Behold the People
R. C. Hickman's Photographs of Black Dallas, 1949-1961

R. C. Hickman was a Dallas photographer whose thousands of images produced from 1949-1961 document aspects of life in an African American community in Texas. His photographs depict a community largely invisible to white Americans — thoroughly a part of mainstream America by virtue of accomplishment and lifestyle but excluded from it because of race.

Mr. Hickman worked as a commercial portrait photographer, as a photojournalist for several black newspapers in Dallas, as a freelance photographer for national black publications such as Jet, Sepia, and Ebony, and as a photographer for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). His images reveal his awareness of the broad community context within which individuals survive, grow, and understand themselves.

The Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin