The photographer who rejected racism in the American south
"I did not know my grandfather but I am very proud that he was able to capture these people in pictures - whether they were black or white, rich or poor, farmers or businessmen," says Martha Sumler.
In an era that was marked by growing racial discrimination and the introduction of what were known as the “Jim Crow” segregation laws, a relatively unknown photographer, Hugh Mangum, did a rare thing - he opened his doors to everyone regardless of their race, gender or how much money they had.
His photographs are not only unusual for the diverse range of people in them but also because more than a few of his subjects seem to be enjoying themselves.
"Often at the end of a sequence of pictures, you see people smiling, laughing, throwing their heads back," explains McCarty. "These comfortable and candid poses were a real hallmark of Mangum’s style."
Hugh Mangum Photographs courtesy of David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.