“Correct Likenesses”

Alonzo Nickerson, Daguerreotype Establishment!, ca. 1848 (809.2000)

Daguerreotype Establishment!
The subscriber would respectfully inform the inhabitants of… and vicinity, that he has arrived at the above place, and has taken rooms at… where he is prepared to execute
Daguerrean Likenesses,
To the satisfaction of all who may avail themselves of his services. Delay not, then as opportunity shall present to secure one or more of the Miniatures of Life, which, under the trying circumstances of final separation of friends, no price can purchase.
Will be set in Rings, Pins, Cases, Frames and Lockets; and no person will be expected to take a likeness unless perfectly satisfactory to themselves. Pictures will be executed in the Black Crayon, Magic Back-ground, Illuminated Back-ground, &c. &c., with all the modern improvements,
All persons wishing for
Correct Likenesses
of themselves or family, are respectfully invited to call and examine specimens. As the Subscriber’s Chemicals are prepared by himself, and from the best materials; he feels confident that for correctness and durability his likenesses are unsurpassed.

Pictures taken in fair weather, and warranted not to fade.
Pictures of sick or deceased taken at their residence.
Particular attention paid to copying from other Daguerreotypes.
Instruction given in the art on reasonable terms.

N.B. Perfect satisfaction given or no charge.
Democrat Press, Meredith Bridge.

Unidentified Photographer, [Two Unidentified Women with Book], ca. 1842-43 (2007.74.1)

Unidentified Photographer, [Unidentified Girl with Statuette], ca. 1850 (2009.22.1)

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Dennis Stock, [Car Park], 1971 (2015.35.3)

Patrick Nagatani, Contamination Area, Building # 3, Sandia National Labortatories, Kirtland A.F.B. Albuquerque, New Mexico, 1989 (2010.116.42)

Unidentified photographer, [Brenda below dinosaur], 1975 (DA.3A10.1186)

Weegee, [Tyrannosaurus rex from the Sinclair Oil Corporation Dinoland pavilion at the New York World’s Fair], ca. 1964 (13269.1993)

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The Acropolis of Athens in the Evening (“The most beautiful thing in the world”)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [North western corner with foundation of the Hekatompedon, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (174.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [North side of Parthenon seen from the Erechtheion, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (180.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [Parthenon seen through the Oriental Portico columns of the Propylaea, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (179.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

Horst P. Horst (1906-1999) speaking, at ICP on October 2, 1980, about his friend George Hoyningen-Huene (1900-1968) and the beautiful evening light at the Acropolis.

George Hoyningen-Huene, [Southeast angle seen from the interior, Parthenon, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (188.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [North side of the Parthenon, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (185.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

Horst P. Horst speaking, at ICP on October 2, 1980, about his friend George Hoyningen-Huene’s “love of Greece and the antique world.”

George Hoyningen-Huene, [Columns of southern peristyle from the interior, Parthenon, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (214.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [The Pnyx seen through the western portico of the Propylaea, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (209.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

George Hoyningen-Huene, [Column of the northern Portico and northeast corner, Erechtheion, Acropolis, Athens], 1938 (212.1980) (Film: Negative, Kodak Panatomic, 6×6)

Horst P. Horst speaking, at ICP on October 2, 1980, about his friend George Hoyningen-Huene’s book (Hellas: A Tribute to classical Greece, New York: J.J. Augustin, 1943) and “the photographs in a suitcase under his bed.”

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Benny A. Joseph, Skipper Lee Frazier, KCOH disc jockey and go-go girls, Houston, 1965 (DA.1D1B.1)

Skipper Lee Frazier
A Mountain of Soul

…When an opening became available at another radio station, KCOH, the time had come for the area to receive the “Mountain of Soul” which would become the trademark of a personality who would have an effect on the lives of millions. He began to promote shows that would propel him into the recording business in a big way.
He promoted and managed the careers of such artist and talents as: The Masters of Soul, Mark Putney, Conrad Johnson, Beau Williams (who was known then as Bobo Mr. Soul), and Sugar Bear. He also managed two more groups that brought him and the city worldwide acclaim. The groups were Archie Bell and the Drells and the TSU Tornadoes. Their big hit was very popular dance tune named “Tighten Up” of which Frazier wrote the lyrics and the Tornadoes did the music.
During his tenure at KCOH, which covered more than 22 years, he either MC’d or promoted shows for James Brown, B. B. King, Wes Montgomery, the O’Jays and the Kool Jazz Festival which was presented in cities all over the country. Success in those and other venues enabled him to open and operate the Venus Motel, another venture that was really successful, and which he stuck with until the time came for him to do something else.
Frazier was inducted into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame on October 30, 2004 in San Antonio, Texas. This is one of his greatest honors. Frazier donated all of his radio memorabilia, music and music contracts to the University of Texas Music Department. skipperlee.com

Benny A. Joseph, “Daddy Deepthroat” (Perry Cain), KCOH disc jockey at record giveaway, Houston, ca. 1960s (DA.1D1B.12)

Guitarist and singer Perry Cain was born in Waverly, TX in 1925 and was very active in the Houston blues scene during the late 1940’s and 1950’s, recording a number of singles in which pianist Buster Pickens shines throughout. During the 1960’s, Perry was a noted DJ at KCOH’s Houston. He died 24 April 1975 at his Houston home. jukegh.blogspot.com

Benny A. Joseph, Remote broadcast, Gladys “Gigi” Hill, KCOH disc jockey, Davidoff Supermarket, Houston, ca. 1960s (DA.1D1B.15)

Gladys Hill (born De Quincy) radio stations like KZEY at Tyler KYOK and KCOH at Houston under the DJ nicknames of Dizzy Lizzy, Hotsy Totsy, Zing Zang or Grandma Gee Gee. Gladys had started her musical career being the female singer of BB King’s band in 1953-54, waxing then her first titles. She also was instrumental in launching the career of many jazz and R & B Houston acts like ace guitar Johnny Copeland who backs her on some of her recordings. jukegh.blogspot.com

Benny A. Joseph, Club Matinee, Houston, 1957 (DA.1D1C.16)

Benny A. Joseph, [KCOH mobile broadcasting vehicle parked at corner, Houston], ca. 1960 (DA.1DC1.1)

Texas’s Oldest Black Radio Station Finds a New Home on FM
KCOH, which proudly calls itself Texas’s first black radio station, has completed a sometimes-bumpy migration over to FM HD radio after over six decades on the other side of the dial. The station has been broadcasting locally since 1953, first on 1430 AM and then on 1230 AM.
“We are the station that gives the community a voice. There aren’t very many stations anymore that let the listeners call in and talk to actual DJs and say what they want to say, to state their case,” Beasley says. “We want people to know they have not lost their voice. As a matter of fact, it’s been enhanced, and they can hear it clearer than ever.” By Roxanna Asgarian, houstoniamag.com

Benny A. Joseph, Travis Garner, KCOH disc jockey, Houston, ca. 1960s (DA.1D1C.24)

Benny A. Joseph, Dr. Daddio, KCOH disc jockey, Houston, 1988 (DA.1DC2.1)

Benny A. Joseph
Benny A. Joseph, Houston, Texas professional photographer, was born December 10, 1924 in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Joseph’s family moved to Houston and he was raised by his mother. He attended Yates Junior High and High School in Houston and served in the U.S. Army during the Second World War from 1943 to 1945 and was stationed in England and France.
After the war Joseph attended the Teal School of Photography in Houston from 1946 to 1947 and subsequently pursued commercial photography. From 1950 to 1953 he worked with Herbert Provost, another African American photographer, and later opened his own studio in July 1958. Primarily a portrait photographer, he maintained the same studio until July 1968 when he relocated, keeping that studio until 1982.
During his career photographing the Houston African American community, Joseph shot ordinary people as well as many noted entertainers, civic leaders, and political figures. Celebrities and leaders represented in the collection include Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Barbara Jordan, and Muhammad Ali. Much of Joseph’s music-related photography was done for the Buffalo Booking Agency, radio station KCOH-AM, and for Don Robey. In assignments for Don Robey, owner and producer of the Houston-based Duke and Peacock labels, Joseph photographed such notables as B. B. King, Junior Parker, Bobby Bland, Buddy Ace, and Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown. He also documented racial discrimination for the NAACP, as well as dances, black-owned businesses, and religious activities in the Houston area.
Benny Joseph and Hattie Calbert were married in 1953 and had four children. He is a member of Phi Beta Sigma service fraternity. Joseph’s work is explored in depth in The Early Years of Rhythm and Blues (Houston: Rice University Press, 1991). An oral history with Joseph and examples of his work appear in Portraits of Community: African American Photography in Texas (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1996). icp.org

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Mamie Smith

Apeda Studio, [Mamie Smith], 1920-24 (1500.1990)

Apeda Studio, [Mamie Smith], 1920-24 (1500.1990) (verso)

Chicago Defender, November 20, 1920, p.3

“Crazy Blues,” Mamie Smith and her Jazz Hounds, by Perry Bradford, Addington Major, trumpet; Ward “Dope” Andrews, trombone; Ernest “Sticky” Elliott, clarinet; Leroy Parker, violin; Willie “The Lion” Smith, piano, (OKeh-4169) August 10, 1920, from archive.org

Chicago Defender, December 12, 1920, p.5

Mamie Smith & Company will be seen at the Avenue Theater in the near future, according to an arrangement which has been made by Manager Weinberg. The engagement will be an eight-day one, starting Sunday matinee, Feb 27. Miss Smith is proving to be the greatest drawing card in the show business, She drew close to $10,000 during a week’s engagement at Richmond, Va. The entertainment is a novel one, five class acts and her own Jazz Hounds of record fame being on the program. Chicago Defender, February 12, 1921, p.5

Chicago Defender, February 19, 1921, p.5 (photo by Apeda Studio)

The announcement of the forthcoming appearance here of Mamie Smith, the supreme phonograph star, and her original Jazz Hounds, with extra additional features, caries with it the assurance that amusement and music lovers of this city will hear the greatest jazz attraction that has even been sent on tour. The engagement here of this celebrated star will mark one of the few stops on a transcontinental tour which has been booked by the Standard Amusement Co., of New York. During her comparatively short career as a star, Miss Smith has done more than any other singer in America to popularize the genuine jazz and blues songs of the day. In her hands a song like “Crazy Blues” and “Mem’res of You, Mammy” becomes a living, potent thing, charged with a pulsing and individual rhythm which has never before been equaled by any singer. After her first sensational success, Miss Smith was asked the secret of her perfect mastery of the “blues” song. “The typical blues song,” said Mamie, “comes from the very heart and to sing it well you have to feel it. It is a peculiar and individual type of music which goes back for generations. In my opinion it is the foundation of real American folk music, much more than the Indian or plantation melodies for real ‘blues’ music has a fascination about it which gets into the blood and is certainly the most popular form of syncopation today, not only in America but, also, I am informed, in London and Paris.” Mamie Smith has been the rage in the east ever since the release of her first phonograph record. Chicago Defender, February 26, 1921, p.4

Chicago Defender, December 4, 1920, p.4 and p.5

The biggest advertised star of the record world appeared in Chicago at the Avenue theater last Sunday night. It was Mamie Smith [1883–1946]. The Avenue, a playhouse devoted to drama and musical comedies, turned its entire program to Mamie. Miss Smith fulfilled one of P.T. Barnum’s sayings, “Give the public what they want and you’ll sell out,” and that’s what she did.
Miss Smith made good with her Sunday night audience beyond a reasonable doubt. Under the most adverse circumstances she made a complete success, equal to any star that has appeared in the city. First, a good vaudeville bill, badly assorted: too many male acts, too much jazz, and a poor stage setting that showed little effort on the part of the stage manager in the attempt to give the star the proper surrounding.
Second, the public misjudged her style of entertaining from her records. One would imagine from the records that she was a of a rough, coarse shouter. To the contrary, she was a splendid reproduction of May Irwin, who made this class of amusement what it is today and what it will remain. One of Miss Smith’s features was that she rendered her numbers clean and void of all foreign dancing, “slapping-the-singer” acts, and added to her personality a good lesson in stage dressing. Her three gowns made the audience gasp.
Advanced criticism of this artist was of little value to Chicago theatergoers. While this is an incubator of all ragtime, jazz stepping and other arts along this line, Chicagoans ignored advance criticisms and went to see for themselves. The advertising and opinions that preceded Miss Smith made it hard for her to make a debut here. Miss Smith’s case on the stage is different from the story of Theda Bara. Theda stormed the world as a vamp. This in pictures alone. In person on the stage she was a failure. Mamie Smith is a sensation in records and came back and made good on the stage. Her first two numbers just “got by.” Her last number, the “Crazy Blues,” justly called the King of all Blues, hit the audience in Baby Ruth order and took a real curtain call and would have done honor to any artist in the business. Miss Smith is one of the overnight successes, and made good and will enjoy packed houses wherever she appears. Chicago Defender, March 5, 1921, p.5

Chicago Defender, March 21, 1921, p.5

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Record Players

Martin Munkacsi, [Portable record player], 1930s (2007.110.2650)

USSR in Construction, July 1935 (2012.13.24)

A portable gramophone manufactured by the Leningrad factory.

The gramophone industry that came to us after the October revolution was a handicraft industry, in a semi-ruined condition. It was only in 1924-1925 that the organization of the production began in the USSR. In 1928–1929 only about 1,500 gramophones were made, the number rising in 1931 to 15,000 and in 1932 to 25,000. During the first five year plan about 6,000,000 records were made. But both gramophones and the records were of poor quality. Their number was also utterly inadequate to cope with the growing demand. On September 23, 1933 the central committee of the CPSU decided on measures to improve and develop the gramophone industry. A special gramophone trust was organized under the commissariat of heavy industry. On the decision of the central committee the old factory in Leningrad was re-equipped and a new one built at Kolomensk, and in 1935 the output will be 140,00 gramophones. In 1937 A new factory will be ready in Vladimir. After it starts to work the manufacture of gramophones will reach 1,5000,000 annually.

Portable gramophones are very popular. in the course of a few years they have penetrated everywhere.
The people of Uzbekistan love to listen to the gramophone.
Portable gramophones are pleasant on boating trips.
Crews who are wintering in the Arctic like them.
The traditional concertina and the portable gramophone.

The collective farmers of the Kalmykov farm, North Caucasus, listen to the music of a portable gramophone in the dinner interval.

USSR in Construction, July 1935 (2012.13.24)

The main conveyor at the Leningrad factory. Assembling electric gramophones.
The mechanism of the portable gramophone, assembled in a metal case, is carefully tested.
Every part of the works is tested with the same care.
Gramophone factory, now being built at Vladimir.

Bernie Aumuller, [Phonograph], October 7, 1947 (2013.115.300)

John Albert, [Record player and radio], October 8, 1947 (2013.115.101)

Bill Wood, [Record player with television], 1966 (2010.14.17)

Curtis Humphrey, [Still life: Realistic Clarinette 84: record player, AM-FM radio, 8-track tape player; “Just Another Way to Say I Love You” by Barry White, incense burner, etc., Texas], 1976 (DA.2C17.847)

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“Orson Welles Citizen Kane”

PM, August 2, 1940, p. 18 (2007.14.64)

Orson Welles, whose man-from Mars broadcast scared radio listeners a while back, now is a movie director – at $150,00 for making, and acting in, Citizen Kane. He’s 25 and plays the role of a 70-year-old man. The cup? Tea, his favorite beverage. Photo by Wide world. PM, August 2, 1940, p. 18

PM, September 4, 1940, p. 23 (2007.15.89) (Sketch by Don Freeman)

Hollywood caught Young Orson Welles a year ago on the last bounce of a bounding career in play acting and radio hobgoblinry. The initial cost was not high, but the upkeep thus far has been tremendous, something approaching $100,000. RKO caught the check, and got for its money an adaptation of Conrad’s Heart of Darkness (never used), a photogenic Wellesian beard (never used either), but not a foot of film. This season RKO is out to get its bait back with Citizen Kane, now in production with Welles as writer, producer, and title character. It will be the life story of a composite American big-shot in politics, journalism, banking, and industry. Orson Welles’ production day starts at 4:30 a.m., when his make-up as 70-year old Kane is applied in a room littered with Welles busts of all ages, and Welles production assistants of all description. This pre-dawn moment, when Welles is strapped in the make-up chair, is about the only time they can get a word in edgewise with him. Sketch by Don Freeman. PM, September 4, 1940, p. 23

“Citizen Kane Trailer” from archive.org.

W. Eugene Smith, Actor/director Orson Welles stepping out of taxi in front of Palace Theater with neon lights spelling out “Orson Welles Citizen Kane,” New York City, 1941 (1588.2005)

“Orson Welles. Once a Child Prodigy, He Has Never Quite Grown Up.” LIFE, May 26, 1941, pp. 108-109, photos by W. Eugene Smith

PM, May 3, 1941, p. 5

‘Citizen Kane’ Rates a Furore; It’s Truly a Great Picture
By Cecelia Ager
Before Citizen Kane, it’s as if the motion picture was a slumbering monster, a mighty force stupidly sleeping, lying there sleek, torpid, complacent-awaiting a fierce young man to come kick it to life, to rouse it, shake it, awaken it to its potentialities, to show it what it’s got.
For Citizen Kane, too, is a movie. It too is a film and sound track and sets and actors and talk and music. It uses the same materials all movies use, the same stuff available to them all. It has no secret weapon, no mystery ray, no Buck Rogers disintegrator. Yet seeing it. it’s as if you never really saw a movie before: no movie has ever grabbed you, pummeled you, socked you on the button with the vitality, the accuracy, the impact, the professional aim, that this one does…
There was a time after Citizen Kane was finished, when the forces of darkness were said to be banding together to prevent its release. But now after seeing it, one feels that nothing could have bottled up its turbulent force, any more than you could hang a curtain over the Aurora Borealis or stopper a volcano. PM, May 3, 1941, p. 5

“Citizen Kane Premiere” from archive.org.

77 years ago this week, in the beginning of May, 1941, Citizen Kane was released.

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