brian cassidy bookseller: april 2019
Civil Rights, Black Arts, and Black Pride

Scarce historical essay on the great 19th century African American actor, written by an African American writer, and published by an African American printer. Peyton describes the racist audience reception in America that preceded Aldridge's triumph as a leading Shakespearean actor on the London stage, considers his interpretation of an African prince in Aphra Behn's Oroonoko, and concludes with the actor's death in 1867, just as "[p]rejudiced America was now in a mood to acknowledge the worth of a man who was forced to leave her shores to obtain an opportunity."


Monthly entertainment magazine from 1955, profiling musicians, nightclub entertainers, and showgirls, with  scene reports and backstage gossip alongside news pieces on the "integration question." 
Concert program with tentative song list ("Due to the ad lib quality of this music no formal program is possible. It is likely, however, that the following numbers will be heard"); an appreciation by Tallulah Bankhead; and photos of Armstrong's All-Stars.

From 1970,  a critical look at the roots and effects of racism in the United States. Prepared by the Commission on Civil Rights and illustrated throughout with black and white photographs.
Report of the damage sustained by commercial buildings and residential housing during the four days and nights of civil unrest following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr: "It all began on 14th Street a few hours after Dr. Martin Luther King was slain in Memphis." Prepared at the direction of DC Mayor-Commisioner Walter E. Washington, who was later the first elected mayor under home rule, as well as the first African American mayor of a major city.

Second issue of this important black arts journal, with work by Thomas Dent, Ishmael Reed, Charles Patterson, Rolland Snellings, George Coleman, Clarence Major, Gil Jackofsky, Maryanne Raphael, Susan Johnn, Conrad K. Rivers, Lorenzo Thomas, Art Berger, Albert Haynes, Charles Anderson, Ann Shockley, Will Inman, Aime Cesaire, Ree Dragonette, Robert Wood, and others.


An original mail-order catalog pamphlet from the More Distribution Company's Afro-American Hero series of illustrated posters. Images for 30 different prints include several Black Panther related images as well as cultural and musical figures including Rev. M.L. King, Jr.; LeRoi Jones, John Coltrane, H. Rap Brown, Frederick Douglas, Geo. W. Carver and more. Posters illustrated by Emory Douglas, Charles Bible, Ervin Cobbs and Santie Huckaby. A scarce, surviving document of the revolutionary 1960's.

Guide to soul food, one of the first cookbooks to use the term, covering both history and recipes. Uncommon.
Program for the 1971 cotillion ball hosted by the Oakland-Bay Area chapter of The Links, an African American women's organization. The program gives an overview of the cotillion and the organization more generally, along with large-scale portraits of all the debutantes and their escorts, information on the philanthropic activities of The Links, and well wishes from community supporters.


Late flyer from the Godfather of Soul and the hardest working man in show business. Get down.

Rare photobook almost certainly compiled as memorial to Dr. King in the immediate aftermath of his assassination, possibly by legendary Philadelphia disc jockey Georgie Woods. Featuring the photography of Laurence Henry, a civil rights worker who marched with Dr. King in Selma, Montgomery and elsewhere. We do not locate the title in OCLC. A rare and ephemeral production. 


A 1973 reprint of the original 1953 Washington University of St. Louis doctoral dissertation of prominent Latino scholar and activist Julian Samora. An early document of race relations scholarship, focusing on a community near the author's childhood home in Southern Colorado. Uncommon.

Promotional mailer for Artistic Director Emory Tayor's Harlem Opera. Promoting a two-week run at the Entermedia Theater, the company mounted the western HODGES & CO. as well as Taylor's own SOLOMAN & SHEBA.


Anthology "designed to give you a feel for what it is like to be Black/human in the 1970s." Includes an oral history of Marie Laveau by Eartha Kitt, as well as work by ntozake shange, Jean Toomer, Leandre Jackson, Sonia Sanchez, Arthur Huff Fauset, Waring Cuney, and many others.



Ninth and final issue of this uncommon regional journal of of the BLKARTS movement. Includes a poem by Alice Walker, along with work by Octave Lilly, Quo Vadis Gex, Lloyd Medley, T. David Watson, Dwan Bailey, Janet Tarver, Stella Ngatho, Jeffrey Winston, Richard Haley, and others. Cover drawing by Skander Boghossian.




The published report of the Commission on Civil Disorders, in response to President Johnson's Executive Order 11365, issued less than a week after the Detroit Riots of 1967. With extensive material on segregation, police use of force, and the civil rights and Black Power movements. Later reprinted as a Bantam mass market paperback, this version the uncommon first GPO printing.


Program for the April 25, 1986 performances of the Sun Ra Arkestra, opening the fifth season of Jazz "Live," dedicated to the musical legacy of Duke Ellington. With an essay by Spencer Weston on Ellington and Sun Ra.


Reproduction of the first and only issue of FIRE!!, a journal of the Harlem Renaissance, first published in 1926. With contributions from Langston Hughes, Richard Bruce, Zora Neale Hurston, Countee Cullen, Helene Johnson, Edward Silvera Gwendolyn Bennett, Lewis Alexander, and others.



1979 Conference proceedings from the International Conference on Black Communication, with full conference schedule, list of attendees, and four papers: "Intercultural Communication: An Afrocentric Inquiry Into Encounter," by Molefi Kete Asante; "Lingustic Issues in Black Communication," by conference chair Mervyn C. Alleyne; "Scholarly Literature on the Black Idiom," by Melbourne Cummings and Jack Daniel; and "Communication Disorders in Blacks" by Orlando Taylor.



Unnumbered and perhaps the only issue of this scarce literary magazine, edited by Rikki Lights. Includes work by Tom Weatherly, Harrison Ridley Jr., Awanda Roberts, Robert Hubbard, Eloise Letman, Brother Severn, Ericka Huggins, Delphine Tinner, Mike Davis, Otis Brown, Calvin Hall, Katheryne Morgan,With an essay, "Black Mu Poetry. What is it?" courtesy of Philadelphia's Black History Museum. 



Program of exhibits and performances from the 1973 April Black Arts Festival, organized by the Black Student Union of West Chester State College. 


Copyright © 2019 Brian Cassidy, Bookseller ABAA, All rights reserved.

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