Bertha Lee Pate / Patton (1902-1975) was a blues singer from the…

Bertha Lee Pate / Patton (1902-1975) was a blues singer from the Mississippi Delta and Charley Patton’s last wife and musical collaborator. An excellent guitarist and singer in her own right, she recorded with Charley in his final recording session in 1934. Of the fourteen sides they recorded together as Patton and Lee (in addition to Charley’s solo recordings) only four are extant; the others were melted down during World War II due to lack of preservational awareness, though the titles are known. This photo was taken by Ann and Sam Charters, who tracked down Bertha Lee and interviewed her at her place of work, a used clothing store in Chicago, in 1965. (Photo)