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Candy Sam Albumen Print on Album Page, Yale University, 1865

George Kendall Warren: New Haven, Connecticut, 1865. Albumen photograph, 5.25 x 7.25 in., mounted to 8.75 x 11.5 in., of an African American man seated in an interior space holding a basket and displaying the contents of an open box. He wears a dark suit, hat, and a small hoop earring in his left ear.

Theodore Ferris, also known as "Candy Sam," was a blind seller of confectionery on the campus of Yale University during the second half of the nineteenth century. His basket typically housed apples, while he kept an assortment of candies in the flat box. The presence of African American staff at elite eastern universities in the 19th century is well documented. In photographic history, however, no such presence was better documented than that of Candy Sam. His likeness was included in select class albums over a span of nearly thirty years. 

George Kendall Warren (American, ca 1824-1884) had worked primarily as a photographer of celebrity portraits prior to the Civil War but transitioned exclusively to university photography at the war's onset. He opened a studio in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1863 and captured portraits of students, faculty, and staff, as well as campus architecture and scenery for Brown, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Rutgers, Williams, and Yale.

Condition:

Light toning. Contemporary pencil notations on verso.

Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium
$1,625
02/20/2020

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