BY THE WAY, BY CARMEN LEVYмGREEN
BY THE WAY,
BY CARMEN LEVY-GREEN
JOSEPHINE BAKER (June 3, 1906 – April 12, 1975) was born in Missouri,
but found major success as a dancer and entertainer throughout
Europe, particularly France.
LOUISE BEAVERS (March 8, 1902 – October 26, 1962) was often cast
in stereotypical mammy and slave roles, but is best known for her
three-dimensional and heart-breaking portrayal of Delilah in Imitation
of Life (1934).
THERESA HARRIS (December 31, 1906 – October 8, 1985) was cast in
a number of parts thought to be ahead of their time, but following the
enforcement of the Hays Code in 1934 she was reduced to playing
marginal maid roles.
INA RAY HUTTON
INA RAY HUTTON (March 13, 1916 – February 19, 1984) led a successful
career as a bandleader, and managed to keep her black heritage a
secret her entire life.
HATTIE MCDANIEL (June 10, 1895 – October 26, 1952) was the first
African American to win an Academy Award for her role as Mammy
in Gone with the Wind (1939).
NINA MAE MCKINNEY
NINA MAE MCKINNEY (June 13, 1913 – May 3, 1967) is thought to be
the first African American actress cast in a lead role in a mainstream
Hollywood film (Hallelujah! 1929).
BUTTERFLY MCQUEEN (January 7, 1911 – December 22, 1995) was best
known for playing Sissy in Gone with the Wind (1939).
EVELYN PREER (July 16, 1896 – November 27, 1932) was a beloved film
and stage actress, who often worked with African American filmmaker
BESSIE SMITH (April 15, 1894 – September 26, 1937) was a popular
singer in the 1920s and 30s, known by some as “Empress of the Blues.”
MADAME SUL-TE-WAN (March 7, 1873 – February 1, 1959) Her film
career began in the blatantly racist Birth of a Nation (1915), but she went
on to work with legendary directors Preston Sturges and Otto Preminger.
FREDI WASHINGTON (December 23, 1903 – June 28, 1993) was a film
actress who faced disapproval from white and black fans alike with
her green eyes and light complexion.
MILDRED WASHINGTON (March 16, 1905 – September 7, 1933) was
best known for her role in Hearts of Dixie (1929), one of the first
Hollywood films with an entirely African American cast, and as a sassy
and sexy maid in the pre-Code film Torch Singer (1933).
ETHEL WATERS (October 31, 1896 – September 1, 1977) was a blues,
jazz, pop, and big band singer, as well as a critically acclaimed actress.