Isaac Hathaway, Tuskegee Institute, Original Studio Mold, Booker T. Washington Carver
HATHAWAY, ISAAC. Plaster mold from the workshop of Isaac Hathaway at Tuskegee: a mold for making commemorative pieces for the anniversary of Booker T. Washington’s Negro Business League. The cast is a rectangle 9 x 5-1/2 inches; some chipping and discoloration. Tuskegee, AL, 1920”s-1940”s
Born in Lexington, Kentucky on April 4, 1874, Isaac Scott Hathaway–a sculptor, ceramicist, illustrator, and educator–became the first African American to design a circulating United States coin.
Mr. Hathaway also broke the color barrier in 1947 by teaching and founding the ceramic department of Auburn University.
He sold his sculptures nationwide life and death masks of notable African American leaders such as Booker T. Washington, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Frederick Douglass. Trained as a sculptor in Boston, Hathaway moved to Arkansas in 1915 to teach at Branch Normal College in Pine Bluff, where he introduced ceramics as the first art class at a historically black college. While in Arkansas, Hathaway made pottery and created 32-inch plaster busts and masks of several influential black Arkansans including John E. Bush (co-founder of the Mosaic Templars of America), Floyd Brown (founder of the Fargo Agricultural School), John Brown Watson (president of Arkansas AM&N now University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff), and Scipio A. Jones (civil rights attorney). Hathaway also moved his art company to Arkansas.
His 1st endeavor, the Isaac Hathaway Art Company sold small 12-inch busts, plaques, pottery, china.
The Fine Arts Commission of the United States Mint commissioned Hathaway to design the Booker T. Washington commemorative half dollar in 1946 and a gold coin featuring both Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver in 1950. At age 92, Hathaway died on March 12, 1967 in Tuskegee, Alabama.
Many of Mr. Hathaway’s works reside in a museum bearing his name in Oklahoma City & Tuskegee University’s museum. Isaac Scott Hathaway died in March 1967.
I acquired this mold from the next door neighbor of Isaac Hathaway about 25 years ago. She was one of the kindest and most genuine souls; I miss her very much.
Dimensions: 9.25” x 6” x 2”
Date: 1920s – 1940s
Origin: Tuskegee ceramic department, founded by Isaac Hathaway.
Condition: Plaster is fragile and this 1947 mold shows Chipping and discoloration, visible in the photos. Please see photos as they are an integral part of the condition report and ask any questions that you have about the item so that we can satisfy you.
Maker: Isaac Hathaway
About Us: Southern Picker Antiques in Darien, GA. is open by appointment. My partner, John and I, for 40+ consecutive years, have never lost our enthusiasm for inspiring objects and art. Without art, there would be a whole lot of days I’d just stay in bed!
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