Allen E. Cole Papers

Allen E. Cole (1883-1970) was a Cleveland, Ohio, photographer who produced over 50,000 photographs of Cleveland’s African-Americancommunity. Cole opened his first studio in 1922, supplementing his income with commercial work and commission work for eight white-owned studios, and earned prizes and commendations at state and local exhibitions. His photographs were frequently published in The Call and Post. The collection consists of personal correspondence, which includes postcards, greeting cards, and membership cards; business correspondence, which includes bills, receipts, orders, customer lists, address book, advertising, and description of events photographed; and notebooks and appointment books. The collection pertains largely to Cole’s photography business, including his struggle to earn a living during the depression.