An Elegiac Portrait of Jim Crow America in Black and White

At the age of 20, Hugh Mangum set forth on a journey as an itinerant portraitist working in North Carolina and Virginia. The year was 1897, and the future was bleak as the peace of Reconstruction was undone by the perils of a new evil on the horizon. Jim Crow, as America has named its system of apartheid and oppression, began, bringing forth the horrors of lynching and the arrival of the Ku Klux Klan.

Over a period of 25 years, until his death in 1922, Mangum created photographs of the...

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