Upcoming History Posts
- Big Joe Turner
- The Vanport Flood & Racial Change in Portland
- Florence ‘Flo Jo’ Joyner-Kersey
- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity
- Ida B. Wells-Barnett
- Omega Psi Phi Fraternity
- Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority
- Delta Sigma Theta Sorority
- Morgan State University
- Richard Wright
- Thelma ‘Butterfly’ McQueen
- Robert H. Sengstacke
- Earl Lloyd
- Carol Moseley-Braun
- Clarence A. “Skip” Ellis
- Use of federal troops in integration – The Ole Miss riot 1962
- Guion Bluford, Jr.
- U.S. Navy opened to Black Women
- School desegregation ends
- JH Hunter
Recent History Posts
BlackUSA Random Recipe List
Shrimp in Mustard Sauce
Hot Cattage Potato Salad
Diet Cocoa Brownies
Ray’s Smothered Chicken
Sesame Chicken Nuggets
Pork Medallions with Lemon and Capers
Island Shrimp Cocktail
Hilda’s Fried Apricot and Peach Pies
Elegant Chicken Cassarole
Creamy Mint Liqueur
More History Posts
Even More History Posts
Paul Robeson was one of the most gifted men in the history of the world. He was an athlete, actor, author, attorney, a scholar and concert singer. Born in Princeton, New Jersey on April 9, 1898, Paul Robeson showed that he was a man of many talents. He gave 296 performances as Othello on Broadway.
He was subsequently recognized as an internationally famous singer and performed on concert stages throughout the world. Robeson spoke and performed in over twenty languages and dialects, and became a spokesman throughout the world against exploitation, injustice, and racism. His attacks on injustice and racism in the United States became a severe international embarrassment to the United States government. Continue reading →
Married name LUCY PRINCE, also called BIJAH’S (ABIJAH’S) LUCE, or LUCE (LUCY) ABIJAH (b. 1730, West Africa–d. 1821, Vermont, U.S.), American poet, storyteller, and activist of the colonial and postcolonial period. Her only surviving work, the poem “Bars Fight” (1746), is the earliest existing poem by an African-American; it was transmitted orally for more than 100 years, first appearing in print in 1855. Consisting of 28 lines in irregular iambic tetrameter, the poem commemorates white settlers who were killed in an encounter with Indians in 1746.
Born in Africa, Terry was taken by slave traders to Rhode Island at a very young age. She was baptized a Christian at age five, with the approval of her owner, Ebenezer Wells of Deerfield, Mass.; she became a full church member in 1744. Continue reading →
Charlie Parker was one of the most influential improvising soloists in jazz, and a central figure in the development of bop in the 1940s. A legendary figure in his own lifetime, he was idolized by those who worked with him, and he inspired a generation of jazz performers and composers.
Parker was the only child of Charles and Addle Parker. In 1927, the family moved to Kansas City, Missouri, an important center of African-American music in the 1920s and 1930s. Parker had his first music lessons in the local public schools; he began playing alto saxophone in 1933 and worked occasionally in semi-professional groups before leaving school in 1935 to become a full-time musician. Continue reading →
Amiri Baraka, born in 1934, in Newark, New Jersey, USA, is the author of over 40 books of essays, poems, drama, and music history and criticism, a poet icon and revolutionary political activist who has recited poetry and lectured on cultural and political issues extensively in the USA, the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe.
With influences on his work ranging from musical orishas such as Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, Thelonius Monk, and Sun Ra to the Cuban Revolution, Malcolm X and world revolutionary movements, Baraka is renowned as the founder of the Black Arts Movement in Harlem in the 1960s that became, though short-lived, the virtual blueprint for a new American theater aesthetics. Continue reading →
A civil rights leader who urged African Americans to work within the system, Whitney Moore Young, as executive director of the National Urban League from 1961 to 1971, played a leading role in persuading America’s corporate elite to provide better opportunities for African Americans.
Young worked with President Lyndon Johnson on civil rights and anti-poverty programs during the 1960s, while calling for a “domestic Marshall Plan” (similar to U.S. aid to revive Europe after World War II).
He was one of the leaders of the 1963 March on Washington and in 1964 he organized the Community Action Assembly to fight poverty in African-American communities. He was awarded the Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, in 1969.
Two years later at the age of 49, Young drowned in Lagos, Nigeria while participating in an annual African-American dialogue on relations between the two continents.
Founder of the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas, Absalom Jones was born into slavery in Sussex County, Delaware, on November 6, 1746. He taught himself to read and knew the New Testament thoroughly at an early age. When he was 16, Absalom’s owner took him to Philadelphia, Pa., where he served as a clerk and handyman in a retail store.
He was allowed to work for himself in the evenings and keep his earning. He was married in 1770. By the time Jones was 38 years old, he had purchased his wife’s freedom, and his own, and had bought a house. Later he built two more houses and used them for rental income. Continue reading →
Norbert Rillieux was born on March 17, 1806 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Norbert was born a free man, although his mother was a slave. His father was a wealthy White engineer involved in the cotton industry. As a child Norbert was educated in the Catholic school system in New Orleans but was sent to Paris, France for advanced schooling.
He studied at the L’Ecole Centrale, the top engineering school in the country and at age 24 became an instructor of applied mechanics at the school, the youngest person to achieve this position. He published a series of papers related to “the Functions and Economic Implications of the Steam Engine.” Eventually, in 1834, Rillieux returned home to his father’s plantation which was now also being used to process and refine sugar.
On March 20, 1944, at the Charleston shipyard in Boston, MA, the USS Mason was commissioned, or placed into active service, by the Governor of the state, the city’s mayor, and the ship’s new captain, William M. Blackford. The ship sailed for Belfast, Ireland, its first port of call, to join the British and American “Battle of the Atlantic.”
During W.W.II only one American Navy warship carried an African American crew into combat, The U.S.S. Mason. It was the job of smaller, easier to handle destroyer escort ships, like the USS Mason, to guard and protect the larger merchant vessels which carried badly needed supplies between the US and Europe. The mission of D. E?s was to stop German submarines, or U-boats, from sinking the larger ships with their deadly torpedoes. Although segregated on this one navel fighting ship, the men of the USS Mason were well-trained and bravely accepted and carried out the job they were given. Continue reading →