venusinthefifth
venusinthefifth:


blackhistoryalbum:


The Black Captain Ahab | 1898 on Flickr.
Portait of Captain William T. Shorey and family, Oakland, CA 1898.

William T. Shorey (1859-1919) was a famous captain in the last days of whaling. He was born in Barbados, the son of a Scottish sugar planter and an Indian creole woman. Shorey began seafaring as a teenager and in 1876 he made his first whaling voyage.
Whaling brought him to California and he married the daughter from a leading African American family in San Francisco. In 1886 he became the only black West Coast ship captain. Known for his skill and leadership, Shorey experienced many adventures and dangers at sea with multiracial crews before his retirement in 1908.
Over time, larger, steam-powered vessels took the place of obsolete sailing ships and black seamen were forced to accept inferior employment on ships as cooks and stewards. The era of significant participation by blacks in whaling ended in 1923 when the Wanderer went aground off Nantucket, MA.

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My god—This picture is gorgeous. That little girl on mama’s lap looks like a baby doll!

venusinthefifth:

blackhistoryalbum:

The Black Captain Ahab | 1898 on Flickr.

Portait of Captain William T. Shorey and family, Oakland, CA 1898.

William T. Shorey (1859-1919) was a famous captain in the last days of whaling. He was born in Barbados, the son of a Scottish sugar planter and an Indian creole woman. Shorey began seafaring as a teenager and in 1876 he made his first whaling voyage.

Whaling brought him to California and he married the daughter from a leading African American family in San Francisco. In 1886 he became the only black West Coast ship captain. Known for his skill and leadership, Shorey experienced many adventures and dangers at sea with multiracial crews before his retirement in 1908.

Over time, larger, steam-powered vessels took the place of obsolete sailing ships and black seamen were forced to accept inferior employment on ships as cooks and stewards. The era of significant participation by blacks in whaling ended in 1923 when the Wanderer went aground off Nantucket, MA.


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My god—This picture is gorgeous. That little girl on mama’s lap looks like a baby doll!

mahader
mahader:


western history equals white mythology 
interview with artist mahader tesfai:
[i] what does this photo mean?
[mt] this photo is meant to challenge the status of history
[i] is it a western myth?  
[mt] yes, precisely. that is the question.  
[i] what informed this photo?
[mt] dialogues and readings of angela davis, edward said,  matthew shenoda, g.c. spivak, arundhati roy, homi bhabha
[i] what is  the role of third world narratives?
[mt] to decolonize history 
[i] who is the photographer?
[mt] my friend duwayno robertson


As the historian of religions Bruce Lincoln put it: “If myth is ideology in narrative form, then scholarship is myth with footnotes.”

mahader:

western history equals white mythology

interview with artist mahader tesfai:

[i] what does this photo mean?

[mt] this photo is meant to challenge the status of history

[i] is it a western myth?  

[mt] yes, precisely. that is the question.  

[i] what informed this photo?

[mt] dialogues and readings of angela davis, edward said,  matthew shenoda, g.c. spivak, arundhati roy, homi bhabha

[i] what is  the role of third world narratives?

[mt] to decolonize history 

[i] who is the photographer?

[mt] my friend duwayno robertson

As the historian of religions Bruce Lincoln put it: “If myth is ideology in narrative form, then scholarship is myth with footnotes.”

The photographer, Sarah Deragon, says,

The Identity Project is my first personal photography project and I launched it in January 2014 with the hope of photographing hundreds of LGBTQ folks in the Bay Area…This [ongoing] photography project seeks to explore the labels we choose to identify with when defining our gender and sexuality. 

Shimina (Gay Masculine of Center) shares why sitting for a portrait* was meaningful:

In addition to supporting my partner, who wanted to participate, I found myself wanting to be a visible face of color within the LGBT community. I do not get to see ‘people who look like me’ on a regular basis in San Francisco, but I wanted to let people know that I’m here. We’re here. Even if you don’t see someone who looks like me in your everyday happenings, I am here and I count.

*edited to remove possible misgendering

George Washington’s dentures, ca. 1780s

More than his teeth were false, as Michael Coard and others have documented:

Although Washington considered his enslaved [B]lack workers unworthy of proper clothing (among other items), he certainly found their teeth quite worthy, so much so that he replaced a number of his unhealthy teeth with their healthy teeth, to his mouth from their mouths. While schoolchildren often were taught and sometimes still are taught about his wooden teeth — a story based on myth, they never were taught about his “slave” teeth — a story based on truth…Instead of (or in addition to) wooden teeth or standard dentures, Washington had teeth that actually were “yanked from the heads of his slaves and fitted into his dentures… [and also] apparently had slaves’ teeth transplanted into his own jaw in 1784…”

Clarence Lusane zooms out:

The White House itself, the home of presidents and quintessential symbol of the U.S. presidency, was built with slave labor, just like most other major building projects had been in the 18th-century United States…President Washington initially wanted to hire foreign labor to build the White House, but when he realized how costly it would be to pay people fairly, he resorted to slave labor…

While professing to abhor slavery and hope for its eventual demise, as president Washington…did everything he could to ensure that not one of the more than 300 people he owned could secure their freedom. During the 10 years of construction of the White House, George Washington spent time in Philadelphia where a law called the Gradual Abolition Act passed in 1780. It stated that any slaves brought into the state were eligible to apply for their freedom if they were there for longer than six months. To get around the law, Washington rotated the people working for him in bondage so that they were there for less than six months each.

blackfoxx
Leaving is not enough. You must stay gone. Train your heart like a dog. Change the locks even on the house he’s never visited. You lucky, lucky girl. You have an apartment just your size. A bathtub full of tea. A heart the size of Arizona, but not nearly so arid. Don’t wish away your cracked past, your crooked toes, your problems are papier mache puppets you made or bought because the vendor at the market was so compelling you just had to have them. You had to have him. And you did. And now you pull down the bridge between your houses, you make him call before he visits, you take a lover for granted, you take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are magic. Make the first bottle you consume in this place a relic. Place it on whatever altar you fashion… Don’t lose too much weight. Stupid girls are always trying to disappear as revenge. And you are not stupid. You loved a man with more hands than a parade of beggars, and here you stand. Heart like a four-poster bed. Heart like a canvas. Heart leaking something so strong they can smell it in the street.
Frida Kahlo (via shiftinconsciousness)
yagazieemezi

yagazieemezi:

Get To Know: Artist André Hora

André Hora is a Brazilian/British artist and freelance illustrator whom I met in a chilly New York last year. At that time, we found ourselves in the company of Artist Tim Okamura during a personal interview regarding his popular paintings. On the rooftop of Tim’s art studio, André and I looked over at the city of Manhattan splayed out in front of us and it was there I learnt about his art. We discussed his different influences within the art world and I was so fascinated by his work that I later had to contact him for an interview.

Y: Can you tell us a little bit about your art? Some of your pieces have a distinct African flare to them. With the several cultural and identity labels within Brazil, have any of them affected you as an artist and in what ways?

André: I would define my art as narrative, especially the late works, almost all of which are telling a story, a myth or describing a day-to-day situation. On my early works we see a lot of faces and skulls – I was obsessed by the human head!  I didn’t attend a formal art school, although I learnt to draw at a very early age with my Dad (who is an architect), and since then I have attended several private lessons and workshops in Brazil, France and in the UK where I am based. I am drawn to Afro-Brazilian culture and particularly to Yoruba mythology as we find in Candomblé (a mixture of traditional Yoruba, Fon, Ewe and Bantu beliefs).  Not only because I come from Bahia, but because my great-great-grandmother was a slave. I was always fascinated by this ancestor of mine I knew so little about. So from my Portuguese, Native American and African origins, I find myself very influenced on my art by the latter – both aesthetically and philosophically.

(read more of the interview)

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

karnythia
zuky:


This is Joseph Seraphim Fortes (aka “Joe Fortes”), a beloved figure in the early history of Vancouver, Canada. He was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, in 1863 and arrived in the Burrard Inlet in Vancouver abroad the Robert Kerr in 1885. At first he lived in a tent on the beach at English Bay, finding work variously as a shoeshiner and porter at the Sunnyside Hotel and bartender at the Bodega Saloon. He eventually settled into a cottage by the beach, where he appointed himself as lifeguard, spending most of his time patrolling the beach and teaching children to swim. He became known as English Bay Joe and was tremendously popular, especially with children.
In 1900, he was appointed by the City of Vancouver as its first official lifeguard; ten years later, the City honored him for his many years of service with a gold watch, a cheque, and an illuminated address. When he died in 1922, the City held its largest-ever funeral procession in his memory. Five years later, a Joe Fortes memorial monument was erected in Alexandra Park. In 1976, the Joe Fortes Branch of the Vancouver Public Library was named in his honor, and in 1986, during the City’s centennial year, the Vancouver Historical Society named Joe Fortes as Citizen of the Century. Not bad for a guy who just wanted to live on the beach and teach children to swim.



(February 9, 1863 - February 4, 1922)

zuky:

This is Joseph Seraphim Fortes (aka “Joe Fortes”), a beloved figure in the early history of Vancouver, Canada. He was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, in 1863 and arrived in the Burrard Inlet in Vancouver abroad the Robert Kerr in 1885. At first he lived in a tent on the beach at English Bay, finding work variously as a shoeshiner and porter at the Sunnyside Hotel and bartender at the Bodega Saloon. He eventually settled into a cottage by the beach, where he appointed himself as lifeguard, spending most of his time patrolling the beach and teaching children to swim. He became known as English Bay Joe and was tremendously popular, especially with children.

In 1900, he was appointed by the City of Vancouver as its first official lifeguard; ten years later, the City honored him for his many years of service with a gold watch, a cheque, and an illuminated address. When he died in 1922, the City held its largest-ever funeral procession in his memory. Five years later, a Joe Fortes memorial monument was erected in Alexandra Park. In 1976, the Joe Fortes Branch of the Vancouver Public Library was named in his honor, and in 1986, during the City’s centennial year, the Vancouver Historical Society named Joe Fortes as Citizen of the Century. Not bad for a guy who just wanted to live on the beach and teach children to swim.

(February 9, 1863 - February 4, 1922)

afrodiaspores
afrodiaspores:

My great-grandfather, Emiliano Obret Vinent. He was a tailor in Guantánamo, Cuba, danced well, and sang in a small son band; my great-aunt remembers “Capullito de Alelí” as a lullaby. His mother was called ‘M’asunción’ and his grandmother, Teresa Maletá, had been a slave. He peppered his speech with Kreyòl words gleaned from members of the Haitian community in Oriente, but wed a Spanish-born midwife not infrequently aroused from her slumber to assist laboring women. He fathered several children by her, and by at least one beloved other.
Surrounding Emiliano are mysteries: his precise location during the last War of Independence (1895–1898); appetite for eating pinches of azúcar straight from the sugar bowl; and candid opinion of his son-in-law, the cocksure cockfighter (my grandfather, whose birthday was—or would have been—today). The way that photos of his brown face tend to go missing in my family is not one of them.

Originally posted on a May 10th, now—as then—for the kin folks.

afrodiaspores:

My great-grandfather, Emiliano Obret Vinent. He was a tailor in Guantánamo, Cuba, danced well, and sang in a small son band; my great-aunt remembers “Capullito de Alelí” as a lullaby. His mother was called ‘M’asunción’ and his grandmother, Teresa Maletá, had been a slave. He peppered his speech with Kreyòl words gleaned from members of the Haitian community in Oriente, but wed a Spanish-born midwife not infrequently aroused from her slumber to assist laboring women. He fathered several children by her, and by at least one beloved other.

Surrounding Emiliano are mysteries: his precise location during the last War of Independence (1895–1898); appetite for eating pinches of azúcar straight from the sugar bowl; and candid opinion of his son-in-law, the cocksure cockfighter (my grandfather, whose birthday was—or would have been—today). The way that photos of his brown face tend to go missing in my family is not one of them.

Originally posted on a May 10th, now—as then—for the kin folks.

Eric P. Rice explains in “Blacks on Display: The Political Economy of Candomblé,”

As early as 1974, when candomblé terreiros were still required to register all festivals with the police, BahiaTursa (the state tourism agency) published a book entitled The Bahian Orixás (Orixás da Bahia)…The book argues that the tourist was most responsible for popularizing, legitimizing, and raising candomblé up out of persecution…and the English section of the book states that with the help of the book the tourist will be able to understand all s/he might see of candomblé…
Candomblé was harshly repressed by the state throughout the first four decades of this century and only tolerated through the 1970s. Stories abound about police raids on terreiros, the seizing of ritual objects, and the destruction of temples. Many of the seized objects are still on display at the Estácio de Lima Museum (Museu Estácio de Lima, formerly called the Museum of Criminal Anthropology), next to displays of murder weapons, drug paraphernalia, counterfeiting equipment, articles used in gambling, the skulls of murder victims, and preserved, deformed fetuses…The emphasis on candomblé as a tourist attraction suggests the cynical explanation that the state saw in candomblé solely an opportunity to promote a new industry. There is some truth to this explanation…

Eric P. Rice explains in “Blacks on Display: The Political Economy of Candomblé,”

As early as 1974, when candomblé terreiros were still required to register all festivals with the police, BahiaTursa (the state tourism agency) published a book entitled The Bahian Orixás (Orixás da Bahia)…The book argues that the tourist was most responsible for popularizing, legitimizing, and raising candomblé up out of persecution…and the English section of the book states that with the help of the book the tourist will be able to understand all s/he might see of candomblé…

Candomblé was harshly repressed by the state throughout the first four decades of this century and only tolerated through the 1970s. Stories abound about police raids on terreiros, the seizing of ritual objects, and the destruction of temples. Many of the seized objects are still on display at the Estácio de Lima Museum (Museu Estácio de Lima, formerly called the Museum of Criminal Anthropology), next to displays of murder weapons, drug paraphernalia, counterfeiting equipment, articles used in gambling, the skulls of murder victims, and preserved, deformed fetuses…The emphasis on candomblé as a tourist attraction suggests the cynical explanation that the state saw in candomblé solely an opportunity to promote a new industry. There is some truth to this explanation…

Anonymous asked:

My name is Orlando Obret, same as my father I was born in Guantanamo, Oriente Cuba on October 29, 1956, I believe we could be kin folks

Mucho gusto, Orlando! Oriente would definitely be a place we share in common. I’m sorry to say I’m not exactly sure to what ancestor I owe the Obret; there seems to have been an Obret married (or attached to) a Ma’sunción, who gave birth to the Emiliano Vinent I mentioned in a post a couple of years ago. My mother was Riveron Obret before marriage. I’ve tried finding the name Obret in genealogical records to pin down the origin but have not gotten very far. Any information you have would be much appreciated. Kinfolk or no, thanks for reaching out!