Early 1900s Black Americana Vintage Valentine Cards.
Racial stereotyping is considered socially incorrect to our modern day thinking, yet these sorts of cards, alongside thousands of gender stereotyping cards, are a part of our political and social past history.
In the early 1900s, cards such as these black Americana were designed by artists like Frances Isabelle Lockwood Brundage (1854–1937), an American illustrator famous for her ethnic illustrations.
Frances was taught art by her father, Rembrandt Lockwood, but when she was seventeen he abandoned his family and she was forced to seek work. She drew attractive and endearing children on postcards, valentines, calendars, and other ephemera published by Raphael Tuck & Sons, Samuel Gabriel Company, and Saalfield Publishing.
Despite often stereotyping races, her illustrations weren’t meant to be negative. Her ‘romance’ cards for Tuck and Sons were diecut valentine cards and postcards that dramatized, rather than ridiculed, racially diverse children. She also illustrated children’s classics such as the novels of Louisa May Alcott, Johanna Spyri, and Robert Louis Stevenson, and traditional literary collections such as The Arabian Nights and the stories of King Arthur and Robin Hood.