This diminutive beauty in very nice original condition appears to be nickel plated brass and measures 3"L x 2"W x 1"H. It shows minor wear of the plating and has subtle surface blemishes commensurate with its age and use.
The scale is complete with the original folding spatula and balance beam which is marked "GRAINS". The mechanism operates smoothly and fits perfectly together! It was made by N.V. Randolph & Co., Richmond, VA.
In bright red and white paint, the sign advertises the "Booker T Colored Motel" of Humboldt, Tennessee. The motel name is clearly a reference to the honorable Booker T. Washington (April 5, 1856 – November 14, 1915) who was freed from slavery as a child at the end of the Civil war as a result of the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution which officially abolished slavery. Booker T. Washington, an important educator and author, became a dominant figure in the African-American community advocating education as the pathway to a better life for African-Americans as well as the use of peaceful pathways to gain rights for the African-American community.
Measuring 24 inches wide x 15.5 inches high, the sign is in fine condition with minor and typical signs of age: some subtle crimping to the metal as well as some evidence of superficial rusting as noted in photos.
This important artifact displays easily and is quite visually appealing! A wonderful opportunity to acquire a piece of history!
From approximately 1915 through the 1930's, Mrs. Vargas-Alphonso, influenced by the artistry of her father who also sculpted in wax, crafted a variety of wax dolls inspired by the black folk she saw on New Orleans's street corners while growing up. Sold exclusively at the time through Harriet's, of 318 Rue Royale in the French Quarter of New Orleans, the completely hand-made, one-of-a-kind dolls are seldom found on today's market due to their inherently fragile nature, making them highly sought after in the Black Memorabilia Collectible arena.
This particular figure is known as the Vegetable Seller.
Vargas wax figures are distinctly characterized by their interesting but highly exaggerated facial features. The Vegetable Seller wears a blue and yellow striped bandanna around his neck, dark pants, and an orange and yellow polka dot shirt- all constructed of actual cloth fabric that was coated with a fine layer of clear wax to stiffen them. He carries a straw basket containing three different types of vegetables in his right hand while holding a corn cob in his outstretched left hand. His wax body is internally supported by a wire frame through which the figure is securely attached to the wooden base. The bottom of the base retains its original paper sticker which reads, "HARRIET'S, 318 Royal Street, New Orleans, LA". Harriet's Gift Shoppe was the exclusive retail outlet for the sale of Vargas figures to the public.
This wonderful figure is in mint condition for his 75+ years of age with no apparent or visible imperfections. Amazingly, all fingers and both thumbs remain perfectly intact! (The fingers are so very, very thin and fragile that they are quite easily broken.)
The Vegetable Seller is most delightful- a snapshot into 1920's New Orleans cultural history!
Please see the other Vargas figure that is currently available and priced separately--type "Vargas" in the search box to quickly locate them. A photo of the other Vargas figure currently available for purchase has been included, for the buyer's viewing convenience, in this listing.
Please note- any white or light spots noted in photos are a result of sun light glare and are not reflective or discoloration or fading.
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!
SOLD to The Smithsonian Institution
Rarely found in this pristine condition, the body of this 8 inch long puppet is constructed of a soft, cotton, flowered fabric, and her head and hands are constructed of a soft rubber. She still retains her "Hazelle" cloth label. Her face is very sweet in appearance!
Produced in the 1950's, the Hazelle Company was a puppet-making company located in Kansas City, Missouri. The company began making hand puppets and marionettes in 1932, and it continued operations for the next 43 years. The founder, Hazelle Rollins, passed away in 1984, nine years after the company closed its doors.
A unique opportunity to acquire a superb vintage puppet! Please see the companion Hazelle Little Black Boy Hand Puppet also offered!
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!
This neat toy features four adorable blinky-eyed Golliwogs that perform individual somersaults as the Merry Go Round spins round and the tiny bell rings! This toy works quite nicely and comes with its original, metal, wind-up key!
This sweet toy appears to have been virtually unused with no wear evident other than some slight superficial scratching to the base. While there are no manufacturer’s marks, this toy was made in post WWII West Germany, and it does retain a paper sticker on its base written in German. This toy, with its red house, is a bit rarer than the same-period-white-colored-house-version; relatively fewer were produced with the red house!!
In fabulous and complete, all-original condition with no repaint, replaced pieces or repairs, this rare piece is impressed on the underside of its wooden and metal dancing platform with patent date and manufacturer (see photos). The dancing man is constructed of painted wood with teeny metal nails holding his arms and legs in place; knees are jointed. Measures 7 inches tall x 7 inches in length.
An extremely rare piece of Black Americana!
This incredible slave collar speaks for itself, opening yet another small window into the history of African-American slavery. The collar is labeled with the enterprise's business name, Ross and Drum, out of Florence, South Carolina (SC), and is dated 1846. This enterprise was likely involved in the trading and auctioning of African-American slaves given its pronouncement of the phrasing "Negroes &" on the metal plate of the collar. The "&" likely implied the service of selling all "other" manner of estate "property" from land to livestock. Slaves- or Negroes as they were commonly referred to in the "slave states"- were considered "property", not human beings.
Measuring approximately 33 inches in length, the collar band is constructed of thick, sturdy leather, upon which is fastened a brass-appearing, engraved plaque, with ten, hand-forged, iron links forming the chain. Two circular, iron loops appear at either end of the leather collar. The collar weighs a hefty 1.6 lbs.
The slave collar plaque, ironically, is decoratively etched and features two crosses and two Masonry symbols, along with other symbolic engravings.
A stunning and important museum-quality offering without question!
In very fine condition, with faint, superficial scratches expected of a 70+ year old metal toy, this wonderful Tuxedoed Dancing Black Man is in working condition! He is stamped "Made in USA" on his back and was made by Buffalo Toy Works. It is operated via a small metal lever at the base that can be jiggled (thus, the name "Jigger" Toy) up and down and back and forth to make Dancing Sambo wave his arms and jiggle his legs!
Measures approximately 6.5 inches high. Maker unknown. Displays wonderfully!
Please note that any white spots appearing in photos are from the camera flash and are not imperfections!
Measuring 6.75 inches wide x 8 inches long, the book is illustrated in both black silhouette and colored, line drawings. 16 pages long. Great condition-- tight binding, no tips or missing pages, clean. Cloth-bound hard covers.
A delightful addition to one's Black Memorabilia collector!!
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.
In wonderful, working condition, the black man's head is attached to his body via the original, flexible, metal rod which allows the head to bob back and forth when jiggled.
Marked on the base of the ashtray "Made in Austria". Paint loss as seen in photos with no repairs or repainting!
An interesting character!
This fabulous metal trunk display features the likeness of 4 Black Gentleman within its copper-toned, product advertisement appearing on the interior of the trunk lid! Product testimonials are written in English, French, German,& Spanish!
Measuring 13 inches long x 8 3/4 inches wide x 7 1/2 inches high, this wonderful early trunk is in remarkable, un-restored, all-original condition and retains its original, functional lock and key! Minor surface scratches are evident along edges where wear is generally expected in an item of this age. Such scratches are most evident on the rear panel. These imperfections do not detract from the striking visual appeal of the trunk! This trunk is actually in quite remarkable condition for its 90+ years of age!
A high quality item when originally produced, please note the trunk's wonderful exterior lithographed details which mimic the exterior of an actual trunk!
A fabulous and extremely RARE, early advertising piece that doubles as a unique and RARE BLACK AMERICANA COLLECTIBLE!
The pipe remains in wonderful condition. It appears to have had some very limited use based upon the slightly darkened condition of the interior bowl.
The pipe is French made and bears the following on either side of the pipe stem, "Bon Fumeur" (Good Smoking) and "Tabaco" (Tobacco). The pipe stem also retains an orange colored, Dutch paper label which reads, "Holland Goedewaagen's" advertising that this pipe was exported for sale in The Netherlands.
This great piece is in very nice condition with the exception of a light spider hairline to the GLAZE ONLY of the top of the chef hat. The spider does not penetrate to the ceramic. He also has two very tiny edge flea bites by his shoes. Other than these very minor obtrusions, this wonderful piece remains free of other fleabites or hairlines as well as free of repaint, paint wear, or repairs.
The chef's head "bobbles" or "nods" on a metal spring adding much whimsy to this piece! His face has wonderful detailing--as does his body, and he has a very pleasant facial expression!! His big wide smile accentuates his pearly whites! This cute chef holds a yellow wooden spoon in his right hand and wears an adorable red bowtie!
**PLEASE NOTE: ANY WHITE SPOTS ON THE CHEF'S FACE ARE THE RESULT OF CAMERA FLASH ONLY-- NOT PAINT IMPERFECTIONS!**
A delightful piece!!
Colors are extraordinarily vivid, a fabulous display piece -retains original cardboard backing but, alas, no game darts!
Present are minor surface blemishes, surface scratches, some surface rust specks, as well as minor edge crimps that one would expect of a 70+ year old toy -all of which fail to detract from the fabulously bold visual imagery of this piece! (The most prominent scratch is on Sambo's yellow hat.)
To see all of the Little Black Sambo items currently available for sale, simply type “Sambo” into the search box on our website homepage.
This colorful paper broadside measures approximately 10.5 inches wide x 15.25 inches, and framed, measures 17 inches wide x 22 inches long. The poster or broadside is in excellent condition with the exception of a small, 1.5 inch long crease line above the top of the gray side of the model under the word "hair'. Otherwise wonderful!!
This piece has been matted and framed for some time and most recently hung on a wall in a Florida restaurant. To deter pilferage, the frame was actually screwed into the wall and as such, has evidence of minor puttying and repainting restoration where the two little screw holes were in the frame. The new owner may wish to continue restoration or simply leave the frame as is!
This poster is rarely found in the antiques market today, and due to its striking imagery and coloring, is destined to become a most delightful and decorative room focal point!!