Robert H. Sengstacke

Robert H. Sengstacke

Sengstacke was born November 25, 1912, in Savannah, Georgia. He was singled out by his uncle, Robert S. Abbott, publisher of The Chicago Defender, and trained as his successor. Abbott financed his nephew’s education at Hampton Institute, where he graduated in 1934.

Abbott also subsidized his studies at the Mergenthaler Linotype School, The Chicago School of Printing, Northwestern University, and Ohio State University. In 1934 Sengstacke became Vice President and General Manager of The Robert S. Abbott Publishing Company, and served as its president, following Robert S. Abbott’s death in 1940.  Continue reading

Amsterdam News

The Amsterdam News was started on December 4, 1909, by James H. Anderson. The paper began production with an initial capital only $10. Being located in the center of Harlem, The Amsterdam News spoke for the largest black population in the nation. The paper placed an emphasis on reporting black society news, such as weddings. At one time it had a circulation of more than 100,000 subscribers. During the 1940’s The Amsterdam News was one of the four leading newspapers in the nation.  Continue reading

The Pittsburgh Courier

Four boys outside Courier

Four boys outside Courier

The Pittsburgh Courier was established in 1907 by Edwin Harleston, a security guard and writer. The newspaper gained fame after Robert Lee Vann took over the paper in 1910 and eventually became the nations most widely circulated black newspaper at almost 200,000.

The Courier was always an organ for the wellbeing of the average African-American. It would call for housing improvements and the opening of black hospitals. The Pittsburgh Courier also sought to improve the black peoples’ financial and political skills.  Continue reading

John James Neimore

In 1879, John James Neimore established The California Owl as a means to help ease the black settlers’ transition to the western way of life. The Eagle provided many disparaged settlers with job, housing, and information on local charities.

When The California Eagle shut down its presses in 1964, it was one of the oldest black-owned and operated papers in the United States. John James Neimore had established it in Los Angeles as The California Owl in 1879, to ease black settlers’ transition to the West. The paper provided them with housing and job information, and other information essential to surviving in a new environment.  Continue reading

Miles V Lunk

Miles V Lunk

Miles V Lunk

Miles Vandahurst Lynk was born near the small town of Brownsville, TN on June 3, 1871 in Haywood County. He was the first-born son of former slaves who made their living off of a small family farm. At the age of six, Miles Lynk’s father was killed in an accident and the young boy was forced to take on adult responsibilities in helping his mother on the farm.

In spite of the hard times, Lynk’s mother insisted that her son attend the rural black schools in the region at least five months a year. She spent much of her time tutoring him herself. She covered the gaps in his education with what books she could acquire and the young boy became a voracious reader. They made enough money from the farm to hire a private tutor and Miles’ was able to study advanced academic subjects and gained an able education.  Continue reading

Upcoming Black History Posts
  • Martin R. Delany
  • Dr. Percy Lavon Julian
  • Segregation in buses and terminals banned
  • Bethune-Cookman University
  • National Council of Negro women
  • William Tucker
  • Lena Horne
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