DRAMA LEAGUE VOTES TO HONOR GILPIN
'Emperor Jones' Star is Included Among Those to Be Guests at Annual Dinner.
--The New York Times, February 21, 1921
Charles Gilpin was to be honored at the Drama League's annual dinner, but people weren't sure if he should be invited, given his race. Some people said he should get a "nice letter" instead of an invitation.
Just wow. My stomach hurts.
Then it looked like Gilpin was indeed going to decline as gracefully as he could:
GILPIN MAY NOT BE DRAMA LEAGUE'S GUEST
Negro Star Has Other Invitations for Night of Dinner--Does Not Want to Socialize.
--The New York Times, February 22, 1921
IMDB doesn't show any movies under Charles Gilpin, however, and a quick Google search didn't find anything. Might have to track down a biography to see how truthful his excuses were.
Several days later, this rather diplomatic article followed, where he agrees to attend the dinner.
Gilpin to Attend Dinner.
--The New York Times, February 28, 1921
Thankfully, a somewhat happy ending...though it's sad that it was ever any issue at all:
GILPIN GETS OVATION.
Forced Twice to Respond to Plaudits of Drama League Diners.
--The New York Times, March 7, 1921
You can read a bit more about Charles Gilpin at BlackPast.org and Find a Grave
I'll post a few updates from the Casa Grande Bulletin tomorrow.
*All articles believed to be in public domain per US law.