Browse Exhibits (2 total)

Early African American Music in the Delta

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Music, poetry, education, diaspora, newspapers and the development of community within California permeated the Delta Region with a unique culture during the early years of the Gold Rush, postbellum, and antebellum years. Minstrelsy and parlor music was a national phenomenon, and exploded in the West almost as much as the mid-western regions of the United States. The West was certainly viewed as an opportunity to establish safety and economic viability for African-Americans escaping the horrors of slavery, and those who made the daunting journey from East Coast to West Coast were not met with open by any means. As thoughtfully articulated by Hans Christian Andersen,  “Where words fail, music speaks.” This rings true as the black community established their home in the San-Joaquin and Delta regions during the late 19th Century.

To View the Scalar exhibit, click here.

Photographic Legends of the Delta


California has always had a rich artistic history with its photographers at the forefront of creativity. People came from all over the country to try their hand at mapping out California through their images, spreading the news of beautiful cities, towns, and wilderness to the rest of the United States, and even internationally, as early as 1859.

It was these individuals that allowed areas like Stockton, Sacramento, and Yosemite Valley to become well-known, although not all of these men and women became well-known themselves. While Carleton Watkins established himself as the favorite Yosemite Photographer and John Spooner became popular throughout all of Stockton, men like Charles Weed and Richard Yoshikawa were forgotten. 

Regardless of the fact that some of these names are not remembered well, these individuals all contributed greatly to the artistic legacy of California, making the state an desired destination early on and establishing themselves as legends through their photographs.