Who is Florence Hines?

She was known as one of the greatest male impersonators of all times and all races.

In 1891, Florence traveled with a minstrel show, The Creole Show, featuring all Black performers, where she was hired as a singer, MC, and drag king performer. She portrayed a Dandy, a flashy, modern young man who drank, openly dated, and wore the latest clothes. That act was revolutionary for a person of color. Playing the role of a dandy was a way of resisting degraded depictions of Black people that were common in stage shows at the time. When the show went to Patterson, New Jersey, hundreds of people were turned away from the door. However, in the local paper’s review of the show, the reporter called Florence “an excellent male impersonator.”  

By 1904, it is reported that Florence commanded the largest salary paid to a colored female performer.  

Not much is known about Florence. However, she broke racial, social, and gender barriers. She had a 15-year run performing as a drag king and later became a preacher. In 1906, she became paralyzed and lived her life as an invalid. Florence died on March 7, 1924.


Karma Eve

Florence Hines

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