The Ikettes - Venetta Fields, Robbie Montgomery and Jessie Smith in New York City circa 1965. The women would later leave Ike Turner and become “The Mirettes.” Yes, that is Ms. Robbie from “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” in the middle. Photo by James Kriegsmann/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images. 

The Ikettes - Venetta Fields, Robbie Montgomery and Jessie Smith in New York City circa 1965. The women would later leave Ike Turner and become “The Mirettes.” Yes, that is Ms. Robbie from “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” in the middle. Photo by James Kriegsmann/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images. 

Esther Rolle (1920-1998) and Bern Nadette Stanis go over a “Good Times” script together in 1975. Photo: Isaac Sutton of Ebony.

Esther Rolle (1920-1998) and Bern Nadette Stanis go over a “Good Times” script together in 1975. Photo: Isaac Sutton of Ebony.

“My brother and I called her Aunt Reesie, her friends called her Reesie. She worked hard on her acting career while supporting herself working in the Post Office all those years of workshops and off-off broadway plays paid off when she was picked as one of the original members of the Negro Ensemble Company. This led to movies and a part in the original Broadway play the WIZ. I really miss her because she was the one member of my family who seemed to understand me and had faith in me.”

This #myVBG on Clarice Taylor (1917-2011) was submitted by Tripp Taylor. I’m going to take a wild guess that you recognize her from later in her career on a very popular classic television show.

My brother and I called her Aunt Reesie, her friends called her Reesie. She worked hard on her acting career while supporting herself working in the Post Office all those years of workshops and off-off broadway plays paid off when she was picked as one of the original members of the Negro Ensemble Company. This led to movies and a part in the original Broadway play the WIZ. I really miss her because she was the one member of my family who seemed to understand me and had faith in me.”

This #myVBG on Clarice Taylor (1917-2011) was submitted by Tripp Taylor. I’m going to take a wild guess that you recognize her from later in her career on a very popular classic television show.

My father, Erskine Butterfield, was a musician in Newark, NJ during the 1930s-1950s. He is credited with helping to create what is known as “Cocktail Music.” He had his own weekly radio program atop Bamberger’s Department Store in downtown Newark at WOR radio. One of his guests was a then unknown singer, Miss Lena Horne. He also recorded for the Decca and New Brunswick labels, and was a protege of Willie “The Lion Smith”, because he had a strong left hand; he played and composed Boogie Woogie music.”

I am so pleased and impressed with the submissions to #myVBG! We have beautiful mothers, grandmothers, aunts, family friends and fathers like Jacqueline Butterfield’s father, Erskine Butterfield. Jacqueline’s note and photo of her dad on #myVBG made my “Nichelle’s Picks” page.

I would love to see your family and friends on on #myVBG. Upload your photos at http://myvbg.com/ with her name, city, date/location of photo, a fun VBG-ish fact about her with #myVBG and #vbgbook. I am selecting a few pictures on the “Nichelle’s Picks” page but really, every submission is my “favorite.” Thank you!

Circus dancers, 1930s. 

(via lascasartoris)

The beautiful Whitney Houston (1963-2012) was born 51 years ago today in Newark, New Jersey. This photo was taken in New York City in 1980 during her modeling days. Photo: Doug Vann/Corbis.

The beautiful Whitney Houston (1963-2012) was born 51 years ago today in Newark, New Jersey. This photo was taken in New York City in 1980 during her modeling days. Photo: Doug Vann/Corbis.

I am excited to announce Vintage Black Glamour’s fan site #myVBG! It was created so we can see and properly admire the VBG icons in YOUR life! I want to see women in your family like your grandmother who may remind you of Lena Horne or Diahann Carroll; a favorite diva aunt with the zest of a Josephine Baker or Gladys Bentley; a mother who brings to mind the heady brilliance of a Dr. Maya Angelou or Ruby Dee. The first three pictures are already up, my mother, grandmother and the beautiful lady picture here, my late great-grandmother Nellie Parson Swilley, my beloved “Mama Nell” in the 1940s. She was so lovely and sharp that a lady tried to buy the hat off of her head after church one day. This is not some family legend - I was actually standing there and watching in amazement at Sandy Mount Baptist Church in Smithfield,Virginia as this lady tried to buy her hat!) Mama Nell also taught me how to cook – and called me Sugarlump.I would be honored to have you share the divas in your family here for the world to see. 
Upload your photos at http://myvbg.com/ and tell us a brief story about her name, city, date and location of photo, a fun VBG-ish fact about her and tag me on Twitter (@VintageBlkGlam) or here on Tumblr with the hashtag #myVBG and#vbgbook. Thank you – I can’t wait to see your #myVBG!

I am excited to announce Vintage Black Glamour’s fan site #myVBG! It was created so we can see and properly admire the VBG icons in YOUR life! I want to see women in your family like your grandmother who may remind you of Lena Horne or Diahann Carroll; a favorite diva aunt with the zest of a Josephine Baker or Gladys Bentley; a mother who brings to mind the heady brilliance of a Dr. Maya Angelou or Ruby Dee. The first three pictures are already up, my mother, grandmother and the beautiful lady picture here, my late great-grandmother Nellie Parson Swilley, my beloved “Mama Nell” in the 1940s. She was so lovely and sharp that a lady tried to buy the hat off of her head after church one day. This is not some family legend - I was actually standing there and watching in amazement at Sandy Mount Baptist Church in Smithfield,Virginia as this lady tried to buy her hat!) Mama Nell also taught me how to cook – and called me Sugarlump.

I would be honored to have you share the divas in your family here for the world to see.

Upload your photos at http://myvbg.com/ and tell us a brief story about her name, city, date and location of photo, a fun VBG-ish fact about her and tag me on Twitter (@VintageBlkGlam) or here on Tumblr with the hashtag #myVBG and#vbgbook. Thank you – I can’t wait to see your #myVBG!