|W.E.B DuBois, 1946|
|Billie Holiday, 1949|
|Alvin Ailey, 1955|
|Mary McLeod Bethune, 1949|
|Langston Hughes and Horace Cayton at Fisk University, 1947|
|Eartha Kitt, 1954|
|Prince Etuka Okala Abutu of Nigeria. 1946|
Van Vechten is credited as being a patron of the Harlem Renaissance, having contributed to black theatrical productions and penned narratives about black life in Harlem such as his controversial book, Nigger Heaven. The book received a mixed reception from Harlemites, as reported by author Wallace Thurman in his 1926 review that appeared in Fire!!. The title, labeled as satirical commentary by Van Vechten himself, initially drew ire from the black community. In addition, many felt that Nigger Heaven portrayed black Americans in a largely negative light drawing upon sweeping generalizations and stereotypes of sexual, gambling and alcohol. W.E.B DuBois would eventually contribute a wholesale dismissal of the book in the NAACP Crisis. It should be noted that the text also had its share of defenders in Langston Hughes and James Weldon Johnson, who lauded the piece in Opportunity, the official journal of the National Urban League.