Item #List1707 Portrait of William L. Dawson, with Accompanying Correspondence Between Dawson and Rolla Foley, Musical Director at Wilmington College, Ohio. African-American Photographers - Music, P. H. Polk, William S. Dawson, Rolla Foley.
Portrait of William L. Dawson, with Accompanying Correspondence Between Dawson and Rolla Foley, Musical Director at Wilmington College, Ohio.

Portrait of William L. Dawson, with Accompanying Correspondence Between Dawson and Rolla Foley, Musical Director at Wilmington College, Ohio.

Tuskegee: 1949. Silver gelatin photograph measuring 8 x 10 inches, with two typed letters, signed, one from Dawson and one from Rolla Foley. Identifying marks to verso of photograph, generally fine condition. Fine. Item #List1707

A portrait of William L. Dawson, taken by P.H. Polk, during Dawson’s tenure at the Tuskegee Institute, where he served in several capacities from 1931-1956. A note on the photograph states that the photograph was sent to Rolla (Foley), the director of music at Wilmington College. In the correspondence, Dawson writes to Foley explaining that a the spiritual “There is a Balm in Gilead” has been misidentified in their programming as White Spiritual: “This is a mistake,” he writes, “This number is one of our most beloved Negro Folksongs.” A response letter from Foley is included, in which he apologizes for the error and notes the correction. A fine photograph and illuminating bit of correspondence from Dawson, whose compositions and choral arrangements of spirituals are still performed widely.

Price: $1,500.00