Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    [Marian Anderson]. Alain Locke. The Negro and His Music. First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author to Marian Anderson. Original cloth. Very good.

    More Information:

    Presentation copy, inscribed by the author to legendary opera singer, Marian Anderson on the front free endpaper: "For Marian Anderson/in deep appreciation and/friendship/Alain Locke/1939". Octavo. 142 pages. Publisher's full printed paper boards. Spine toned, some edgewear, some offsetting to title-page. Very good. This title wasn't issued with a dust jacket.

    The volume traces African-American music from slave spirituals through Ragtime and Jazz. In the chapter on "Negro Musicians To-Day" Locke highlights Marian Anderson as one: "Who has now achieved international fame as one of greatest voices of this generation" (page 124). The date of Locke's inscription, 1939, and Locke's academic position in Washington, leads us to consider that the book may well have been presented to Marian Anderson at the time of her historic Easter Day concert at the Lincoln Memorial.

    Alain Locke (1885-1954) was an American writer and philosopher. He was Professor of Philosophy and chairman of the department at Howard University until his retirement in 1953. He is acknowledged as the "Philosophical Architect" and "Dean" of the Harlem Renaissance--that cultural flowering associated with the "New Negro" movement of 1919-1934. Locke edited "The New Negro: An Interpretation of Negro Life" (1925) which was acclaimed as the first "national book" of African America.

    Marian Anderson (1897-1993) was a contralto and one of the most celebrated American signers of the twentieth century. Most of her singing was in concert and recital venues with many of the greatest orchestras in the world. Anderson's fame as an artist shared the spotlight with her renown as an important figure in the black struggle to overcome prejudice in the performing arts. In 1939 the Daughters of the American Revolution refused her permission to sing to an integrated audience in Constitution Hall. With the assistance of Eleanor Roosevelt and the President, Marian Anderson performed at a critically acclaimed open air concert on Easter Sunday April 9, 1939, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    6th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 15
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 379

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $200,000 (minimum $14), plus 20% of any amount between $200,000 and $2,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $2,000,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 April 17 Featuring the Michael Ward Collection Americana & Political Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    The department director has the heart of a true and highly knowledgeable collector with the business acumen of someone who has been not only successful but has decades of an impeccable track record
    David Greenburg,
    Chicago, IL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search