Race and Place Newspapers

The Reflector

Newspaper Information
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Date of Publication: September 16, 1933 (Wednesday)
Frequency: weekly
Article Transcripts

Page 1

Column 01
The Result of Confidence

Transcript of Article

Thru the wisdom and initiative of President Roosevelt this nation is experiencing a phenomenal change in its affairs.

The New Deal has, and is, working wonders in certain sections of the country, however, in this particular section, few of our group have been favorably affected by it. Nevertheless, it goes to show what a people can do when they have confidence in themselves and their leader. Confidence begets unity; unity begets strength. Combine confidence, unity and perseverance and we will eventually attain success.

If ever a race did need a New Deal the Negro does. In order to reach our goal, in order to get some semblance of our share of this much heralded New Deal, our first step should be to shuffle our "Deck of Affairs," deal our "Uncle Tom" type of leaders to the discard and select a few real men; men who will not fight for personal aggrandisement but who will have the welfare of the race at heart. With such leaders it would be our duty to unite to a man behind them in this battle for rights; to use our most formidable weapon--the ballot; to aid those in office who aid us and to severely rebuke those who fail us. In business the employer whose work is against the success of the business, so should it be in politics. Remember the saying, "God helps those who help themselves". Therefore, since God has made man in His own image, it is probable that some of them will be God-like enough to help us--but, first, let's help ourselves.

Editor's Note: We received six articles discussing the values of community cooperation through organization. Space does not allow us to use all of the work we received this week but we highly appreciate the spirit of the readers that submitted manuscripts. It is gratifying for any newspaper to learn that its public attitude is akin to its policy. With the chasm between press and public bridged by mutual understanding a fundamental aim of journalism is realized.

Summary of Article
An article about the New Deal's implications for African Americans.

Column 02
The Negro Problem and the Negro Press

Transcript of Article

We have heard much talk about Race Problems. It would take most of the space in any standard size Journal to outline the various so called race problems as classified by white and negro theories; so any attempt at such a lengthy procedure would certainly be an unwise step for us to make, and furthermore we think it unnecessary.

We believe that the one and only problem confronting the American Negro is to find effective methods of proving to the world that he is a different being from what he was years ago. When he has proven himself to be different then the universal attitude towards him will be different.

Having analyzed our problem, let us look at our PRESS and note the "important" part it plays in helping to solve the problem. An upstate Weekly prints the details of a free love affair that involves a prominent minister--This is headline news for a month but affords a "black-eye" to the entire ministerial profession. A Western paper hears false rumors of disturbed financial conditions of a large Negro insurance firm; long winded stories are featured, circulation for the paper increases, confidence in the company decreases, the company is forced into bankruptcy--AND faith is shaken in Negro business men. A large Southern Weekly ventured to prove through its editorial pages that the late Booker Washington was all wrong when he said that educated Negroes did not commit crimes. So College Negroes that had gone to the electric chair and College Negroes serving prison terms were all named and their pictures adorned the front page. Such a show of Journalistic ignorance did its bit to give Negro Education a "push" downward.

Of course all Negro papers are not guilty of this style of Journalism but of the 176 Negro papers published in America, those refraining from the style are sadly in the minority. Printing all of that as news is a little unwise when one considers our problem. For the morbid view of Negro activity not only gives our white well wishers the wrong impression but it leaves the Negro reader in pessimistic frame of mind. Absolute proof that we are different will be difficult until we are blessed with more trained Negro newsmen, who can see the folly of printing vivid accounts of lynchings or startling lies about other incidents that will kindle racial hatred and disrepect. Negro Journalism needs men who will put the cause ahead of circulation. Until such men are found the Negro press will ACCOMPLISH very little in solving THE NEGRO PROBLEM.

Summary of Article
Asserts that the "one and only problem confronting the American Negro is to find effective methods of proving to the world that he is a different being than he was years ago," and that the Negro press has an important role in solving it.

Column 3
Negro Criminality

Transcript of Article

This present administration promises to wage a uniform war on national crime. Mr. Cummings, Attorney General, told the American Bar Association that Convened in Grand Rapids, last week, that one of the major movements of this administration would be crime prevention.

Now one cannot well mention crime without mentioning the Negro because records of ten states prove that the higher percentage of crime is committed by Negroes. Of course as scholars have pointed out, there are reasons for these facts. The Negroe's present environment, his past history and the high percentage of illiteracy that prevails are all logical reasons for the alarming increase of crimes committed by Negroes. An interesting point to note, however, is that the majority of the crimes committed by Negroes occur within the race. This leads us to conclude that there is another reason for this high percentage of crime--Justice seems asleep when the crime involves all Negroes and of course the Negro criminal is tempted to increase his activity, knowing that the sentence will be light or his case shall be dismissed after the trial has amused the court officials.

This is a loose screw that the average community may do well to tighten up before even thinking of a "national police" or "International Scotland Yard". Our officials must be men able to see the importance of crime prevention among Negroes. As it is, if a Negro murders another Negro, the sentence is usually 3 to 7 years, rape cases 5 to 9 months, while assault and battery charges are usually dismissed with light fines. So the Negro that is criminally inclined goes on his savage way, killing and raping his fellowman, disgracing his race and handicapping its progress, all because Justice has not yet realized that severe punishment is the only PREVENTIVE OF ANY CRIME.

Summary of Article
Assertion that the American justice system does not punish black on black crime severely enough.

Page 2

Column 01
Weekly Short True Story

Transcript of Article

About five years ago I worked as road man for a large negro insurance company. My job kept me on the go most of the time. One evening I had engine trouble, thirty miles from town, and since it was getting dark I decided to walk to the nearest farm house to get food and shelter for the night. It must have been 7 P.M., but it was in November and of course it was fully dark. I took out my brief case and hand bag, then locked the car and started up the road. I was a little hungry and stiff too after so many hours of driving, but the moon and that freshness of the night gave me new life and I found myself trudging up a strange North Carolina road, brief in one hand and hand bag in the other, just as happy and carefree as a school boy on his way to see his girl. I walked about three miles before I saw a house. Then just as I turned around a short bend in the road I could see the faint gleam of light stealing from beneath a window shade that was partly drawn at a side window. The house looked to be a very small and humble one from a distance, but as I came close, I noticed that it was quite a large building. Knowing by this time that white people lived in the home I, of course started towards the back, intending to ask for some kind of shelter and food or directions that would carry me to same. When I opened the side gate that led to the back yard I heard a mighty bark and could see by the moonlight that a heavy chain was the only thing that had saved me from the well developed jaws and perfectly sound teeth of a large white bull dog.

Shortly after the bark I heard the front porch light button click and thinking that may be an angry planter was coming with his gun I yelled out my name, my color, my business, my home town, and my desires for food and shelter. A soft voice answered me. "Come to the front porch so that I may see you." Still nervous I walked around to the porch and nearly lost my balance at what I saw. The most beautiful copper colored woman stood on the porch. She had very large eyes and her long black hair hung loosely about her head, making her look very much like an Indian maiden standing there in the moonlight.

She questioned me several minutes, then told me to come inside and make myself at home. I went directly to my room and she brought food there. I was so tired I did not even bother to write the customary letter to the home office. I undressed and in a few seconds was ready for sleep. Then suddenly sleep left me; I began to think about the lady, just how beautiful she was; wondered who she was and a thousand thoughts about her made me wide awake in a little time. I was just trying to forget this strange lady when I heard a faint tap, then a pause, then a louder rap. My God, I nearly jumped out of bed. I stammered, I cursed, I, I er--finally said "come in". And there she stood gowned in a gorgeous silk sleeping outfit. She stood for a moment as if waiting to see what I was going to say; then she said, "Do you have room in your bed for another?" I turned hot, I turned cold, I turned all of the colors, then I could feel large beads of perspiration breaking out on my forehead. I stuttered, I tried to talk but words failed me.

"Oh that is all right," she said, "if you would rather not have company in your room; you see another lodger has just come in and since he is an insurance man too, I thought you two would like to be together."

Summary of Article
A narrative about a Charlottesville insurance salesman's strange trip out of town.

Column 03

Transcript of Article

Why rob him of his Playthings--O Life?
He's but a Child.
Why make him a slave of real things?
Let him live his little while.
Why take away his Pleasures, O World?
He's but a Youth;
Why need you try to shield from him,
All understanding truths?
Why envy his Ambitions, O Fate?
He's just a man.
He makes one step and loses two
Can you not understand?
Why rob him of his Idleness, O Death?
He's just an Aged Soul;
Life took his Toys, World stole his Joys
And Fate envied him his Goal.

Summary of Article
A reflective poem about the difficulty of life's progressive stages, from cradle to grave.

Page 3

Column 01,02
Society Notes of Charlottesvillians

Transcript of Article

Mrs. Catherine Saunders of Brooklyn, N. Y. is the house guest of Mrs. Frank Johnson of Eighth St.
Mr. William Lankford left this city several days ago for Cincinnatti, Ohio, where he will attend school the coming session.
Mrs. Lucille Jackson spent the weekend in Staunton, Va. She is now visiting Mrs. Nannie Preston of Fifth St., N. W.
Mrs. J. Dewis is the guest of Mrs. E. C. Whitlock of Fifth Street.
Mrs. Sadie Swift of Washington, D. C. is visiting her mother in Shadwell, Va.
Miss Sadie Meade of Gordon Ave., for the past three weeks visited relatives and friends in Waynesboro and Lexington.
Sampson's Happy Pals entertained their many admirer from station W. E. H. C. last Monday afternoon, with thirty minutes of pleasing dance music. This outfit of all local musicians is rapidly coming into prominence under the management of Teddy Chisolm and the direction of Saxaphonist Earl Sampson.
Miss Mary Washington, who has been visiting her mother, Mrs. Jennie Washington on Preston Ave., has returned to Hartford, Conn.
Mr. Charlie Scott of Tenth Street is quite ill.
Mrs. Georgia Reed, who has been in Chatham all summer, has returned to this city.
Mr. and Mrs. Humphrey Michie of Dice St, entertained in honor of Miss Edna Johnson, French teacher in the Roosevelt High School in Gary, Ind. Miss Johnson was recently elected National Secretary of the Delta Sigma Theta Sororiety.
Mrs. Carrie Byers who has been quite ill at her residence on Seventh Street is improving.
Mr. and Mrs. Tanner Slaughter recently motored to Philadelphia and Manassas.
Mrs. Caroline Flood of Oak St. returned last week from a visit with relatives in North Carolina.
Mrs. Irma Carter entertained the "Smarter Set", at her residence on Sixth Street last night.
Mrs. Ophelia Fields, who has been visiting her parents all summer has returned to this city.
Mr. John L. Holmes of Philadelphia, Pa. was the recent guest of his sister, Mrs. C. N. Cary of Ridge Street.

Summary of Article
Various local announcements detailing activities of Charlottesville's black community, from higher education to visiting out of town relatives, and local musical events.

Column 02
Tittle Tattle

Transcript of Article

The hottest bit of gossip runs like this: A certain Mr. and Mrs. were "high balling" with a young and single Romeo who wisely tried to "high ball" the Mr. into a deep sleep. Well after taking on quite a few, the Mr. did doze off. Then Romeo took Mrs. by the hand and started for the door. Said Mr. in an alcoholic hick, "say, gimme another shot before yo'all go out there".

Honest, Zeke, that "TREES" is just your number. If you don't believe it, ask----? about the other night at the concert.

Mr. Booker we certainly enjoyed your piano solo last Thursday over W. E. H. C. When can we expect another?

To the couple in the coupe that parked for one hour last Friday night down on Preston Ave.--watch your step. I played the figures on the license plate and if I strike, boy, O boy, what publicity, won't you get!!

Awful sorry Mr.-- we received your letter but we cannot mention names unless permission is granted. How did you manage to know about the two youngsters out on Garth road after 2 A.M. last Thursday morning?

Tis whispered that a certain romantic gent, who has a habit of playing his guitar and singing songs in the street late at night--left the "heights" in a gallop one night last week.

Now don't tell that I told, but a certain salesman was interrupted in midst of his "sales" talk by the head of the house. Do you think that boy was unnerved? No, sir--he just calmly said, glad to see you Mr.--did your wife tell you about the policy I want to sell you?

Summary of Article
A humorous series of rumors, from clandestine affairs to cheating at cards, that detail the racy happenings in Charlottesville without revealing the names of those involved.

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