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THE NEGRO TRAIL-BLAZERS OF CALIFORNIA: A Compilation of Records from the California Archives in the Bancroft Library at the University of California, in Berkeley; and from the Diaries, Old Papers and Conversations of Old Pioneers in the State of California..
Los Angeles: Delilah L. Beasley, 1919. First Edition. Hardcover. Very good. "This rich work took some eighteen years to complete - ten years of research and an additional eight years in the writing. Delilah Beasley (1871-1934) published it herself in the hope that it would find a place in every public library and in the home of every African American. Although it never achieved that status, it did have a wide distribution, and was probably purchased by many of the hundreds of people named in its pages. Beasley spent much of her time, as she wrote, 'interviewing old pioneers of the Negro Race in every section of California wherever a railroad or horse and buggy could go' to learn first-hand the life they experienced during the last half of the nineteenth century. She voraciously read the many documents and newspapers in the Bancroft Library relating to Black people, and examined county files, poorhouse records, and whatever else offered information on their lives. The first half of the book gives a brief history of California as it relates to African Americans, touching on the first settlers, miners, and even the homes set up for the aged and infirm. Beasley discusses churches, including the formation of the first African Methodist Episcopal church in San Francisco, as well as education for children [...] The book's second half concentrates on prominent African Americans in the first decades of the twentieth century, mainly army officers, literary people, distinguished women, doctors, and lawyers" (Gordon J. Van De Water, Zamorano Select, #4). Illustrated with seventy-three photographs. This copy is inscribed and dated by Beasley on a prefatory blank leaf: "With the compliments and recollections of former days, Delilah L. Beasley, Author and Publisher, May 21- 1920." Tall octavo. Original orange cloth binding, with pictorial burgundy stamping. The front hinge is tender; overall, the binding is quite sound. Some minor soiling and fading to the boards, with a bit of light wear to the corners and tips; otherwise very good. Scarce.
      [Bookseller: The Book Shop, LLC]
Last Found On: 2018-01-10           Check availability:      Biblio    

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