African Americans

“I haven’t seen an honestly prejudiced person yet.” Ending segregation at Lincoln’s public swimming pool

Jesse Ishikawa and Rev. Trago T. McWilliams

Joseph Ishikawa came to Nebraska from a Colorado internment camp during World War II. As a city employee in 1946 he challenged a longstanding policy barring African Americans from the municipal pool. When a multiracial coalition pressured city leaders, officials claimed they didn’t support the rule… even as they resisted changing it.

Ann Lowe and the Intriguing Couture Tradition of Ak-Sar-Ben

John Falter Jazz

One of the most interesting things I’ve discovered going through our John Falter collection in the last few years is how and how much of his personal interests, friends, and environs manifested themselves in his art.  Jazz is a great example.  Falter loved jazz from an early age and was a talented self-taught musician (clarinet and piano to be sure–perhaps even other instruments).   As a teen in Falls City he played in a band with George “Pee Wee” Erwin, who went on to a successful career as a jazz trumpeter.

The jazz theme appears in his teenage sketch/scrapbook . . .

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