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Standing portrait of Jessie DePriest taken by renowned black photographer Addison Scurlock on the day of the “Tea Incident,”

Standing portrait of Jessie DePriest taken by renowned black photographer Addison Scurlock on the day of the “Tea Incident,”

Photographer
Addison Scurlock
Date of Work
June 12, 1929
Medium
Photo
Credit
Courtesy of Barbara DePriest

Standing portrait of Jessie DePriest taken by renowned black photographer Addison Scurlock on the day of the “Tea Incident,”

Standing portrait of Jessie DePriest taken by renowned black photographer Addison Scurlock on the day of the “Tea Incident,” June 12, 1929. Jessie Williams DePriest by all accounts was a well-educated, gracious, and polite woman. Dressed elegantly in the fashion of the time, her look conveyed style, grace and dignity providing an antithesis to debasing stereotypical depictions of African-Americans. The mainstream press described Mrs. DePriest as a “negress” or “colored lady.” Time magazine recognized Mrs. DePriest’s elegance, describing her as a “slender, middle-aged invited guest wearing an afternoon dress of Capri blue chiffon, a grey coat trimmed in moleskin, a small grey hat, moonlight grey hose, [and] snakeskin slippers” (June 24, 1929).

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