R. Lee Thomas


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Creation Date



Image of two rows of men and women sitting and standing in a room. Two women in the front row are holding a banner. Banner: NATIONAL LUNCH EMPLOYEES 3.4.48. MEMPHIS TENN. Date: 3/4/1948. 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.

Rights Statement

EWI681 A4 2561.jpg (852 kB)


Eartha M.M. White Collection; Thomas, R. Lee (Photographer) -- Photograph collections; African American photographers -- Mississippi -- Mound Bayou -- History -- 20th century – Archives; Photographers; Black -- Mississippi -- Mound Bayou -- History -- 20th century – Archives; African American professional employees -- Tennessee -- Memphis -- History -- 20th century -- Pictorial works; images