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Cool Item Of the Week: Topsy and Eva pressbook pressbook

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Added: 10/02/2017

As many of you know, I, Bruce Hershenson, owner of, have collected pressbooks (and related movie paper like studio yearbooks) for over 30 years, and I have the world's foremost collection of such material. I thought I would share one item with you each week, the type of items you almost surely have never seen before, and which might not come up for sale for DECADES!

This week, I have the pressbook from Topsy and Eva, the 1927 Del Lord & D.W. Griffith silent pre-Civil War anti-slavery black African American comedy melodrama short ("Based on the play by Catherine Chisholm Cushing") starring Rosetta Duncan (as Topsy), Vivian Duncan (as Eva), Gibson Gowland (as Simon Leegree), Noble Johnson (as Uncle Tom), and Marjorie Daw. Note that the title characters of this movie were of course drawn from the classic novel "Uncle Tom's Cabin" by Harriet Beecher Stowe, but little else from the novel was used, except for the names of the other leading characters! The Duncan Sisters were popular vaudevillians in the 1920s, and they had a big hit with the stage play version of this movie (interestingly, they did not originate the roles, which were originated by The White Sisters in 1923), and this film version was based on that, but was not completely faithful to the stage play. It was the Duncan Sisters' first movie, even though one sister was in her late 20s and the other was 30 when this movie was made, which did not help, since they were playing pre-teen girls! Note that famous black actor Noble Johnson played the role of Uncle Tom in this movie.

Here is an image of the front cover and two interior poster pages:

Each week I will showcase a different pressbook (or related item) from my collection (so in just 25,000 weeks or so, I will have shared the entire collection with you!).

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