Mollie Moon Photographs and Letter

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Mollie Moon photographs and letter
Creator: Moon, Mollie
Call Number: D.603
Dates: 1945-1960
Physical Description: 1 folder
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Biographical/Historical Note
Scope and Content
Arrangement
Subject(s)
Access
Use
Citation
Related Materials
Content List
Collection Overview
Title: Mollie Moon photographs and letter
Creator: Moon, Mollie
Call Number: D.603
Dates: 1945-1960
Physical Description: 1 folder
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Biographical/Historical Note
Mollie Moon (1912-1990) was a pharmacist, social worker, and community activist who in 1942 founded the National Urban League Guild, the fundraising arm of the National Urban League. Her work with the Guild was centrally responsible for helping the League become financially stable, funding their work to improve race relations, economic and social justice, and the civil rights of Black Americans. In 1942 she also began the tradition which she would build into the annual Beaux Arts Ball, a black tie fundraising event to benefit the League. Moon was the sole President of the Guild from 1942 until her death in 1990.

Moon's husband, Henry Lee Moon (1901-1985), a journalist, author, and civil rights activist, was the Public Relations Director of the NAACP from 1948-1974.

Cecil Layne was the President of the Negro Press Photographers' Association and had a photography studio in Harlem (Layne's Studio). Themes of his work include portraits and scenes of New York City and Harlem community leaders and events.

Carl Van Vechten (1880-1964) was a white American writer, photographer, and controversial patron of the Harlem Reinaissance who photographed many Black artists, community members, and civil rights activists.

Scope and Content
This small collection is comprised of two photographs and a letter.

In the first photo, Mollie Moon (right), director Walter J. Hausman. Jr. (center), and Josephine Baker (left) pose in front of a marble fireplace at the National Urban League's Beaux Arts Ball at the Hotel Roosevelt, New York City, on February 12, 1960. The back is stamped "Photo by Cecil Layne."

The second photo is a studio portrait of Moon dated Dec. 11, 1956. The back is stamped "Photograph by Carl Van Vechten, 146 Central Park West. Cannot be reproduced without permission," and "Dec 11.56. VI.pp.18" inscribed in pen, with "Mollie Moon" at the bottom in the same hand in pencil.

The letter is dated Wednesday, 2.28.45, addressed to "Darling Baby," (most likely her husband, Henry Lee Moon) and signed simply, "Mollie." It discusses news of friends and family and references the addressee's travel. Among the people mentioned is "cousin Chester," writer Chester Himes, who lived with the Moons for some time and wrote a satirical book (Pinktoes: A Novel) loosely based on their lives. A full transcript has been done and is available on request.

Arrangement
The collection is organized in a single series.

Subject(s):
New York (State)--New York
African Americans
Correspondence
Photographs
Moon, Mollie
Moon, Henry Lee, 1901-1985
Himes, Chester B., 1909-1984
Baker, Josephine, 1906-1975
National Urban League
Civil rights workers
Access
The Mollie Moon photographs and letter is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], Mollie Moon photographs and letter, D.603, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of RochesterRelated Materials
The John A. Williams papers


Administrative Information
Author: Lev Earle
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Address:
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055
rarebks@library.rochester.edu
URL:

Finding aid publication date: February 2020
Content List
Folder 1Photo of Mollie Moon, Walter J. Hausman, Jr., and Josephine Baker at the Beaux Arts Ball. Cecil Layne, February 12, 1960
Folder 1Studio portrait of Mollie Moon. Carl Van Vechten, December 11, 1956
Folder 1Letter, February 28, 1945


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