Helen Armstead-Johnson miscellaneous theater collections, 1831-1993.


Helen Armstead-Johnson miscellaneous theater collections, 1831-1993.

The Helen Armstead-Johnson Miscellaneous Theater Collections (HAJMTC) are formed by over two hundred file-folder level collections (1 to 3 file folders per personality/event). The collections contain information dating from the mid-19th century to the late 20th century documenting early dramatic actors, minstrel shows, vaudeville, musical revues, 1920s and 30s Broadway productions, the protest dramas of the 1940s and 50s, plays that came out of the Black Arts Movement of the late 60s and 70s, and theatrical productions of the 1980s and 90s. In addition to actors, playwrights, singers, musicians, and dancers (classical and popular) (e.g. Ira Frederick Aldridge, Eubie Blake and Katherine Dunham), and the productions they appeared in, there are collections for poets, and visual and plastic artists. There are eighteen collections documenting performers of the 19th century; twenty-nine collections covering the period 1900-1919; thirty-seven collections document the 1940s-1950s; and eleven collections for the 1980s and 1990s. The bulk of the collections cover the two most productive periods for black theater: ninety-two collections for the 1920s through the 1930s, and ninety collections representative of the Black Arts Movement.

15.7 lin. ft. (46 hollinger boxes)


SNAC Resource ID: 6690541

New York Public Library System, NYPL

Related Entities

There are 44 Entities related to this resource.

Handy, W. C., 1873-1958

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6wj3h4j (person)

W. C. Handy, also known as William Christopher Handy (born Florence, Alabama, November 16, 1873-died March 25, 1958, New York, New York), known as the "Father of the Blues," is credited with helping popularize blues music. In 1896, he joined W. A. Mahara's Minstrels, as its trumpeter-bandleader and began a theatrical production that featured African American music. In the early 1900s, he started writing his own music with the first published commercial blues song "Memphis Blues," which became a ...

Dunham, Katherine, 1909-2006

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w67q9rd4 (person)

Legendary dancer, choreographer and anthropologist Katherine Dunham was born June 22, 1909, to an African American father and French-Canadian mother who died when she was young. At an early age, Dunham became interested in dance. However, she did not seriously pursue a career in the profession until she was a student at the University of Chicago.During her studies, Dunham attended a lecture on anthropology, where she was introduced to the concept of dance as a cultural symbol. Intrigued by this ...

Johnson, James Weldon, 1871-1938

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w62g8fd2 (person)

James Weldon Johnson was a publisher, educator, lawyer, composer, artist, diplomat, and civil rights leader. Together with his brother, J. Rosamond Johnson, he wrote the song "Lift Every Voice and Sing", which came to be known as the "Negro National Anthem", as well as a large number of popular songs for the musical stage of the early twentieth century. Johnson also served as consul of the United States to Venezuela and Nicaragua. He wrote several books and served as editor of the New York Age. ...

Blake, Eubie, 1887-1983

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6z42rfk (person)

Jazz composer and pianist. From the description of Autograph card signed : [New York?], 1979 Jan. 24. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270904411 American ragtime pianist and composer. From the description of Autograph note signed with his initials on his visiting card, dated : [Brooklyn, N.Y., n.d., 1963-1983], to an unidentified recipient, [1963-1983]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270899295 American composer. From the description of Eub...

Anderson, Marian, 1897-1993

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64k16hh (person)

Marian Anderson was born on February 27, 1897 (although throughout much of her life she gave her birth date as February 17, 1902) in south Philadelphia. Her father, John Berkley Anderson, sold ice and coal and her mother Annie Delilah Rucker Anderson was a former schoolmistress. She was the oldest of three sisters. She began singing when she was six, in the church choir, and by eight had become a regular substitute, filling in for absent sopranos, tenors and even bass. She was presented in one c...

Hayes, Roland W., 1887-1977

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6xj0gst (person)

Roland Hayes (June 3, 1887 – January 1, 1977) was an American lyric tenor and composer. Critics lauded his abilities and linguistic skills demonstrated with songs in French, German and Italian. Earlier African-American concert artists were not recorded because in their day recording companies were only interested in a vaudeville type of singer. Hayes was one of the first to break this barrier and in 1939 he recorded with Columbia. Earlier both Marian Anderson and Paul Robeson had recorded from t...

Robeson, Paul, 1898-1976

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6fc5sfw (person)

Born in Princeton, New Jersey, on April 9, 1898, Paul Robeson was a multitalented man whose artistic and political career spanned over four decades, from the 1920s to the 1960s. Known worldwide during the 1930s and 1940s, he fell from prominence in the 1960s because of the political controversy that surrounded him during the McCarthy era. Robeson was a talented dramatic actor whose performance of Othello in this country in 1943-44 once held the record for the ...

Mapp, Jim

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6q25qpk (person)

Playward Bus Thater.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6091mcp (corporateBody)

Troy, Henry, 1908-1962

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6c55bwn (person)

Miller, Bessie Oliver, 1888-1974

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64b4s67 (person)

Pomare, Eleo

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6m32xk0 (person)

Choreographer and dancer Eleo Pomare was born on October 20 1937 in Santa Marta, Colombia. His father, Tawny Forbes, was the captain of a civilian freighter that was torpedoed near Colón, Panama during World War II. Pomare, at age six, who was with his father during the attack, survived and moved to live with his mother, Mildred Pomare Lee, in Panama. In 1947 Pomare was sent, alone, to New York City to live with an aunt and uncle who cared for him until some years later when his mother also move...

Baker, Josephine, 1906-1975

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w69x14kk (person)

Josephine Baker(1906-1975) was a dancer, singer, and civil rights activist. She performed in Paris, New York, Africa, and the Middle East, and was a crusader for racial equality. She was born Freda Josephine McDonald in St. Louis, Missouri, the daughter of Eddie Carson, a musician, and Carrie Macdonald. Her parents parted when Josephine was still an infant, and her mother married Arthur Martin, which has led to some confusion about her maiden name. Very llittle is known about her childhood, exce...

Jarboro, Caterina

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64x7001 (person)

Concert opera singer. From the description of Caterina Jarboro papers, 1933-1977. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122378675 From the guide to the Caterina Jarboro papers, 1933-1977, (The New York Public Library. Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division.) ...

Lafayette Theatre Players

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6q86v0q (corporateBody)

South, Eddie, 1904-1962

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6ff54bc (person)

Ring, Montague

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6ff3szj (person)

Dodson, Owen, 1914-1983

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6v69rjb (person)

Owen Dodson was a playwright and author. From the description of Owen Dodson Collection 1936-1951. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 80551547 From the description of Owen Dodson Collection 1936-1951. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 702148305 African American author, poet, playwright, and professor of drama at Howard University; died 1983. From the description of Owen Dodson papers, 1930-1968. (Moorland-Spingarn Resource Center). WorldCat record id: 741522194...

Mitchell, Abbie, 1884-1960

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6qv5cf7 (person)

Muse, Clarence

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6jh5brv (person)

Born Baltimore Maryland, ca. 1890; died Perris, California, 1979. Black performer, stage producer, songwriter, screenwriter, and founding member of the Screen Actors Guild. He was a producer-director-writer in the Black theaters of New York and Chicago before coming to Hollywood in 1928, where he appeared in more than 200 motion pictures. From the description of Clarence Muse papers, [ca.1930-1978]. (University of California, Berkeley). WorldCat record id: 86093721 ...

Williams, Fess, 1894-1975

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6z91413 (person)

Hughes, Langston, 1902-1967

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6rn37qn (person)

Poet, author, playwright, songwriter. From the guide to the Langston Hughes collection, [microform], 1926-1967, (The New York Public Library. Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books Division.) From the description of Langston Hughes collection, 1926-1967. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 144652168 Langson Hughes: African-American poet and writer, author of Weary Blue (1926), The Big Sea (1940), and other works. ...

Matheus, John Frederick, 1887-1983

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6j68mdq (person)

Webb, Margot.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6km13g6 (person)

Johnson, Helen A.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6nw1934 (person)

Helen Armstead-Johnson (1920-2006) was an English professor and the founder/director of the Armstead-Johnson Foundation for Theater Research, whose purpose was to collect, preserve, document and exhibit African-American contributions to the American stage. Johnson spent her professional life as an educator, primarily at the college level, and taught for 23 years at York College, City University of New York, until her retirement in 1990. From the description of Helen Armstead-Johnson ...

Bubbles, John W.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6w38m7j (person)

John W. Bubbles (1902-1986) was an American vaudeville performer, dancer, singer and entertainer. John W. Bubbles was born John William Sublett in Louisville, Kentucky on February 19, 1902. His family moved to Indianapolis as a youth, where he met and formed a partnership with Ford L. "Buck" Washington. In 1919, they began performing as "Buck and Bubbles" with Buck playing piano and singing while Bubbles tapped. They appeared in the Ziegfeld Follies of 1931 and were the ...

Whipper, Leigh R. (Leigh Rollin), 1877-1975

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6zw28vr (person)

Character actor in the movies and theater, a founder of the Negro Actors Guild of America. From the description of Leigh Rollin Whipper papers, 1861-1963. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122346178 African American actor and playwright. From the description of Papers, 1864-1965. (Moorland-Spingarn Resource Center). WorldCat record id: 70941227 Leigh Whipper, one of America's best known character actors, was born in Charleston, South Carolina o...

René, Leon, 1902-1982

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w67q0qhn (person)

Croxton, Darryl

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w62r5h1k (person)

Senghor, Léopold Sédar, 1906-2001

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6j38vr2 (person)

Robinson, Bill, 1878-1949

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6vh5szq (person)

Jazz dancer. From the description of Autograph card signed : [n.p.], [194-?]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270904716 ...

Saunders, Gertrude

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6gt7d6r (person)

Sissle, Noble, 1889-1975

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w62b92zp (person)

American musician Noble Sissle, who was born on July 10, 1889, in Indianapolis, Indiana, was also an actor, publisher, lyricist, and author. A singer with touring bands in the early 1900s, Sissle later teamed up with Eubie Blake for vaudeville acts and wrote the lyrics for several Blake scores, including "Shuffle Along," a successful Broadway production. Among the many songs that Sissle and Blake wrote are "I'm Just Wild About Harry," "Hello ...

Shepp, Archie

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w68d02mb (person)

Byrd, Sam, 1908-1955

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w67d3hjn (person)

Byrd was an author, actor, and producer, of Mt. Olive, N.C. From the description of Sam Byrd papers, 1904-1972. WorldCat record id: 25290691 ...

Jessye, Eva, 1895-1992

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6nk3cvg (person)

Eva Jessye-Director of Music-Writer. b. Coffeyville, Kan.; educated Western University, Kansas City, Kan.; State University for Colored, Langston, OK. Director of Music, Morgan College, Baltimore, Md., 1920; Editorial staff, Afro-American, Baltimore, Md., one year. Won prizes: Essay, Music, Poetry, Interstate Literary Society of Kansas and the West; President Interstate Society, 1924. Director of Music, first all-Negro moving picture, "Hallelujah," produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corporation, di...

Norton and Margot (Dance team)

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6s80xct (corporateBody)

Aldridge, Ira Frederick, -1867

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6b57nqk (person)

Johnson, Hall, 1888-1970

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6h995m4 (person)

Francis Hall Johnson (1888-1970), African American choral director, composer, and arranger. From the description of Hall Johnson collection, 1933-1943. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79463092 "Hall Johnson, a native of Athens, [Georgia], was a highly regarded African American choral director, composer, arranger, and violinist who dedicated his career to preserving the integrity of the Negro spiritual as it had been performed during the era of slavery. His Hall Johnson Choir,...

John, Henry.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6dw14k5 (person)

Thompson, Ulysses S.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6zc9v02 (person)

National Negro Opera Company (U.S.)

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w66b25db (corporateBody)

The National Negro Opera Company was managed and directed by its founder, Mary Cardwell Dawson (1894-1962). The company was founded in 1941. In the late 1940s, Mrs. Dawson moved to Washington, D.C., which then became the center of company activities. There were active chapters in Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, New York, Pittsburgh, and Red Bank, New Jersey. In 1950, the National Negro Opera Foundation was incorporated to help raise funds to sustain the company. The company ceased operations with...

Sidney, Jay.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6fr1nn6 (person)

Parker, Dolores

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w62r5hfz (person)