Is there anything better than vintage photography of black people?

Thanks to the magic of the internet and all of the Flickr accounts and Tumblrs it has to offer, it’s possible to spend hours just staring at images of our not-so-distant past. One of the best sources for these images, and for a read on black America over the past few decades while you’re at it, is the Ebony archive hosted by Google Books, where you can find every issue of the magazine from 1959-2008 in its entirety.

The new Ebony Tumblr displays the photographic content from those archives — everything from advertisements to Ebony covers — in an accessible way, complete with dated captions. Johnson Publishing Company, the home of Ebony, holds one of the world’s largest collections of quality black vintage images so the photos on this tumbler run the gamut. Many of them are so striking, speak to the mood of the era, show another side of celebrities we thought we knew, or provide snapshots of black history that we’re too young to know firsthand. I’ll definitely be adding this one to my bookmarks.

Check out a few favorites so far:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ossie Davis & Ruby Dee on the February 1961 issue!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Miss America, 1980 (Sharon Wright)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The incomparable Diana Ross in 1970.

See more here.

Like Us On Facebook Follow Us On Twitter
  • Blasé

    love it!

  • THIS IS AWESOME. I actually love reading Ebony, even if it trends toward an older Black generation. I feel that they are always aware of the strengths of our past…

  • MarloweOverShakespeare

    This is REALLY awesome. Now if we can just get all our old sitcoms and films on OWN…

  • Yes, finally! I blog on tumblr so it’d be nice to see some black faces in my Dashboard.

    I’m always struggling to find vintage black images.

    I’d also like to see if someone can provide older vintage images, e.g. images of black victorians and blacks during the Jazz/Harlem Rennaissance period. Those would be particularly useful.