University of Texas Arlington

Culmer Family Papers:

A Guide



Descriptive Summary

Creator: Culmer Family
Title: Culmer Family Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1930-1993
Abstract: The Culmer Family Papers are composed primarily of photographs and color slides. The subject of the materials is career achievements of friends and associates as opposed to current events or community news. Some of the materials are newsletters on the issues of education. In spite of materials of limited value, the record of the Culmer Family is found exclusively in the black and white and occasional color picture which comprise this collection. The papers also contain historical documents about the Priscilla Art Club, the oldest African American women's club in Dallas (formed in 1911).
Identification: AR395
Extent: 1.25 linear ft.
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Special Collections, The University of Texas at Arlington Library

Biographical Note

Harold Harcourt Culmer was a black West Indian medical doctor. He was born on March 6, 1908, and was raised on Cat Island, Nassau, Bahamas (now known as San Salvador). The 5′4″ stocky man received his Bachelor of Science degree and later medical degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C. (Class of 1930 and 1935, respectively). His wife, Etta Williams Culmer, was a school teacher prior to her marriage to Harold Culmer. Born on September 18, 1914, the 5′10″ stately Etta grew up in Monroe, Union County, North Carolina. Harold and Etta met in Monroe, after Harold came there to complete his medical residency at the local black hospital. Harold Culmer and Etta Williams were married in Monroe, North Carolina, on December 24, 1942.

During World War II, the United States faced a shortage of physicians, and Texas was home to more military camps than any other state. Harold and Etta Culmer moved to Texas. Though his medical specialty was the treatment of tuberculosis. Harold Culmer established himself in the practice of Family Medicine. Unlike the East Coast, there were few black hospitals in Texas and only one existed in Dallas--Pinkston Hospital. Black hospitals were privately owned by black doctors. The doctors could not treat patients in county hospitals. Dr. Culmer, as did many black doctors, built his practice by making house calls. For the remainder of his professional career in Dallas, Dr. Harold Culmer never affiliated with a hospital. His patients were treated at home at his clinic. His first clinic was located in the Green Building in black North Dallas. His last clinic was located on Gaston Avenue, near Baylor Hospital in Dallas.

As the Culmers became more and more affluent, they travelled extensively. In 1951 they took a trip to Havana, Cuba. There they adopted a two-year old toddler, Miguel Gregorio. He was born on July 29, 1949. The child, who had been born to a black Cuban father and a white Cuban mother, had been placed in an orphanage. Miguel was educated at the all black St. Phillips Catholic School. It was located in the historic Thomas Avenue-State Street neighborhood. He attended Houston-Tillotson College and Prairie View A&M College, but eventually graduated from Dallas' Bishop College. Though the dates are uncertain, it is known that Miguel entered into three marriages. Two of the marriages ended in annulments. The third marriage was to Beverly (her maiden name is unknown). By 1993, the marriage had lasted some thirteen years, but it also (along with other matters) resulted in Miguel's estrangement from both of his parents. Miguel Gregorio was not favored in the Last Will and Testaments of Harold and Etta Culmer. Miguel won a court challenge to the provisions of the will, which heavily favored Etta Williams Culmer's relatives. Miguel survived both of his parents following their deaths in 1993. Since the death of his mother, Miguel Gregorio Culmer's whereabouts are unknown as of 1997.

The Culmer family lived at 6633 Aubrey Street, Dallas, Texas, for fifty years. The black neighborhood was referred to by some as "Elm Thicket" or "North Park," depending upon the oral history statements of old Dallas natives. The pink two-story wood frame house was located off Mockingbird Lane, one city block from the entrance to Dallas' Love Field Airport. After the death of Etta Williams Culmer, the home was purchased by a national car rental company. Court documents appraised its value in 1993 at $78,790.00. The house was demolished and was used by the company to expand its location. Much of the home's expensive furnishings--oriental rugs, an organ which Etta Williams Culmer played with great enjoyment, silver service pieces, and art work--disappeared.

The Culmers placed great value in familial relationships. Etta was the oldest of fourteen children. Harold was the eldest of three siblings--one brother and one sister, Rachel Culmer Williams. They loved pets and travelled by automobile with their chow dog.

The Culmers' interests could be divided into three categories--medical profession, civil rights, and cultural pursuits. While Harold Culmer's activities focused primarily on medical interests, the Episcopal Church and his fraternity, Alpha Pi Alpha (the oldest black men's Greek organization, established in 1906 at Howard University, Washington, D.C.), Etta's concerns were more extensive and far reaching. She was a charter member of the Dallas chapter of Links, Inc., and was historian until her death, of the oldest black women's social club in Dallas, the Priscilla Art Club established in 1911.

The Priscilla Art Club was one of the most prestigious, if not elitist clubs for African American women in Dallas, and as of 1997, remains so. The club's maximum membership was set at twenty-five. Twenty-three women of "good moral character" began to build an organization, the motto of which was, "Art and Beauty, Home and Duty." The motto has lasted eighty-six years as of this writing in 1997.

The women who were the wives of businessmen, preachers, teachers, doctors, lawyers and bureaucrats in the years following Plessy v. Ferguson in Texas, sought to create a life of gentility amidst the harsher reality of life under "Jim Crow," Texas style. The women met every Tuesday afternoon promptly at 3:30 PM. They would rotate their meetings, which were always held in a member's home. (This practice subsided after 1964 when public accommodations became available via civil rights legislation). The names of some of the original members are found on buildings, school houses and educational scholarships. Initially membership was restricted to any woman of good moral character, but later was restricted to matrons only.

The club members were firmly steeped in their religious beliefs. It is presumed, therefore, that the name of the club, "Priscilla," was chosen for its association with a biblical character who was a helpmate to her husband, a tent maker and an associate of the Apostle Paul of Tarsus.

The club's activities focused on subjects of interest to married women. Their primary focus, however, centered on the quest for refinement and domesticity. The housewives held gatherings when they made quilts (called "quilting bees"). They read books and poetry, often by African American authors and poets. They created what they considered to be artistic projects, and they presented these projects once per year.

Invitations were extended to prospective members who met the criteria of being wives of excellent moral character and who were considered members of an elite social strata. As was the custom of the day, and being one or two generations removed from the bonds of slavery, social etiquette was enormously important to these women. As a result, at Priscilla meetings the women referred to each other by their formal married names. As Mrs. Ella M. Bailey explained, "The ladies of the club were very sensitive about the fact that they were often referred to as `girl' by racist whites." Referring to each other by their husband's names reinforced the legality of their status as married women (something slaves did not enjoy until Reconstruction) and reinforced their social standing as being married to men who were on parallel status (if only in name) with white society. Formality of this nature was also in keeping with the traditions of the day.

The foci of the Priscilla Art Club changed with time. Though the original members were housewives, the Industrial Revolution and two World Wars took African American women into the workplace far sooner than their white sisters. Many even became social activists. Education, women's suffrage, and children's rights became increasingly important to the members of the organization. The changes in the club's social and political consciousness took the form of financial contributions it made to various organizations, e.g. the American Bible Society, a children's day care center, the United Way, the Negro Chamber of Commerce, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Negro College Fund, and the Progressive Voters League.

The club has produced "Yearbooks" every two years since its inception. These books list the members, motto, colors (Baby Blue and Royal Purple), meeting calendar, and addresses and birthdays of its members.

Membership in the Priscilla Art Club is for a lifetime unless a member leaves the city, is absent from three or more meetings or dies.

The club does not engage in fund raising, but maintains itself only by means of dues from the members. The social events which moved from the homes to outside locations over the years included costume parties, Easter and Christmas banquets and soirees.

The Priscilla Art Club replenishes members by invitation based upon the referral of friends within the organization. The invitation is issued only after a member has died or left the city. Some members may take a sabbatical, going on inactive status thereby becoming an honorary member. All members must agree upon the acceptance of a new member.

The club makes an effort to remain true to the founders' by-laws and constitution, however, the demands of the late twentieth century have reduced the meeting times to once monthly in the evenings.

Harold and Etta Culmer were socially active and prominent in civic and religious organizations. Though Etta grew up as a Methodist in North Carolina, she became an Episcopalian to accommodate her husband's religious upbringing. They helped to establish Epiphany Episcopal Church, a small predominantlyAfrican American congregation in the Oak Cliff section of southwest Dallas.

Harold Culmer died on February 4, 1993, of heart failure. He was eighty-four years old. His wife, Etta Williams Culmer, died on September 4, 1993, after a fifteen year battle with a form of leukemia commonly referred to as "L.L.L." She was seventy-eight. Both of the funeral services for the Culmers were held at St. Matthew's Episcopal Cathedral on Ross Avenue in Dallas, Texas. Harold and Etta Culmer's remains are interred in a mausoleum located in Monroe, North Carolina. Their estate was estimated to have been valued at about $498,104.05.

Sources:

  • Dallas Catholic Diocese, Education Department, Dallas, Texas.
  • Dallas Morning News (No dates on articles).
  • Dallas Post Tribune Newspaper (1978).
  • Interviews with members of the Priscilla Art Club.
  • Interviews with Priscilla Art Club members (Mrs. H. I. Holland, Mrs. Ella Bailey, Mrs. A. Maceo Smith, Mrs. Ollie Lee Mason).
  • Last Will and Testaments of Harold and Etta Culmer, 1963 and 1993.
  • News Articles (Sources of articles are unidentified, but probably between 1960-1980).
  • Obituaries provided by Black and Clark Funeral Home.
  • Probate Records, Dallas County, Texas (1994).
  • 1914 Yearbook.
  • Telephone Interview with Marie A. Harris, sister of Etta Williams Culmer, May 13, 1997, Palo-Alto, California.
  • Telephone Interview with Rachel Culmer Williams, sister of Harold Culmer, May 13, 1997, Miami, Florida.
  • Telephone Interview with Robert Prince, Jr., M.D., May 13, 1997, Dallas, Texas.

Scope and Contents

The Culmer Family Papers, in two legal size document boxes and one oversize box, are composed primarily of photographs and color slides. The collection did not contain documents, such as letters, diaries, or other forms of personal correspondence which would provide a more detailed view into the lives of the Culmer Family. There are, however, a few newspaper clippings, event programs, and subject specific newspapers. The subject of the materials is career achievements of friends and associates as opposed to current events or community news. Some of the materials are newsletters specifically on the issues of education. This interest would be consistent with Mrs. Culmer's interests as a former school teacher in her native North Carolina. In spite of materials of limited value, the record of the Culmer Family is found exclusively in the black and white and occasional color picture which comprise this collection. The collection also contains historical documents about the Priscilla Art Club. This organization is the oldest African American women's club in Dallas, formed in 1911. These materials are much more revealing about the social lives of middle to upper middle class African American women over the course of some seventy years. Finally, the oversize box contains a scrapbook and home movies transferred to a T-120 video tape. The home movies are random and of extremely poor quality. It is difficult to identify any coherent definition of subject, place or time in the home movies. There is also a guest book containing the names and addresses of guests at a Priscilla Art Club function in 1973. This book provided the means by which to interview and verify membership in the historic organization.

There are no means by which to identify the subjects, locations, or time during which the photographs were taken. The Culmers were reputed to be extremely private individuals so all that is known about them is to be found within the photographs and color slides. Interviews with old friends and acquaintances helped to provide some insight about the lives of the Culmers. Additionally, the review of public documents also contributed to definitive revelations about the Culmer family. These materials, which were not a part of the original collection, may be available upon request. The items are currently housed in the collection's holding file.

The time period which the predominantly black and white photos depict range from the 1930s to the late 1970s. They reflect the family life of an African American family (Probably in North Carolina, Cuba, Washington, D.C., and possibly Dallas). In spite of the fact that both Dr. and Mrs. Culmer came from extremely humble beginnings, they reached a pinnacle of social and economic success uncommon for many African Americans, and one which challenged the stereotypes of social descriptions of the 1960s. The Culmers realized the "American Dream" for most of their married lives, but also experienced the American family's nightmare as they struggled to handle the problems of drugs, addiction, the social unrest of the 1970s and their adopted son. It is, nevertheless, very poignant that Dr. Culmer, who became to the United States as an immigrant, succeeded in the South at a time when America was in the beginning throes of the Great Depression and at a time when America was its most segregated. Toward that end, only one white person--a priest--is seen in the color slides. The photos are of children in cowboy costumes, children with pets (a chow dog), what may be a family reunion, children riding bicycles, teenage girls in frivolous poses, parties, men in social gatherings and women in similar activities, and pictures of infants and toddlers (possibly Miguel Culmer). Harold Culmer was never a member of the United States military, but there are photographs of African American men (unidentified) in the collection, and one large group photograph of an African American army company. There are couples who appear to be romantically involved. They may be members of the Williams family as Etta Williams Culmer had twelve living brothers and sisters, of whom she was the oldest. All in all, the photographs depict happy times. The single photograph of a grave is laden with flowers. There is nothing to indicate the identity of the occupant or relationship to Harold or Etta Culmer.

The socially prominent Culmers were members of numerous civic and social service organizations. One such group, of which Mrs. Culmer was historian until her death in 1993, was the Priscilla Art Club. This portion of the collection (Box 2) is a testimony to the genteel lives of some African Americans just after the turn of the century. Moreover, this segment of the collection documents not only social mores, religious values, and aesthetic values contributing to the quality of life of blacks in a southern city at a time when the Ku Klux Klan was extremely active, but acts as a documentary of southern urban blacks who managed to create a social elite, a politically sophisticated elite, and an active elite that emerged from under the weight of "Jim Crow." It is a view of women in a domestic setting that does not center on the black woman's place in the domestic lives of southern whites. Most historical pictures see the African American woman as a crusader or domestic, but seldom as the homemaker who exclusively devotes her time and energies to the care of her own family and home. This is not to suggest that the economic conditions of African Americans were in any way equal to those of whites during the period, but it is to suggest that there was some manner of a stratified caste system among blacks similar to whites.

The historical materials about the Priscilla Art Club are in relatively good condition. The Yearbooks, which are very informative about the club members in so far as their addresses and amenities (i.e. telephones in 1914), give some idea of the economic status of these women. Photographs, which appear to be dated from the very late 1930s to the 1980s, show faces of the women, fashion, art projects, and events. Some of the photographs were taken by famed African American photographer, R.C. Hickman. Others who documented Dallas black life were photographers Dewitt and Bell, respectively. These photographers were often invited into the homes of the members to document their luncheons, brunches, costumes parties, and photograph group shots of the members annually. There is a biography (author unknown) of one of the founders, Mrs. J. L. Patton. There are obituaries of two other founders, Mrs. Hendricks and Mrs. Dyson. Regrettably, there is no correspondence or minutes which record the "voices" of the women over the decades. There are a few financial records in the form of cancelled checks. These documents, dating from the late 1940s through the 1950s, show an interesting change in the social and political awareness of the women. They proceed from contributions to day care centers to the Progressive Voters League, later the Negro College Fund, and later yet, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

The collection was originally found in a garage sale and purchased by a dealer, David Grossblatt of Dallas. The materials were eventually purchased by the University of Texas at Arlington on July 3, 1995. Prior to the demolition of the Culmer home, which was located at 6633 Aubrey Street in Dallas, the materials had gone unclaimed by the family, Culmer estate and members of the Priscilla Art Club. Photographs were loose, slides were housed in the boxes which came from the development laboratory over thirty years ago, and the 8mm (eight millimeter) home movies were in their laboratory processing canisters. Priscilla Art Club yearbooks were in highly acidic scrapbooks secured by rusting brads. Some news clippings were on adhesive backings in an oversize scrapbook. Yearbooks were beginning to deteriorate from lack of proper preservation. Financial records were sparse, inconsistent, and randomly unsecured in the box containing the collection.

All materials were arranged alphabetically by subject matter. The most significant problems with the collection were the inability to identify subjects, places or occasions; and, the lack of continuity in financial records of the Priscilla Art Club. Moreover, no part of the collection contained personal correspondence (as was earlier stated), which would provide insight or enlightenment as to the nature and personal behavior of any of the subjects. There are no written documents which provide a more detailed picture of the people. There are no early photographs of the Priscilla Art Club members contained in this collection. Also lacking are contemporary photographs of club members after the 1970s. The kinds of personal items which tell the stories defining the lives of the Culmers or members of the Priscilla Art Club are missing from the collection. Yet, the yearbooks do contain programs and other such notes which say a great deal as do the photographs of the Culmer family. From 1914 to 1993, the yearbooks provide some revelations as to the club's interests. The financial records, though sporadic and incomplete, show the evolution of the club's interests from concerning itself with the home to more sophisticated and timely issues of the day.

While the Culmer collection might be considered a small one, it does offer insight to those with the background in African American history to evaluate the materials against the stereotypes presented of African American life in the South.


 

Organization

The Culmer Family Papers are organized in three series:
Series I. Family Papers, 1930-1980. 0.45 linear ft. (1 document box, 37 folders). Arranged alphabetically. Primarily composed of photographic negatives, photographs and slides. The remainder of the series is composed of memorabilia and printed material, i.e. newspapers, event programs, etc. Subjects appear to be family and friends. Locations appear to be Texas, North Carolina, the Caribbean.
Series II. Priscilla Art Club, 1914-1993. 0.45 linear ft. (1 document box, 53 folders). Arranged alphabetically. Primarily composed of biographies, obituaries, news articles; club yearbooks which contain by-laws, constitution, meeting calendars, club motto, club flower, club officers, activities calendars, club committees and birthday lists. Also included are numerous group photographs of members, club projects and social gatherings.
Series III. Visual and Bound Materials, 1961-1979. 0.30 linear ft. (1 oversize box) Arranged alphabetically. Primarily composed of 8mm film canisters, T-120 VHS video tape transfer of home movies, an oversize scrapbook of Culmer friends, family and Priscilla Art Club subjects. There is also a bound guest book containing signatures and addresses of Priscilla Art Club members and guests at unidentified functions.

Restrictions

Access

Open for research.

Literary Rights Statement

Permission to publish, reproduce, distribute, or use by any and all other current or future developed methods or procedures must be obtained in writing from Special Collections, The University of Texas at Arlington Library. All rights are reserved and retained regardless of current or future development or laws that may apply to fair use standards.


Index Terms

These materials are indexed under the following headings in the catalog of The University of Texas at Arlington Libraries. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.
Persons
Culmer, Harold--Archives.
Culmer, Etta--Archives.
Organizations
Priscilla Art Club (Dallas, Tex.)--Archives.
Subjects
African Americans--Texas--Dallas--Archives.
Priscilla Art Club (Dallas, Tex.)--Records.
Alternate Titles
Historical Manuscripts Collection

Administrative Information

Citation

Culmer Family Papers, AR395, Box Number, Folder Number, Special Collections, University of Texas at Arlington Library.

Acquisition

The Culmer Family Papers were purchased by the University of Texas at Arlington. Dr. Gerald Saxon, Associate Director of the Library and Director of Special Collections, received the materials from David Grossblatt, a dealer. The materials were taken possession of by the University in 1995. The collection was purchased in its entirety from the dealer.

Processing Information

Finding aid prepared by Marilyn A. Walton, May 16, 1997.

In processing the collection, it was necessary to organize photographs and color slides by subject category and then to alphabetize them. There was no means available by which to identify the individuals, pets, places or time periods except by clothing styles or automobile models. The photographs were placed in acid-free folders, interleaved and then placed in acid-free, lignin-free boxes. Slides and negatives were placed in acid-free polypropylene jackets and sleeves followed with placement in acid free folders, then lignin-free document boxes. The Priscilla Art Club materials were methodically preserved as well. The club's yearbooks were transferred to acid-free folders with interleaf sheets, and placed by chronology in acid-free lignin-free boxes. The same procedure was used with photographs as well. The home movies were transferred to one T-120 VHS tape. The original movies, along with the transferred VHS, and one oversize scrapbook and the odd-shaped guestbook were placed in an oversize box.


Container List

 

Series I.
Family Papers, 1930-1980

Box Folder
1 1 News Clippings, 1968, 1977, 1980, undated
(9 items)
Dallas Morning News (1968) article on Esther Juliet Dyson-Priscilla Art Club charter member; Dallas Morning news article on Dr. Emmett Conrad and Dallas Independent School District (1977); Afro-American Culture Club scholarship (1979); Post Tribune Newspaper (1979); Post Tribune article on Holmer Browne, D.D.S. honored by M. C. Cooper Dental Society (1979); Viola Hyman Hinson, Priscilla Art Club charter member; Dallas Morning News article on Emmett Conrad and St. Paul Hospital Board (1980); Early Childhood Development Center and Jimmie Brashear, Dallas Independent School Board.
2 News Clippings and Programs, 1980
(4 items)
Contains a social note from Eleanor Conrad to Jimmie Brashear; Post Tribune Newspaper article on A. Maceo Smith, et. al. (1972); East Oak Cliff Clarion-Dallas Independent School District "Black Heritage" (1980); American Education Week program (1980); Dallas Morning News,"YWCA Opens Center" Yvonne Ewell, Asst. Superintendent (1980).
3 Personal Papers, 1979
(1 item)
Invitation from M. C. Cooper Dental Society.
4 Photographs-Harold Culmer, M.D., undated
(16 items)
Contains candid wallet size photographs of young Harold Culmer, circa 1940s to early 1950s; contains three black and white matte formal portraits taken possibly during the 1940s.
5 Photographs-Harold and Etta Culmer, circa 1960-1970s,
(2 items).
Contains 8×10 formal color portraits.
6 Photographs-Antique, undated
(1 item)
Contains one sepia tone 8×10 antique matte photo. Subject appears to be a 1930s graduation class of male and female graduates. Fragile condition. Identities or ownership of photograph indeterminable.
7 Photographs-Children and Pets, 1946
(4 items)
Black and white photographs of "Rusty," the chow dog and an unidentified young boy.
8 Photographs-Children, 1946
(Infants to Teens) (26 items)
Contains black and white photographs in various sizes. Candids are of young children on bicycles children in groups, young boys in cowboy suits, unidentified school boys, unidentified infants, adolescent girls, female toddlers (1950), unidentified toddlers, unidentified adolescent males, "queen and her court" (unidentified young school girls).
9 Photographs-Family Groupings, 1946, 1950
(6 items)
Contains black and white wallet size glossies of small family groups-adults and children.
10 Photographs-Male and Female Couples, undated
(7 items)
Contains black and white and sepia tone 4×6 wallet size shots and three formal portraits of women and soldiers, women and men in civilian clothes, on carriage rides and outside of buildings. The time period suggests a span of over twenty years (1940s-1960s).
11 Photographs-Men, n.d
(2 items)
Contains a single unidentified man in each photo.
12 Photographs-Military
(2 items)
Contains an odd size photograph of a military company of African American soldiers and one wallet size photograph of soldier and male dressed in civilian clothing. Appears to be World War II (1940s) or Korean Conflict period.
13 Photographs-Pets, 1945-1946
(4 items)
Contains photographs of "Rusty," the chow dog.
14 Photographs-Places, 1946, 1961
(20 items)
Various sizes under 8×10. Black and white glossies. Some locales appear to be New York City, North Carolina and Washington, D.C., et. al. sites.
15 Photographs-Rituals, undated
(1 item)
Contains one glossy wallet size of a newly covered grave site covered with flowers. The location or occupant is unknown.
16 Photographs-Social Gatherings, 1940, 1961
(15 items)
Contains many color candids, two 4×6 black and white shots from 1940s or early 1950s. One graduation (?); group settings. Other sites or occasions are unidentified.
17 Photographs-Women, 1946, 1961
(25 items)
Contains glossies of various sizes under 8×10. There are women alone, women in groups--all of which are unidentified. There are social and formal portraits, candid shots.
18 Photographs-Women and Children, 1945, 1950
(2 items)
Contains 4×6 glossy of women and toddlers. They are unidentified. Locale is unknown.
19 Photographic Negatives-Female, undated
(7 items)
Contains color negatives of children of various ages riding bicycles.
20 Photographic Negatives-Group Gatherings, undated
(4 items)
Contains color negatives from unidentified occasions. Time period is probably from the 1960s.
21 Photographic Negatives-Location, undated
(10 items)
Contains black and white negatives of Washington, D.C. and other sites. Time period is probably during the 1940s or early 1950s.
22 Photographic Negatives-Men, undated
(7 items)
Contains black and white negatives of men-perhaps Dr. Culmer with "Rusty" the chow dog pictured, also possibly in North Carolina and in Washington, D.C. There is also a photograph of a soldier and man dressed in civilian clothes.
23 Photographic Negatives-Miscellaneous, undated
(1 item)
Contains negative, the subject, locales and dates are unidentifiable, but contributes to overall picture of African American life during the period.
24 Photograph Negatives-Pets and People, 1946-1970
(22 items).
Contains candids of "Rusty," the chow dog with people (ranging from children, adults, groups, during Christmas holidays, seasonal shots, i.e. winter, summer). Black and white negatives. Odd sizes.
25 Photograph Slides-Adults, undated
(14 items)
Contains color slides of adults in interior and exterior environments. Candid shots, some posed. Some locations appear to be rural. Other shots are of holiday periods, domestic chores, and large family groupings.
26 Photograph Slides-Adults and Children, undated
(38 items)
Contains color negatives of interior and exterior candids and posed shots of children and adult subjects. Exterior show man and boy fishing, playing ball, dressed in business suits (functions are unidentified), women and young toddler aged children and infants, women and young children during holidays (appears to be during Christmas), women with young children and infants during dress occasions at social functions. Environments are public places, home, recreational and nature shots.
27 Photograph Slides-Adults on Location, undated
(7 items)
Contains color exterior and interior shots of adults (possibly the Culmers) in vacation locales, such as the Bahamas, mountain regions (perhaps the Carolinas), seaside and other unidentified localities.
28 Photograph Slides-Children, undated
(19 items)
Contains color interior and exterior candids of children of various ages in single, dual, and group poses. Boys and girls during Christmas, with pets, at parties of other children at play and at dress social functions.
29 Photograph Slides-Dr. Culmer, undated
(7 items)
Contains candids of Harold Culmer, M.D., in color. Locations are at meetings, in examining rooms, and unidentified locations.
30 Photograph Slides-Female Gatherings, undated
(18 items)
Contains candids of adult females, primarily in group shots in exterior and interior settings. Some appear to be clubs or sorority activities, graduations, social functions, and recreational activities. People are unidentified.
31 Photograph Slides-Men, undated
(6 items)
Contains color slides of unidentified men of various ages in interior and exterior settings. Some shots show party, solitary and other settings.
32 Photograph Slides-Places, undated
(41 items)
Contains candids of location sites which include Washington, D.C.'s capitol building, the White House, Supreme Court, a university campus (possibly Howard University's medical school)--the Culmer alma mater, and other locations with foreign flavor (perhaps Cuba, airplanes and airports).
33 Photograph Slides-Places, undated
(60 items)
Locations sites such as beaches, tropical climates buses, harbors, canoes, statues, stately homes, avenues with foreign flavor, campuses and buildings, airplanes, boulevards, and monuments are dominant.
34 Photograph Slides-Religion, undated
(2 items)
Contains negatives of an Anglo man in priest's clothing in front of an unidentified church, (probably Catholic or Episcopal). Location and identity of priest are unknown.
35 Photograph Slides-Rituals, undated
(28 items)
Contains color negatives which appear to be graduations, ceremonies, weddings, family reunions, funerals showing unidentified grave.
36 Photograph Slides-Social Gatherings, undated
(22 items)
Contains color negatives. The subjects are male and female in groups at various types of social functions, such as weddings, parties, and ceremonies (perhaps the 4th of July). People and events are unidentified.
37 Photograph Slides-Women, undated
(20 items)
Contains color negatives of women at fashion shows, parties, social functions, entertaining at home and in public places. Time period appears to be in the 1950s or early 1960s.



 

Series II.
Priscilla Art Club, 1914-1993

Box Folder
2 1 Biography of Mrs. J. L. Patton, Sr., charter member, undated
2 Bylaws and Constitution, 1963
3 Certificates and Service Awards, 1946, 1960-63, 1973
Contains three membership certificates from the Negro Chamber of Commerce. One certificate from the Tuberculosis Society and service awards from New Hope Baptist Church, the oldest African American church in Dallas.
4 Financial Records, 1946-1957, 1959
Contains cancelled checks made payable to: Negro Chamber of Commerce, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Citizens' Student Aid Funds, American Bible Society, National Freedom Fund, Goodwill Industries, Dallas Tuberculosis Association, Libby Benson Nursery, Progressive Voters League, Woodland Cemetery Improvement Association, The Unsighted Guild, Carnation Charity Club, National Council of Negro Women, Charles Curry Fund, and one bank book from Republic National Bank (1955).
5 Media/News Clippings, 1974
Contains clippings from the Dallas Morning News and the Post Tribune Newspaper, 1974, on members' daughters attendance at New Orleans Mardi Gras ball. There is also a mention of the club's activities.
6 Media/Printed Materials, 1969, 1975, 1976, 1978
Contains articles from the Post Tribune on a 1969 reception, an anniversary celebration for Mrs. Hendricks, a longtime member; articles in the Dallas Morning News on the club's 65th anniversary and its annual art exhibit.
7 Memorabilia, 1975
Contains handwritten note regarding the Hendricks' anniversary, invitations and printed napkins.
8 Obituaries, 1979, 1981, 1993
Contains obituaries from the funeral services of Marie Johnetta Burke, Mrs. E. B. Payne, and historian until her death, Etta Williams Culmer.
9 Photograph-30th Anniversary, 1941
Contains three 8×10 glossy black and white photographs of members. Each photograph shows a group of four members in formal dress.
10 Photograph-40th Anniversary, 1952
Contains one photograph of three members. 8×10 glossy black and white.
11 Photograph-50th Anniversary, 1961
Contains a full group formal photograph of members. 8×10 black and white glossy.
12 Photograph-Debutantes, 1948
Contains one 8×10 glossy black and white photograph of two unknown debutantes, possibly members' daughters.
13 Photograph-Members, 1947
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of large group of members. President was Mrs. McShann.
14 Photograph-Members, 1948
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of large group of members and possibly guests at an Easter Brunch.
15 Photograph-Members, 1949
Contains one black and white 8×10 glossy of members on April 18, 1949. President was Mrs. Jimmie Brashear.
16 Photograph-Members, 1949
Contains a duplicate of the above described item.
17 Photograph-Members, 1951
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of a group of members. President was Mrs. Pettigrew.
18 Photograph-Members, 1952
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of a group of members. President was Mrs. H. I. Holland.
19 Photograph-Members, 1953
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of members and their art projects on display. President was Mrs. Ira Harrison.
20 Photograph-Members and Events, 1953
Contains one 8×10 glossy of the group at Mrs. Patton's home and four photos of projects by Priscilla Art members. Mrs. Ira Harrison was president.
21 Photograph-Members and Events, 1953
Contains one 8×10 full group photo of the members on May 5, 1953.
22 Photograph-Members and Events, 1954
Contains one 8×10 black and white glossy of the full group of members at a costume ball; two 5×7 black and white glossies of members and guests at costume ball; one guest card and invitation for March 5, 1954.
23 Photograph-Members and Events, 1955
Contains one photograph of a full group shot and one photo of a small group dated April 11, 1955 (Easter Brunch). President was Mrs. H. L. Lewis.
24 Photograph-Members and Events, 1955
Contains full photo of full group shot at Garden Party. Dated September 18, 1955, at the William Green residence.
25 Photograph-Members and Events, 1961
Contains photo of small group of members at a Christmas "shower" and is dated December 19, 1961.
26 Photograph-Members and Events, 1963
Contains photo of all the members at an Easter Brunch dated April 15, 1963. Mrs. A. W. Brashear was president.
27 Photograph-Members and Events, 1960-1980
Contains thirteen photographs (nine black and white photos of members and four color shots at a Holiday Gala; projects made for nursing home residents. The photographs were taken by A. C. Bell, African American photographer in Dallas. Bell is contemporary of African American photographers Marion Butts and R. C. Hickman, taking society photographs of Dallas' African American society.
28 Photograph-Members and Guests, 1968
Contains four color 3×5 and one 8×10 glossy of members at various functions. Unidentified and undated.
29 Photograph-Members (Senior), 1957
One 8×10 glossy of two charter members, Mrs. Hendricks and Mrs. Dyson. It is dated November 20, 1957.
30 Photograph-Unidentified Members, undated
One 8×10 black and white glossy of members.
31 Photograph-Project Displays, undated
Contains three 3×5 color and one black and white glossy shots. Photographer is an African American, last name is DeWitt.
32 Yearbooks (cover and materials reflective of period).
Each yearbook contains the club motto, a greeting in the form of a poem, club colors, club flower, a list of current officers and committee members, a membership list and directory of home addresses and telephone numbers, a meeting calendar, a copy of the club's constitution, and information on the annual exhibits and member projects. Contains two yearbooks for 1914-1917.
33 Yearbook, 1919-1922
(Each folder contains three books).
34 Yearbook, 1922-1925
35 Yearbook, 1925-1928
36 Yearbook, 1928-1931
37 Yearbook, 1931-1934
38 Yearbook, 1934-1937
39 Yearbook, 1937-1940
40 Yearbook, 1941-1943
41 Yearbook, 1946-1949
42 Yearbook, 1949-1952
43 Yearbook, 1952-1955
44 Yearbook, 1955-1959
45 Yearbook, 1959-1961
46 Yearbook, 1961-1964
47 Yearbook, 1962-1964
48 Yearbook, 1965-1968
49 Yearbook, 1968-1971
50 Yearbook, 1971-1974
51 Yearbook, 1974-1975
(Contains two yearbooks)
52 Yearbook, 1978-1979
53 Yearbook, 1988, 1990-1992



 

Series III.
Audio Visual and Scrapbooks, 1961-1979

Box Folder
OS320 1 Priscilla Art Club Scrapbook, 1970-1975
Contains news clippings on members over a five year period beginning in 1970 and ending in 1975. Some articles cover relatives of club members and their activities.
2 VHS of Family Home Movies, 1960s
Contains one 8mm exposed film in canister.. The poor quality footage rarely climbs above waist level of the subjects. About 10 minutes in length. Subject, time, and place indeterminable. Contains one VHS transfer tape and one unexposed 8mm canister.
3 Guestbook, 1973
Contains attendance at meetings by members and guests. Also contains addresses and name of attendees at social functions. Ownership of the book is not noted, nor is there any sequential order in the information it contains. There is nothing to indicate the function at which guests and members are present.