National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
1920 English Book 15 p. : ill. ; 31 cm. New York City : National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Fair condition. $1450 Rare. Only four copies located in OCLC.
ITEM 2. “The Crime of Being a Negro”
[No real title on title page] “Some of the 51 Lynchings [dropped title] which have occurred during the last Six Months—and there are others”NAACP, NYC (20 Vesey Street) ca. 1912.
4pp folded 7 ½ x 10 inch sheet. 2 photos.
The interior unfolds to a broadside-like display, the title running across the two pages being “The Crime of Being a Negro”.
Lists about a dozen different incidents which provoked lynchings.
This is a very graphic, chilling item.
No listings in WorldCat/OCLC. $1250
ITEM 3. Single sheet, broadside, 1911/1912. 10 x 7 inches. Depicting a postcard received by an anti-lynching speaker from the NAACP.
This item was meant to illustrate the mentality of the lynching population in the South.
The text of the postcard reads: “This is the way we do them down here. The last lynching has not been put on the card yet. Will put you on the mailing list. Expect one a month on the average.” The letter is of course unsigned.
Rare. No listings found in the WorldCat/OCLC. $500
Original Dustjacket Artwork.
ITEM 4. Merton Witten (Artist and designer) Illustrated scene of a lynching, being the original dustjacket art for the novel "The Curse at the Door", by Clara Morris Diggs. 15 ½ x 10 inch image on 18 ½ x 12 inch board.
There are printing directions at bottom of the image in the margins.
The board has several defects., some of which extend into the image itself-none are fatal.
There is scant info regarding Ms. Diggs, though there are at least two references regarding this work as a novel involving African Americans. Rare. $1750.
The address for Merton Whitten on the back of the board lists 35 Mt. Vernon St-this is Beacon Hill, and is in the same block (today) as the Colonial Society of Massachusetts (a very considerable old structure). Julia Ward Howe lived next door once upon a time. Whitten is listed as a "Commercial Artist" in the 1923 Boston Directory with a business address of 118-A Bowdoin. Provenance: none; from an estate in Maine.
The Fight for the Never-Passed
ITEM 5. Taylor, Robert Gray. Supreme Court Proposal and the Wagner Van Nuys Anti-Lynching Bill. Mimeographed letter to Senator A.H. Vandenberg, Robert F. Wagner and four others. 11x8", from typed originals. 4pp. 3rd August, 1937. $500
"It scarcely takes a statesman to se that the murder of any citizen by a gang.is not justified on any grounds whatsoever.If any single congressman dissents from the point of view here taken, I should appreciate his advising on what legal or moral grounds it is done."
Gray was a very prominent Philadelphia Quaker and Scion of a business begun in that city in 1683. He was on numerous committees for racial fairness and equality including the Whittier Center Housing Corporation-here he extracted a promise from the Secretary of Commerce that the Public Works Administration would not build new apartment complexes ruled by discrimination or racial unfairness.
Gray writes about the difficulty of establishing the Wagner Van Nuys Anti-Lynching Bill coming to loggerheads with FDR's plan to pack the Supreme Court. (Evidently the President's need for Southern support for his court plans would have to be purchased with the defeat of this Bill. Versions of this 1937 Bill (strongly written by the NAACP) had failed to pass the House and Senate in 1934 and 1935. The general way of defeat for these bills had been Southern Filibuster.
From TIME Magazine, 28 January 1938:
"The actual contents of the Wagner-Van Nuys Bill, as simple as they were familiar, would scarcely keep the U. S. Senate busy for that period. Like its predecessors, it provided for Federal prosecution, and a $5,000 fine or up to five years' imprisonment, or both, for sheriffs & peace officers who did not afford criminals and suspected criminals reasonable protection from mobs (any gatherings of more than three persons)."
(The principle Southern anti-anti-lynching bill proponents were) " Tom Connally's loyal little band-Georgia's Russell, North Carolina's Bailey, South Carolina's James Byrnes, Tennessee's Kenneth McKellar, Louisiana's Ellender, and Pat Harrison."
"But if the practice has been general, the opposition to laws intended to suppress it has centred in the South. For two generations Southern Representatives and Senators have greeted every lynching bill that came up for debate with a reaction as sharp and unfailing as would be produced by a polecat. Snorted Georgia's Richard Russell last week of the latest and one of the most threatening Federal attempts to prosecute and punish lynchers: "Skunk meat."
"Whenever the Republican Party, the Democratic Party or the New Deal Party or any other party," rumbled North Carolina's Josiah Bailey, "caters to the Negro vote, it is going to elect to office common fellows of the baser sort." But when Kenneth McKellar began scornfully quoting from the bill in an effort to establish its unconstitutionality, Senator Wagner pointed out that the passage in question was a quotation from the Fourteenth Amendment. "Yes," stammered Senator McKellar, "it is."
End TIME Magazine quotes.