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Warren Taylor

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Warren Taylor


Mr. Warren Taylor shared items from three distinct locations and time periods: a 1925 Business Guide produced by the Colored Commercial Club of Omaha, homestead documents from early twentieth century Wyoming, and artifacts from his ancestors’ enslavement in mid-nineteenth century Mississippi. A friend gave the Business Guide to Mr. Taylor, but the other two collections are family heirlooms.

The Business Guide provides valuable insight into Jim Crow-era Omaha. The book illustrates that segregation between the black and white communities was able to exist without legal segregation codes. Mr. Taylor commented that a number of those businesses in the guide remained until the riots of 1968, after which a significant number closed their doors.

The Homestead Act documents contain dated certificates of land registration and land deeds, as well as some other documents from Mr. Taylor’s paternal grandfather and granduncle, Russel Taylor and Otis Taylor, respectively. The brothers both homesteaded in Wyoming for a time, but moved back to Nebraska due to the inability to maintain livelihood with the poor soil of the region.

Mr. Taylor’s family heirloom collection contains photographs of both a penny from 1840 and a cup owned by Mr. Taylor’s great-great-grandmother. Warren Taylor’s grandaunt created handwritten notes to accompany both artifacts, and have also been handed down to him. The notes themselves hold a great deal of meaning to his family, as Mr. Taylor’s grandaunt was the daughter of a formerly enslaved person, and learned to read and write in church, later becoming a church orator. This collections was contributed at the North Omaha History Harvest in 2011.


Warren Taylor, North Omaha History Harvest, 2011


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Items in the Warren Taylor Collection

Mr. Warren Taylor provided some homesteading documentation from his paternal grandfather, Russel Taylor. This is Russel Taylor's homestead application, approved for 160 acres of land near Cheyenne, Wyoming on May 20th, 1913. Wyoming had a large…

Russel Taylor wrote a letter to the Secretary of the Interior, explaining his inability to build a house and make the proper improvements to his homestead land by the proper date, as required by law. Russel was a school teacher, as well as a farmer,…

Mr. Taylor brought in this penny to the History Harvest to share with us, accompanied by a note from his grandaunt. This penny is a 'braided hair coronet'-style penny, dated 1840, and Mr. Taylor informed us that his great-great-grandmother held on to…

A note from his grandaunt accompanies the folding cup brought in by Mr. Taylor. This is his great-grandmother’s folding cup that she used in the field while enslaved in Mississippi. This artifact would have been essential to his…

The Omaha Colored Commercial Club was formed in 1920 to aid African Americans in finding employment and learning which businesses to support. It was important for the community to know which businesses were black-owned or willing to hire employees…