- first chorus of “In The Jailhouse Now (Number Two)” by Jimmie Rodgers, 1930, Hollywood, California; a Victor recording, published by Peer Music: Ralph Peer, owner and operator, sole proprietor.
The Okemah Ledger stated: “It is generally thought the negroes got what would have been due them under due process of law.” A photograph of the lynchings was printed up and sold as a popular local postcard.
In the darkroom, the photographer has dodged in a white blot for the sake of modesty, to cover the unsightly view of castration.
His mother, Laura Nelson, who was raped, is covered in a long sundress. ”For a year or so my dad was undersheriff of Okemah, Oklahoma, and he used to tell me many a sad tale about that old black jailhouse...
Besides, “The Later State” would have made a lousy license plate slogan. Oklahoma’s own Will Rogers, that great American cowboy star, Number One Hollywood Box Office Star in 1934, in the top ten for years before and dead a year later — oh, and the obvious model for most of Woody Guthrie’s showbiz persona when it wasn’t aimed at aping Jimmie Rodgers — was different than Woody Guthrie just the same.
Will Rogers had traveled, bummed around, which Woody mostly just claimed to have done, and he’d done it adventurously all over the world.