Scottsboro Mothers [photoprints from 1934 negative]
Scurlock, Addison N. 1883-1964
Scurlock, Robert S [Saunders] 1917-1994
Hamilton, Julia West
3 prints, A-C: Silver gelatin on resin-coated paper, 8" x 10", unmounted
3 prints, D-F: Silver gelatin on fiber-based paper, 8" x 10", unmounted
from 1934 negative
A version of this photograph was printed in the national edition of the Afro American on May 19, 1934 with the caption, "Four of the Alabama mothers who were greeted by Mrs. Julia West Hamilton (center) chairman of the board of directors of the Phyllis Wheatley Y.W.C.A., as they arrived at the D.C. Y where they stayed until arrangements were made to see Marvin H. McIntyre, secretary to President Roosevelt. Left to right, Ruby Bates, white, Mrs. Mayme Williams, Mrs. Viola Montgomery, Mrs. Julia W. Hamilton, Mrs. Janie Patterson and Mrs. Ida Norris. The mothers are seeking the aid of President Roosevelt in an effort to save their sons lives." The image was taken May 13, 1934 at the Phyllis Wheatley YWCA, 901 Rhode Island Ave. N.W/, Washington. Bates was an accuser of the "Scottsboro Boys" who recanted, Williams, Montgomery, Patterson and Norris were mothers to five of the accused. Prints probably made by Robert S. Scurlock much later, ca. 1960s-1970s? Caption and reproduction of photograph from the Baltimore Afro American provided by Craig Simpson after Pro Quest search.
Six women standing in room. Ink caption on verso: "Mrs. Julia West Hamilton prominent Washington civil rights member and pres. of Phyliss [sic] Wheatley Y.W.C.A. welcomes the 'Scottsboro,' Alabama mothers w/ Ruby Bates, who recanted her accusation of rape by the Scottsboro boys. Case was fought all the way to Supreme Court where freedom eventually was granted." Ruby Bates is the white woman at the left. The RC paper prints have borders, but the fiber-based prints are borderless.