Jim crow laws and dating
Rosa Washington Riles -- Aunt Jemima born in Brown County By T. Although, the character of Aunt Jemima has been often criticized for its stereotypical portrayal of African-Americans, Rosa remains one of Brown County's most beloved daughters.
"Aunt Jemima" was born in 1901 as Rosa Washington near Red Oak, Brown County, Ohio. She was employed as a cook in the home of a Quaker Oats executive and went out for pancake demonstrations at her employer's request.
In the beginning of Rosa Washington's career as Aunt Jemima, the pancake mix was packaged and sold in one-pound covered cardboard cartons.
At that period her portrait covered one entire side of the carton.
The Jim Crow Museum is worth studying for anyone who wants to understand propaganda, and it remains relevant today.
Although overt racism is less acceptable today than it was in the past, the museum includes many recently-created items, often with a harder, more hostile edge than its older items. Brutally racist items are readily available through Internet auction houses, most notably, e Bay.
These objects, with racist representations, both reflected and shaped attitudes towards African Americans.
Last week I was invited to give a talk about free speech at Ferris State University in Michigan.
Much to my pleasure, I discovered that one of the professors at Ferris is an old colleague, Dennis Ruzicka, who was a fellow reporter 20 years ago when we both worked for a small-town, daily newspaper in Wisconsin.
However, she remains an example of the "mammy" stereotype that has been used in advertisements for household items including foods, detergents, planters, ashtrays, sewing accessories, and beverages.
Viewing these images can be disturbing and enlightening at the same time, and Ferris State University is providing a public service by making them available.