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    Description

    A Marvelous Series of Ten (10) French, Real-photo Postcards Featuring Black Children Performing a Dance Entitled "Le Cake-Walk". By the 1890's, the "Cakewalk" was the hottest dance in the United States... soon to catch on when exported to Europe. There is some dispute as to how it originated, but in 1889, "The Creole Show" would feature the dance, and in 1892 the first Cakewalk contest was held in a New York ballroom. As detailed by Wayne Chapman, Associate Professor of Theatre Arts, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, the dance most certainly found its roots in "The Chalk Line Walk" as it was originally known, popular in the Southern plantations as early as 1850. It is believed to have originated in Florida among African American slaves who got the basic idea from the Seminole Indians. Many of the special movements of the cake-walk, such as bending the back of the body and the dropping of the hands at the wrists, were also a distinct feature in certain tribes of the African Kaffir dances. "Walkers," as they were called, saw over time the dance evolve into an exaggerated parody of white, upper-class ballroom figures who would imitate the mannerisms of those in the master's house with such dignified walking, bowing low, waving canes, doffing hats, and high kicking grand promenade. The idea of the Cakewalk was that of a couple promenading in a dignified manner, high stepping and kicking, mimicking high society. Some of the better plantation owners would bake a cake on Sundays and invite the neighbors over and have a contest of the slaves. Different prizes were given, but originally it was a cake and whoever won would get the cake...thus creating the still used term, "That takes the cake!" Ten items all together, each in fine condition.

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    Auction Dates
    November, 2007
    12th-13th Monday-Tuesday
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