| Hello, and welcome to our collection of original African American cultural artifacts, lovingly rescued from estate sales and auctions around the country.|
We offer several artifactual genres.
Our antique image offerings range predominately from the 1800s to the 1940s. There are photos of African American families, church groups, children, couples. There is professional portraiture; there are many vernacular and “found” photographs. There are cabinet card photos, RPPCs, cartes de visite, and tintypes. African Americans, from myriad locales, rural and urban, are always the focal point.
This eclectic and fluid photograph collection features all manner of African Americans -- worshiping, recreating, child-rearing, marrying, mourning—engaging in the full gamut of life experiences.
The photos contain many hints with regard to times, places, genealogy, names, and the like. Many contain inscriptions or photographer’s marks. Others contain first and or last names.
Our ephemera-memorabilia offerings include artifacts such as programs, diaries, scrapbooks, sheet music, posters, advertisements, letters, diplomas, and legal documents. These items lend dimension to the collection.
Our digital services, which include creation of personalized photographic-musical retrospectives and digital antique images for various uses, make access to and preservation of cultural artifacts possible for a diverse range of people.
We create customized exhibits, offer live presentations and seminars, and facilitate group discussions on the significance and societal impacts of African American cultural artifacts, with emphasis on photographs.
Persons interested in African American history and genealogy, particularly persons with roots in the areas from which these artifacts have come, may, as they peruse this collection, see familiar places or faces. If you are interested in the origins of a particular item, do ask us what we know about the history surrounding it...we will delight in telling you!
Our proudest achievement to date has been the identification and location of the African American people featured in a large collection of “found” photographs, memorabilia and ephemera. We joyfully returned the photos home to their Princeton, New Jersey family. Read the full story below, as told by Shirley Satterfield, a Princeton community historian and member of the “lost” photos’ family.
We are here to serve you and to help facilitate, through our collection, enhanced understanding and broadened perspectives of the African American Diaspora.
This is an outstanding, ever changing, and unusual collection offering many rare items, so look and enjoy!
Michèle-Louise Ridley Cook
La Bonne Vivante
Building Bridges: A Story of Family Photos Lost, Found, and Returned Home