, April 2010 [NPR Story audio and The Home Place video].
Access Interview


Subjects: Communities, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Potter, R. G. (1901-1987) Collection
Start Year : 1880
End Year : 1930
This collection contains 13,700 photographs. Potter was a salesman and sometimes photographer who collected local history photographs from the period 1880-1930. He then copied and peddled the images for use as decoration in Louisville businesses, hotels, and restaurants. The collection includes images of African Americans. Available at the University of Louisville Libraries' Photographic Archives.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Robert J. Doherty Photographs
Robert J. Doherty was born in 1924. He documented Louisville, KY, scenes, political rallies and events, prominent Louisvillians, and important visitors to the city. His photographs of Martin Luther King in Louisville and at the 1964 march on Frankfort, KY, have frequently appeared in print. Doherty founded the University of Louisville Libraries' Photographic Archives. For more see Robert J. Doherty photographs at the University of Louisville Libraries' Special Collections and Archives.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Royal Photo Company Collection
Start Year : 1903
End Year : 1972
The Royal Photo Company was founded in Louisville, KY, in 1903 by Louis Bramson and operated as a commercial photography studio until 1972. The collection is a valuable source of information about commerce, industry, and major construction during this important period. In addition, there are significant groups of photographs showing workers, family groups, and minorities in Louisville. Available at the University of Louisville Libraries Photographic Archives.

See the M.R. Kopmeyer Co. Photo of Oertel Negro couple framed display from Royal Photo Company online digital collection at the University of Louisville.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Sleet, Moneta J., Jr.
Birth Year : 1926
Death Year : 1996
Born in Owensboro, KY, Moneta J. Sleet, Jr. was the first African American to win a Pulitzer Prize in photography; he was given the award for a photo of Mrs. Martin L. King and her daughter, Bernice, at Dr. King's funeral. A photographer for Ebony Magazine, he covered African nations gaining independence. He also co-authored Special Moments in African American History: 1955-1996. Sleet was the son of Moneta Sr. and Ozetta L. Allensworth Sleet. For more see Notable Black American Men, by J. C. Smith; and Who's Who of Pulitzer Prize Winners, by E. A. Brennan and E. C. Clarage. See also the Sleettown entry.

See photo image and additional information about Moneta J. Sleet in "Great Black Kentuckians" at the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website.
Subjects: Authors, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Smith, Morgan and Marvin
Birth Year : 1910
Born in Nicholasville, KY, the sons of Allena Hutchinson Smith and Charles Smith. The Smith twins were photographers who left Kentucky and settled in Harlem, NY. The memorable photo of Robert Day playing Hi-Li was taken by Morgan Smith. Marvin later took up abstract painting and Morgan became interested in film. The resonant life in Harlem was captured on film and in photographs with events and images such as the first African American policeman. Morgan Smith died in 1993 and Marvin Smith died in 2003. For more see The Photography Encyclopedia, by G. S. McDarrah, et al.; M & M Smith: for posterity's sake, by H. Lyons, et al; Morgan and Marvin Smith, from North By South: The African American Great Migration; and Harlem: the vision of Morgan and Marvin Smith, by M. and M. Smith.

 
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Migration North, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky / Harlem, New York

Strider, Maurice
Birth Year : 1913
Death Year : 1989
Maurice Strider, born in Lexington, KY, was a graduate of old Dunbar High School, Fisk University, and the University of Kentucky. He was an artist and an art educator. After furthering his study of art in New York, he returned to Lexington in 1934 to become an art teacher at old Dunbar School. His painting, The Carnival, won the John Hope Purchasing Award in 1960. He was a researcher of African American art, culture, history, and race relations. His artwork has been exhibited in many locations, including the Carnegie Institute. Strider was also a correspondent and photographer for the Pittsburgh Courier and Louisville Defender. He received the Chicago Defender Award in 1958. In 1966 he became the first African American full professor at Morehead State University. The Maurice Strider Library/Media Center is located at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans 1975-2004.



See photo image and additional information on Maurice Strider on p. 6 in the Kentucky Alumnus, vol. 4, no. 44, 1974, at Kentucky Digital Library.

Access Interview

Read about the Maurice Strider oral history interview available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item record in SPOKE Database.

 
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania / Chicago, Illinois

Thomas, Jay V., Sr.
Birth Year : 1930
Death Year : 2003
Thomas was the first African American photographer on the staff of the Louisville, KY newspaper, the Courier-Journal. He was also a photographer for the Louisville Defender. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy and is buried in the Lebanon National Cemetery in Lebanon, KY. For more see Rev. L. Coleman, "A remembrance of Jay Thomas; Photographer, role model," Courier-Journal, 04/23/03, Forum section, p.09A.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Van Leer, Darryl
Birth Year : 1961
Darryl Van Leer is an actor, vocalist, writer, and photographer. He was born in Madisonville, KY, and is a graduate of Western Kentucky University. He began his career on BET's "Bobby Jones Gospel Show." Van Leer has appeared in First Time, a Nickelodeon movie, and HBO's The Second Civil War and Up Against the Wall. He was nominated for a 1996 NAACP Theatre Award and was recognized by the National Association of Campus Activities. His one-man plays, which he wrote and produced, represent African Americans such as Malcolm X, Nat Turner, and Marcus Garvey. His more recent work is Rubycat Lawson’s Roadhouse Lounge. There are several videos of Van Leer's performances on YouTube. Darryl Van Leer is also a public speaker, a musician, and he has done stand-up comedy. For more see the Darryl Van Leer website.

See Darryl Van Leer in the YouTube video Roadhouse Lounge.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Authors, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Photographers, Photographs, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Madisonville, Hopkins County, Kentucky

White Sox Baseball Team (Richmond, KY)
A 1940s picture of the African American baseball team, the White Sox, from Richmond, KY, is included in the Black America Series title Berea and Madison County. The picture was taken in front of Blythe's Restaurant. The caption gives the names of most of the players. For more see Black America Series: Berea and Madison County, by J. G. Burnside.
Subjects: Baseball, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky

Wilson, G. Marshall
Birth Year : 1906
Death Year : 1998
G. Marshall Wilson, who was born in Kentucky, lived much of his life in New York and died in Germany. He was a long time national and international photographer with Ebony, serving for 33 years with the magazine before retiring in 1986. Of his noted photographs is the image of Martin Luther King waving to the crowd in 1963 during the March of Washington. Wilson was an honorary pallbearer at the funeral of fellow Kentucky photographer, Moneta Sleet, Jr.; the two had worked together at Jet. For more see "Prolific Ebony photographer, G. Marshall Wilson, succumbs," Jet, 03/09/1998, p. 16 [article available full-text at Google Book Search, includes photo image].


Subjects: Migration North, Photographers, Photographs, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Kentucky / New York / Germany, Europe

Works Progress Administration (WPA), Kentucky, Photographs
Start Year : 1935
End Year : 1943
The Works Progress Administration was a New Deal Agency that was created in 1935 to help provide relief for U.S. citizens during the Great Depression. In 1939, the name was changed to Work Projects Administration. African Americans were employed on building projects, there were classes for women, food was provided to families, daycare centers were provided for children, and families received medical care. Within the Kentucky Digital Library are WPA photographic images that include the work involving African Americans in Kentucky. Search using the term "WPA" to find related photo images, including those with African Americans.


See photo images of African Americans in Kentucky who were involved with the WPA programs. (colored)


See additional photo images. (Negro)

 

See also the Works Project Administration documentary film that highlights the employment of African Americans, "We Work Again, 1937," at the National Archives website.

 
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs, Works Progress Administration (WPA) / Work Projects Adminstration (WPA)
Geographic Region: Kentucky

World's Columbian Exposition 1893
Start Year : 1893
End Year : 1893
In 1890, U.S. President Benjamin Harrison appointed a national commission with representation from all states and territories to oversee the planning of the world's fair, to take place in Chicago during the summer of 1893. No African Americans were selected for the commission or the Board of Lady Managers that was headed by Mrs. Bertha Honore Palmer, a Chicago socialite originally from Kentucky. African American contributions were also missing from the majority of the exhibits; these exclusions were cause for protests. There were also ongoing disagreements between various African American groups about the fair. An attempt to appease the protesters resulted in a Colored Jubilee Day being held in August 1893. Discrimination of public accommodations was not part of the grievance; during the fair only one incidence of exclusion based on race was reported: Miss Mary Britton of Lexington, KY, was denied entrance to the Kentucky Building. The building had also been featured in one of the series of stereotyped cartoons about the unenlightened Johnson family, former slaves, who were attending the fair. The cartoons were printed in issues of Harper's Weekly. For more about African Americans and the Columbian Exposition see All the World is Here!: the Black presence at White City, by C. R. Reed; and Rudwick & Meier, "Black Man in the White City: Negroes and the Columbian Exposition, 1893," Phylon, vol. 26, issue 4 (1965), pp. 354-361. For more about the Kentucky Building, see the cartoon in Harper's Weekly, 11/04/1893, p. 1059. For more about the Mary Britton incident, see The Freeman (Indianapolis, IN), vol. 5, issue 32, front page, bottom of column one. The Hifner Photo Collection of Woodford County, KY, Schools was created in 1892 for the educational exhibit at the World's Fair, available online via the Kentucky Historical Society Digital Collections web page.

See images from the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893, a digital history collection at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Paul V. Galvin Library website.
 
Subjects: Colored Fairs & Black Expos, Photographers, Photographs
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

 

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