The Old Print Shop

Louis Armstrong.

  • ARTIST: John Ross

  • MEDIUM: Woodcut,

    DATE: undated, circa 2003.

  • EDITION SIZE: Edition unknown. Paper size 12 x 17" (30.3 x 43.2 cm).

  • DESCRIPTION: Signed in pencil. Impressions from this block were used in the John Ross/Lloyd Jonnes book entitled "Portraits of the Twentieth Century." <BR><BR> Text within print: "Louis Armstrong. Armstrong - the genius of jazz - was born into indescribable poverty and violence in one of the black ghettos of New Orleans. Reared by his grandmother, he survived the chaos of his childhood and his two year commitment to the Colored Waifs' Home only by his music. Befriended by King Oliver, a leading jazz musician, who moved him to Chicago in the early 1920s, Louis became the quintessential jazz man of the US and later the world, making his way through a maze of gangland conspiracies, incompetent or dishonest managers, and four wives. <BR><BR> With his All-Star Band, organized in 1947, composed of great jazz musicians - Teagarden, Cole, Hines, Bigard, Edmund Hall, Catlett, were among the members - Armstrong traveled the world. In the process, he became one of the marvelous showmen of the era. And the music!! 'When the Saints Go Marching In, West End Blues, Muskrat Ramble.' <BR><BR> Through all of the music, two other preoccupations. Curiously, he loved to write and turned out a remarkable body of correspondence and commentary. Perhaps above all he was devoted to the welfare of his people. At the time of the school integration battle of 1957 in Arkansas, he telegraphed Pres. Eisenhower, 'Mr. President, Daddy, if and when you decide to take those little Negro children personally into Central High School, please take me along, ... God Bless you.' For his plea, he came under FBI scrutiny for the rest of his days."


  • CONDITION: Very good condition.