Winners of the cotton contest.

The calendar in this photograph dates it to January 1949. It depicts ten men — four African-American — standing in what appears to be the lobby or a wide hallway of an office building. One man is accepting a document, perhaps a check, from another. I don’t have any other context for the image and don’t know the identity of any of the men.

[Update, 25 May 2023: John Hackney provided the essential clue — the man at far right is his grandfather Tom Bridgers. With that information, I was able to find an article in the 8 January 1949 issue of the Daily Times. At the Wilson Chamber of Commerce’s farm aware program, on behalf of Kiwanis Club, Bridgers presented awards to winners in the “cotton contest” — W.P. Proctor of Stantonsburg; John Farmer, Rufus Brewer, and Charlie Batts of Elm City; Tom Morris, E.G. Lindsey, Hardy Hooks, Henry Trevathan, James Faison, and Joe Hester of Wilson. The photo above, taken by a Chamber photographer, did not run with the article. I’ve amended the title of this post.]

Photo courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

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