May 07, 2020 - Sale 2534

Sale 2534 - Lot 345

Price Realized: $ 27,500
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 10,000 - $ 15,000
(MUSIC.) Campbell, E. Simms; artist. A Night-Club Map of Harlem, featured in the inaugural issue of "Manhattan: A Weekly for Wakeful New Yorkers." 16 pages, 16 x 12 inches, on 4 unbound folding sheets, with the map appearing as pages 8 and 9 of the 16 x 24-inch centerfold spread; folds, minor edge wear. With the original 8 x 8 illustrated wrapper printed in blue and black, 3-inch closed tear and other minor wear. [New York], 18 January 1933

Additional Details

First printing of the famous map of Harlem, which also appeared in an issue of Esquire several months later. It serves as a guide to the old speakeasies and night-clubs that dotted the Harlem landscape during the Prohibition era, which ended later that year. The Savoy Ballroom, the Cotton Club, Gladys's Clam House (a gay speakeasy featuring drag artists: "Gladys Bentley wears a tuxedo and high hat and tickles the ivories"), Tillie's Chicken Shack, and many others are shown, with little vignettes throughout of Harlem characters, such as Jeff Blount of the Radium Club, Snakehips Earl Tucker, the "Reefer Man," the "Crab Man," and musicians like Cab Calloway, Don Redman, and Bill "Bojangles" Robinson ("The world's greatest tapdancer").
The artist Simms Campbell (1906-1971) was best known as an Esquire artist from 1933 until the late 1950s, the first African-American illustrator whose work was featured regularly in national periodicals. The original artwork for this remarkable map sold for $80,000 hammer in Swann's 31 March 2016 sale, one of the all-time highlights of our annual Printed and Manuscript African Americana sales.