Group Portrait, Smithfield Lodge #145

Image of five rows of men in sitting and standing in a room. Banner held by the front row, center. Banner: SMITHFIELD LODGE #145 MODERN FREE AND ACCEPTED COL MASONS OF THE WORLD. W.M. C.C. GASTON BHAM 8-10-46. SECY V.H. MCDUFF. Date: 8/10/1946.

One of 156 black and white photographs by R. Lee Thomas, an African American photographer active in the early twentieth century in the southern United States. Thomas’ work provides photographic documentation of southern black social life, primarily religious and labor groups, circa 1946-1949. The majority of the photographs depict groups from Birmingham, Alabama, and adjacent areas. His imprint contains the caption: Made by R. Lee Thomas, Mound Bayou, Mississippi, The Oldest Negro Town in America.