African American Musicians, Beatrice, Nebraska, circa 1868

Cabinet card of two African American musicians, one with a banjo, the other with a guitar, in military-style uniforms. Campbell: Beatrice, Nebraska, n.d., circa 1886. 504 Court Street imprint on recto. The two are photographed playing their fine and expensive instruments. One musician is playing a five-string banjo in open A tuning (contrary to the standard G tuning of the time) and the other plays his guitar in the key of A. 

An article advertising the "Original Hampton College Students" in Beatrice's Daily Democrat on November 15, 1886 reports that "this celebrated colored concert company will appear at the opera house for one night only, Monday, Nov. 22d. These are the only people who give a genuine negro entertainment." Though we have no indication that these musicians are Hampton students, the appetite for "genuine negro entertainment" was evident. 


Minor handling marks.

Estimate: $2,500 - $3,500
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium

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