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All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1920 item #961676 (stock #BA776)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
In the mid-1800's, an unknown artist painted the face of a young Black boy in warm, soft colors, and unbeknownst to the artist, forever immortalized the young boy's image! Since that time a variety of items have been produced in the image of the "Young Black boy with the Torn Hat" or "Johnny Griffin".

This circa 1900-1910 Johnny Griffin item is a double image still bank that features 2 images of Johnny's head placed back-to-back. It was manufactured by the A.C. Williams Company of Ravenna, Ohio, which at the turn of the 20th century and up until World War II, was the largest toy and still bank manufacturer in the world. (At the start of WWII, production declined sharply as iron was needed for military consumption, marking the end of an era.) The bank is constructed of cast iron in two pieces which unscrew to facilitate the emptying of coins. There is a coin slot at the top of Johnny's head for use in depositing the coins. This sweet bank remains functional for banking use today or may be simply used as an attractive desk paperweight!

It is in all original condition with delightful patina- NOT a reproduction- and measures 4 inches high x 3 inches wide. It retains a majority of the original gold leaf paint. Photos of both faces of the bank have been provided.

The Johnny Griffin image- in the arena of Black Americana collectibles- should form the cornerstone of any serious Black Memorabilia collection!

Please take a moment to view the slightly smaller version of this same bank, offered separately.

To see all of the Johnny Griffin items currently available for sale, simply type “Johnny Griffin” into the search box on our web home page.

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1920 item #794389 (stock #BA707)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Offered is a wonderful, seldom-seen, circa 1910's, tin wind-up, Black Porter toy manufactured by Ferdinand Strauss of New York City, New York.

This Black Porter Pushing A Wheelbarrow amazingly still retains his original, red ribbon neckerchief. The windup mechanism is intact and holds a full wind...the man's legs are a little sluggish after 90+ years, but the toy does work.

This very difficult-to-find, Black Memorabilia toy measures 6" long, is approximately 2 3/4" wide and is 6" tall. Minor rubs to paint are present as noted in photos, but this paint loss is insignificant given the age of this toy.

A fine addition to one's Black Memorabilia collection!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1900 item #421164 (stock #BA 514)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
This stately, titled, English Staffordshire figure of a seated Uncle Tom and Little Eva was produced circa 1855. Inspired by Harriet Beecher Stowe’s 1853 publication of her controversial “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”, the figure depicts the gentle Uncle Tom bouncing his little mistress, Miss Eva, on his knee.

The figure is decorated in underglaze black, measures 9 inches high, and is in perfect condition with the exception of expected and appropriate superficial crackling to the glaze, and a shallow and very tight, early hairline to the back of the figure at its base. It is titled “Uncle Tom & Eva” on the front base.

An very exceptional piece of Black Memorabilia for the discriminating collector.

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1940 item #520409 (stock #BA591)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring just 3 6/8 inches long x 2 ¾ inches wide x 2 inches high, this sweet little 1930’s Germany tin at one tin held coffee!

In very fine condition with the expected superficial scratches and rubs to the litho and some light rust spots on the inside bottom of the tin, the tin’s most endearing feature is the image of 3 adorable black children holding the brand name sign: MACHWITZ KAFFEE.

Brightly colored in orange, gold, black and cream, this darling tin is visually striking and displays very well!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Pre 1950 item #950210 (stock #BA769)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Offered is a vintage, Occupied Japan, tin and celluloid, wind up toy depicting a dancing Black Man or Jigger with cane and hat.

This delightful toy dancer stands on the corner of 125th Street and Lenox Avenue, the Gateway to Harlem, New York City!

The toy is complete and is in excellent working condition. Wind him up and his arms go round and his feet tap frantically! Retains original key. The dancer's head and hat are celluloid. His red felt jacket is age-stained as seen in photos. The dancer's other clothes are in fine condition as are the tin and celluloid components.

The dancer measures 8 1/2" tall, with base 3" by 2 3/4" across. On the back of the platform, the toy is marked: MADE IN OCCUPIED JAPAN PATENT NO15139 DESIGN PATENT NO92497. Items marked "Occupied Japan" date from 1945-1952.

A delightful addition to one's Black Memorabilia collection!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1940 item #559972 (stock #BA602)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
An utterly fabulous, all-original, 1930s, "pure licorice", English Toffee tin with a phenomenal caricature of a black man eating a large piece of yummy toffee! This piece is enhanced with a striking visual graphic making this the centerpiece of one's Black Memorabilia collection!!

Measures 9.75 inches high x 6.25 inches wide x 4.25 inches deep. Condition is quite fine with superficial scratches and minor surface rust near the base and on some seams--see photos--no problems to structural integrity!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1930 item #950276 (stock #BA770)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring 4 inches tall x 3 inches at its widest point (the head), this cast iron, Circa 1920's, English, still bank is labeled on its back, "The Young Nigg*r Bank".

In wonderful, all-original condition, the bank retains its original screw closure and the majority of its paint, with minor and insignificant paint loss as noted in photos.

A visually-appealing piece, a pleasing caricature! A fine addition to one's Black Memorabilia collection!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1920 item #1207267 (stock #BA853)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
In the mid-1800's, an unknown artist painted the face of a young Black boy in warm, soft colors, and unbeknown to the artist, forever immortalized the young boy's image! Since that time a variety of items were been produced in the image of the "Young Black boy with the Torn Hat" or "Johnny Griffin".

This circa 1910-30's Johnny Griffin item is exceedingly rare, being the only example of this form ever seen by this seller either in print, on the internet or “in person”. Clearly, very few of these smoking and/or tobacco stands were produced in comparison to other Johnny Griffin novelties!

The smoking stand is constructed of two different metals- from the intricately embossed “corn stalk” pot metal cigarette and cigar holders, to the brass plated tray, match holder, base and stand. It is in all original condition with delightful patina- not a reproduction- no replaced parts- and measures 30 inches high x 9 inches wide at the tray. It does not retain any marking other than mold number 3104 located on the underside of the tray. This very unusual smoking and/or tobacco stand is a heavy, sturdy piece, and is well-made.

Johnny Griffin Black Americana collectibles are a very interesting and infrequently found collectible form, and they should rightfully constitute the cornerstone of any serious Black Memorabilia collection!

To see all of the Johnny Griffin items currently available for sale, simply type “Johnny Griffin” into the search box on our web home page.

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1940 item #290331 (stock #BA412)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Circa 1930's, this extraordinarily tiny and delicate glass Black Boy perfume bottle measures just 2 inches high!

In excellent condition, this little piece of vintage Black Memorabilia, features hand-painted legs, hands, and a very sweet and whimsical face!

This piece is diagonally incised "Germany" across the back of the bottle and dates to the 1930's. These sweet little bottles typically experienced a second life as Christmas tree ornaments once their contents were exhausted, and thus, not many survive today!

A delightful and diminutive addition to one's Black Americana collection!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1950 item #739636 (stock #BA687)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring 20 inches in length by 4 inches high, this rare, Jim Crow-era, segregationist sign once hung in the one and only movie theatre of Doerun, Georgia, a small south Georgia town. Folks would view movies on a white sheet that was tacked to one wall. The white folk sat in folding chairs on the first floor while the African-Americans were directed to seating via this sign in the upstairs balcony.

This 1940s sign is white-washed on both sides with lettering and art work completed in red paint. Made of metal with 2 holes on either end for hanging. It has seen its share of vandalism with numerous deliberately inflicted scratches to the paint as seen in photos.

Once part of the Middle Passage Museum inventory, the sign has been de-accessioned. The Middle Passage Museum was the dream of Jim and Mary Anne Petty of Mississippi as well as that of an anonymous Georgian benefactor who had together compiled a collection of slave artifacts numbering over 15,000 pieces and who had hoped to find a permanent site in Mobile, Alabama, for their museum. While they formed a non-profit organization to raise funds for their hoped-for museum, their dream was never realized.

In a 2003 statement, Jim Petty remarked, "The importance of the exhibit of these artifacts is to understand the harshness of what slavery and segregation was all about. The items in the exhibit remind us of the terrible heinousness of slavery. Viewing the collection can be very emotional, but it is a tool through which we can understand, honor and respect a great culture. We want to realize that out of slavery, a great culture emerged, and carried on, and continued to strive for a better life regardless of the adverse conditions that were placed upon them."

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1930 item #326807 (stock #BA427)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring just 3 inches high, this very, very seldom found, VINTAGE SAMPLE SIZE, LUZIANNE COFFEE TIN is in near mint condition with just a few very tiny rubs and scratches to the tin as seen in photos. This piece was obviously safely tucked away over the past 80 years! Sample tins such as this were given away to customers to help promote a product.

Processed and packaged by the William B. Reilly Company of New Orleans, Louisiana, this great tin even has a few flecks of coffee still inside!

The tin features a vivid graphic of "Mammy Pouring Coffee" which was the first style of Mammy graphic used by the company, dating this tin to the early 1920's.

In marvelous condition- an especially lovely and visually appealing piece of vintage Black Americana advertising!!!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Pre 1940 item #264032 (stock #BA385)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Increasingly more and more difficult to find, this pot metal pencil sharpener was made in pre-WWII Germany in the 1930's.

Measuring 1.5 inches long x 1 inch wide, this sharpener depicts a derogatory caricature of a Black Man. The glaring eyes are painted a stark white with teeny black pupils, while the red painted lips surround the pencil sharpener blade which takes the place of the man's teeth. Curly molded hair and eyebrows are painted black, while the face is painted brown- inside and out.

The pencil sharpener is stamped GERMANY on the back inside.

Condition is quite fine with approximately 80% (a conservative estimate) of the original paint remaining. There is no repaint! The paint is worn in expected areas, with the majority of paint wear seen on the sides of the face and bottom of the chin where one would grasp the sharpener. Facial feature paint is strong. Brown paint on the inside/back of sharpener is 100%!

Germany apparently made a good steel blade as the sharpener still works!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1950 item #808028 (stock #BA725)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
An exquisite pair!!!

These mint condition, 1940s, PEARL CHINA Black Chef and Mammy salt and pepper shakers are simply outstanding!

Measuring a super-size 7.50 inches high, this exceptionally large salt and pepper pair are meant for stove-top and not table-top use, thus their robust dimensions!

The pair are in mint condition and likely were never used. They retain their original corks and are accented in 24KT GOLD-- on the black chef's lips, ladle, the kerchief in his back pocket, and his name, "SALTY" and on Mammy's name, "Peppy".

Rarely found in this condition, the pair displays simply beautifully!!!!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1950 item #728200 (stock #BA679)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring 19 inches long by 3.5 inches wide, this untouched, all-original, double-sided, porcelain-enameled, 1930-40s, metal sign is an extraordinarily RARE piece of Black American history-- an artifact of the "Jim Crow" era when segregation of the African American race was unfortunately, most commonplace.

This sign was found in storage inside of an old Austin, Texas, gas station and likely designated the COLORED ONLY entrance to a local public building or room within.

This historic sign is enameled on both sides with the word "COLORED" and a downward pointing arrow. Colors are blue with cream background.

The sign is in all-original condition with several chips to the porcelain enamel as well as subtle edge wear. It likely was posted on the interior of a building as its overall condition is really quite fine and does not evidence any characteristics one would expect of a sign that was subject to the ravages of Mother Nature. Or...perhaps the sign was simply never used-- a mystery never to be solved!

An utterly phenomenal, extremely RARE, one-of-a-kind, museum-worthy piece of Black American history that is quite likely the only one of its kind extant today!

Please take a moment to view the second "Jim Crow" Segregationist Era sign I currently have the pleasure of offering.

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Pre 1930 item #427471 (stock #BA520)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Derogatorily entitled "Uncle Sam's Big Show Jackie 'COON' Acrobats", this exceedingly rare, early 1920's toy was manufactured by the National Toy Mfg. Company, 1345 West 21st, Chicago.

Included are the original box, as well as the original paper instruction booklet that depicts the "thousands of tricks" the wooden acrobats can perform!

The set of 5 black character acrobats have detachable arms and legs with lithographed paper faces and clothing. All body parts have either notched edges or sides which allow the acrobats to assume all sorts of poses. The figures are free-standing once put together as the toy also comes with wooden bases or stands to mount then upon.

This toy was likely seldom played with as the figures and booklet are in superb condition for its age! The exterior of the box -particularly the cover- shows its 80+ years with expected wear to seam edges, but it remains in sturdy condition.

A very rare toy that displays quite well- has striking, visual appeal!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1910 item #1194898 (stock #BA788)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Measuring a diminutive 4.50 inches wide x 2.25 inches long x 1.5 inches high, this very early, metal, circa 1900, Diamond Match Co. box is very rarely found on today's market.

The box is in very good condition for its 100+ years of age with teeny tiny chips to the surface as noted in photos.

The box features an incredibly detailed graphic on its cover depicting an African-American family gathering around the patriarch as he readies to strike a match for the very first time.

Entitled "Their First Box of Drawing Room Matches. Paterfamilias: You chillin keep back deah! You want you heads blowed off'n you shouldus?"

A fabulously rare piece for the serious collector!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Pre 1930 item #326389 (stock #BA362)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
In the mid-1800's, an unknown artist painted the face of a young Black boy in warm, soft colors, and unbeknown to the artist, forever immortalized the young boy's image! Since that time a variety of items were been produced in the image of the "Young Black boy with the Torn Hat" or "Johnny Griffin".

This circa 1920-30's Johnny Griffin item is constructed of cast iron and is a match holder! It remains functional for such use today or may be simply used as an attractive desk paperweight or perhaps as a wall ornament!

The match holder is in all original condition with delightful patina- not a reproduction- no replaced parts- and measures 4 1/4 inches long x 4 1/4 inches wide x 1 inch deep. It is unmarked and retains traces of original paint as well as some surface rusting which appears in some photos to be more significant than it is in actuality.

The Johnny Griffin image- in the arena of Black Americana collectibles - should form the cornerstone of any serious Black Memorabilia collection!

All Items : Archives : Collectibles : Memorabilia : Contemporary item #676637 (stock #BA652)
Stonegate Antiques
SOLD
Painted on a 16 inch x 20 inch artist canvas panel, this highly colorful acrylic painting was executed by Geraldine Smith, a self-taught, African-American, Southern, Folk Artist.

This vibrant work, painted in June 2006, depicts a charming 1930's scene of a Southern cotton farm complete with log cabin, old stone wall, dilapidated truck, two big red barns, and two black women picking cotton in the fields. The leaves have turned the brilliant colors of autumn and some have fallen to the ground. The piece is signed in red in the lower left corner "Geraldine Smith June 2006".

(Please disregard any "shiny" or "white" areas in the painting; these are the result of camera flash glare ONLY and are not imperfections in this work. The colors in this painting are actually more vibrant and brilliant in tone than can be depicted in photos.)

Geraldine Smith, who is now in her late 50's, did not begin painting until the late 1980's when she saw the television painter, Bob Ross, and decided she wanted to give painting a try. "I don't know why," Ms. Smith said. "I couldn't draw a straight line. I'd sit up all night trying to paint. Lord help me. Something was driving me to learn to paint." Smith credits The Lord with providing her with the continued inspiration to paint, and states, "When the spirit is leading me, I can paint and paint."

Source for quotes and newspaper photo, The News, South Carolina.