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The Anacostia Community Museum’s indoor gallery will be closed March 2 through May 18 as we bring our next exhibition to life. Even though our gallery is closed, join us at any of the dynamic upcoming events planned during this time. More information about our events is available at: We look forward to seeing you soon!

Percival Bryan collection

Object Details

Biographical/Historical note
Born in Galena, St. Mary's Parish, Jamaica, Percival Bryan (1906-1996) came to the United States in 1924 as a stowaway in search of adventure and opportunity. He settled in the Anacostia neighborhood of Washington, D.C., involved himself with various social and civic organizations, and was instrumental in forming the Caribbean American Inter-cultural Organization. He worked as a White House butler under Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), Harry S. Truman (1884-1972), and Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969). Bryan also served as a chauffer for Attorney General Homer S. Cummings (1870-1956) before becoming a cab driver. An autograph collector, Mr. Bryan collected over 100,000 signatures of notable individuals.
bulk 1942-1980
5.94 Linear feet (20 boxes)
Percival Bryan collection, Anacostia Community Museum, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Rose Dyke.
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographic prints
Autograph albums
African Americans
Taxicab drivers
African American neighborhoods
African American musicians
Jamaican Americans
Washington (D.C.)
Percival Bryan collection representative image
Finding aid
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