Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Art History


Museum Practices

Committee Chair

Earnestine Jenkins

Committee Member

Fred Albertson

Committee Member

William Mckeown


The African American experience in Collierville, Tennessee is largely untold among the larger community. The photographs by Elizabeth "Bessie" Dean Parr from the early twentieth century include numerous images of African Americans of Collierville and is a significant example of larger photographic imagery of African American. The collection includes around 200 glass plate negatives that depict town scense, portraits, and family portraits inside and outside Parr's studio. Information provided by the Parr/Broer family, maps, census records, and literature related to photography, gender roles, and the New Negro Movement were referenced for the purposes of creating a public exhibit at the Morton Museum of Collierville History in the Spring of 2019. The photographs are studied within the photographic practices of the time period and consider the principles of the New Negro Movement. A visual analysis of the photographs is employed to discuss issues of gender, race, and class and how they expand the African American narrative within Collierville, Tennessee at the turn of the century.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.