All entries by this author

Ralph David Abernathy

Aug 27th, 2011 | By
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1926-1990  Ralph David Abernathy was an inspirational church pastor and an important activist in the struggle for civil rights. His leadership role in the Montgomery Bus Boycott and his alliance with Martin Luther King, Jr., helped spur desegregation and create a more promising future for African Americans in the United States. An Ambitious Beginning Abernathy
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Fredi Washington

Aug 26th, 2011 | By
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1903-1994  Fredi Washington, an ivory-skinned African American beauty with exceptional acting talent, was the tragic victim of the racial stereotypes, fears, and prejudices of her time. Unable to develop a career as a serious black actress, and unwilling to pretend to be white, she became an important activist and journalist in the field of black
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Carl Lewis

Aug 25th, 2011 | By
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1961-Present  Frederick Carlton “Carl” Lewis achieved numerous world records over a long career, and across four track and field events: the 100-meter and 200-meter sprints, the 400-meter relay, and the long jump. In 1984, he confidently fulfilled his own prediction and won four gold medals in a single Olympic games. An Athletic Family Lewis was
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Jules Bledsoe

Aug 24th, 2011 | By
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1899?-1943  Jules Bledsoe was an exceptionally accomplished singer of classical music, spirituals, and the contemporary show tunes of his time, and a talented composer of vocal music as well. Launched to prominence by his unforgettable performance in the original Broadway production of Show Boat, he transcended racial discrimination in his native Texas and throughout the
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Walter Francis White

Aug 23rd, 2011 | By
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1893-1955  Walter Francis White spent most of his highly accomplished career in the service of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and led the organization during a crucial period in American racial history to a position of undeniable political power and broad interracial support. A New Middle Class White was born in
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Oscar Micheaux

Aug 21st, 2011 | By
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1884-1951  Oscar Micheaux was a pioneer writer and filmmaker during the formative years of the motion picture industry. Over a period of more than 20 years, he wrote, produced, directed, distributed, and marketed more than 30 groundbreaking feature films oriented toward the African American audience. From Porter to Pioneer Micheaux was born outside Metropolis, Illinois,
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Nina Mae McKinney

Aug 20th, 2011 | By
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1912?-1967  Nina Mae McKinney burst onto the popular scene, on stage and screen, at a young age with great talent and promise. But limited by Hollywood’s preconceptions about African American lead actresses, she was frustrated after her initial success and spent much of her short professional life performing in Europe. A Chorus Line McKinney was
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Ron Karenga

Aug 18th, 2011 | By
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1941 -  Ron Karenga’s early work as an activist and Black Nationalist leader grew into a career as an academic specializing in African American studies. His interest in promoting black culture and identity led to his creation of Kwanzaa, a weeklong celebration of African culture and heritage. Farm to City Karenga was born Ronald McKinley
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Josephine Baker

Aug 17th, 2011 | By
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1906-1975  Josephine Baker became wildly popular as an American dancer and singer who brought the essence of the Jazz Age to Paris. Widely known for her daring costumes and exotic cabaret performances, she also was an early civil rights activist and the mother of 12 adopted children known as her “Rainbow Tribe.” A Fleeting Childhood
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Jesse Owens

Aug 16th, 2011 | By
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1913 – 1980  James C. (“Jesse”) Owens overcame physical, economic, and racial barriers to become one of the greatest athletes of all time, and the first world renowned African American sports star. In so doing, he publicly refuted bigoted attitudes toward Blacks, and set an example for personal excellence and achievement in all of his
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