Market Lavington Museum

Easterton’s Black and White Minstrels.

These days, blacking up white people and having them perform like black people is probably deemed racist. We can only apologise if reporting the past on these pages offends anyone. It certainly isn’t meant to offend, merely to draw attention to things done in the past.

The TV programme, ‘The Black and White Minstrel Show’ ran for twenty years, from 1958 until 1978 but blacking up and performing as minstrels goes back much further than that. We think the Easterton performance, shown here probably dates from the time when the TV program was something many people looked forward to and really wanted to watch.

Easterton’s Black and White Minstrels. Can you help by telling us when this show was staged?

Inevitably, we can’t recognise people in the picture with the exception of Easterton school headmistress, Gladys Windo who is third from right in the middle row. Of course, many of the others are disguised by their make-up and, in several cases by their clerical garb.

So once again we appeal for help with basics. We don’t know who the people are. We don’t know when this was for sure and we don’t know what the occasion was. If you remember this, please let us know.