Support The Christmas Boycott – 1963

In 1963, Ossie and Ruby Davis, James Baldwin, John O. Killens, Odetta, and Louis Lomax formed the Association of Artists for Freedom, which called for a Christmas boycott to protest the church bombing, and asked that, instead of buying gifts, people make Christmas contributions to civil rights organizations. I remember that my extended family participated in the boycott.  My sister and I were teenagers. I don’t remember anything else about that Christmas. The article below was printed in the Illustrated news in November 1963.

Christmas_boycott_1963 1
Click to enlarge.
Insert, Louis Lomax, James Baldwin, Louis Lomax, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee and Odetta called for a boycott of Christmas gifts.
Insert, Louis Lomax. Back row:  James Baldwin, Louis Lomax, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee and Odetta  artists who called for the boycott of Christmas Boycott in 1963.

Christmas_boycott_1963_small

And a clip from a sermon about giving gifts given on December 17, 1967 by my father, then known as Rev. Albert B. Cleage Jr.

Other links for 1963

Kennedy Refuses to Support Civil Rights Demands

Remembering 1963

Six Dead After Church Bombing – Washington Post article from 1963

On the Origins of Christianity – January 8, 1967

My father, then known as Rev. Albert B. Cleage jr preaching.  This is rather a long sermon, about 45 minutes.  He talks about growing up in the black church in Detroit with no use for religion until attending Plymouth Congregational Church and hearing Rev. White preach. He mentions attending Oberlin Seminary and finishes up by sharing a bit from an article by Dr. Harding in a religious magazine. This was just at the start of 1967. What a year was to come.  Click on the documents below to enlarge.

Epiphany Sunday January 8, 1967

Bulletin from that Sunday

Sermon Notes

Helping With the Christmas Lights

matthew 2015 xmasMy grandson Matthew helping decorate the Christmas tree.

I used all my old Christmas tree with child photos in past posts. We do not seem to have taken many pictures of children on Christmas for some reason, although there are plenty of pictures of older people and Christmas trees. Maybe the photographers were too involved in the moment.

 

For more Sepia Saturday offerings, CLICK!
For more Sepia Saturday offerings, CLICK!

 

Sermon – Advent 1966

The original stained glass window before the Black Madonna.
The original stained glass window before the Black Madonna mural was added in 1967.  It was a picture of the Pilgrims landing in America. Brewster Pilgrim Congregational Church owned the building before they sold it to us.  At one point, as I remember, they wanted to take the window with them but did not want to pay to remove and replace it.  It is still under the present mural of the Black Madonna.

 

The Advent sermon below was preached on the first Sunday of Advent, November 27, 1966 by my father, Rev. Albert B. Cleage Jr., who was later known as Jaramogi Abebe Agyeman.

 

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy

1914934_10153101829462820_8430711022798170380_nI was reminded by my facebook history that on December 14 of last year, I participated in Blog Caroling. This year there is no official Blog Caroling being organized by footnoteMAVEN. In honor of Blog Caroling past, I offer The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy played on a glass harp.

Since posting this, I found that Blog Caroling is taking place this year!  Those participating are leaving their link on Friends of footnoteMAVEN Facebook Group located here.  In order to post you have to join the group, but everybody who is on facebook can follow the links.

Olga Preobrazhenskaya as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Nikolai Legat as Prince Coqueluche in the Grand pas de deux in the original production of The Nutcracker. Imperial Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg, c. 1900
Olga Preobrazhenskaya as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Nikolai Legat as Prince Coqueluche in the Grand pas de deux in the original production of The Nutcracker. Imperial Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg, c. 1900 (public Domain photograph)

Christmas Candy

daisyturner
Aunt Daisy Turner

Aunt Daisy took us downtown to the show every summer and to Saunders for ice cream afterward.  And I always ended up with a splitting headache.  Too much high living I guess.  She and Alice would buy us dainty, expensive little dresses from Siegel’s or Himllhoch’s.  They all went to church every Sunday at  Plymouth Congregational. Daisy always gave us beautiful tins of gorgeous Christmas candy, that white kind filled with gooey black walnut stuff, those gooey raspberry kind and those hard, pink kind with a nut inside, also chocolates, of course!

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Doris and Mary Virginia Graham. Their mother and baby brother Howard are looking out of the window.

 

See Mary Virginia’s Christmas Memories here Mary V. Graham Elkins Remembers Christmas

Santa On The IRT

santa-IRT

I wrote this on February 8, 1999

It all happened last Christmas Eve. I’d had a long, hard day working at the restaurant and I just wanted to get home and soak my tired dogs. That’s what my father always said when he came home from work. “Whew! My dogs are killin’ me!” he’d say. Then he’d take off his shoes, plop down in his favorite chair and fall asleep reading the paper until dinner time.

But I didn’t start this to tell you about my feet. I wrote this to tell you about meeting Santa on the subway. First I thought it was just some joker on his way to a Xmas party. I looked the other way when he came over and started looking at the IRT map. I didn’t want to get into a big conversation about nothing, but some guy hollers out “Hey, Santa, hope you don’t lose your way when you’re looking for my house.” Course that got a big laugh. Until he turned around and said “Fellows, this is no laughing matter. I’ve lost my map of NYC. The one that marks the houses I’ve got to go to and who’s been naughty and nice.   You could have heard a pin drop in there.

(This first appeared on my other blog Ruff Draft)

Blog Caroling – Silent Night

BlogSongBookIt’s been hard for me to get into the Christmas spirit this year.  Everyday seems to bring some new report of violence, both here and around the world. This years offering for Footnote Maven’s Blog Caroling is Silent Night sung by Sweet Honey in the Rock.  It combines a version of the carol combined with pictures of the demonstrations that have swept the nation after the police actions in Ferguson, MO and New York.  May next Christmas find us closer to true Justice for all in this country and Peace around the world.

 

Carol Of The Bells – Blog Caroling 2013

"Blog Caroling logo"For the past several years I have done We Three Kings as my carol for the Blog Caroling event hosted annually by footnote Maven. I was looking for something different and found this version of Carol of the Bells.   You can find a short history at Carol of the Bells – Wikipedia.

Carol of the Bells

Christmas is here, bringing good cheer
To young and old, meek and the bold
Ding, dong, ding, dong, that is their song,
With joyful ring, all caroling
One seems to hear words of good cheer
From everywhere, filling the air
Oh!, how they pound, raising the sound
O’er hill and dale, telling their tale

Gaily they ring, while people sing
Songs of good cheer, Christmas is here!
Merry, merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas!
Merry, merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas!

On, on they send, on without end
Their joyful tone to every home
Hark! How the bells, sweet silver bells
All seem to say, “Throw cares away.”
Christmas is here, bringing good cheer
To young and old, meek and the bold
Ding, dong, ding, dong, that is their song
With joyful ring, all caroling.
One seems to hear words of good cheer
From everywhere, filling the air
O, how they pound, raising the sound
O’er hill and dale, telling their tale

Gaily they ring, while people sing
Songs of good cheer, Christmas is here!
Merry, merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas!
Merry, merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas!

On, on they send, on without end
Their joyful tone to every home.
Ding dong ding dong…

 

Merry Christmas – 1920 – Sepia Saturday #208

merry_Christmas_1920This is another card from the collection of my maternal grandparents, Mershell and Fannie Graham.  Unfortunately there is no name and no address so I have no way to find out who she is. Because it is dated 1920, the first Christmas after their marriage in 1919, I believe she was an old friend from Montgomery, Alabama sending them a card in their new home in Detroit.  I will echo their unnamed friend by saying “Merry Xmas!”

For more Sepia Merry Christmas', CLICK!
For more Sepia Merry Christmas’, CLICK!