• WALKER THEATRE , Indianapolis, IN. Black-controlled theatre, located on the ground floor of the Madame C. J. Walker Bldg., active 1928/65. Mme. Walker was a beauty culturist and entrepreneuse who discovered and marketed her own special method of straightening, curling, and dressing the hair of Afr. Am. women, using a "hot comb" that she invented, and the burners, oils, greases, and other related products that she packaged and sold along with her "method." During its heyday, the Walker Theatre showcased the talents of many black performers, including * Cab Calloway, * Lena Horne, * Duke Ellington, and the great * Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong. On Oct. 14, 1988, the theatre was reopened by Mme. Walker's grandchildren with a ceremony attended by several well-known contemporary celebrities, including Roscoe Lee Browne, George Faison, Isaac Hayes, Gregory and Maurice Hines, * Rosalind Cash, and Alex Haley.
[G. W.] WASHBURN'S BIG SOUTHERN COLORED MINSTRELS. Minstrel troupe, active 1897/ 1900. ∘ G. W. Washburn, prop. Toured the Northeast for four seasons with a company that featured comedians * George Titchner, * Wesley Norris, and * Albert Bailey, the * Norrises (olio artists), * William Garland, and * Nettie Goff. The choir was under the direction of * Paul C. Floyd (vocal dir.), and * Walter Robinson was business manager.
[LEON] WASHBURN'S DOUBLE MINSTRELS. Integrated minstrel troupe, active 1898. ∘ Leon Washburn, prop. Black members included * George Titchner and Will Godgon (comedians), "a colored band and orchestra" led by H. G. Brown, the Queen City Quartet, and a drill corps of thirteen Negro boys led by Titchner.