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Print of "Murder on a Highway"

Object Details

James Amos Porter
after 1929
silver-gelatin photograph on RC paper
14 × 10 7/8 in. (35.5 × 27.7 cm)
In this photographic reproduction of a crayon drawing, James A. Porter illustrates a grisly event. A figure lies bleeding in the foreground of the image, the victim of a stab wound, while a man holding a bloody knife looks over his shoulder as he walks away. Both figures appear to be white. Possibly inspired by a murder case that happened during Porter’s lifetime, the gruesome scene leaves the viewer with unanswered questions regarding the figures’ identities, the murder’s motivation, and whether the murderer escaped.
This work was photographed by the Scurlock Studio, an African American-run photography firm that captured many important portraits and events in Black Washington, in addition to scenes from local life and works of art by Black artists in Washington, DC. This photograph was among the records of Porter’s work kept by his daughter, who donated this and six others to the museum (2001.0003.0002, 2003.0019.0002, 2003.0019.0004, 2003.0019.0005, 2003.0019.0006, 2003.0019.0007).
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Anacostia Community Museum Collection
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Anacostia Community Museum
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