OLDER BLACK MAN IN YORK, PENNSYLVANIA

This photograph features an older African American gentleman. He is nicely dressed in fancy clothing. Note his long coat. The gentleman appears to be displaying a friendly half smile. He has one hand on his hip; surely, he was told to pose in that manner. The reason for such instruction is not clear. The photographic studio that produced this image is Shadle & Busser of York, Pennsylvania. James Monroe Shadle was born in 1861 in Freeport, Pennsylvania. Oscar W. Busser died of Brights Disease at age 61, in 1921. The studio that bared their names was located at 20 South George Street (1887-1902), 44 South George Street (1903-1925), and 58 South Beaver Street (1925-1936). All of these locations were in York. To view other early photographs of African Americans, click on the category of “African Americans”.

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN IN CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

This cabinet card features an African American woman posing for her portrait at the studio of Hartley in Chicago, Illinois. The woman is nicely dressed. Her fashion statement includes an interesting hat and a cumberbund. The Cabinet Card Gallery has a large collection of images of Blacks at the turn of the century. The images can be viewed by clicking on the category of  “Black Americans”. Other photographs by Hartley, as well as some biographical information about him,  can be seen by clicking on “Photographer: Hartley”.

CAPTAIN WILLIAM J WILLIAMS: AFRICAN AMERICAN SPANISH AMERICAN WAR VETERAN

This cabinet card creates a historical mystery. Is this image really a portrait of Captain William James Williams? Captain Williams was among the first African American officers to serve in a state volunteer regiment during the Spanish American War. He served in the 6th Massachusetts Infantry, Company L. This company was probably the first and possibly only African American company to be attached to a white regiment. Williams commanded Company L and was the first African American to enter the US Volunteer army with a captain’s commission. He was six feet tall. He was a product of Boston schools  and was a lawyer. He joined the Massachusetts Militia in 1891. The reverse of this card is inscribed “William James Williams, Captain, Spanish American War”. A photograph of Captain Williams found from another source, has resemblance to the man in this image, but does not confirm the identity. The photographer of this image is William G. Hussey of Salem, Massachusetts. A photographic journal (1900) reported that Hussey sold his Salem studio in 1900.

AFRICAN AMERICAN MAN IN SOMERVILLE, NEW JERSEY

black man new jersey_0001This interesting Cabinet Card is a photograph of an African American man posing for his portrait at the studio of W. A. Apcar in Somerville, New Jersey. This gentleman looks quite dapper and intellectual. He appears professorial but his biographical information is lost in history.

Stylishly Dressed African American Man in St. Louis, Missouri

black-man-st-louis

This Cabinet card offers a very clear and detailed image of a young Black man who is very nicely dressed. He posed for this photograph at the studio of Genelli in St. Louis, Missouri. To learn more about this studio and to view other photographs produced by Genelli, click on the category “Photographer: Genelli”.