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Notes Introduction 1. Variety, 11 August 1906, p. 10. The correspondent adds that “the performances are of a high order, refinement predominating from the front of the house to the stage.” 2. Negro Politicians, pp. 127–28. Gosnell’s view of Motts has left its distorting mark on the otherwise deeply insightful study of Baldwin, Chicago’s New Negroes. 3. This set Chicago apart from all other major urban centers in the North, as Martin Kilson explains: “Perhaps basic to the Negro’s success at having his ethnic turf in Chicago included fully in the city-wide machine organization was the keen competition between the Democratic and Republican parties for city office, as well as the internal divisions between city and state factions within the Republican party. Unlike Philadelphia, Baltimore, and New York, where Republicans (Philadelphia) or Democrats (Baltimore and New York) had a veritable built-in majority, no such situation prevailed in Chicago. Both parties had to work hard for victory in Chicago , and when victory came the margin was small.” “Political Change in the Negro Ghetto, 1900–1940’s,” in The Social Reality of Ethnic America, ed. Rudolph Gomez et al. (Lexington, MA: D. C. Heath and Company, 1974), pp. 24–48 (37–38). 4. Crusade for Justice: The Autobiography of Ida B. Wells, ed. Alfreda M. Duster (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1970), p. 290. 5. The fortunes of Brown’s theatrical ventures are documented in George A. Thompson Jr., A Documentary History of the African Theatre (Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 1998). Marvin McAllister has published a more interpretative study, White People Do Not Know How to Behave. 6. Indianapolis Freeman, 3 February 1906, p. 6. 7. To begin with, as a conservatory dedicated to raising professional and artistic standards the Pekin had little in common with “industrial education.” Nor can 186 Notes to Introduction Motts be accused of promoting “Negro support for Negro businesses . . . as a rationalization for the Negro working classes to support Negro entrepreneurs,” in the words of Meier (“Negro Class Structure and Ideology,” p. 258). It was instead elite patronage that proved critical to the success of the enterprise. Further, the censure so often leveled at Booker T. Washington, that of “accommodation” (with deferral of social and political struggle for equality as a necessary entailment), also badly misses the mark in this case. And finally, “race loyalty” was scarcely necessary to draw black patrons to the Pekin and away from white theaters. Motts never took these seriously as competitors, and in fact routinely extended the courtesies of the house to members of the profession, both black and white, who were performing there. 8. The expression comes from Locke’s introductory essay to The New Negro, whose opening paragraph announces the arrival of a younger generation “vibrant with a new psychology” (pp. 3–4). 9. Freeman, 14 September 1907, p. 2. 10. The New Negro, pp. 153–60 (156–59). 11. Uplifting the Race, p. 11. 12. In February 1904, the show opened in Louisville. The presence of J. Ed. Green in the cast as Planter Cain signals clearly the conduit through which it found its way to the Pekin when Green arrived there two years later. Freeman, 27 February 1904, p. 5. 13. “Colored People Play,” Daily News, 24 February 1908, p. 5. 14. 23 February 1907, p. 2. The review is signed “D.” 15. “The Only Colored Stock Theatre in America,” Theatre 8 (1908): 28. 16. Editor’s introduction to Ethnic Groups and Boundaries, p. 17 (emphasis added). Barth, whose work centered on Bali, New Guinea, Sudan, and northern Pakistan, makes no mention of ethnicity in America, but his views have been influential on the thought of Werner Sollors, who does. See his Beyond Ethnicity, pp. 27–28. 17. Public Opinion (New York: Macmillan, 1922). 18. The Nature of Prejudice, p. 192. 19. Floyd, The Power of Black Music, p. 60 (emphasis added). 20. The latter comes from Dennison, Scandalize My Name, p. 423; the former from Houston Baker’s hyperbolic Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987), p. 49, which compounds the lurking essentialism in the term with a romanticized appeal to an African “pure source” as a guarantor of racial authenticity. 21. Introduction, Ethnic Boundaries, pp. 11–15. 22. Hatch, “Here Comes Everybody.” 23. Sampson, Blacks in Blackface and The Ghost Walks; Greer, “A History of the Pekin Theatre”; Peterson, A Century of Musicals. 24. Exception should be made for the careful and detailed account...


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