The Calvert McCann photographs (dated 1961-1964; 3.7 cubic feet; 7 boxes) consist of 20 black and white photographic prints depicting the Civil Rights Movement in Lexington and Frankfort, Kentucky. The photographs show sit-ins at lunch counters, demonstrations in downtown lexington, Louis Armstrong refusing to cross a picket line at the Phoenix Hotel, and the March on Frankfort led by Martin Luther King, Jr, Ralphy Abernathy, Wyatt Tee Walker, and Jackie Robinson.
Above: March on Frankfort led by (from left) Martin Luther King, Jr.; Ralph Abernathy; Wyatt Tee Walker; and Jackie Robinson
Calvert McCann (1942-2014) was a teenager when he began participating in marches and demonstrations as part of the civil rights movement in Lexington in the 1960s. While a part time employee at Michael’s Photography Store in downtown Lexington, McCann began to document these experiences on a Pentax 35mm camera that he carried everywhere. He photographed demonstrations in downtown Lexington, sit-ins at lunch counters, protests at the Phoenix Hotel, and the March on Frankfort led by Martin Luther King, Jr. Much of the footage he took remained undeveloped until the early 2000s when McCann gave the film to Gerald Smith. Smith used the images in his book Black America Series: Lexington, Kentucky.
Above: Henry Jones and his younger brother leading a demonstration on Lexington’s Main Street, circa 1960s