Letter from Emmett Till’s Mother

mamie-till-mobleyOther than photos of my wife and children, this is perhaps my most meaningful possession. This letter from Emmett Till’s mother (Mamie Till Mobley), was a significant factor in the healing of my heart. When I learned of the murder of Emmett Till, I was devastated in an unhealthy way. Truthfully, even to this day, I have never stopped thinking about Emmett and the men who were never brought to justice…even though he was murdered many years before I was born. I poured-out my heart in a letter to his mother, Mamie Till-Mobley expressing the burden I had about her son’s death. In the letter, I committed to telling others about Emmett. Receiving this response from Mrs. Till-Mobley did more for me than words can express. She passed away in 2003.

1970 “BLACKS & WHITES” BOARD GAME

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An undeniable sign of the times, this 1970 board game “Blacks & Whites” says (on the bottom cover) “Experience the ghetto.  Live on welfare.  Try to buy in a white suburb.  Your challenge: To keep the land-hungry majority type from winning the game cheaply and quickly.”  It also says “…if Black players turn the tide against white advantages–a kind of irrepressible excitement takes over the board.” Continue reading

1968 MORMON BOOK PROHIBITS BLACK PRIESTS & “LOSE…BLESSINGS BY MARRYING A NEGRO”

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The Church and the Negro, A Discussion of Mormons, Negroes and the Priesthood by John Lewis Lund, copyright 1967, third printing 1968.  From the dust jacket it says the book “openly and frankly discusses and documents the Mormon position concerning the Negro.  “In regard to inter-marriage with the Negro…God does not approve!” Continue reading

1972 “BLACK MORMON TELLS HER STORY”

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This is a fascinating book written by Wynetta Willis Martin about her experiences as the first African-American in the famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir.  She staunchly supports the LDS church even though, at the time of her autobiographical account, the Mormon Church would not allow African-Americans to become priests.  The latter part of the book includes the chapter “Why Can’t the Negro Hold the Priesthood” by John D. Hawkes.  The “Forward” (see photo) is written by Odgen Mayor Bart Wolthuis. Five newspaper articles written about Ms. Martin are included in the book (see photos). Continue reading

MURDERER OF 4 BIRMINGHAM GIRLS FOUND GUILTY (38 yrs later)

DSC08994This May 2nd, 2001 mint condition copy of The Birmingham News has the cover story “BLANTON GUILTY” which details the conviction of Ku Klux Klansman Thomas E. Blanton who bombed the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, killing 4 little girls, on September of 1963.  Subtitle says, “Prosecutor: ‘Justice Delayed Is Still Justice'”.


I obtained this newspaper after flying to Birmingham, Alabama to witness this historic trial.  While only there a few days, I was blessed to be there for the rendering of the verdict of “Guilty”; an unforgettable moment. Continue reading

1995 “MILLION MAN MARCH” COLLECTION

DSC08578This is a collection of 10 items relating to the Million Man March on October 16, 1995.  This mint condition collection includes the following:DSC08934

–The original poster advertising the event
–An “I Was There” pennant
–3 “Final Call” newspapers advertising the MMM, 1 “Final Call” chronicling the event after it concluded, and 3 newspapers reporting the MMM the next day (New York Times, Rocky Mtn News, and USA Today).
–The official book that was released (see the table of contents which shows sections including “Spiritual and Historical Significance”, “Home Training Units”, and “interviews and Comments”).

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6 TUSKEGEE AIRMEN SIGNATURES

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This Tuskegee Airmen book Lonely Eagles is signed by 6 Tuskegee Airmen, with at least 2 of them identifying themselves as being part of the famed 99th Fighter Squadron.  The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African-American military aviators in the United States armed forces. During World War II, Black Americans in many U.S. states were still subject to the Jim Crow laws and the American military was racially segregated Continue reading

SHUTTLESWORTH SIGNED BIOGRAPHY

DSC09420This is an outstanding biography of the greatest hero (in my opinion) of the American Civil Rights Movement: Rev. FRED SHUTTLESWORTH.  It is also signed by the author, Doug Ervin.  Book and dustjacket are in mint condition. Read the back cover (see photo) to see why this man matters. Our country lost an amazing General of the Civil Rights Movement when Shuttlesworth graduated to heaven in 2011.

Shuttlesworth was whipped with a chain for trying to enroll his children in a white school. He advertised that he was going to do it and knew he was going to suffer for it (his wife was also stabbed during the effort). His home was bombed with 16 sticks of dynamite by the KKK and he miraculously survived. Shuttlesworth invited Martin Luther King to Birmingham resulting in the climax of the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement. As a result, the 1964 Civil Rights Act can be attributed initially to HIS efforts.

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RESTAURANT SIGNS FROM MURDERER OF JAMES REEB

DSC06412 jamesreeb2200woptThese two signs advertised “ONeil Resturant” in Selma, Alabama in the 1990’s.  Oneil Hoggle was one of 4 segregationists wrongfully acquitted by an all-white jury of killing Civil Rights supporter Reverend James Reeb.  Oneal Hoggle later opened a used car dealership (still open) and the restaurant; I believe the restaurant no longer exists.  These signs are made of thick, dark green plastic. Continue reading

1977 “ROOTS” TV MINISERIES COLLECTION

DSC08543This is a collection of 7 items from the 1977 groundbreaking miniseries “Roots”.  It includes the following:

  • –TV Guide (Jan 22-28 1977)
  • –Vinyl LP (still in shrinkwrap)
  • –Jet Magazine (January 27, 1977)
  • –Music Book (all about the music of “Roots”), includes poster (see photo of Kunta Kinte raising child to the heavens)
  • –Time Magazine (February 14, 1977), signed by Levar Burton
  • –Large publicity still from rebroadcast (Ed Asner and Levar Burton)
  • –Roots Magazine

Continue reading

1992 RODNEY KING POLICE ACQUITTAL (LOS ANGELES TIMES)

DSC08826“All 4 in King Beating Acquitted”  This is the COMPLETE newspaper from the acquittal of the 4 police officers charged with beating black motorist Rodney King.  Newspaper is in great condition; a real time capsule.  Rodney Glen King III (April 2, 1965 – June 17, 2012) was an American construction worker who became nationally known after being beaten by Los Angeles police officers following a high-speed car chase on March 3, 1991. A local witness, George Holliday, videotaped much of it from his balcony. The footage shows five officers surrounding King, several of them striking him repeatedly, while other officers Continue reading

1927 RACE CONTACT

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This book by Earl Edward Muntz is a 1927 scientific explanation about what happened to primitive and aboriginal races when caucasians conquered/displaced them.  From the preface it says “The rapid dispersal of the Caucasian peoples throughout the inhabitable portions of the world during the past four or five centuries has been fraught with unfortunate consequences for the backward races of mankind.Continue reading

1920 THE NEGRO: AN AMERICAN ASSET

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The Negro: An American Asset by Rev. S.J. Fisher, DD.  Published by Board of Missions for Freedmen of the Presbyterian Church in the USA.  Surprising verbiage from the Presbyterian Church: “We can neither understand the Negro, nor realize how great is his progress if we do not look back to the pit from which he was digged.  We cannot sympathize or feel a loving consideration for this people unless we see him emerge from savagery.” Continue reading

1969 THE RIGHTNESS OF WHITENESS

DSC06453This is a pamphlet dated Feb 1969 that was produced for the school system.  It is titled The Rightness of Whiteness, The World of the White Child in a Segregated Society. Really unusual, written by the Michigan-Ohio Regional Educational Laboratory as part of a program to combat the causes and effects of racism.

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1955 AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF WHITE CIVIL RIGHTS MARTYR

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This is a rare 1st Edition hardcover of The Mind In Chains: the Autobiography of a Schizophrenic by William L. Moore.  William Lewis Moore (April 28, 1927 – April 23, 1963) was a postal worker and Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) member who staged lone protests against racial segregation. He was murdered on his final protest.  On April 23, 1963, about 70 miles (110 km) into a march, Moore was interviewed by Charlie Hicks, a reporter from radio station WGAD in Gadsden, Alabama, along a rural stretch of U.S. Highway 11 near Attalla, Alabama. The station had received an anonymous phone tip about Moore’s location Continue reading

1962 “WHERE THE STATES STAND ON CIVIL RIGHTS”

DSC08660This hardbound book is like a reference manual.  The subtitle is “STATE BY STATE PROBLEMS AND PROGRESS IN: EATINGPLACES/ VOTING/ HOUSING/ EDUCATION/ EMPLOYMENT/ TRAVELS/ HOTEL“.  Written by Richard Barnett and Joseph Garai, it answers many practical questions such as “Where can a Negro get a haircut in Iowa?” or “Is intermarriage legal in Missouri?” or “What is the housing situation in Alaska?” or “Are public schools desegregated in Nevada?….in New York?”  Book gives a state by state account of all 50 states.

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1988 DAVID DUKE FOR PRESIDENT PINBACK

DSC06375Former Klansman turned Louisiana politician, this is from David Duke’s run for the Presidency in 1988, This 1.75″ diameter button is in excellent condition.  It has dark wording that reads “The New Minority WASP’S FOR DAVID DUKE FOR PRESIDENT”

David Ernest Duke (born July 1, 1950) is an American White nationalist, writer, right-wing politician, and a former Grand Wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, and former Republican Louisiana State Representative. He was a candidate in the Democratic presidential primaries in 1988 and the Republican presidential primaries in 1992. Duke has unsuccessfully run for the Louisiana State Senate, United States Senate, United States House of Representatives, and Governor of Louisiana.


1963 “HUMILIATION STALKS THEM” (NAACP BROCHURE)

DSC00719This 1963 brochure from the NAACP says “From Morning until Night…Humiliation Stalks Them”.  This is the text of the testimony of Roy Wilkins, NAACP Executive Secretary, July 22, 1963, in supporting the public accommodations section (Title II, S.1731) of the proposed civil rights bill being considered by the Senate Commerce Committee.  It says, “…our faltering fealty to the great ideal of ‘all men’ set down in our Declaration of Independence, has shaken the confidence of the millions of mankind who seek freedom and peace.  Do we mean ‘all men’ or do we just say so?  Is our nation the leader of the free world or of the white world?  Are we for democracy in southeast Asia, but for Jim Crow at home?” Continue reading

1960 “THIS IS WHAT WE FOUND”

DSC00592This book This Is What We Found by Ralph and Carl Creger, is an insider-look at race relations from a student who attended Little Rock High School.  “…A Little Rock father and son dispassionately explore the background of the issue that tore Little Rock asunder. The authors shun the traditional arguments of segregationists and integrationists….They discover that segregation is an innovation rather than a Southern tradition and that it has its unique counterparts in all sections of America….[This book] began as a history assignment for Carl Creger, a seventeen-year-old white student of Little Rock’s Central High School. Ralph Creger is his father, chief train dispatcher in Little Rock for the Rock Island Railroad. Both father and son became so interested in the topic that they collaborated to expand it to its present length. It wound up as both a study of the history of the American Negro and the reasons why a white father and son in Little Rock came to champion equal rights and opportunities for Negroes….” Continue reading

Fred Shuttlesworth AUTOGRAPH on Segregation FDC

DSC08539Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth has signed this First Day Cover issued by the United States Postal Service.  Shuttlesworth was whipped with a chain for trying to enroll his children in a white school.  He advertised that he was going to do it and knew he was going to suffer for it (his wife was also stabbed during the effort).  His home was bombed with 16 sticks of dynamite by the KKK and he miraculously survived.  Shuttlesworth invited Martin Luther King to Birmingham resulting in the climax of the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement.  As a result, the 1964 Civil Rights Act can be attributed initially to Shuttlesworth’s efforts. Continue reading

“Black In Selma”–Autographed and Inscribed

DSC09431Autobiography of J.L. Chestnut, one of the most interesting heroes of the Civil Rights Movement I have ever met (now deceased).  Mr. Chestnut has an amazing testimony of the Civil Rights Movement from the perspective of being a black lawyer in Selma, Alabama.  The anecdotes of what he witnessed (including the brutality of those beaten on the Edmund Pettus Bridge during “Bloody Sunday”) during the Civil Rights Movement makes this a must-have narrative in documenting the struggle. 

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1950 “BULL” CONNOR IN BIRMINGHAM, AL BROCHURE

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This is a Birmingham, Alabama brochure about the New City Hall that was “Built without borrowing.”  It has two interior pages.  The cornerstone was laid in 1950.  W. Cooper Green, President and Mayor James W. Morgan and Eugene “Bull” Connor were Commissioners when it was a Commission form of government.  This brochure was printed just a couple of years before the South exploded and the name “Bull” Connor became synonymous with police brutality against black men, women, and children peacefully protesting against segregation in Kelly Ingram Park.

It has lots of detail about the building, who contributed labor, material, and effort in building it.


1957 11×14 PHOTO JEFFERSON THOMAS (LITTLE ROCK 9)

DSC08601While I believe this is the only reproduction in the collection, this very sad 11×14 litho print of Jefferson Thomas (being harassed by the white community of Little Rock) is offered here as a compliment specifically to the “Little Rock Nine Collection” of the larger collection.  In fact, with the other Little Rock Nine items in the collection (the Little Rock 9 autographs on the cover of Life Magazine, the Orval Faubus signed letter, the Orval Faubus metal sign, the Hazel Bryan Massery autograph, and the Daisy Bates autograph) this photo is a terrific compliment in grouping these together for display. Continue reading