All entries by this author

Ruby Hurley

Aug 15th, 2011 | By
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1909-1980  Ruby Hurley devoted more than four decades to the struggle for racial justice. She spent most of that time working with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in important administrative positions, while also contributing as an investigator in racially motivated crimes, and was affiliated with many of the most salient events
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Anna Julia Cooper

Aug 14th, 2011 | By
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1858?-1964  Anna Julia Haywood Cooper was a pioneer black feminist and educator, whose achievements expressed her faith in the potential of African Americans and the special role of black women. A Gentlemen’s Course Cooper was probably born in 1858 in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her mother, Hannah Stanley Haywood, was a slave whose master, George Washington
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J.R. Clifford

Aug 13th, 2011 | By
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1848-1933  John Robert Clifford published the leading African American newspaper of its era, and as the first black attorney admitted to the West Virginia state bar, he won a trailblazing victory in Williams v. Board of Education that found discriminatory practices in public education illegal. Studies in Chicago Clifford was born in Williamsport, Virginia, in
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Ella Baker

Aug 12th, 2011 | By
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1903-1986  Ella Josephine Baker worked with the leading civil rights activists of her time, and played a critical part in forming the organizational basis for the movement. Although her gender may have kept her from a more visible role, she remained a steadfast proponent of grass roots empowerment and social change. Granddaughter of a Slave
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Clifton R. Wharton, Sr.

Aug 11th, 2011 | By
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1899-1990  Clifton Reginald Wharton was the first African American to enter the U.S. Foreign Service under the State Department’s merit system. In 1958, after decades of service in traditionally black posts such as Liberia and the Canary Islands, he broke the department’s color barrier by becoming the first black diplomat to be named ambassador to
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Hattie McDaniel

Aug 10th, 2011 | By
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1895-1952  Hattie McDaniel was an actress best known for her performance as “Mammy” in Gone with the Wind. During her career, she also became a lightning rod for criticism of the racially stereotyped roles offered in the entertainment industry at the time. Brought up in the Family Business McDaniel was born to Henry and Susan
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Mark Matthews

Aug 9th, 2011 | By
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1894-2005  Mark Matthews first enlisted in the U.S. military at the age of 15, became one of the original “Buffalo Soldiers,” and served his country with distinction through numerous conflicts and wars, and racial segregation in the armed forces. Born to Ride Matthews was born in Greenville, Alabama, on August 7, 1894. His family moved
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Ella Fitzgerald

Aug 8th, 2011 | By
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1917-1996  Ella Fitzgerald bebopped with Dizzy Gillespie and scatted with Louis Armstrong during a nearly 60-year-long career in which she became a renowned jazz pioneer. She effectively reinterpreted the American songbook, won 13 Grammy Awards, and earned the title “The First Lady of Song.” From Dance to Song Fitzgerald was born on April 25, 1917,
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Richard Wright

Aug 7th, 2011 | By
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1908-1960  Richard Nathaniel Wright, one of America’s great literary figures, was also one of the first African American writers to receive international fame and notoriety. He was a prolific writer who used stunning prose to address themes of race, gender, politics, and the struggle for individual freedom. Wright was the first black author to have
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Mary Eliza Church Terrell

Aug 6th, 2011 | By
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1863-1954  Mary Eliza Church Terrell played a central role in the struggle for civil rights. A master at organizing, lecturing, and writing, she was present at the founding of the NAACP. Terrell began her career as an activist in an era when lynching was common in the United States, and lived to see the dawn
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