Saturday, July 4, 2015
1910-1925 American Picnic. Photo by John Johnson. Johnson was born in Lincoln in 1879 to Harrison Johnson, an escaped slave and Civil War veteran, & his wife, Margaret. After graduating from high school & briefly attending the University of Nebraska (where he played football), Johnson found work in one of the few realms open to African-Americans at the time: manual labor. He was a janitor & a drayman, but also a very prolific & talented community photographer. From roughly 1910 to 1925, he took as many as 500 photographs using a bulky view camera and flash powder.