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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-03-06 11:35 AM
Original message
Black history that doesn't make it into the history books
As most readers here know, US history has been sanitized for "our" protection. This being black history month, please put down historical events, good and/or bad, that aren't generally known.

Here's my entry--Torn from the Land
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Xipe Totec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-09-06 09:39 AM
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Charles Richard Drew was born in 1904 in a black neighborhood in the so-called Foggy Bottom area of Washington, D.C. His intellectual and athletic abilities were soon evident. He went to Amherst College on scholarship in 1922 and served as both captain of the track team and football quarterback.

At the time, even in the North, most public institutions were still segregated. Drew was a campus hero, but he couldn't belong to most honor societies. He lived in a tough world, and his career plans made it tougher. He wanted to go to medical school. His bachelor's degree had left him in debt, so he took a job as athletic director and chemistry teacher at Morgan College -- a small black school in Baltimore. Two years later he was able to enter medical school at McGill University in Canada.

He finished his internship, and a residency in surgery, in 1935. But all the time another interest had been welling up. He wanted to solve the problem of preserving blood for transfusions. He spent three years teaching at Howard Medical School and then went to Columbia University to do his Ph.D. on blood storage.

He finished a thesis, titled Banked Blood, in 1940. It was a monumental work. He was now the world expert in preserving human blood. He'd developed the notion of separating and storing plasma to the point that it was a practical reality. And this was the first doctorate Columbia ever awarded to a black.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-09-06 10:53 AM
Response to Original message
2. Daniel Hale Williams, MD
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-13-06 08:25 AM
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3. The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment /

This hideous "study" should never be forgotten. The majority should be reminded of this when love to say, as they often do: oh, that could NEVER happen here.

It can and it did. :(
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undergroundrailroad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-17-06 08:34 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. What a horrific, evil, vicious trick of
systemic racism. The sad part is that African-Americans participated in this experiment. How could they lie to the patients that trusted them?

Yes, The Tuskegee Experiment should be documented in all history books. I thank President Clinton for the apology he offered to the men and their families on behalf of the United States.
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undergroundrailroad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-17-06 08:52 PM
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5. Dr. Delford G. Williams Jr., who blazed medical trails for other blacks,
including two sons, died of lung cancer Dec. 21, 2005, in Sinai-Grace Hospital. He was 85.

The Wilmington, N.C., native, who was valedictorian of his high school and graduated cum laude from college, was an intern at a St. Louis hospital in 1946 -- a time when few minorities were training at majority institutions. He came to Detroit four years later to serve a surgical residency at Trinity Hospital and never left. He practiced medicine until 1997, specializing in obstetrics and gynecology. His two sons, David and Delford III, also became doctors and followed their father into his private practice. "He was proud to tell you that he practiced medicine for 52 years," said David Williams.

Dr. Williams, who served on the staff of six hospitals, was chief of staff at two of them: Boulevard General Hospital from 1969 to 1975 and Southwest Detroit Hospital from 1976 to 1991. He was a trustee at Southwest Detroit Hospital for more than a decade. Dr. Williams is survived by his wife, Eresteen; son David; daughter, Donna; and four grandchildren.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-22-06 09:13 AM
Response to Original message
6. Shani Davis
1st black man to make the US Speed Skating Team AND 1st black person to win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics. The 1st black person to win an individual medal in the Winter Olympics was Debi Thomas, who won the bronze in 1986.

Only took 'til 2006--maybe Bryant Gumbel was right.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-17-08 10:08 AM
Response to Reply #6
136. Page not available
but here's a related article by Dave Zirin on Gumbel's comments and the right-wing bloviating bigots of the Blogosphere.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-11 09:21 AM
Response to Reply #6
230. George Poage (1880-1962) , 1st black olympian
Participated in the 1904 Olympics in St. Louis, he won 2 bronze medals in track (200m and 400m hurdles).
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-11 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #6
231. Vonetta Flowers, 1st black Winter Olympics gold medal winner
winner of the 2-person bobsled in the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City. Shani Davis is the first black individual gold medal winner in the Winter Olympics.
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fortyfeetunder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-24-06 03:20 AM
Response to Original message
7. Black Americans in space
Edited on Fri Feb-24-06 03:33 AM by fortyfeetunder
1st African-American Astronaut

In June l967, Robert Henry Lawrence, Jr. was named the first African-American astronaut, though he never made it into space. Several months later, on December 8, Lawrence died when his F-104 Starfighter jet, in which he was a co-pilot/passenger during a training flight, crashed at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

Guion Bluford (USAF, Retired) first African-American man in space
Dr. Mae Jemison, first African-American woman in space

And I don't want to forget the ones we lost (and my eyes always well up when I think of these two):

Dr. Ronald McNair, lost in Challenger mishap(1986)
Michael Anderson, lost in Columbia mishap(2003)

EDIT: updated to add more history!
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-26-06 07:58 PM
Response to Original message
8. Vernon Baker
I just saw his story in the Olympic coverage. I would just like to sit with that man and have a teensy bit of his grace and courage and dignity rub off on me. What an amazing human being. Here's a book about him, Lasting Valor.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-27-06 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. One of the few black servicemen in WW2
to win the Congressional Medal of Honor and the only one still alive. He was 1 of 7 black servicemen to win the CMH.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-15-07 10:42 AM
Response to Reply #9
113. Addendum
From the History Channel article "Honor Deferred", no black troops were awarded or even recommended for the Medal of Honor in WWII. That was a deliberate action by the senior levels of the military. The need to prove the inferiority of black troops to save white sensibilities was so great that the troops would be under trained and supplied, unsupported, poorly lead, and thrown to be cannon fodder. Some cases that was literal.
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wildeyed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-01-06 07:40 AM
Response to Original message
10. Dr. Mark Dean
You may not have heard of Dr. Mark Dean. And you aren't alone. But
almost everything in your life has been affected by his work.

See, Dr. Mark Dean is a Ph.D. from Stanford University. He is in the
National Hall of Inventors. He has more than 30 patents pending. He
is a vice president with IBM. Oh, yeah. And he is also the architect
of the modern-day personal computer. Dr. Dean holds three of the original
nine patents on the computer that all PCs are based upon. And, Dr. Mark
Dean is an African American.

So how is it that we can celebrate the 20th anniversary of the IBM
personal computer without reading or hearing a single word about him?
Given all of the pressure mass media are under about negative portrayals
of African Americans on television and in print, you would think it
would be a slam dunk to highlight someone like Dr. Dean.

Somehow, though, we have managed to miss the shot. History is cruel
when it comes to telling the stories of African Americans. Dr. Dean isn't
the first Black inventor to be overlooked. Consider John Stanard, inventor
of the refrigerator, George Sampson, creator of the clothes dryer,
Alexander Miles and his elevator, Lewis Latimer and the electric lamp.
All of these inventors share two things:

One, they changed the landscape of our society; and, two, society
relegated them to the footnotes of history. Hopefully, Dr. Mark Dean
won't go away as quietly as they did. He certainly shouldn't. Dr. Dean
helped start a Digital Revolution that created people like Microsoft's
Bill Gates and Dell Computer's Michael Dell. Millions of jobs in
information technology can be traced back directly to Dr. Dean.

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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-05-06 01:59 AM
Response to Original message
11. Paul Robeson

In Princeton, New Jersey on April 9, 1898, Paul Robeson was born to a former slave, the Rev. William Robeson. His mother, a teacher, died shortly thereafter when he was only five years old. Three years later, the Robeson family moved to Westfield, New Jersey. In 1910, Robeson's father became pastor of St.Thomas A.M.E. Zion Church and the Robeson family moved to Somerville, New Jersey. Paul Robeson attended Somerville High School. There, Robeson excelled in sports, drama, singing, academics, and debating. He graduated from Somerville High School in 1915.

Robeson was awarded a four year academic scholarship to Rutgers University in 1915, the third black student in the history of the institution. Despite the openly racist and violent opposition he faced, Robeson became a twelve letter athlete excelling in baseball, basketball, football, and track. He was named to the All American Football team on two occasions. In addition to his athletic talents, Robeson was named a Phi Beta Kappa scholar, belonged to the Cap & Skull Honor Society, and graduated valedictorian of his class in 1919.

He went on to study law at Columbia in New York and received his degree in 1923. There he met and married Eslanda Cardozo Goode, who was the first black woman to head a pathology laboratory. Robeson worked as a law clerk in New York, but once again faced discrimination and soon left the practice because a white secretary refused to take dictation from him.

At this point in his life, Paul returned to his childhood love of drama and singing. He starred in Eugene O'Neill's All God's Chillun Got Wings in 1924, creating the starring role. While the racial subject matter of the play spurred controversy and protest, he went on to star in another play by O'Neill - Emperor Jones. Perhaps he is most widely recognized from the musical Showboat, where he changed the lines of the song "Old Man River". His eleven films included Body and Soul, Jericho, and Proud Valley.

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fishwax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #11
16. his name was stricken from the all-american lists after
Edited on Sun Mar-26-06 01:28 PM by fishwax
he was persecuted by HUAC :grr:

Walter Camp (who created the all-american teams) called him the greatest football player ever. But of course, as the bio you posted demonstrates, he was so much more than that ...
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-08-06 09:03 AM
Response to Original message
12. Gordon Parks
1st famed photographer, in addition to film director, poet, and author. Just died at age 93.
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-15-06 04:02 PM
Response to Original message
13. Ever heard of
Clora Bryant?
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-25-06 06:27 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. Jazz pioneer/trumpet player who toured with Billie Holiday
"Jazz is not classical, it's c-l-a-s-s-i-c!" ;)
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. Thanks Swampers!!!
:loveya: She and Dorothy Donegan were the catalysts that got me OUT of the U.S. Both AMAZING musicians that "no one ever heard of" and just incredible, outrageously funny, LOVING characters. Here's a bit on Dorothy...

THIS is the FIRST link that comes up on Google for her...

Dorothy Donegan Page in Fuller Up, Dead Musician Directory :eyes:

I burst into tears when I saw it...
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 10:29 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. DAMMIT! Dorothy Donegan's not in The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz!!!


Interestingly, though, Times jazz scribe Ben Ratliff quoted his noted jazz predecessor, John S. Wilson's coverage of a Town Hall appearance in 1971 citing that '"Ms. Donegan showed a technical virtuosity that could be compared only to that of Art Tatum and a swinging drive that might be equaled by Mary Lou Williams." Oddly omitted was the Wilson quote that Donegan carried ever closest to her heart, ". . . She is potentially the greatest jazz pianist playing today." A reflection on this comment comes into focus with Chip Deffaa recalling in his obit, "She was probably the only jazz artist who, in the 1990's, could somehow satisfy the very different audiences of the Village Vanguard (the high temple of jazz purism) and the Tavern on the Green (the glitzy tourist nightspot) - both of which she loved."

The gutty truth, though, despite these admiring tributes at her death, is that never was Dorothy Donegan given due recognition for her artistry by the sacred cows of jazz, the critics, during her more than sixty years of performing throughout the U.S. and abroad. Wilson brought this to readers' attention: "In fact, in jazz circles she is scarcely even thought of as a jazz pianist. . . . Her reputation as a lounge entertainer has virtually buried the fact that she is potentially the greatest jazz pianist playing today." Leonard Feather, in his Encyclopedia of Jazz in the 1960s, lends support to this observation in his listing of Donegan with the closing comment, "Much of her appeal, however, is based on her visual antics." In a later edition Feather omits the pianist, as did John Chilton in his Who's Who Of Jazz and, more recently, both The Guiness Who's Who of Jazz and The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz.


Following any planned program was never meant to be for the flamboyant Dorothy. She frequently reminded her interviewers, "The artistry is always uppermost in my mind. It's not a matter what anyone says about me. I like audiences, I like people, and I like having fun with them." "Having fun" went something like this, Dorothy went on to explain: "Maybe somebody calls out, 'Play Melancholy Baby!' Okay, I have fun and play it like a Bach fugue." And, indeed, the pianist would enthrall her audience performing the classic with amazing authenticity but never denying them a whopping climatic jazz finale.

At age six, Dorothy began classical music studies in Chicago, where she grew up, receiving instruction at the Chicago Conservatory and the Chicago Music College. By age eight her teachers knew they had an exceptional student on hand who enjoyed her studies and hours of practice. "I hated housework," is how Dorothy would impishly explain her abiding love for studying, practicing, and composing at the piano until her death. "You can always keep learning - we all know there's no such thing as knowing it all," she later told interviewers as she diligently pursued studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, and at the University of Maryland, where she would enroll for two-week-long master classes when visiting and performing in the Washington, D.C., area.


I found this great photo:

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-19-06 01:00 PM
Response to Original message
14. The undefeated Chuck Ealey
the only QB to go undefeated in a high school AND college career. His high school record (1967-69) was 30-0; his collegiate record for U. of Toledo was 35-0 from 1969-71. Both records still stand.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #14
17. To finish, in a cruel twist of fate
and testimony to the racial caste system, he wasn't drafted by the NFL. The NFL would have taken him--but NOT as a quarterback. He went on to a successful career in Canada in the CFL, as a QB.
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 05:31 PM
Response to Reply #14
19. NOT surprisingly...

"I was disappointed that I didn't have a chance to play in the NFL. But at the time, the way the world was working, the way the U.S. was working, the way the quarterback situation was working, there were only one or two black quarterbacks then. Most of them were drafted as defensive backs or wide receivers. I didn't want to do that. I sent a note to NFL teams letting everybody know that I wanted to at least have a chance to play quarterback."

"I didn't start the first couple of games of my CFL career. I actually took over as the starter in the third or fourth game of the season and we lost the first one in Edmonton. Then, we won something like 11 straight and won the Grey Cup, which is like winning the Super Bowl in the States."

Ealey, now 55, is a financial advisor for The Investors Group in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga. He lives in nearby Brampton with his wife. They have three children and three grandchildren. Ealey's son, Damon, played football for UT and lettered in 1995. Ealey, whose No. 16 jersey has been retired at Toledo, is a member of the UT and MAC halls of fame, but surprisingly, he is not in the College Football Hall of Fame.
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fortyfeetunder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 11:27 PM
Response to Reply #14
24. ..and more stories about Black QB's.
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msgadget Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-27-06 02:26 AM
Response to Original message
21. James Crudup
He's still alive but he's got to be just one of many who've made such contributions in anonymity.

Surgeons learned skills from ex-trucker


James Crudup, who never went to college, who was never allowed to operate on a human, was the best surgeon in the medical school. And he could make you one of the best in the world.

Dr. Sherman Silber of St. Louis, a world-famous urologist, says of him: "He made me what I am."


He could do whatever he put his mind to, and particularly his hands. He watched the doctors coming through, transplanting organs in animals. He thought, "I believe I can do that." He learned terms from medical books. Vena cava, aortic arch. He practiced on the bodies of animals destined for the incinerator. It was as natural to him as rewiring a house.

A doctor who ran the lab found him out. He put a knife in Crudup's hand.

"Then he started sending residents to me," Crudup say. They were told, 'See Jimmy. If he can't teach you, you have to go.' "

By the time Sherman Silber found him, Crudup was already a legend.

"He could do shunts, liver transplants, much faster and with healthier results than any of the surgeons," Silber says. "And there were damn good surgeons.

"I went to him and told him what my problem was."

Silber wanted to be a surgeon. "But I wasn't good with my hands," he says. "I had a huge amount of insecurity about it. Jimmy was a prodigy. But he was kind."

Crudup taught him how to use his hands, he says.

"Then it went further."

Silber wanted to study transplant rejections, but the best subjects for this were inbred rats, animals with tiny organs and vessels - too tiny for the clumsy instruments at hand at the time. "I asked Jimmy if this was possible," Silber says.

"He thought about it for a minute, and said, 'Yeah, I think we can do that.'

"He made his own instruments. We basically pioneered microsurgery together."

In 2005, an Alabama woman, Stephanie Yarber, had a baby; 10 years earlier, her ovaries had shut down. The birth became possible because of a transplant of ovarian tissue donated by her identical twin.

Silber was the surgeon.

Now at St. Luke's Hospital in St. Louis, Silber is a renowned fertility expert; he's a pioneer in reverse vasectomies.

"I wouldn't have the techniques or tools to do that without Jimmy," he says.


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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-27-06 08:19 AM
Response to Original message
22. "Life Without Black People" e-mail
I had starting researching the claims of the listings, when I found that Snopes had beaten me to it, . Some are true, but most are false or incomplete. Example, Alexander Miles did NOT invent the elevator (a survey of the patent records quickly confirms that), but worked on the the elevator door mechanism. At the end, there are actual facts.
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theHandpuppet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-29-06 10:58 AM
Response to Original message
23. African American Operators of the Underground Railroad
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-11-06 12:59 PM
Response to Original message
25. Lewis Latimer
noted draftsman and inventor. His drafting skills were such that he became Head Draftsman for patent solicitors Crosby & Gould in Boston. He drafted the patent drawings for Alexander Graham Bell's patent application for the telephone. He is more noted for his invention of a method of making carbon filaments for the Maxim electric incandescent lamp. He was the only black member of "Edison Pioneers," the engineering division of the Edison Company.

More at
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DrDebug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-21-06 06:33 PM
Response to Original message
26. Thank you
I hardly ever see this part of DU. I just saw undergroundrailroad's name and I know that he has been a mod here for ages now, but I hardly ever knew anything about so, so I checked out his journal and ended up here.

You just made me realize that I know very little. At the end of last year I had the idea that I'd learned enough and didn't really know what to do with all the information.

I guess it made me see how screwed up the world really is, but I since then began to understand that was just a small part of puzzle. And things like black history are parts which are hidden even deeper.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-25-06 09:10 AM
Response to Original message
27. Franklin Raines, 1st black CEO of a Fortune 500 company
He was appointed CEO of Fannie Mae in 1998.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-03-06 08:35 AM
Response to Original message
28. Black Like Me '94
Edited on Wed May-03-06 08:44 AM by Lurking_Argyle
Joshua Solomon, a U. of Maryland college student, re-creates John Howard Griffin's sojourn thru' the South and records his experience at

Where John Griffin was black for a summer, Solomon doesn't make it a week.

How is this history? There are those who would like to think the racial caste system and racism are over just because the Brown vs. Board of Education decision ended formal segregation and the Civil Rights Acts were passed. Just because they may have a boss that isn't a white male doesn't mean that this country is living up to its credos and ideals. A visit to the GD board proves that.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 10:06 AM
Response to Original message
29. Inventor Granville T. Woods
who is a recent inductee into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Akron, OH. Article is at

Some of his noted inventions are the electric 3rd rail and the Railway Telegraph that allowed real-time communications between moving trains and railway stations. This improved railway safety immeasurably.

Though a known and respected inventor, he was still a black man in segregated America and frequently had to defend himself and his inventions in court. He had to defend himself against Thomas Edison twice, winning both times. He didn't enjoy financial success in spite of his inventions. He was nearly broke at his death in 1910.

Woods was called the "black Thomas Edison". Maybe Edison should've been called the "white Granville Woods".
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-22-06 08:54 AM
Response to Original message
30. The slave codes
The British North American colonies (predecessor to the present-day USA) did not have chattel slavery, defined as Africans and their decendants as property through an inherited and permanent condition determined by the mother's status. Slavery and the racial caste system, under which we suffer to the present day, came about gradually with the introduction of laws called "slave codes" or "black codes". These laws slowly eroded away the civil rights of the Africans, or Negroes, as they were called in the 17th Century. Some of these laws included banning Negroes from owning firearms and making Negroes "servants for life".

A timeline is found at and additional information is at
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-30-07 11:02 PM
Response to Reply #30
104. Slave codes and slave ownership
The question is not whether or not there were black slaveowners, in which the answer is yes. The REAL question is: did black slaveowners own white slaves?

This anecdotal point always appears in any discussion of slave reparations. Usually put forth as fact by disgrunted whites who seem to think that black American history started with the Emancipation Proclamation and slavery wasn't so bad. The question is not a simple yes-no because it hits where most white people are hurt--a point where the white-dominated social caste system did not work.

There is a hard chronological boundary. In 1670 in colonial Virginia, two laws were passed that codified slavery for blacks and ownership restrictions. The laws established blacks as "servants for life": the "normal" condition judged for Blacks; and forbade free Blacks and Native Americans, "though baptised," to own Christian servants, i.e. white servants. The other colonies would pass similar laws and make servitude for blacks a permanent and hereditary condition during the coming years. It is intellectual dishonesty to even put white and black slaveowners as equals, because it has never happened.

There were 51 years, from 1619 to 1670, between the arrival of the first African indentured servants and the reduction of blacks to second-class citizenship and permanent servitude. Let's do a little number-crunching: The estimated population of the American colonies in 1670 was 112,000 of which 4,500 were black--that's 4% of the total population. One can estimate that 2% of the population were rich enough to own slaves, thus 2% of 4,500 was 90 black slaveowners out of an estimated total slaveholding population of 2240. If the average holding were 1-5 slaves, that means that an estimated maximum of white servants that could have been owned by black slaveowners was not more than 450, which is 0.04% of the total population. These numbers alone show the minor economic and social impact black slave owners held at the time, even if they did have white indentured servants. In accordance with the slave laws and codes, whites could not be permanent slaves. There was no documentary evidence of black ownership of white servants, other than entries on some right-wing reactionary and racist websites. US and colonial history has shown time and again that the white power structure had no respect for the rights of non-whites. Even if black owners had white servants, upon passage of those laws, the contracts would have been voided or passed to white ownership.

Why do white people use an over-exaggerated argument that has no basis in fact? Because the cruelty that was slavery is incompatible with the great American myth of equality for everyone and it highlights the fact of a white-dominated racial caste system that oppressed everyone that was not of European descent. In saying that black people were "just as bad" as everyone else allows white people to deny the overwhelming evidence of history. This denial and re-writing of the cruel past is a reoccurring theme in anti-racist authors and scholars, most notably Tim Wise and Robert Jensen.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-31-06 08:25 AM
Response to Original message
31. Hamilton E. Holmes and Charlayne Hunter
now Hamilton Holmes, MD and Charlayne Hunter-Gault, were the 1st two black students to desegregate the University of Georgia in 1961. Ms. Hunter-Gault is the CNN Bureau Chief in Johannesburg, South Africa. Dr. Holmes died in 1995.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-01-06 09:33 AM
Response to Reply #31
32. Autherine Lucy
first black student admitted to a major southern college. She was admitted to the University of Alabama as a post-graduate student in 1956. She did not finish because she was suspended three days later because the university could not guarantee her safety. Her lawyers filed suit to have the suspension removed, but the university used the suit as an excuse to expel her.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-01-06 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #32
33. Silas Hunt
the first black student in modern times to attend a major Southern public university when he was admitted without litigation into the University of Arkansas School of Law in 1948.
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kwassa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-02-06 01:58 PM
Response to Original message
34. some very early history in the Americas

African American Men: Moments in History from Colonial Times to the Present

Colonial Times, 1492-1776

1492: Among the crew on the Santa Maria during Christopher Columbus's voyage to the Americas is Pedro Alonzo Nio, a black man. Africans also accompany Ponce de Leon, Hernando Cortes, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, and Francisco Vasquez de Coronado in the early 16th century.

1623: William Tucker, the son of indentured servants living in Jamestown, is the first recorded black birth in America.

1625: A census of Virginia counts 11 black men among a population of 1,227.

1641: Mathias De Sousa, a free black man, is elected to the Maryland General Assembly. He had come to the colony as an indentured servant.

1644: Lucas Santomee, a black physician and one of the major landowners in what is to become New York, is granted a tract by the Dutch that stretched from modern-day Greenwich Village to Brooklyn.

jump ahead

1776: Five thousand black men serve in the Army and Navy during the American Revolution. But 20,000 fight for the British, who promise freedom to any slave who joined them. At the end of the war, 12,000 African Americans leave with the British. While some are freed in Europe and Africa, thousands more are sold back into slavery in the West Indies.

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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-16-06 02:14 AM
Response to Reply #34
46. Mathias De Sousa ... More info:
Archives of Maryland
(Biographical Series)

Mathias de Sousa
MSA SC 3520-2810
Freeman in attendance at the Legislature, 1642


Founding of Maryland - Educational Project for Elementary and Middle School Students
Maryland Public Television and Maryland State Archives (January-February 2003)
written by Maria A. Day, MSA Archival Intern

Historians know very little about an early settler to Maryland named Mathius de Sousa. Only a few documents record the details of his life. Some people recognize Mathius as the first, free person of African descent living in Maryland. Others simply find his life inspiring. Mathius was a servant who learned skills as a sailor and fur trader to win his freedom. There are some details about Mathius' life we will probably never know, but there are enough facts to tell his story.


We don't know exactly what Mathius did in the first few years he lived in Maryland. He probably worked very hard with other indentured servants building houses and the new church for the Jesuits. Many servants also planted and harvested crops for food. He probably traveled by boat to Maryland's Eastern Shore with Father White. The priests visited the Native American people who lived there. We know that one of the Jesuit priests identified Mathius as, "Mathias Sousa, a Molato" in an important land record3 The record listed all of the people who came to Maryland with the Jesuits. Governor Leonard Calvert said the Jesuits owned farmland near St. Mary's City. The Governor allowed the priests and their servants to continue to lived and grow crops for food on this land.

The term "molato" used by the priest, is the old spelling for "mulatto," defined in the seventeenth-century as a person of mixed African and European descent. It is sometimes difficult to find out about a person's race if they lived in the seventeenth-century. "Mulatto" can also refer to the complexion (lightness or darkness) of a person's skin. We can only guess if this refers to Mathius' ancestry or to the color of his skin tone.4 His last name, "de Sousa," is common in Portugal, where perhaps Mathius' father was born. We also do not know how Mathias de Sousa thought of himself. Mathius left us no written record of what he said or thought. Several priests and public officials who knew Mathius recorded all of the information known about him.


During his years of service to the priests, Mathius had learned how to sail the small ship owned by the Jesuits. Mathius decided to earn his living as a fur trader and sailor. He earned money by trading English goods with Indians for animal furs and food. For a few years, he continued to work for the priests. The priests made him captain of their trading ship. Later, Mathius was captain of a trading ship owned by John Lewger, who was Secretary in the Maryland government. In March 1641, Mathius was elected as a representative at a Maryland Assembly meeting. This proves that Mathius was no longer a servant. He voted as a citizen. Then, colonists had a very hard year in 1642. The Susquehannock Indians attacked the English settlers. Mathius could not trade for furs during the Susquehannock invasion. He had trouble paying his rent and buying food. He owed money to three wealthy men: Governor Leonard Calvert, Captain Thomas Cornwaleys and John Hallowes.


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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-06-06 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
35. Crispus Attucks
allegedly, the first person to die in the Boston "Massacre" for American liberty from the British; also considered the first American "martyr". I deliberately placed "allegedly" and the other quotation marks to note two major points: the aforementioned incident was hardly a massacre in the true sense of the word (5 dead), and, like most events leading up to the American Revolution, has reached mythical status. The patriot press was totally partisan and objectivity was in short supply when reporting about the British. Sam Adams used the incident for propaganda, along with Paul Revere's famous woodcut, anointing the dead as heroes and martyrs. The racial segregation rules for burial were suspended so that Attucks and the other four dead (who were Samuel Gray, James Caldwell, Samuel Maverick, and Patrick Carr) could all be buried together as the honored dead.

Attucks is remembered only as the first death for liberty. That is the height of irony because the same liberty for which he is remembered, rightly or wrongly, was denied him while alive. He was skilled herdsman, especially adept at buying and selling cattle. He was so skilled that he could not purchase his freedom, his master deemed him too valuable to let go. He ran away to sea, working as a sailor and related jobs. This was just as hazardous to his liberty because of an escaped slave bounty on his head and impressment by the British Navy. How he came to be involved that night is open to speculation. Attucks was implicated as the head of a mob of sailors and lead instigator of the riot according to Sam Adams' trial speech for the defense of the British soldiers who fired on the crowd. Did he really lead a mob that night? No one can say for sure. (Writer's note: Then, as now, blame the black guy. :eyes: ) Later propaganda elevated Attacks and the others from riotous thugs to heroes for liberty. Most of the articles I've read imply that Attucks and the other four men were unlucky members of a riotous crowd.

This entry is to show that in a country with a racial caste system, even then, like now, people of color were more respected, even more honored, dead, rather than alive.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-12-06 08:05 AM
Response to Original message
36. John "Bud" Fowler and Moses Fleetwood Walker
these gentlemen are the first pro baseball players. Fowler was the first black professional player in 1878 ( ) and Walker was the first black Major League player in 1884 ( ). Fowler was credited for inventing shin guards for baseball because he was a frequent and regular target for spiking by white players. He taped pieces of wood on his legs to protect himself. MLB became segregrated (for all practical purposes) in 1887 when the International League banned all future contracts for black players, but existing contracts remained in effect. MLB was de-segregated in the modern era in 1948 by Jackie Robinson.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-20-06 09:34 AM
Response to Original message
37. First black soccer players
Since it's World Cup time, and I have a soccer football avatar, I've been researching the first black US soccer players. This has been exceptionally difficult because soccer in the US has been a minor sport and most players were foreign-born. Add the fact that soccer didn't suffer from the crippling racism of the major sports, researching this was quite the labor of fun. Relegation to minor status by colleges in favor of rugby, the forerunner of gridiron (American) football, lack of money, regional differences, and political infighting were always the problems in soccer's early years.

Jamaican-born Gil Heron is considered the first pro soccer player in 1946. Joe Gaetjens, the star of the 1950 USA World Cup team that defeated England 1-0, was from Haiti (the name comes from a Belgian father and Haitian mother). That win is still considered the greatest World Cup upset of all time. A team of college students, semi-pros, and amateurs winning over a full professional team from the home of modern soccer. IMO, the English hate that fact more than losing the American Revolution. It's also the subject of the 2005 movie The Game of Their Lives starring Patrick Stewart--THE Patrick Stewart.

The first US-born black pro soccer I could find was Desmond Armstrong, from Columbia, MD. A 3-time all-ACC standout at the U. of Maryland, he began his pro career with the MISL (Major Indoor Soccer League) Cleveland Force in 1986. He was on the 1988 Olympic Team and on the 1990 and 1994 USA World Cup teams. First international appearance vs. Egypt in 1987.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-14-06 10:02 AM
Response to Reply #37
41. To include the women...
the first black female pro soccer player I could find was Briana Scurry. One of the founding members of the WUSA, she was starting goalkeeper for the women's World Cup team in 1995 and 1999 and she was the starting goalkeeper for the women's Olympic team in 1996. She played for the WUSA team Atlanta Beat from 2001-2003, when the league folded.

In my survey of W-League women's team rosters, i.e., the team home pages that actually had photo rosters, the teams that actually have black players, they tended to come from outside of the US, much like the early days of men's soccer in the 20th century.
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Lucy Donating Member (216 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-25-06 05:25 PM
Response to Original message
38. August Wilson
I have to admit that I'd never heard of him until a friend of mine from Denmark went to see one of his plays. Last week-end I went to "Joe Turner's Come and Gone" at the Fountain Theater in L.A. Excellent play; superb cast. The theater was sold out and the play and actors received a standing ovation from all 78 patrons. Wilson wrote a series of plays about the black experience in America. Mr. Wilson passed away last year.
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itzamirakul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-23-06 07:00 AM
Response to Reply #38
42. The African Grove Theatre NYC 1821-1823
Edited on Sun Jul-23-06 07:03 AM by itzamirakul
First it is important to note that NYC slaves did not receive emancipation until 1827, so this theatre was in operation DURING the time of slavery in New York City.

Founded by William Brown and located within three blocks of the Greenwich Village site of NYU, and Washington Square Park, the African Grove was a "pleasure garden" or a place with tables and chairs set outside where couples could stroll among flowers and sit and have coffee, ice cream and sometimes stronger drinks. It was on a site "behind the one-mile stone" at Broadway and Mercer Streets and at the time was on the outskirts of town.

The African Grove Theatre was located in a building on the same property and presented Shakespearean plays with all black casts. James Hewlitt was the star performer. The plays were so well done that they soon drew large white audiences and resulting problems caused black audiences to eventually cease to attend. New York newspapers wrote reviews of the plays presented by Brown and his company and although the reviews were meant to be snarky, they did draw even more audience members. When the audiences were racially mixed, according to the NY newspapers, Brown reversed the segregated seating policy and had white audiences sit in the rear, behind the black audience members.

Attending the theatre in the 1820s was a daunting task: theatre goers had to traverse rutted, unpaved, muddy roads and fight off wandering pigs that had been turned out like dogs to rummage for food. The pigs were often quite vicious. Returning home was even more dangerous, for in the dark, there were no street lights and patrons walked the carriage-rutted streets with only flaming torches to show the way.

The manager of the nearby Park Theatre was incensed by the success and popularity of the African Theatre and felt that they were drawing "his" audiences. So he sent "white rowdies" to interrupt the performances. They threw things at the stage and in the middle of a dramatic monologue, the rowdies would demand that Hewlitt sing a "coon song."

The theatre was burned to the ground at least three times and each time, an unintimidated Brown rebuilt it and continued on. Once a fight broke out between the rowdies and the cast members,and when the police came, they quite naturally arrested the black cast despite the provocations of the white thugs. As they were led away in shackles, Brown was heard to be spouting appropriate lines of Shakespeare to the watching crowd.

Finally a visiting group of circus performers was sent to disrupt the play and they beat Brown and his actors senseless. This time Brown did not rebuild and for all intents and purposes, this brilliant, brave man disappears into oblivion.

Such was not the case for James Hewlitt, renowned singing waiter at the white-owned luxury City Hotel, located near today's WTC territory. Hewlitt continued to give performances in buildings near to the destroyed African Grove,for a couple of years, but eventually, he also disappears into the pages of history.

To see a drawing of Hewlitt in costume visit . An annoying ad will pop up but you can click it away.

Brown also wrote the first known play written by a black man in America. The name of the play was "King Shotaway,"
however copies of it have also disappeared.

Conjecture has it that Brown, of West Indian heritage, had traveled with a white Shakespearean actor as his dresser/valet, and after years of hearing the plays, night after night, had ingested and memorized them, allowing him to then teach others and to direct and produce on his own.

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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 04:30 AM
Response to Reply #42
49. Theatre goers had to "fight off wandering pigs! - Whoa!
William Brown was amazing! if only a copy of "King Shotaway" could be located...
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-22-09 11:59 PM
Response to Reply #38
182. August was a good friend of mine
I have a copy of "The Piano Lesson" which he autographed for my daughter and I saw premiers of a couple of his shows in NYC and hung out with the cats and August afterwards (Laurence Fishburne and Keith David were in Two Trains Running and Seven Guitars.

I was so sad when he passed

I saw the first staged readings of Joe turner at the eugene O'neill theater center where I worked as an actor and also did some staged readings of my own plays.

August wrote on legal pads with a pencil, generally and said he would not use a typewriter or comuter because he did not beieve in the "delete" key (altho he always rewrote and edited and double spaced lines to make corections.

He told me once about getting kicked out of a Dunkin Donuts (where he would go to write and drink coffee) cause he was African American AFTER he won his first Pulitzer (he won two and is one of ony a ahndful of playwrights - including arthur iler, to win more than one.

a great man and writer and friend.

Joe Turner was , i believe, the play he thought was best. A great play.

I saw also Howard Rollins (who I became friends with) in Wilson;s play about the Negro baseball league (name escapes me at the moment.
Howard, an oscar winner for ragtime, was a great guy and died too young.
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 12:05 AM
Response to Reply #182
183. Eugene Bullard. WWI Flying and fighter ace pilot
Edited on Thu Jul-23-09 12:06 AM by Liberation Angel
see his wikipedia page.

amazing story.

Ameria would not let him be a fighter pilot. but Franc did.

Part native American and an ex patriot in Paris, he had to flee the Nazis in 1940-1 as they were STILL pissed at him for shooting down their pilots in WWI.

He ended up an elevator operator on wall steet, i believe.

and died in relative obscurity.

I am working on a screenplay which deals with his story.I have done a lot of research on him.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-07-06 08:11 AM
Response to Original message
39. List of the nations and tribes of West Africa
These are the tribes and nations from which most black Americans are descended. Individual lineages will never be known. This is a partial list: Wolof, Fon (Fan), Akan, Fulani, Mande, Asante (Ashanti), Hausa, Woodabe, Ga, Dogon, Yoruba, Baule, Malinke (Mandinka), Berber, Woodabe, Ibo.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-07-06 12:24 PM
Response to Original message
40. Althea Gibson
first black American tennis player to win the Lawn Tennis Championships (bka Wimbledon) in 1957 and 1958.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-31-06 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
43. Madame C.J. Walker
born Sarah Breedlove, became the first black millionaire. She made her fortune manufacturing and marketing hair care products. She donated large sums to the NAACP's anti-lynching campaign and other philanthropic interestests. She can be read about at in addition to other sites.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-09-06 10:01 AM
Response to Original message
44. Pierre Landry
the first black mayor in the US. Mayor of Donaldsonville, LA, served from 1868-1869.
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wildeyed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-15-06 11:14 AM
Response to Original message
45. Jason Thomas, 9/11 "mystery" hero.

Thomas, who had been out of the Marine Corps about a year, was dropping his daughter off at his mother's Long Island home when she told him planes had struck the towers.

He retrieved his marine uniform from his truck, sped to Manhattan and had just parked his car when one of the towers collapsed. Thomas ran toward the centre of the ash cloud.

"Someone needed help. It didn't matter who," he said. "I didn't even have a plan. But I have all this training as a marine, and all I could think was, 'My city is in need."'


Shamberg said he apologized to Thomas for an inaccuracy in the film: Thomas is black, but the actor cast to portray him, William Mapother, is white. Filmmakers realized the mistake only after production had begun, Shamberg said. ( :eyes:)
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-11-07 11:01 PM
Response to Reply #45
97. Angelina Jolie as Mariane Pearl in "A Mighty Heart" /

It seems that accuracy is secondary to keeping actual people of color out of major/starring roles. It doesn't have to be deliberate, just overlooked or an "oops" moment. In this case, since Ms. and Mr. Angelina Jolie (that's no typo) are the forces behind the film, they can cast who they want, facts be damned. Having seen photos of Mariane Pearl and Angelina Jolie, there's no way that the real Mariane Pearl would be mistaken for white, and Angelina couldn't pass for black--or not-white.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-21-08 03:26 PM
Response to Reply #97
142. Mariane Pearl's ancestry
born Mariane van Neyenhoff, is Afro-Cuban (mother) and Dutch (father), and born in France.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-05-06 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
47. NFL coaching history
the 1st and 2nd black pro football coaches were Fritz Pollard and Art Shell.

Fritz Pollard was named co-coach in 1921 while playing for the Akron (OH) Pros of the newly founded American Professional Football Association (later renamed the National Football League). He was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2005.

Art Shell became head coach of the Oakland Raiders in 1989, becoming the first black NFL head coach. He was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1989.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-19-06 08:32 AM
Response to Original message
48. The 1906 Atlanta Race Riot
The article ran on the front page of this past Sunday's Journal-Constitution newspaper.

A century later, a city remembers

Excerpt: On a cloudy Monday night a century ago this month, a dozen white lawmen and armed civilians marched into Brownsville, a black neighborhood on the southern edge of Atlanta, and started arresting anyone with a weapon.

It was the third day of the 1906 Atlanta Race Riot, the worst outbreak of racial violence in the city's history. Whites had done almost all of the bloodletting so far, and authorities feared blacks were plotting reprisals.

As they headed back for the jail with their prisoners, the posse noticed figures lurking in the shadows. An officer ordered them to put up their hands. Someone pulled a trigger. Guns crackled and flashed for five minutes. A white cop and at least two black residents fell dead.

At the Fulton County Courthouse the next morning, one of the policemen, John Oliver, gave an account of the battle to a gathering that included a reporter for The Atlanta Evening News. After the shooting started, he told them, he spotted a man with a gun coming toward him and fired.

"I found him this morning. I had shot him in the stomach. He was an old negro and had a muzzle-loading musket."

The "old negro" was probably George Wilder, a disabled veteran who lived with his wife on nearby Moury Avenue. At 70, he was a former slave who had fought with the Union Army at the end of the Civil War. Thought to be the oldest Atlantan to die in the riot, he lies under a broken tombstone barely a mile from where he was shot to death.

Wilder's grave has become a focal point for a group of Atlantans who plan to commemorate the riot centennial this week. The Coalition to Remember the 1906 Atlanta Race Riot - representing an array of local colleges, governments, and cultural and faith groups - is staging a four-day remembrance that will be part symposium and part town hall meeting.

The observance will begin Thursday with a memorial service at old Ebenezer Baptist Church, where the names of dozens of people caught up in the violence will be read aloud. Then a funeral procession will leave for South-View, Atlanta's oldest black cemetery, where an African libation - a blessing and ceremonial pouring of water - will be held at the Wilder plot.

"It's the only victim's grave we've been able to find," says historian Clarissa Myrick-Harris, a coalition organizer.

A result of white rage

Unlike the urban disturbances of the 1960s, when black ghettos exploded in frustration, the riots of a century ago were usually the result of white rage. In an era of lynchings, white hysteria over black sex crimes - real and more often imagined - occasionally boiled over in mass retribution that resembled the pogroms against Jews in Russia.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, white marauders attacked black communities in Wilmington, N.C.; Springfield, Ill.; Tulsa, Okla.; and a dozen other cities.

Atlanta's descent into a near race war began on Sept. 22, 1906. It was Saturday night, and the newspapers were hawking extras with wildly exaggerated reports of rapes by blacks. Whipped into a frenzy, a crowd of 5,000 downtown started assaulting blacks at random. By the time the violence ended four days later, between 25 and 50 people were dead, and the city's reputation for New South moderation had been badly bruised.
(article continues)

I had never heard of the Atlanta race riot. This is another example of how history has been sanitized by the majority, especially if it makes them look bad. x(
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SemperEadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-18-07 06:01 PM
Response to Reply #48
81. The East St. Louis Massacres
Edited on Sun Mar-18-07 06:08 PM by SemperEadem
the evil of those days has left a miasma which has never left that city.

The horror of the East St. Louis massacre of July 2,1917 is told in the eyewitness accounts of over fifty people interviewed by Mrs. Ida B. Wells-Barnett and the eyewitness accounts of white news reporters. What follows is a brief synopsis of a report entitled "History of the East St. Louis, Illinois, Riot" written by Mrs. Ida B. Wells-Barnett.

This report was held under seal by the U.S. Government as "classified information" and the U.S. Government did not de-classify this report until 1986. The first three stories were told to Mrs. Wells-Barnett as she traveled back and forth from East St. Louis to St. Louis. Taking women with trunks of their wearing apparel, which they were able to salvage from their ransacked and burned out homes in East St. Louis, Illinois. Mrs. Emma Ballard said, men and boys were in the street hollering "come out, n_____s" as they roamed up and down in the African American district. They shot and beat every African American found on the streets Monday night. She saw fourteen men beaten and two killed.

Mrs. Mary Howard said, that during the riot a young fellow whom she had sent to the grocery to get a chicken, was knocked off his wheel by the mob. Then the mob took his wheel and struck him on the side of his head with a brick and knocked a hole in it. His name was Jimmie Eckford, eighteen years old and he roomed at her house. He ran into the nearest yard which happened to be that of white people. When the mob said they would burn this house down if they didn't make Mr. Eckford come out, the tenants picked him up and threw him out in the street to the mob.

Where he was kicked and stamped on and beaten till they knocked his teeth from his head and killed him. The street cars ran right along in front of Mrs. Howard's house, and she saw white women stop the street cars and pull African American women off and beat them. One woman's clothes they tore off entirely, and then took off their shoes and beat her over the face and head with their shoe heels. Another woman who got away, ran down the street, with every stitch of clothes torn off her back, leaving her with only her shoes and stocking on. Mrs. Howard saw two men beaten to death.

She had escaped all excepting having rocks thrown at the house, until this solider humiliated her by coming into her house and arresting her and the other women there, because they couldn't find any guns concealed. In the Chicago Herald, July 4,1917, a white reporter wrote that the National Guards were lax and cruelly good-natured. In one instance a corpulent African American woman brought up the rear of procession and for several blocks a white boy, one of the gang of stone-throwing mischief-makers, who followed every squad, was beating her with an iron bar at intervals of a few yards. She did not dare to protest or to resist. She was even too frightened to scream. At last a white man, probably a nonresident of East St. Louis, called the attention of a guardsman to the outrage, and he laughingly drove the boy off.

The square block from Broadway and Eighth streets was burned to an ash heap. On that corner stood an African American commercial building containing a grocery and barber shop. The vanguard of the rioters invaded these stores and found an African American crouching timorously in each. The armed invaders drove the two African Americans out through the back doors and there they were shot down and left to be burned alive. The shots were fired from militia rifles by khaki-uniformed men.

Dozens of men who saw it done today loudly proclaimed it so, slapped their thighs and said the Illinois National Guard was alright. Another white newspaper said, boys 13,14,15 and 16 were in the forefront of every felonious butchery. Girls and women, wielding bloody knives and clawing at the eyes of dying victims, sprang from the ranks of the mad thousands. Another eyewitness, Mr. Carlos F. Hurd of St. Louis, Mo., a white staff reporter, wrote and published a part of what he saw in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on July 3, 1917.

For an hour and a half on July 2,1917, Mr. Hurd saw the massacre of helpless African Americans at Broadway and Fourth street, in downtown East St. Louis, where a black skin was a death warrant. Mr. Hurd saw man after man, with hands raised, pleading for his life, surrounded by groups of men; men who had never seen him before and knew nothing about him except that he was African American; and saw them administer the historic sentence of intolerance, death by stoning.

Mr. Hurd saw African American women begging for mercy and pleading that they had harmed no one, set upon by white women of the baser sort, who laughed and answered the cource sallies of men as they beat the women faces and breasts with fists, stones and sticks. "Get a n____r," was the slogan, and it was varied by the recurrent cry, "Get another." It was nothing so much as the holiday crowd, with thumbs turned down, in the Roman Coliseum, except that here the shouters were their own gladiators, and their own wild beasts.

The sheds in the rear of African American houses, which were themselves in the rear of the main buildings on Fourth Street, had been ignited to drive out the African American occupants of the houses. And the slayers were waiting for them to come out. It was stay in and be roasted, or come out and be slaughtered. A moment before Mr. Hurd arrived, one African American had taken the desperate chance of coming out and the rattle of revolver shots, which Mr. Hurd heard as he approached the corner, was followed by the cry, "they've got him," and they had. He laid on the pavement, a bullet wound in his head and his skull bare in two places. At every movement of pain which showed that life still remained, there came a terrific kick in the jaw or the nose, or a crashing stone, from some of the men who stood over him.

The mob then turned to see a lynching. An African American who had his head laid open by a great stone-cut had been dragged to the mouth of the alley on Fourth Street and a small rope was being tied about his neck. It broke when it was pulled over a projecting cable, letting the African American fall. A stouter rope was secured. Right there Mr. Hurd his most sickening sight of the evening. To put the rope around the African American's neck, one of the lynch men stuck his fingers inside the gaping scalp and lifted the African American's head by it. "Get hold and pull for East St. Louis," called a man with a black coat and a new straw hat on as he seized the other end of the rope, and lifted the body seven feet from the ground, and left it hanging there.

One of those firing on him being a boy in short trousers. The driver of the first ambulance that came was not permitted to remove this body, and it layed for an hour beside the street car tracks seen by the passengers in every passing car. At 9:30 that morning an African American still living, but in critical condition, was found in a sewer manhole at Sixth Street and Broadway. He was beaten by the mob with paving bricks 13 hours before and thrown in. The two-year old African American child who was killed was the daughter of William Forest of 1118 Division Ave..

They also were searched and even had their pocket knives taken from them. One of the shots fired took off an arm of a woman who was working in this restaurant. One of the half dozen men standing around, told Mrs. Well-Barnett that he saw a woman and two children killed, also her husband. That they were going across the bridge and the mob seized the baby out of her arms and threw it into the river. Frank Brown said, he saw a man hit an African American with a piece of iron and shoot him four times in the stomach.

African American men had their fingers cut off by the mob and their heads split open with axes. Will Morgan, employed at the B.&O. Roundhouse, saw the mob make the African Americans swim into the Cahokia River, then shoot them, one being killed instantly. The others managed to struggle back to shore, only to be stoned to death by children. Mr. Buchanan said, he saw them beat men down with revolvers and clubs; white men knocked African American women down, and then the white women would finish by beating them to death or nearly so.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-04-08 09:59 AM
Response to Reply #48
130. Detroit Race Riot of 1943
Excerpt from the article:
As the nation's most important production center during the Second World War, the city of Detroit was popularly known as the "arsenal of democracy." The city's overwhelmingly industrial landscape had been rapidly expanding since the manufacturing boom of the post-Civil War era. Yet its industrial prosperity masked underlying and deeply-rooted racial animosities. As the city's many production plants mobilized for the war effort, employers turned to a ready pool of African American labor from the South. Yet Detroit was in no way equipped to accommodate these new laborers. The shift in the city's demographics caused volatile racial tensions which would erupt into one of the bloodiest riots in the nation's history.

By the 1940s Detroit already had a long history of racial conflict. Race riots had occurred in 1863 and as recently as 1941. By the 1920s the city had become a stronghold of the Ku Klux Klan, an organization committed to white supremacy. The industrial plants provided jobs but not housing. White communities militantly guarded the dividing lines imposed by segregation throughout Detroit's history. As a result, the city's 200,000 black residents were cramped into sixty square blocks on the East Side and forced to live under deplorable sanitary conditions. Ironically, the ghetto was called Paradise Valley.

These and numerous other indignities contributed to escalating racial tensions in June of 1943. In many cities the demands of wartime were manifesting themselves in outbursts of intolerance. Race riots had already erupted in Los Angeles, as well as Mobile, Alabama, and Beaumont, Texas. In 1943 the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People held an emergency war conference in Detroit and accused the nation of its hypocritical commitment to personal freedoms abroad and discrimination and segregation at home.

The Detroit riot began at a popular and integrated amusement park known as Belle Isle. On the muggy summer evening of June 20, 1943, the playground was ablaze with activity. Several incidents occurred that night including multiple fights between teenagers of both races. White teenagers were often aided by sailors who were stationed at the Naval Armory nearby. As people began leaving the island for home, major traffic jams and congestion at the ferry docks spurred more violence. On the bridge which led back to the mainland, a fight erupted between a total of two hundred African Americans and white sailors. Soon, a crowd of five thousand white residents gathered at the mainland entrance to the bridge ready to attack black vacationers wishing to cross. By midnight, a ragged and understaffed police force attempted to retain the situation, but the rioting had already spread too far into the city.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-04-08 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #48
131. List of Race Riots in the Jim Crow era
The violent, racial confrontations in which mobs of whites and blacks battled each other in U.S. towns and cities during the Jim Crow era were triggered by some of the same forces driving legalized segregation, disfranchisement, and the lynching of thousands of African Americans. These explosions of urban violence against blacks differed in several ways from the individual lynchings and systematic terror practiced by organizations, such as the Ku Klux Klan, in the 1870s. For one thing, the urban explosions were directed less at individuals and more at entire black communities. They also reflected more the anxieties felt by lower-class whites, who feared competition with blacks for housing, employment, and social status as African-American newcomers began moving into urban settings following the Civil War. Also, although whites--who felt enraged by some real or imaginary actions by blacks--always started these riots, black victims increasingly defended themselves as best they could. Clearly, the race riots also were backlashes by white Americans who reacted with contempt and rage to black Americans cries for equality, justice, and decency.

The race riots generally followed historical events. The first wave occured after Reconstruction. Some of the more serious outbreaks occurred in New Orleans, Louisiana (1866), (1868), (1874), Memphis, Tennessee (1866), Meridian, Mississippi (1870), Vicksburg,Mississippi (1874), and Yazoo City, Mississippi (1875).

The second wave occured after the Plessy vs. Ferguson Supreme Court decision and legalized segregation and disenfranchisement. The most serious riots happened in Lake City, North Carolina (1898); Wilmington, North Carolina (1898); Greenwood County, South Carolina (1898); New Orleans, Louisiana (1900); New York City, New York (1900); Springfield, Ohio (1904); Atlanta, Georgia (1906); Greenburg, Indiana (1906); Brownsville, Texas (1906); and Springfield, Illinois (1908).

The third wave occured during and after World War I with demands from angry black people for justice along with the return of black veterans in no mood to tolerate injustice after fighting "to make the world safe for democracy". The great urban migration from the south to the manufacturing centers of the north brought blacks into too close and uncomfortable contact with whites. Whites saw their social status threatened by the newcomers and "uppity" black veterans.

Between 1917 and 1921, an unprecedented outbreak of racial violence swept across the nation. Over 20 race riots broke out between April and October 1919 alone, a six-month period remembered as the "Red Summer." Among the most deadly outbreaks were those in East St. Louis, Illinois (1917); Chester, Pennsylvania (1917); Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1917); Houston, Texas (1917); Washington, D.C. (1919); Chicago, Illinois (1919); Omaha, Nebraska (1919); Charleston, South Carolina (1919), Longview, Texas (1919); Knoxville, Tennessee (1919); Elaine, Arkansas (1919); and Tulsa, Oklahoma (1921).

After the 1921 Tulsa riot and except for the 1935 New York (Harlem) disturbances, no major racial riots occurred until the world war era of the 1940s. Many of the same domestic demographic and social changes affecting blacks and whites that had unfolded during 1919 accompanied World War II, but this time, on a larger scale. The competition between increasing numbers of working-class blacks and whites for housing and employment in urban areas again set the stage for racial conflict. Though the race riots during the World War II era race were far fewer (only three) than their World War I precursors, they no less violent. The 1943 Detroit riot, for example, resulted in the deaths of 25 African Americans and nine whites. The other two riots occurred in New York City (Harlem) and Columbia, Tennessee, in 1943. Eight years later, the last major race riot before the 1960s inner city explosions (which most historians view as rebellions rather than race riots) erupted in Cicero, Illinois (1951).

Although urban race riots in the United States between 1866-1951 were unique episodes rooted in the particular historic situation of each place, they shared certain characteristics. To begin with, the whites always prevailed, and the overwhelming majority of those who died and were wounded in all of these incidents were blacks. The few times when white casualties outnumbered black casualities were riots involving black soldiers (Brownsville, 1906; Houston, 1917). Riots also tended to break out in clusters during times of significant socio-economic, political, and demographic upheaval when racial demographics were altered and existing racial mores and boundaries challenged. Perhaps most importantly, the riots usually provoked defensive stances by members of the black communities who defended themselves and their families under attack. Seldom did the violence spill over into white neighborhoods. Finally, the riots greatly strengthened the resolve of blacks to challenge white supremacy legally, intellectually, and emotionally--producing greater efforts by organizations like the NAACP and leaders such as W. E. B. Du Bois, as well as an outpouring of black cultural manifestations of defiance identified with the "New Negro Movement" of the Harlem Renaissance.

Addendum: It cannot be stressed enough that the reason for the race riots go back to the basic racist premise that black people are not really human and, thus, are not deserving of respect and decency, much less basic human and civil rights.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-12-08 07:53 AM
Response to Reply #48
147. The 1908 Springfield Race Riot
From the article: A century ago this week, the normally placid town of Springfield, Ill., the hometown of President Abraham Lincoln, erupted in a two-day spasm of racial violence and mayhem that still has the power to shock today.

Goaded by two alleged attacks by black men on whites, a mob of white residents killed two black men, destroyed dozens of black-owned businesses and ran most of the city's black population out of town on Aug. 14, 1908.

Roberta Senechal de la Roche, professor of history at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va., tells host Liane Hansen that, "White Northerners had a rather complacent and self-satisfied attitude that anti-black prejudice and anti-black violence in particular was largely a Southern problem. And one of the really shocking things about the well-publicized Springfield race riot and its association with Abraham Lincoln was that the North had a race problem."


The 1908 riot has left an enduring legacy it was the catalyst for the formation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 09:43 AM
Response to Original message
50. Slave rebellions and reporting
Reporting of slave rebellions in the US in the 19th Century were heavily censored after Nat Turner's rebellion, esp. in the South (of course!) and censorship laws were passed. Also, PC reporting rules were in place (PC is hardly a new concept, just a new term) claiming that Indians attacked or slaves were "captured" by Indians in order to placate the status quo. Because of this, slave rebellions go unreported and unstudied by present-day historians.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 09:51 AM
Response to Reply #50
51. Little known slave rebellions
esp. in N. America and the Caribbean. The two most famous are Toussaint LOverture's in Haiti, making it a free country in 1804, and Nat Turner's rebellion in Virginia in 1831. Two that don't make the history books are the St. John slave rebellion of 1733 and the Black Seminole slave rebellion (the largest in N. America) in 1835.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #51
52. St. John slave rebellion of 1733
On November 23, 1733 slaves carrying bundles of wood were let into the fort at Coral Bay. Concealed in the wood were cane knives, which the rebels used to kill the half-asleep and surprised soldiers who were guarding the fort. One soldier, John Gabriel, escaped by hiding under his bed and running away when he had a chance. He was able to get to St. Thomas in a small boat and tell the story to Danish officials there. The rebels raised the flag and fired three cannon shots. This was the signal for slaves on the plantations to kill their masters and take control of the island.

The rebels proceeded to kill many of the whites in the Coral Bay area. The insurgents gained in number as they progressed from plantation to plantation. Some whites were spared, notably the company's doctor, Cornelius Bdger, because of the good relationship he had with the Africans in treating their medical needs. Also spared were Dr. Bdger's two stepsons. They were saved from death out of respect for the surgeon, and also to be made into servants for the new rebel leaders.

The stated aim of the rebels was to make St. John an Akwamu ruled state, governed under the Akwamu system. Africans of other tribal origins were to serve as slaves in the production of sugar and other crops.

Many of the small planters on the East End, who had few slaves or possessions, were able to escape to other islands in their family boats. Some of the whites from the western and southern parts of the island were warned by loyal slaves, and they were either able to escape to St. Thomas or to assemble with the other surviving planters at Durloe's Plantation at Caneel Bay (then known as Klein Caneel Bay). The approach to the plantation was guarded in part by two cannons. Captain Jannis von Beverhaut and Lt. Charles assumed command. Women and children were sent to Henley Cay with the intention that they be picked up later and brought to St. Thomas.

Meanwhile, the rebels attacked Cinnamon Bay (then called Caneel Bay). John and Lieven Jansen and a small group of their slaves resisted the onslaught. The rebel force was overwhelming. Jansen's loyal slaves fought a rear guard action and held off the advancing rebels with gunfire, thus allowing the Jansens to retreat to their waiting boat and escape to Durloe's Plantation. Miraculously, the loyal slaves were also able to escape.

The rebels paused to loot the Jansen plantation before pressing onward to confront the white planters at Durloe's. The attackers became disorganized when faced with the initial cannon and musket fire of the defenders, and the attack on Durloe's plantation was repulsed.

Meanwhile in St. Thomas, Governor Philip Gardelin, under pressure from former Governor Moth, consented to send a small party of soldiers to St. John to relieve the besieged planters. More troops under the leadership of William Barrens, as well as a detachment consisting mainly of African slaves sent by the Danish West India Company and by St. Thomas planters, arrived on St. John soon afterwards. This well-armed and well-supplied army was able to recapture the fort and scatter the rebels who then took to hiding in the bush to fight a war of attrition.

To regain the status quo, the planters needed to wipe out the last vestiges of resistance. The remaining rebels could continue to survive by looting abandoned plantations and small farms and by living off the land where cattle now ran wild all over the island. The rebels would be a constant harassment to the orderly development and operation of any restored plantations. Furthermore, the Company and the St. Thomas planters feared that the St. John rebellion would inspire uprisings on St. Thomas and wanted to discourage slaves on that island from taking similar action.

The insurgents held their ground, fighting a guerrilla style war and disappearing into the bush when confronted with direct attack by the numerically superior troops led by the planters. This status quo continued for ten weeks.

The British were also concerned that the rebellion might spread to Tortola, and they decided to help the Danes by sending an English Man O' War from Tortola to St. John. The warship was commanded by a Captain Tallard had a crew of sixty soldiers.

When the British ship landed on St. John, the rebels staged an ambush in which four of Tallard's men were wounded. Tallard and his men, demoralized by this defeat, sailed back to Tortola.

Meanwhile, the owner of the plantation at Maho Bay, William Vessuup, had abandoned his plantation and fled to Tortola after being implicated in a murder. Maroon slaves had taken up residence at his plantation and had later used it as a headquarters for their troops in the rebellion.

In an attempt to regain favor with the Danes and be exonerated from the criminal charges against him, Vessuup offered a plan to trick the rebels. He was to lure the leaders aboard his ship with the promise of supplying them with badly needed guns and ammunition. He then planned to capture the rebel leaders and turn them over to the Danes. This attempt at treachery, however, proved to be unsuccessful.
In February of 1734 the St. John planters again solicited aid from the English, and shortly afterwards Captain John Maddox, a privateer, sailing from St. Christopher (St. Kitts) arrived on the ship Diamond with 50 volunteers. His motivation was personal gain. He arranged a contract with Danish officials that would have allowed him to keep all rebel slaves captured except for the 10 considered most dangerous. They were to be turned over to the Danes for punishment. For these 10 he demanded a payment of 20 pieces-of-eight each. On their first confrontation with the Africans, the forces of John Maddox suffered a loss of three killed (including one of his sons) and five wounded. Like his predecessor Captain Tollard, Captain Maddox and his men left St. John shortly after their defeat.

English Governor Mathews wrote:
On St. John the Danes at present hardly have possession. Their negroes rose upon them about six months ago. At my first arrival I heard they had quelled their slaves, but it was not so, they have in a manner drove the Danes off, at least they dare not now attempt any more to reduce these Negroes, who have always beaten them, and in a manner are masters of that Island. The governor of St. Thomas, was even modest enough to desire I would send some of H. M. ships to reduce them...and I now learn a rash fellow from St. Christophers, in open defiance of my positive orders to the contrary, having made a compact with the Danish governor, went with his two sons and three or four and twenty more on this errand, that the negroes have killed one if not both his sons, and two or three more of his company, and beaten them off.

In early April of 1734 a group of about forty rebels attacked Durloe's Plantation. This assault, like the previous one, was almost successful, but was finally repulsed by the defenders. The insurgents managed, though, to set fire to the defenders supply magazine.

Events in far away Europe were to deal a deathblow to the rebel cause. King Louis of France wanted to make his father-in-law, Stanislas Leszcynski the King of Poland. This would mean war with Poland, and France needed to know that Denmark would at least stay neutral. In addition to this, France was in need of money after having suffered severe financial losses in their Mississippi colony.

The Danes had been interested in the island of St. Croix for quite some time. Sensing an opportunity, the Danish West India Company offered the French 750,000 livres for St. Croix and sweetened the deal with the promise of Danish neutrality.

As a gesture of solidarity with their new friends, France offered Denmark help in subduing the slave rebellion on St. John. Monsieur de Champigny, the Governor of the French West Indies, sent Commander Chevalier de Longueville from Martinique to St. John with a force of two hundred soldiers. This included a free colored corps whose specialty was the tracking down, capturing and killing of runaway slaves, an activity they called maroon hunting.

The French detachment arrived on St. John on April 23, 1734 in two vessels, one commanded by Monsieur de Longueville and the other commanded by Monsieur Nadau. Danish Governor Gardelin dispatched a force of about 30 men under the command of Lt. Froling to offer any assistance necessary to the French soldiers. Gardelin also sent attorney Fries who was to mete out justice to captured rebels.

The French troops proceeded to relentlessly pursue the remaining rebels. A rebel encampment of twenty-six huts was found and destroyed. A young severely wounded slave named January was captured and led the soldiers to a point of land (Ram Head Point) where eleven rebels had committed suicide. A few weeks later eight slaves, two of whom were women, surrendered after their master promised them clemency.

From St. John Backtime, "The Raw Truth has Been Reported," Commander Longueville, from a document discovered and in the Colonies section of the French National Archives by Aimery P. Caron and Arnold R. Highfield:

On Sunday the 16 (May 16, 1734), six Negroes and two negroe women surrendered at the appeal of their master who spared their lives. He then informed me of the matter. I ordered him to bring them to me, since they were identified as rebels. I have them put into chains. Three of them were burned at the stake on three different plantations on St. John. I had previously informed the governor while passing through St. Thomas that should I catch a few of the rebels, I would put most of them to death and send him the rest so that he could make an example of them. The following day I informed him of their capture. He sent a judge who passed sentence for the sake of formality; I sent him the three other rebels along with the two women and requested that he not have them executed until I be present. One was burned to death slowly, another was sawed in half and the third was impaled. The two Negroe women had their hands and heads cut off after all five had been tortured with hot pincers in the town.

One week later twenty-five rebels were found dead on an "outjutting point of land in an unsuspected place" identified later as near Brown Bay. Commander Longueville and his men left St. John a few days later on May 26, 1744 and sailed to St. Thomas.

Unbeknownst to Longueville at the time of this departure, still at large, but hiding in the bush, was one of the leaders of the rebellion and a small group of his followers. He was a former Akwamu noble who was named Prince by his master. Through an intermediary, a deal was arranged whereby Prince and his supporters would be forgiven and allowed to come back to work. Prince and fourteen others surrendered to a Sergeant ttingen. Prince was summarily shot and killed. His head was cut off as a trophy and his followers were captured. Subsequently four of the followers died in jail in St. Thomas, six were tortured to death and four were sent to St. Croix to be worked to death.

Sergeant ttingen was given a reward and was promoted to Lieutenant for his bravery. The soldiers under him were also honored and rewarded.

The Danish West India Company reported that their losses in this rebellion amounted to 7,905 Rigsbankdalers.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #51
53. Black Seminole slave rebellion
From 1835-1838 in Florida, the Black Seminoles, the African allies of Seminole Indians, led the largest slave rebellion in U.S. history. The uprising peaked in 1836 when hundreds of slaves fled their plantations to join the rebel forces in the Second Seminole War (1835-1842). At the heights of the revolt, at least 385 slaves fought alongside the black and Indian Seminole allies, helping them destroy more than twenty-one sugar plantations in central Florida, at the time one of the most highly developed agricultural regions in North America. Amazingly, one would hardly know any of this from the country's textbooks. For over 150 years, American scholars have failed to recognize the true size and scope of the 1835-1838 rebellion. Historians have focused on the Indian warriors of the Second Seminole War (1835-1842), with some attention to the maroon fighters (the Black Seminoles) but almost none to the plantation-slaves.

The omission fits a general pattern in American history. In a trend dating back to the country's earliest national histories, scholars have tended to downplay all incidence of slave resistance. Contemporary scholars may believe that they have overcome this legacy, and yet their failure to identify the country's largest slave revolt speaks to the contrary.

Why did America forget this rebellion?

The Black Seminole slave rebellion was not only the largest in U.S. history, it was also the only one that was even partially successful. During the Second Seminole War the U.S. Army could never conclusively defeat the black rebels in Florida. After three years of fighting, the army chose to grant freedom to the holdouts in exchange for surrender -- the only emancipation of rebellious African Americans prior to the U.S. Civil War.

It might not matter much that the country forgot a slave rebellion, but why the largest? And why the only one that was partially successful?

Certainly in the 1800s, it was never in the political interests of the white South to admit defeat at the hands of black rebels. But how did the censorship of the nineteenth-century become the amnesia of the twentieth? It remains something of a mystery how the country's largest slave rebellion has remained unrecognized for so many years even by the country's leading scholars of African American studies.

P.S. I removed the footnotes for ease of copying. The complete text is at

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-30-07 07:45 PM
Response to Reply #51
103. The Stono Rebellion
The Stono Rebellion--South Carolina, 1739

South Carolina, September 9, 1739: A band of slaves march down the road, carrying banners that proclaim "Liberty!". They shout out the same word. Led by an Angolan named Jemmy, the men and women continue to walk south, recruiting more slaves along the way. By the time they stop to rest for the night, their numbers will have approached one hundred.

What exactly triggered the Stono Rebellion is not clear. Many slaves knew that small groups of runaways had made their way from South Carolina to Florida, where they had been given freedom and land. Looking to cause unrest within the English colonies, the Spanish had issued a proclamation stating that any slave who deserted to St Augustine would be given the same treatment. Certainly this influenced the potential rebels and made them willing to accept their situation. A fall epidemic had disrupted the colonial government in nearby Charlestown (Charleston), and word had just arrived that England and Spain were at war, raising hopes that the Spanish in St. Augustine would give a positive reception to slaves escaping from Carolina plantations. But what may have actually triggered the rebellion on September 9th was the soon-to-be-enacted Security Act.

In mid-August, a Charlestown newspaper announced the Security Act. A response to the white's fears of insurrection, the act required that all white men carry firearms to church on Sundays, a time when whites usually didn't carry weapons and slaves were allowed to work for themselves. Anyone who didn't comply with the new law by September 29 would be subjected to a fine.

Whatever triggered the Rebellion, early on the morning of the 9th, a Sunday, about twenty slaves gathered near the Stono River in St. Paul's Parish, less than twenty miles from Charlestown. The slaves went to a shop that sold firearms and ammunition, armed themselves, then killed the two shopkeepers who were manning the shop. From there the band walked to the house of a Mr. Godfrey, where they burned the house and killed Godfrey and his son and daughter. They headed south. It was not yet dawn when they reached Wallace's Tavern. Because the innkeeper at the tavern was kind to his slaves, his life was spared. The white inhabitants of the next six or so houses they reach were not so lucky -- all were killed. The slaves belonging to Thomas Rose successfully hid their master, but they were forced to join the rebellion. (They would later be rewarded. See Report re. Stono Rebellion Slave-Catchers.) Other slaves willingly joined the rebellion. By eleven in the morning, the group was about 50 strong. The few whites whom they now encountered were chased and killed, though one individual, Lieutenant Governor Bull, eluded the rebels and rode to spread the alarm.

The slaves stopped in a large field late that afternoon, just before reaching the Edisto River. They had marched over ten miles and killed between twenty and twenty-five whites.

Around four in the afternoon, somewhere between twenty and 100 whites had set out in armed pursuit. When they approached the rebels, the slaves fired two shots. The whites returned fire, bringing down fourteen of the slaves. By dusk, about thirty slaves were dead and at least thirty had escaped. Most were captured over the next month, then executed; the rest were captured over the following six months -- all except one who remained a fugitive for three years.

Uncomfortable with the increasing numbers of blacks for some time, the white colonists had been working on a Negro Act that would limit the privileges of slaves. This act was quickly finalized and approved after the Stono Rebellion. No longer would slaves be allowed to grow their own food, assemble in groups, earn their own money, or learn to read. Some of these restrictions had been in effect before the Negro Act, but had not been strictly enforced.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-13-11 01:15 PM
Response to Reply #51
227. Louisiana Slave Rebellion of 1811
Another little-known chapter in US history.

The largest slave revolt in the history of the United States erupted in Louisiana in 1811. A group of slaves launched their attack from a plantation upriver from New Orleans. Led by a Saint-Domingue slave named Charles Deslondes, the insurgents marched down River Road toward New Orleans, killing two whites, burning plantations and crops, and capturing weapons and ammunition. Accounts differ, but an estimated count of between 150 and 500 slaves were involved.

Planters organized militiamen and vigilantes, reinforced with United States Army troops from Baton Rouge and New Orleans. The free black militia offered its services, and one company accepted. The two sides met outside of New Orleans, and sixty-six slaves were killed in the revolt, with others missing or captured and held for trial. Only two whites were killed. Of the slaves who were tried, twenty-one of them were sentenced to death, shot, and decapitated, and their heads were placed on poles along the River Road as a warning to other potential rebel slaves.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-28-07 06:53 PM
Response to Reply #50
73. Denmark Vesey
Denmark Vesey, whose original name was Telemanque, was born in West Africa. As a youth, he was captured, sold as a slave, and brought to America. In 1781 he came to the attention of a slaver, Capt. Vesey, who was "struck with the beauty, alertness, and intelligence" of the boy. Vesey, a resident of Charleston, S.C., acquired the boy. The captain had "no occasion to repent" his purchase of Denmark, who "proved for 20 years a most faithful slave."

In 1800 Vesey won a $1,500 lottery prize, with which he purchased his freedom and opened a carpentry shop. Soon this highly skilled artisan became "distinguished for great strength and activity. Among his color he was always looked up to with awe and respect" by both black and white Americans. He acquired property and became prosperous.

Nevertheless, Vesey was not content with his relatively successful life. He hated slavery and slaveholders. This brilliant man versed himself in all the available antislavery arguments and spoke out against the abuse and exploitation of his own people. Believing in equality for everyone and vowing never to rest until his people were free, he became the political provocateur, agitating and moving his brethren to resist their enslavement.

Selecting a cadre of exceptional lieutenants, Vesey began organizing the black community in and around Charleston to revolt. He developed a very sophisticated scheme to carry out his plan. The conspiracy included over 9,000 slaves and "free" blacks in Charleston and on the neighboring plantations.

The revolt, which was scheduled to occur on July 14, 1822, was betrayed before it could be put into effect. As rumors of the plot spread, Charleston was thrown into a panic. Leaders of the plot were rounded up. Vesey and 46 other were condemned, and even four whites were implicated in the revolt. On June 23 Vesey was hanged on the gallows for plotting to overthrow slavery.

After careful examination of the historical record, the judgment of Sterling Stuckey remains valid: "Vesey's example must be regarded as one of the most courageous ever to threaten the racist foundations of America.... He stands today, as he stood yesterday ... as an awesome projection of the possibilities for militant action on the part of a people who have for centuries been made to bow down in fear."
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NOLALady Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-06-10 11:17 PM
Response to Reply #50
210. 1811 Louisiana Slave Rebellion

The Louisiana revolt was led by a man named Charles, a laborer on the Deslonde plantation. The revolt began some 50 or so miles up river from New Orleans. On the evening of January 8, the insurrection spread to the Andry plantation some 35 miles from New Orleans. At about 8 P. M. led by Charles and his lieutenants overwhelmed their oppressors. Armed with cane knives, hoes, clubs and few guns, the insurgents marched down the River Road toward New Orleans. They declared themselves free and rallied behind the chants (On to New Orleans!) and (Freedom or Death). Their numbers swelled as they moved from plantation to plantation on the East Bank of the Mississippi river, traversing about 25 miles (the distance between the present day towns of Reserve and Kenner).

The leaders were intent on creating an army, capturing the city of New Orleans, and seizing state power throughout the area. Following the example of the Haitian revolution, they sought to liberate the tens of thousands of held in bondage in the territory of Louisiana. The rebels armed themselves as best they could with a few guns, cane knives, hoes and other farm implements. As their numbers swelled into the hundreds, they divided into companies, each with an officer. Some of the leaders were mounted on horseback. Arrayed in columns, with flags flying and drummers beating out a rhythm, they headed down the River Road. Their destination New Orleans, the territorial capital. Their guiding principle, (Freedom or Death]. The plantation of Louis-Augustin Meuillon was one of the larger estates in St. Charles Parish. An inventory made just months before the uprising lists 70 adult on the property.

Many on the Meuillon plantation joined the revolt and all but one supported it. An account published just after the revolt, lists two killed, nine in jail and two missing. Two of the jailed , Apollon and Henri, were tortured to death. Only the Bazile, 36 years old and a native of Louisiana, lifted a hand to try and put out the fire. After the revolt he was freed for the betrayal of his fellow . The solid Green line represents the route of the insurgents, led by Charles Deslonde. The rebels moved down the River Road from the Andry plantation all the way to the Jacque Fortier plantation where they camped on the evening of January 9, 1811.

At about nine oclock that evening, they were attacked by a force led by Major Derrington, made up of advanced elements of the U. S. militia, regular troops and merchant marine from New Orleans, represented by the solid Red line. The attackers were repulsed and the rebels retreated to the sugarhouse. During the middle of the night, the rebels retreated upriver to the plantation of Bernard Bernoudy and encamped. The broken Red line represents the forces led by General Wade Hampton. They left New Orleans in the afternoon of January 9 and arrived at the plantation of Jacque Fortier at the time of the attack by Major Derringtons forces. The next day at about 9 A. M., Hampton led his forces and those of Derrington upriver to the Beroudy plantation. Meanwhile, on the evening of the 8, Manual Andry escaped from his plantation, crossed the river to the west bank and organized the militia). Despite the rebels best efforts, they were not able to succeed. They ran out of ammunition and could not match the well armed forces arrayed against them. Many leaders and participants were killed by U. S. troops (both militia and regular units. By January 19, the revolt was crushed. Some of the leaders were captured and executed. Their heads were cut off and placed on poles along the River Road and at the gates of the city of New Orleans. The into submission.***

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-24-06 02:54 PM
Response to Original message
54. Witchita sit-in boycott of 1958

Though the Greensboro, NC sit-in of 1960 is considered the first of the sit-in boycotts, this little-known one predates that by 2 years.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 11:04 AM
Response to Original message
55. First black NBA coach
was Bill Russell for the Boston Celtics in 1966.

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kwassa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 01:27 PM
Response to Reply #55
56. Red Auerbach just died ....
probably the most famous coach in NBA history, he also made Bill Russell the first black coach, right after he moved from coach to manager. Auerbach also played the first black player in the NBA as coach, and the first all-black starting five in NBA history. He also gets much credit for making it a big-time sport.
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mark414 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-01-06 04:05 PM
Response to Original message
57. Joshua Glover
Joshua Glover was a runaway slave from St. Louis, Missouri who sought asylum in Racine, Wisconsin in 1852. Upon learning his whereabouts in 1854, slave owner Bennami Garland attempted to use the Fugitive Slave Act to recover him. The events that followed helped to galvanize the abolitionist movement in the state and led to Wisconsin becoming the only state to declare the Act unconstitutional.
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blazinjason Donating Member (132 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-02-06 07:42 PM
Response to Original message
58. Huey Newton
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 12:08 AM
Response to Reply #58
184. Bobby Seale and Angela davis George Jackson and Jonathan
Edited on Thu Jul-23-09 12:09 AM by Liberation Angel
I got drunk with Bobby once and he told me what a shit Jesse Jackson was.

The Jackson story is too sad too tell but I have a conection to that as well (I worked with the Panthers many years ago and still have some friends who were high up in the party)
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-07-06 10:10 AM
Response to Original message
59. 40 acres and a mule
the legendary promise and catch phrase was just that--a legend. It was never proposed or promoted by Lincoln.

Facts of the matter, it was a mix of 2 similar and unrelated events: Section 4 of the First Freedman's Bureau Act and Special Order No. 15 by the War Department.

Section 4 of the First Freedman's Bureau Act stated that this agency "shall have authority to set apart for use of loyal refugees and freedmen such tracts of land within the insurrectionary states as shall have been abandoned or to which the United States shall have acquired title by confiscation or sale, or otherwise; and to every male citizen, whether refugee or freedman, as aforesaid there shall be assigned not more than 40 acres of such land."
Introduced into Congress by Thaddeus Stevens this portion of the Freedmen's Bureau Act was defeated by Congress on February 5, 1866 "by a vote of 126 to 36." Lands which had been distributed to freedmen were reclaimed and returned to the previous owners.

Issued January 16, 1866 by General William T. Sherman, Special Order No. 15 provided that:

"The islands of Charleston south, the abandoned rice fields along the rivers for thirty miles back from the sea, and the country bordering St. Johns River, Florida, are reserved and set apart for the settlement of egroes now made free by the acts of war and the proclamation of the President of the United States."

The land was then divided into 40-acre tracts. Sherman then issued orders to General Saxton to distribute the plots and processory titles to the head of each family of the freedmen. There were no mules included in the order, so where did the "and a mule" come from? Shortly after Stanton left, Sherman's commissary man came to him complaining that he had a large number of broken down mules for which he had no means of disposal. Sherman sent the useless animals to Saxton for distribution along with the land.

After Johnson became President, he recinded Special Order No. 15 and had the land returned to the former owners and the freed slaves were thrown off.

These events helped to solidify the idea of the freed slaves were meant to receive 40 acres and a mule to live free in the USA. The rest is history.
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japple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-08-06 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
60. Rosewood, FL, January 1923

Another thing I'd like to mention is a wonderful book by David Bradley, The Chaneysville Incident which was probably panned by the critics because the author is "difficult." It's one of the best books I've ever read, and it never got the exposure it deserved. Check it out.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-08-06 09:25 AM
Response to Original message
61. Ronald Yancey, first black graduate of Georgia Tech
graduated in electrical engineering (EE '65). I must add Tech had been integrated in the Fall of 1961 by Ford Greene, Ralph Long Jr. and Lawrence Williams were admitted as entering freshmen, but they didn't graduate. President Edwin Harrison, recognizing the inevitability of integration, was determined to accomplish the change without the violence by white students and the attendant publicity that had marked integration at the University of Georgia. Thanks to Harrison's foresight, integration of Tech didn't follow the same pattern as a lot of southern colleges.

_Argyle, Georgia Tech alumnus, BS Applied Physics (APHYS '86)
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Kerrytravelers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-14-06 12:17 AM
Response to Original message
62. As an educator, I'd like to thank you for this thread.
I try to go beyond Dr. King and Rosa Parks. I like to show a wealth of history and understanding to my students. It shocks me how few know Medger Evers. I will be bookmarking and using this for future reference.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-14-06 09:39 AM
Response to Reply #62
63. Glad I could be of assistance

As you well know, there's more to black history than, MLK, Malcolm X, and Rosa Parks, though that seems to be all that the "educational system" wants to talk about. To delve deeper would shatter the myth of meritocracy and expose the horror that a race-based caste system has done to all in this society.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-14-06 09:42 AM
Response to Original message
64. Black people on coins
In 1946, the Booker T. Washington half-dollar was minted and was minted from 1946-1951. This was the first.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-05-07 04:12 PM
Response to Original message
65. How neighborhoods go bad Click on "The Downward Spiral" button.

From the PBS mini-series, Race--The Power of an Illusion, this shows the downward progression of a neighborhood. In addition, click on the "Uncle Sam Lends A Hand" button to show how the Federal Government was complicit in creating the segregated conditions of the present-day inner city and suburbia.

Regardless of the "blame the victim" ignorance regularly shown in GD, these conditions didn't happen because black people fell down and spent all their money and useless crap. It was a systematic denial of rights, opportunities, and access to wealth that has caused this. Click on "A Tale of Two Families" button to see how family wealth and social access had an effect on the two individuals highlighted for the article.

Here's an answer, thanks to Tim Wise, for those idiots who want to say, "Oprah did it, why can't they?" here at The Oprah Effect: Black Success, White denial and the Reality of Racism

The exception is NOT the rule.
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flamingyouth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-07-07 04:46 PM
Response to Original message
66. I've always greatly admired Edna Lewis, the grande dame of Southern chefs
Edited on Sun Jan-07-07 04:50 PM by flamingyouth
She passed away about a year ago after a remarkable life. I love her cookbooks. :) I have eaten at Watershed in Decatur, which is owned by her dear friend Scott Peacock, who cared for her during her last years. They wrote a book together called "The Art of Southern Cooking."
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-08-07 04:14 PM
Response to Original message
67. Vivien Thomas, surgical pioneer (1910-1985)

Vivien T. Thomas was a surgical technician and Supervisor of Surgical Research Laboratories at Johns-Hopkins. He was a key player in pioneering the anastomosis of the subclavian artery to the pulmonary artery. The surgical work he performed with Alfred Blalock paved the way for the successful outcome of the Blalock-Taussig shunt in the 1940's. He did the main body of research and designing of the procedure, but the virulent racism of the time shut him out of both professional and financial recognition.

In 1929, as he was preparing for college and medical school, Thomas lost his entire savings when a Nashville bank failed. With no financial support for a college education, he took a job as a laboratory technician at Vanderbilt University Medical School, working for Dr. Alfred Blalock. He started out working for Alfred Blalock, MD, in his lab at Vanderbilt University. After beginning work at Vanderbilt, Thomas still hoped to save money for his own medical degree, but the Depression worsened and the research with Blalock grew. Soon Thomas was working 16 hours a day in the laboratory, performing operations on animals that would advance Blalock's studies of high blood pressure and traumatic shock. For this work, Thomas invented a heavy spring device that could apply varying levels of pressure. Their work at Vanderbilt created a new understanding of shock, showing that shock was linked to a loss of fluid and blood volume.

In 1941, when Blalock left Vanderbilt to become Chief of Surgery at Johns Hopkins, he insisted that Vivien Thomas be hired to join his team there. At Hopkins, Thomas, Blalock, and Helen Taussig pioneered the field of heart surgery with a procedure to alleviate a congenital heart defect, the Tetralogy of Fallot, also known as blue baby syndrome. Sufferers faced brutally short life expectancies. Working with cardiologist Helen Taussig, Blalock and Thomas developed an operation that would deliver more oxygen to the blood and relieve the constriction caused by the heart defect. Thomas tested the procedure---a refinement of one that they had created in laboratory dogs---to make sure it would work. In 1944, with Thomas advising Blalock, the first "blue baby" operation was successfully performed on a 15-month old child. Vivien was a key partner in hundreds of "blue baby" operations, performing pre- and post-operation procedures on the patients as well as advising in the operating room. At the same time, he continued to manage Blalock's ongoing laboratory research. He also taught a generation of surgeons and lab technicians.

After 37 years, Thomas was appointed to the faculty at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Leaving an indelible mark, he became instructor emeritus of surgery. At age 75, Dr. Vivien Thomas died in Baltimore.

A note about the stunning irony of those times. Though earning low wages, Thomas performed and guided surgeries, designed instruments needed to perform surgery on blue babies, did innovative work on the defibrillator, and taught surgical techniques to surgeons. He also moonlighted as a bartender to support his family. In 1960, Blalock celebrated his 60th birthday, and while 500 people attended, Thomas, a colleague for over 30 years, was not invited--which would never have happened had Thomas not been black.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-03-07 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #67
88. Made for TV bio "Something the Lord Made" (2004)
Starring Mos Def as Thomas and Alan Rickman as Alfred Blalock.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-09-10 03:55 AM
Response to Reply #88
226. need to verify....
...this important film is included on the movie list. thank you!
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-29-07 08:06 PM
Response to Original message
68. Black people and mental illness
In order to justify slavery of the black Africans, a pseudo-psychological concepts were developed to show that black people were mentally inferior had to be enslaved for their own good, and that white people were superior and were obligated to enslave these inferior people.

Some prominent writers of the time, most notably Dr. Samuel Cartwright and Prof. Thomas R. Dew, were staunch defenders of slavery. Dew first published Review of the Debate in 1832. The purpose of this text was to influence the atmosphere, and create a theoretical justification of slavery. It was then later on quoted greatly by Dews intellectual successors from William and Mary College. Dews intention was to view slavery from a dispassionate approach. Dews efforts were mainly to explain what might occur if slavery were to be abolished.

Being a southern physician, Cartwrights explanation of Negroes' inferiority was regarded as psychological. He saw them as people that who were not capable of performing curtain duties. Cartwright claims this very explicitly in his Diseases and Peculiarities of the Negro Race, and also shows the length to which he would go to defend slavery as a result of a psychological problem in black people. He created and decribed the condition drapetomania, or the disease that causes Negroes to run away.

These writers, and others, have set the stage for creating the psychological and mentally inferior mindset about those not-white that US society suffers today. According to NPR's "Bridging the Gap" series, 30% of white people surveyed (2006) still hold negative views of black people. Remember, "The Bell Curve" was a best seller--and black people didn't put it on the best seller list.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-31-07 05:37 PM
Response to Original message
69. Jimmy the Greek, bred black athletes, and where are the white athletes?
I remember the uproar about Jimmy the Greek's statement about black people made superior athletes because of slave breeding programs. Not to mention the belief that some black people have that did happen. Anecdotal belief not withstanding, the evidence of slave eugenics and slave breeding programs is non-existent. Gregor Mendel's research leading to the study of modern genetics, Experiments in Plant Hybridization was not published until 1865. The term "eugenics" for humans was coined was proposed by Francis Galton, a cousin of Charles Darwin, in 1883. The general concept of genetics and selective breeding was not known until the early 1900's, though it was known locally or by certain people for hundreds of years.

Even if any evidence existed, it does not change the fact that an estimated 75% of black people that can trace their ancestry to the pre-Civil War/Reconstruction/Jim Crow period have at least one white ancestor. Conversely, an estimated 10% of white people that can trace their ancestry to the same period have at least one black ancestor. The numbers cited above already put the concept in question. This is not to overlook the fact of assault and rape perpetrated on black women during and post-slavery.

Slaves were first and foremost a LABOR force. Until the slave trade was abolished in the US in 1808, slaves would be renewed by the purchase of new slaves. The more enlightened slave owners (that's an oxymoron if I've EVER heard one :P ) would allow families, but simply as a method of pacification, not out of any sense of duty, and DEFINITELY not for eugenics purposes. Everything, even concepts, has to obey the laws of physics. The main problem with eugenics "programs" is the time between generations. A generation for humans is approximately 20 years, as opposed to 2-5 years for livestock. Even with multiple offspring, generations for humans take far too long to analyze results and make changes. A breeding program for numbers increase has the same time problem. Add to that humans arehuman, and don't make good test subjects.

Imagine this: If a eugenics program was started in 1809, after the end of the US slave trade, the process would take too long to show results. Accounting for the medical science of the period, mortality rates, infant and adult, were poor for both white and slave populations, and definitely disproportional. (Present day statistics attest to that fact.) For the eugenics experiment, subjects would have to be selected, cared for, successfully reproduce, and the offspring would have to live to adulthood, next generation breeding subjects selected, and produce the next generation. That is a gross oversimplification leaving out everything that could go wrong. If our imagined program were successful, there could only be TWO complete generations before the Civil War started--hardly enough information for a scientific analysis and far too expensive and no return on investment with the end of slavery. After Reconstruction, Jim Crow segregation was put in place. Black people were under de facto slavery, but "free" in that the white employers in that time weren't responsible for their care and upkeep, unlike slave days. Now, add one hundred years to the Civil Rights era or five generations of uncontrolled results, that negates the results of the two previous generations. Thus, the whole concept is invalid and impossible.

Seems to me that a black woman during the Jim Crow era would have to worry more about becoming the mistress of a powerful white man than any "eugenics" program--see Strom Thurmond. Even in my family line, my great-grandfather (paternal) was the offspring of a white court judge and his black maid.

So why did Jimmy open mouth and insert foot? I think the question Jimmy was really answering was: Where are the white athletes? It's easier for white people in general to concede pro sports to black people because they are "physically superior", but white people are "mentally superior" and will control everything else. To borrow from Chris Rock, it's the difference between being rich and being wealthy: Shaq is rich, but the white man who signs his check is wealthy!

Of the major pro sports, the NFL is approximately 67% black, the NBA is approximately 85% black, MLB is approximately 30% black. Black people comprise 12% of the total population, yet are severely over-represented in major pro athletics. Since athletes are considered "dumb jocks" in general, there's a ready-made typecast population group. Add to that the concept that "those people" are here to entertain the upper caste. Upper caste members don't have to be entertainment for the masses. Sports geared to the upper caste, like swimming, golf, and hockey, have no shortage of white participants, but those sports are expensive. Pool maintenance, greens fees and golf gear, hockey gear and rink maintenance are expensive relative to football gear and field maintenance or basketball gear and court maintenance.

The better question is why are there so many black professional athletes? It has nothing to do with eugenics or genetics. We're back to the same overriding fact of life in the US--the racial caste system. Black kids see black athletes on TV and think they can do it too. Athletics is a true meritocracy, the best performance wins. No crappy schools, no dealing with prejudiced white people, no being condemned to flipping burgers or sweeping floors because school stinks and they're too poor for college. Black people are still negatively stereotyped according to recent surveys. If your name is DeAndre or Jamal, you're more likely to get a sports team tryout than a job interview. Big dumb black guys can run with the ball, not fix a computer. Think about it: did you ask a tall white guy if he was a basketball player?

Littlefield, Daniel C. Rice and Slaves, Ethnicity and the Slave Trade in Colonial South Carolina, University of Illinois Press, 1981.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 10:47 AM
Response to Original message
70. The Port Chicago Mutiny
After World War I, the Navy tried to exclude African-Americans, replacing their ranks with Filipinos. In 1932, the Navy again recruited blacks, but they were limited in numbers and confined to menial tasks, primarily as messmen (kitchen helpers). There were no black officers.

In 1942, the Navy reluctantly accepted blacks for general service, but in segregated units which did not include sea duty. At Port Chicago at the time of the disaster there were 1,400 black enlisted men, 71 officers, 106 marine guards, and 230 civilian employees.

America was swept into World War II on 7 December 1941. As war in the Pacific expanded, the Naval Ammunition Depot at Mare Island, California, was unable to keep up with the demand for ammunition. Port Chicago, California, located 35 miles north of San Francisco, proved an ideal place for the Navy to expand its munitions facilities.

Construction at Port Chicago began in 1942. By 1944, expansion and improvements to the pier could support the loading of two ships simultaneously. African-American Navy personnel units were assigned to the dangerous work at Port Chicago. Reflecting the racial segregation of the day, the officers of these units were white. The officers and men had received some training in cargo handling, but not in loading munitions. The bulk of their experience came from hands-on experience. Loading went on around the clock. The Navy ordered that proper regulations for working with munitions be followed. But due to tight schedules at the new facility, deviations from these safety standards occurred. A sense of competition developed for the most tonnage loaded in an eight hour shift. As it helped to speed loading, competition was often encouraged.

On the evening of 17 July 1944, the empty merchant ship SS Quinault Victory was prepared for loading on her maiden voyage. The SS E.A. Bryan, another merchant ship, had just returned from her first voyage and was loading across the platform from Quinault Victory. The holds were packed with high explosive and incendiary bombs, depth charges, and ammunition - 4,606 tons of ammunition in all. There were sixteen rail cars on the pier with another 429 tons. Working in the area were 320 cargo handlers, crewmen and sailors.

At 10:18 p.m., a hollow ring and the sound of splintering wood erupted from the pier, followed by an explosion that ripped apart the night sky. Witnesses said that a brilliant white flash shot into the air, accompanied by a loud, sharp report. A column of smoke billowed from the pier, and fire glowed orange and yellow. Flashing like fireworks, smaller explosions went off in the cloud as it rose. Within six seconds, a deeper explosion erupted as the contents of the E.A. Bryan detonated in one massive explosion. The seismic shock wave was felt as far away as Boulder City, Nevada. The E.A. Bryan and the structures around the pier were completely disintegrated. A pillar of fire and smoke stretched over two miles into the sky above Port Chicago. The largest remaining pieces of the 7,200-ton ship were the size of a suitcase. A plane flying at 9,000 feet reported seeing chunks of white hot metal "as big as a house" flying past. The shattered Quinault Victory was spun into the air. Witnesses reported seeing a 200-foot column on which rode the bow of the ship, its mast still attached. Its remains crashed back into the bay 500 feet away.

All 320 men on duty that night were killed instantly. The blast smashed buildings and rail cars near the pier and damaged every building in Port Chicago. People on the base and in town were sent flying or were sprayed with splinters of glass and other debris. The air filled with the sharp cracks and dull thuds of smouldering metal and unexploded shells as they showered back to earth as far as two miles away. The blast caused damage 48 miles across the Bay in San Francisco.

Navy personnel quickly responded to the disaster. Men risked their lives to put out fires that threatened nearby munitions cars. Local emergency crews and civilians rushed to help. In addition to those killed, there were 390 wounded. These people were evacuated and treated, and those who remained were left with the gruesome task of cleaning up. Less than a month after the worst home-front disaster of World War II, Port Chicago was again moving munitions to the troops in the Pacific. The men of Port Chicago were vital to the success of the war. And yet they were often forgotten. Of the 320 men killed in the explosion, 202 were the African-American enlisted men who were assigned the dangerous duty of loading the ships. The explosion at Port Chicago accounted for fifteen percent of all African-American casualties of World War II.

The Armed Forces were a mirror of American society at the time, reflecting the cooperation and dedication of a country. For many people, the explosion on 17 July 1944, became a symbol of what was wrong with American society. The consequences of the explosion would begin to reshape the way the Navy and society thought about our social standards. More importantly, the explosion illustrated the need to prevent another tragedy like this one.

The tremendous danger and importance of the work, while not always recognized by the public, was always present in the minds of the men of Port Chicago. The Marines, Coast Guard and civilian employees knew of the danger, but none as vividly as the Merchant Marine crew and the Naval Armed Guard of the ships and the men serving on the loading docks.

The black ammunition handlers, many of whom had quietly voiced concerns about safety, feared loading ammunition again. Fifty enlisted black men, including one with a broken arm, were tried for mutiny. The men stated they were willing to follow orders, but were afraid to handle ammunition under unchanged circumstances. They stated they had never been ordered to load ammunition, only asked "if they wanted to load ammunition."

All 50 were found guilty of "mutiny," and sentenced to 15 years. Review of the sentence brought reductions for 40 of the men to sentences of 8 to 12 years. Joe Small, who acted at foreman for his group of loaders and others who were willing to criticize the operation had their original sentence upheld. An appeal by Thurgood Marshall of the NAACP was denied. In 1944 the Navy announced that blacks at ammunition depots would be limited to 30% of the total. In 1945 the Navy officially desegregated.

In January 1946 the 50 "mutineers" were released from prison, but had to remain in the Navy. They were sent to the South Pacific in small groups for a "probationary period," and gradually released.

A proposal in Congress to award $5,000 to victims was reduced to $3,000 because most of the beneficiaries were black.

The explosion and later mutiny proceedings would help illustrate the costs of racial discrimination and fuel public criticism. By 1945, as the Navy worked toward desegregation, some mixed units appeared. When President Harry Truman called for the Armed Forces to be desegregated in 1948, the Navy could honestly say that Port Chicago had been a very important step in that process.

Congressman George Miller (D-Martinez) lobbied to get the the sailors' convictions overturned and to get a presidential pardon in 1999 for one of the sailors, Frederick Meeks. On 23 December 1999, President Bill Clinton pardoned Freddie Meeks of Los Angeles, one of the few still living members of the original 50.

Miller introduced legislation to make the Port Chicago National Memorial into a National Park. Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial is administered by the National Park Service and the United States Navy.

The Navy eventually bought out the town of Port Chicago, and the depot itself was incorporated into the Concord Naval Weapons Station. Concord was a major shipping point for ammunition during the Vietnam War and the site of many anti-war demonstrations which continue today.

Writer's note: Vividly displayed is the extreme lengths that the racial caste society will go to punish those that won't "stay in their place". The definition of mutiny (UCMJ Article 94) is as follows: "Any person subject to this chapter who--

(1) with intent to usurp or override lawful military authority, refuse, in concert with any other person, to obey orders or otherwise do his duty or creates any violence or disturbance is guilty of mutiny;

(2) with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of lawful civil authority, creates, in concert with any other person, revolt, violence, or other disturbance against that authority is guilty of sedition;

(3) fails to do his utmost to prevent and suppress a mutiny or sedition being committed in his presence, or fails to take all reasonable means to inform his superior commissioned officer or commanding officer of a mutiny or sedition which he knows or has reason to believe is taking place, is guilty of a failure to suppress or report a mutiny or sedition.

UCMJ Article 92, Failure to Obey a Lawful Order would have been more appropriate because the ammo handlers weren't trying to overthrow lawful authority, just get proper training and equipment to do the job properly.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-16-07 03:49 PM
Response to Original message
71. Famous first black mayors
Pierre Landry, first black mayor of a US city/town. (See Post #44)

Carl Stokes (1927-1996), first black mayor of a major US city, Cleveland, OH. One term, 1967-1971

Maynard Jackson (1938-2003), first black mayor of a major southern US city, Atlanta, GA. Three terms, 1973-1981, 1990-1994,
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-17-07 05:59 PM
Response to Original message
72. Percy Julian, chemist (1899-1975)
The grandson of Alabama slaves, Julian met with every possible barrier in a deeply segregated America. He was a man of genius, devotion and determination. As a black man, he was also an outsider, fighting to make a place for himself in a profession and country divided by bigotry - a man who would eventually find freedom in the laboratory. By the time of his death, Julian had risen to the highest levels of scientific and personal achievement, overcoming countless obstacles to become a world-class scientist, a self-made millionaire and a civil-rights pioneer.

His professional and personal journey was a tumultuous ride of highs and lows. Julian was born into a world ruled by Jim Crow segregation. His parents, both trained as teachers, believed education offered the path to a better life. But academia did not welcome Julian with open arms. As a sophomore at DePauw University, he already dreamed of a graduate education, though only one African American at the time had ever earned a doctorate in chemistry. He went on to earn his Masters at Harvard, even while black students were banned from the dorms in Harvard Yard and white researchers argued that blacks did not have the intellectual capacity to master the sciences. Julian received his PhD from the University of Vienna, where he studied under one of Vienna's leading chemists, Ernst Spth.

As a scholar, Julian taught at Howard University, Fisk University and back at DePauw. Early in his career he put himself on the map with a high-stakes research project that pitted him against the premier organic chemist of the time. It was one of many races he would win on his way to publishing scores of papers and pursuing groundbreaking science. But even national acclaim in his field could not sweep aside prejudice.

Finding too many doors closed to black men in academe, Julian leapt into the private sector as director of research, Soya Products Division, for Glidden Paints. In 1936 it was a rare opportunity for a black man in America, and one that Julian made the most of, filing more than 100 patents during his tenure. Julian and his team of chemists turned the soybean inside out, isolating parts of the bean that would serve as key ingredients in a vast and varied range of new household and industrial products, including food oils, latex paint, plastics, linoleum, plywood glue, high-protein livestock feed and fire-fighting foam. This was chemistry that changed the way we live.

It was also chemistry that healed. Just a few years before Julian arrived at Glidden, scientists in Europe and America had discovered that chemicals called steroids played a number of roles in the human body. But steroids drawn from animal sources were scarce and expensive; if these compounds were ever to have a significant role in the treatment of human disease, someone would have to find a way to make them from plants. Julian realized that in the soybean he had a perfect starting material for making steroids on a commercial scale. He seized that opportunity, making Glidden the first American company to make progesterone, a female sex hormone, available in large quantities at reasonable prices.

Julian's crowning honor came when he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences. The year was 1973, and Julian was only the second African American member. Even in the shadow of society's prejudice, his drive, intelligence and mastery of chemistry often prevailed. In a more enlightened era, his colleagues argue, he could have been a Nobel laureate. /

Writer's Note: Dr. Julian made incredible discoveries in spite of having to deal the crippling effects of the racist caste society. To add insult to injury, his achievements meant nothing to an ungrateful country and neighbors--only the fact that he was black mattered. And they wonder why black people get so angry. :grr:
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-02-07 04:45 PM
Response to Original message
74. The term "black Irish"
The term "black Irish" is a purely US term and not used in Ireland. In the US, the term "black Irish" has reached mythical status on par with the lost tribes of Israel or 13th Colony of Kobol in that it refers to a demographic group. The term simply refers to someone of Irish decent with dark hair. It has no demographic, historical, or cultural basis. The most common belief is that those are the descendants of the survivors of wrecks on the Irish coast of the Spanish Armada. Research shows that there were very few shipwreck survivors of the Armada, and the few survivors were given a very unwelcome reception, i.e. they were killed on sight. In short, there is no demographic group of "black Irish".

Why is this entry here? As regular readers here know, no one whines more about being "oppressed" than the Irish. True, they did suffer greatly under English occupation of the island, but, they didn't suffer to that extent in North America. They definitely didn't suffer to the level of black people and the Indians, though they love to argue the point. Here's a great point to shut up any whiny Irish you meet: Why is everyone Irish on St. Patrick's Day, but no one wants to be black during Black History Month?

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mark414 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-20-07 05:03 AM
Response to Reply #74
83. good post
we may have built the railroads alongside blacks and the Chinese but once everyone else followed we fit in quite nicely
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-11-07 03:40 PM
Response to Original message
75. America's racial cleansings
Including this story about Corbin, KY.

The article and book highlight another unspoken part of American history and consciousness. This concept has morphed into "white flight" and "sundown towns". Even in North GA, Forsyth County, now part of metro Atlanta, was a "sundown" county well into the 1980's. Hosea Williams and Tim Wise participated in a protest march there in 1989.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #75
94. Without sanctuary--The lynching postcards collection

Words cannot do this justice. :(

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-27-07 04:50 PM
Response to Reply #75
101. More on racial cleasings and sundown towns
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XemaSab Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #101
173. I read about this a few years ago
and Loewen has a website with lists of towns, organized by state.

If you click on the towns, it'll give you information about what happened there, and why he thinks it was a sundown town.

Terrific resource, and absolutely depressing how many towns had "whites-only" policies.

(I know this thread is about African-American history, but did you know that virtually every town in California once had a Chinatown? And the Chinese were violently expelled from most of these towns? Black history is not the only history that is not taught.)
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jmm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-11-07 06:27 PM
Response to Original message
76. Doris (Dorie) Miller


Holder of the Navy Cross for outstanding bravery at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Ship's Cook Third Class Doris (Dorie) Miller was one of the earliest American heroes of World War II. Although at the time the U.S. Navy did not offer African Americans opportunities to rise above the menial labor of the mess hall, Miller took advantage of the chance fate gave him to distinguish himself in battle. But two years after his heroism at Pearl Harbor, he lost his life aboard the USS Liscome Bay in the Gilbert Islands in November of 1943.


Valor at Pearl Harbor

The ship was anchored at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941. Miller was on deck collecting laundry at 7:55 a.m. Many of the ship's crew were either sleeping in or spending the weekend ashore. On this quiet Sunday morning no one expected the first-wave attack force of some 200 Japanese bombers, torpedo planes, and fighters that struck the U.S. fleet without warning. Miller did not know it at the time, but the United States had just entered World War II.

When the alarm for general quarters sounded, Miller ran amidship to his battle station, an anti-aircraft battery. But torpedo damage had already put the battery out of commission. Miller was knocked down by the explosions but scrambled to his feet and ran on deck. In the smoke, flames, and chaos that engulfed the harbor as the enemy planes continued their relentless and deadly assault, Miller worked to carry wounded sailors to safer sections of the ship. An officer enlisted Miller's help carrying the ship's wounded captain, Mervyn Bennion, off the bridge.

The officer then spotted two unmanned, 50-caliber anti-aircraft machine guns on deck and shouted for two trained seaman to fire them. Miller was to supply the ammunition, but when the officer was needed elsewhere, Miller quickly stepped up to man the gun. Although he had not been trained to fire it, he reasoned it could not be much harder than the squirrel gun he used back home in Texas. Later he said, according to the Naval Historical Center website, "It wasn't hard. I just pulled the trigger and she worked fine." In all, he was credited with downing three planes that morning. Some witnesses, however, claimed his marksmanship was astonishing and that he had shot down as many as six planes.

Perhaps he would have shot down more enemy planes, but Miller was ordered to abandon ship. Five 18-inch torpedoes had hit the West Virginia's port side and two armor-piercing bombs had exploded on deck. With severe flooding below decks, the battleship slowly sank in shallow water. Of the 1,541 men on board, 130 died that day and 52 were wounded. In total, five battleships went down at Pearl Harbor, most within 30 minutes of the start of battle. Three others were damaged, as well as three cruisers, three destroyers, and other vessels; 180 U.S. aircraft were destroyed. More than 2,300 people died in the surprise attack, and more than 3,400 were wounded. As for the West Virginia, it lived to fight another day. It was refloated and repaired and operated in the Pacific until the end of the war in August of 1945.

Honoring a Hero

Miller transferred to the USS Indianapolis a week after Pearl Harbor and spent the next 17 months on the cruiser. In April of 1942, he was commended by Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox for his bravery at Pearl Harbor. Shortly after, aboard the USS Enterprise, Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief, Pacific Fleet, pinned the Navy's highest award for valor, the Navy Cross, on the chest of the 22-year-old ship's cook. According to the Naval Historical Center website, the citation read: "For distinguished devotion to duty, extraordinary courage and disregard for his own personal the face of a serious fire, assisted in moving his captain, who had been mortally wounded, to a place of greater safety, and later manned and operated a machine gun..until ordered to leave the bridge." Nimitz said of Miller, according to the Naval Historical Center website: "This marks the first time in this conflict that such high tribute has been made in the Pacific Fleet to a member of his race."

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jmm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-11-07 06:32 PM
Response to Original message
77. Elizabeth "Lizzie" Jennings


On July 16, 1854, Jennings, then a 24-year-old schoolteacher, waited at a New York City corner to board a horse-drawn bus to take her to church, where she played the organ. In Pre-Civil War Manhattan, black residents could ride either buses bearing big "Colored Persons Allowed" signs or, at the discretion of the driver, any other buses without such a sign. Drivers on those unmarked buses carried whips to keep undesirable passengers off.

Jennings chose a bus without the "Colored Persons Allowed." A local newspaper of the day described what happened next: "She got upon one of the Company's cars to ride to church. The conductor undertook to get her off, first alleging the car was full; when that was shown to be false, he pretended the other passengers were displeased at her presence; but she insisted on her rights, he took hold of her by force to expel her. She resisted."

The newspaper reported: "The conductor got her down on the platform, jammed her bonnet, soiled her dress and injured her person. Quite a crowd gathered, but she effectually resisted. Finally, after the car had gone on further, with the aid of a policeman they succeeded in removing her." No charges were filed.

This was not the end of it. Not satisfied with the massive rally that took place the following day at her church, Jennings took the bus company to court.

Jennings hired the law firm of Culver, Parker, & Arthur to represent her in a lawsuit against the Third Avenue Railway Company. The lawyer who argued her case was Chester A. Arthur, the future President.

In 1855, Judge William Rockwell of the Brooklyn Circuit Court ruled in Jennings' favor, finding: "Colored persons if sober, well behaved and free from disease, had the same rights as others and could neither be excluded by any rules of the Company, nor by force or violence." Jennings was awarded $22.50 in court costs and an additional $225 for damages. The Third Avenue Railway Company issued a directive to all of its drivers the day after the decision, telling them to allow black passengers to ride any carriage. All carriages in the city were desegregated within five years of the lawsuit.

Jennings' actions had not been unplanned. The Rev J.W.C. Pennington had been speaking out in Jennings' church against the policy of refusing black passengers. Like Rosa Parks, Jennings decided to make herself a test case.

Jennings later married Charles Graham. The couple had a son, Thomas, who was killed in the Draft Riots of 1863.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-13-07 06:11 AM
Response to Original message
78. In the interest of accuracy
please don't make Wikipedia your sole source of information. Wikipedia is freely accessible to any and everyone and has no editorial control. :hi:
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-14-07 05:27 PM
Response to Original message
79. Jim Crow and legislated segregation
Edited on Wed Mar-14-07 05:28 PM by Lurking_Argyle
This time in US history between the end of Reconstruction and the signing of Civil Rights legislation is the known as "Jim Crow". When the few civil rights gains made during Reconstruction were wiped out by a recalcitrant South and an uncaring North. "Jim Crow" was a two-part social action that both created and reinforced the racial caste system that is US society today.

The first and early part was a minstrel show based on a song:
"Come listen all you galls and boys,
I'm going to sing a little song,
My name is Jim Crow.
Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow."

These words are from the song, "Jim Crow," as it appeared in sheet music written by Thomas Dartmouth "Daddy" Rice. Rice, a struggling "actor" (he did short solo skits between play scenes) at the Park Theater in New York, happened upon a Black person singing the above song -- some accounts say it was an old Black slave who walked with difficulty, others say it was a ragged Black stable boy. Whether modeled on an old man or a young boy we will never know, however, it is clear that in 1828 Rice appeared on stage as "Jim Crow" -- an exaggerated, highly stereotypical Black character.

Rice, a White man, was one of the first performers to wear blackface makeup -- his skin was darkened with burnt cork. His Jim Crow song-and-dance routine was an astounding success that took him from Louisville to Cincinnati to Pittsburg to Philadelphia and finally to New York in 1832. He then performed to great acclaim in London and Dublin. By then "Jim Crow" was a stock character in minstrel shows, along with counterparts Jim Dandy and Zip Coon. Rice's subsequent blackface characters were Sambos, Coons, and Dandies. White audiences were receptive to the portrayals of Blacks as singing, dancing, grinning fools.

Rice, and his imitators, by their stereotypical depictions of Blacks, helped to popularize the belief that Blacks were lazy, stupid, inherently less human, and unworthy of integration. During the years that Blacks were being victimized by lynch mobs, they were also victimized by the racist caricatures propagated through novels, sheet music, theatrical plays, and minstrel shows. Ironically, years later when Blacks replaced White minstrels, the Blacks also "blackened" their faces, thereby pretending to be Whites pretending to be Blacks. They, too, performed the Coon Shows which dehumanized Blacks and helped establish the desirability of racial segregation.

The second part of Jim Crow is the legalized segregation that cut the rights grant to black people under the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments. Under Jim Crow, black Americans were relegated to the status of second class citizens. Jim Crow represented the legitimization of anti-Black racism. Many Christian ministers and theologians taught that Whites were the Chosen people, Blacks were cursed to be servants, and God supported racial segregation. Craniologists, eugenicists, phrenologists, and Social Darwinists, at every educational level, buttressed the belief that Blacks were innately intellectually and culturally inferior to Whites. Pro-segregation politicians gave eloquent speeches on the great danger of integration: the mongrelization of the White race. Newspaper and magazine writers routinely referred to Blacks as niggers, coons, and darkies; and worse, their articles reinforced anti-Black stereotypes. Even children's games portrayed Blacks as inferior beings (see "From Hostility to Reverence: 100 Years of African-American Imagery in Games"). All major societal institutions reflected and supported the oppression of Blacks.

The segregation laws created the social and economic pit that a lot of black Americans have to deal with today, while the Jim Crow minstrel shows helped create and perpetuate the negative stereotypes of black people that persist to the present day. Why is this an entry? To serve as reminder that the legacy of Jim Crow segregation isn't that far in the past and US society is hardly the equal society found in Star Trek's Federation. When white people still feel obligated to tell black people that they aren't so bad after all, or have to preface a comment by "no offense, but", or get nervous if they get more than 5 black neighbors, or whine about Black History Month, society hasn't come as far as people want to think.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-06-07 07:11 PM
Response to Reply #79
111. The Jim Crow laws
Below are some of the actual Jim Crow laws:

Barbers. No colored barber shall serve as a barber (to) white girls or women (Georgia).

Blind Wards. The board of trustees shall...maintain a separate building...on separate ground for the admission, care, instruction, and support of all blind persons of the colored or black race (Louisiana).

Burial. The officer in charge shall not bury, or allow to be buried, any colored persons upon ground set apart or used for the burial of white persons (Georgia).

Buses. All passenger stations in this state operated by any motor transportation company shall have separate waiting rooms or space and separate ticket windows for the white and colored races (Alabama).

Child Custody. It shall be unlawful for any parent, relative, or other white person in this State, having the control or custody of any white child, by right of guardianship, natural or acquired, or otherwise, to dispose of, give or surrender such white child permanently into the custody, control, maintenance, or support, of a negro (South Carolina).

Education. The schools for white children and the schools for negro children shall be conducted separately (Florida).

More are at the below website.

Writer's Note: Even though the Irish, Italians, and other Europeans were subjected to discrimination, the discrimation against them was social and never codified into law. They would eventually become "white" as defined by the US racial caste system. To add, the American Indians, Chinese, and Mexicans were also subjected to legalized required discrimination.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-24-08 03:12 PM
Response to Reply #79
128. Immigrants, discrimination, and Jim Crow
No question that a lot of the new immigrants, esp. the waves from Ireland, then southern and eastern Europe were met with resistance and discrimination. What so few realize was that those above-mentioned immigrants were met with social discrimination, which was discrimination by social convention, not by law. Those immigrants and their descendants assimilated over time into US society. Their basic civil rights were maybe curtailed, but never endangered. They could become citizens, buy land, travel freely, etc. Black people did not get the same consideration, and neither did American Indians, Asians, or Mexicans.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-14-07 05:32 PM
Response to Original message
80. The Letters of Secession

by some of the states that would become the Confederacy. Unfortunately, the South and the Confederacy had the misfortune of occupying the same area for 4 years.

This entry is to deal with those historical revisionists and Confederate apologists that want to claim that "states' rights" was the reason the Civil War was started. That's true, but not accurate. The rest of the story is that they seceded for states' rights--the right to maintain and expand slavery. Those letters show that the states had no question to why they were seceeding.
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fishwax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-19-07 07:35 PM
Response to Reply #80
82. Great idea to post these. Thanks!
Every time anything remotely related to the confederacy comes up, I know that the BS "states' rights" justification will follow shortly. (<whine>But most of the people in the confederacy weren't even slaveholders, so how can you say it was about slavery?</whine> :eyes:) Several times I've had to scramble for the articles of secession or some source that proves the folly of this line of thought.

Thanks for putting them here, where they will be easy to find :)
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SemiCharmedQuark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-26-07 09:07 PM
Response to Reply #80
90. I love those letters! Stops people from weasling out with
"it was about states rights"
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-19-11 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #80
228. "The Cornerstone Speech" by Alexander H. Stephens, Vice-President of the Confederacy
The text of the speech is here at

The speech is called the "Cornerstone Speech" from the following passage: Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner-stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition.

In addition to the defense of slavery, the speech also outlines the functional differences between the Union and Confederate constitutions, the reasons for secession, and the possibility of armed conflict with the Union.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-11-07 07:51 PM
Response to Original message
84. More on "Torn From The Land" More of the series is found here.

One excerpt: Land Ownership Made Blacks Targets of Violence and Murder

As a little girl, Doria Dee Johnson often asked about the man in the portrait hanging in an aunt's living room her great-great-grandfather. "It's too painful," her elderly relatives would say, and they would look away.
A few years ago, Johnson, now 40, went to look for answers in the rural town of Abbeville, S.C.

She learned that in his day, the man in the portrait, Anthony P. Crawford, was one of the most prosperous farmers in Abbeville County. That is, until Oct. 21, 1916 the day the 51-year-old farmer hauled a wagon-load of cotton to town.

Crawford "seems to have been the type of negro who is most offensive to certain elements of the white people," Mrs. J.B. Holman would say a few days later in a letter published by The Abbeville Press and Banner. "He was getting rich, for a negro, and he was insolent along with it."

Crawford's prosperity had made him a target.

The success of blacks such as Crawford threatened the reign of white supremacy, said Stewart E. Tolnay, a sociologist at the University of Washington and co-author of a book on lynchings. "There were obvious limitations, or ceilings, that blacks weren't supposed to go beyond."

Poster's Note: Then, like now, there is a limit to what black people are supposed to be able to do. Any questions--just look in of the race topics in GD.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-24-07 03:56 PM
Response to Original message
85. The Civil Rights Memorial
Created by the Southern Poverty Law Center and designed by Maya Lin, who also designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., the memorial consists of a large round table of black Canadian granite with the names of 40 select men, women and children carved on the table-top like the spokes of a wheel. Water oozes from the table's center and flows over the names. Behind the massive structure is a black granite wall with the Biblical quotation of the prophet Amos which Martin Luther King Jr. often used: ". . . Until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream." They died during the height of the Civil Rights era, between 1954 (Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court case) and 1968 (Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King).

They are:

1 Louis Allen--A farmer shot Jan. 31, 1964, in Liberty, Miss., after witnessing the murder of Herbert Lee, a civil rights worker.

2 Willie Brewster--A factory worker died July 16, 1965, in Anniston, Ala., from a nightrider's bullet.

3 Benjamin Brown--A truck driver and civil rights worker killed May 12, 1967, when police fired on demonstrators in Jackson, Miss.

4 James Chaney--A civil rights worker abducted and shot at point-blank range June 21, 1964, by Klan members in Philadelphia, Miss.

5 Addie Mae Collins--A schoolgirl killed Sept. 15, 1963, in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham.

6 Vernon Dahmer--A community leader died Jan. 10, 1966, from a firebomb in Hattiesburg, Miss., after volunteering to pay Black voters' poll taxes.

7 Jonathan Daniels--A white seminary Student shot dead Aug. 14, 1965, by a deputy sheriff in Hayneville, Ala.

8 Henry H. DEE--A civil rights volunteer abducted, beaten and thrown into the Mississippi River in Natchez, miss., May 2, 1964, by the Klan.

9 Cpl. Roman Ducksworth Jr.--A miliary policeman shot to death April 9, 1962, in Taylorsville, after refusing a police order to sit in the back of the bus.

10 Willie Edwards Jr.--Adeliveryman killed Jan. 23, 1957, near Montgomery, Ala., when the Klan forced him to jump from a bridge into the Alabama River.

11 Medgar Evers--A civil rights leader shot June 12, 1963, in the driveway of his home in Jackson, Miss.

12 Andrew goodman--A civil rights worker abducted and shot at point-blank range June 21, 1964, by the Klan in Philadelphia, Miss.

13 Paul Guihard--A French new s reporter shot in the back Sept. 30, 1962, during grace riots at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss.

14 Samuel Hammond Jr.--A South Carolina State College student fatally shot Feb. 8, 1968, when police fired on demonstrators in Orangeburg, S.C.

15. Jimmie Lee Jackson--A farmer died Feb. 18, 1965, after being beaten and shot in the stomach by state troopers following a march in Selma, Ala.

16 Wharlest Jackson--Ar NAACP treasurer in NAtches, Miss., killed Feb. 18, 1965, by a bomb after his promotion to a job once reserved for Whites.

17 Martin Luther King Jr.--Famed civil rights leader assasinated April 4, 1968, during an organized compaign by garbage workers in Memphis.

18 Rev. Bruce Klunder--A White minister from Cleveland, Ohio, run over by a bulldozer April 7, 1964, while protesting a segregated school.

19 Rev. George Lee--A minister in Belzoni, Miss., died May 7, 1955, of gunshot wounds after organizing a voter-registration drive.

20 Herbert Lee--A cotton farmer and voter registration organizer shot in the head Sept. 25, 1961, by a White state legislator in Liberty, Miss.

21 Viola Gregg Liuzzo--A White civil rights worker from Detroit fatally shot in the head March 25, 1965, by Klan members near Selma, Ala.

22 Denise McNair--A schoolgirl killed Sept. 15, 1963, in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala.

23 Delano H. Middleton--A high school student fatally shot Feb. 8, 1968, when police fired on demonstrators in Orangeburg, S.C.

24 Charles E. Moore--A civil rights volunteer abducted, beaten and thrown into the Mississippi River near Natchez, Miss., May 2, 1964, by the Klan.

25 Oneal Moore--A Black deputy sheriff fatally shot after his nightly patrol June 2, 1965, during an ambush by nightriders near Varnado, La.

26 William Moore--A White mail carrier from Baltimore shot April 23, 1963, in Attala, Ala., during his one-man march against segregation.

27 Mack Charles Parker--A truck driver accused of raping a WHite woman was lynched April 25, 1959, by masked White men in Poplarville, Miss.

28 Lt. Col. Lemuel Penn--A U.S. Army reservist fatally shot July 11, 1964, by the Klan while driving near Colbert, Ga.

29 Rev. James Reeb--A White minister from Boston beaten to death Mar. 11, 1965, on the streets of Selma, Ala., during a civil rights march.

30 John Earl Reese--A teenager slain Oct. 22, 1955, by nightriders who opposed improvements on a Black school in Mayflower, Texas.

31 Carole Robertson--A schoolgirl killed Sept. 15, 1963, in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala.

32 Michael Schwener--A civil rights worker abducted and shot at point-blank range June 21, 1964, by the Klan in Philadelphia, Miss.

33 Henry E. Smith--A South Carolina State College student fatally shot Feb. 8, 1968, when police fired shotguns at demonstrtors in orangeburg, S.C.

34 Lamar Smith--A prominent farmer fatally shot Aug. 13, 1955, in broad dayligh in Brookhaven, Miss., after organizing Black voters.

35 Emmett Louis Till--A chicago teenager lynched Aug. 28, 1955, for allegedly "flirting" with a White woman in Money, Miss.

36 Clarence Triggs--A bricklayer sho in the head July 30, 1966, by nightriders ih Bogalusa, La.

37 Virgil Ware--A youngster fatally shot Sept. 16, 1963, by a White teener while riding his bicycle in Birmingham, Ala.

38 Cynthia Wesley--A schoolgirl killed Sept. 15, 1963, in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in birmingham.

39 Ben Chester White--A caretaker shot June 10, 1966 by Klan members in Natchez, Miss.

40 Samuel Younge Jr.--A college student shot Jan. 3, 1966, by a Tuskegee, ALA., gas station attendant following a dispute over a 'Whites-only' restroom.

Let not their sacrifices be forgotten, for the quest for a just and equal society is by no means over. :patriot:
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-30-07 07:18 PM
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86. Journey on the Underground Railroad /

Compliments of National Geographic. The links include a journey on the Underground Railroad, the major figures of the Abolitionist movement, and a timeline of slavery in North America.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-03-07 03:47 PM
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87. Jackson State University, May 14, 1970
The forgotten campus incident eclipsed by Kent State 10 days earlier. Student unrest and shootings at Jackson State University (HBCU in Jackson, MS) May 14, 1970 left 2 dead and scores injured.

What occurred at Jackson State University was a protest against racism. Unlike Kent State, students had not rallied to protest the war in Vietnam.

On May 13, 1970, students amassed on Lynch Street (Note: Lynch St. is one of the area's main roads that runs through the center of the campus.) but did not get out of hand. Governor John Bell Williams ordered the Highway Patrol to establish order on the Jackson State campus, and students did not resist.

The next day, the President of the school twice met with students to listen to their concerns, but tension continued to mount.

Around 9:30 PM on May 14, JSU students heard a rumor that Fayette, Mississippi mayor Charles Evers, brother of murdered civil rights activist Medgar Evers, had been killed along with his wife. Students again gathered on Lynch Street and began rioting.

The ROTC building was set on fire, a street light was broken, and a small bonfire was built, but the riot was still a small one. Several white motorists called police to complain that students had thrown rocks at their passing cars, but eyewitnesses later proved that it was non-students, known as "cornerboys," who did the rock throwing. Firemen arrived to distinguish the fires, but requested police protection after students harassed them as they worked.

Police arrived, blocked off Lynch Street, and cordoned off a thirty block area surrounding the University. Later police told the media that they had received reports of gunfire for an hour and a half before arriving on campus. On the west end of Lynch Street, National Guardsmen assembled, still on call for rioting of the night before. The guardsmen had weapons but no ammunition.

There were seventy-five city police men and Mississippi State officers on the Lynch Street side of Stewart Hall, a men's dormitory, to hold back the crowd as firemen extinguished a blaze. They were armed with carbines, submachine guns, shotguns, service revolvers and some personal weapons.

When the firemen had departed, the police marched together, weapons in hand, down Lynch Street towards Alexander Center, a women's dormitory, for reasons still unclear today. A crowd of 75 to 100 students massed together in front of the officers at a distance of about 100 feet. There were reports that students shouted obscenities at officers and threw bricks.

Someone either threw or dropped a bottle, and it broke on the pavement with a loud noise. Some say police then advanced, while others insist the officers simply opened fire, or even others believe a campus security officer had the students under control. At any rate, police began shooting, and later said they had been fired upon by someone inside the Alexander West dormitory or that a powder flare had been spotted in the third floor stairwell window. Two television news reporters agreed that a student had fired first, but were unsure as to where, while a radio reported believed a hand holding a pistol had extended from a window in the women's dormitory.

At 12:05 AM on May 15, then, police opened fire on Jackson State students and fired for approximately thirty seconds. Students ran for cover, mostly inside one of the doors to Alexander West dormitory. Later police insisted that they had only fired on the dorm, but today bullet holes can still be found in a building faade 180 degrees across the street.

Struggling to get inside, students bottlenecked at the west end door of Alexander West. Some were trampled, while others fell from buckshot pellets and bullets. They were either left on the grass or dragged inside.

Fifty feet from the west end entrance to the dormitory, Phillip Lafayette Gibbs, age 21, lay dead from four gunshot wounds: two in his head, one under his left eye, and one in his left armpit. Gibbs left behind a wife, one child, and another on the way.

Behind the police line across the street, James Earl Green, age 17, was lying dead in front of B. F. Roberts Dining Hall. Green was a senior at Jim Hill High School and on his way home from work at a grocery store when he paused to watch the riot. Police later claimed they had been fired on from the dining hall. Green was killed by one gunshot.

Fifteen other students were wounded, at least one of whom was sitting inside the dormitory lobby. Each window facing the police in the five-story dormitory was shattered. At least 460 rounds were fired on the building, while investigators counted over 160 bullet holes on the outside of the stairwell alone.

Ambulances were not called for the injured students for twenty minutes while officers picked up their shell casings. Police also attempted to remove the shattered glass, but students and even sympathetic whites camped out on the lawn to prevent this until investigators had arrived.

Police and state troopers left the scene, while National Guardsmen remained behind. Jackson city officials later denied that city police had fired, and made no issue of the involvement of highway patrolmen.

"At Kent State there are photographs from the beginning of the incident on," comments current Jackson State University archivist Juanita Murray. "There are no photographs of that night at Jackson State. There are no photographs of the bodies lying on the ground... there was enough time to cover up what happened before the next newscast."

Local media coverage was poor and racist, with a few papers reporting that blood tests revealed that Gibbs was legally drunk when he was shot. Even the university newspaper did not report on the tragedy until a special edition one year later.

Members of a grand jury and a jury at a civil trial refused to indict any of the officers involved in the shootings. In 1974, a US Court of Appeals ruled that the officers had overreacted but that they could not be held liable for the two deaths that resulted. In 1982, all but two US Supreme Court Justices refused to hear the case.

On June 13, 1970, President Nixon formed the Commission on Campus Unrest. After the Commission's first meeting on June 25, public hearings were held for thirteen days at Jackson, Mississippi; Kent State, Ohio; Washington, DC; and Los Angeles, California. Despite the testimony of Jackson State administration, faculty, staff, and students, no arrests or convictions were made.

The Jackson City Council voted to permanently close Lynch Street to through traffic, and added the initials J. R. to street signs to denote John R. Lynch, Mississippi's first black congressman.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-21-07 04:10 PM
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89. Oldest black neighborhood and church in US
The Faubourg Trem neighborhood (usually shortened to Trem) of New Orleans is the oldest black neighborhood in US. Trem geographically is that part of New Orleans that lies between North Rampart and North Broad and from Canal Street to St. Bernard Avenue. The area received its name from Claude Trem, a model hatmaker and real estate developer who migrated from Sauvigny in Burgundy, France, and settled in New Orleans in 1783. Trem owned only a small portion of the area that bore his name and was in possession of that for just a decade. In later years, free persons of color and eventually those African slaves who either obtained, bought or bargained for their freedom were able to acquire and own property in Trem. There are hundreds of examples of 18th and early 19th century ownership of large and small land areas in Faubourg Trem by free peoples of color. The ability to acquire, purchase and own real property during an era when America was still immersed in slavery was remarkable, and only in New Orleans did this occur with any regularity and consistency. John Blassingame, in his landmark study of early New Orleans black culture, notes in his book Black New Orleans, that "the strongest economic base of the free Negroes rested on ownership of real property. By 1850, a decade before the outbreak of the Civil War, free blacks held $2,214,020 in real estate, with much of that in the center of the city." The seeds of this enormously successful business and social class of freed African slaves and free people of color would have a major impact not only on New Orleans, but on America. Also, in the Trem section is the oldest continuous black church in the US, St. Augustine Catholic Church, founded in 1842. /

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-01-07 04:33 PM
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91. The Red Ball Express
Edited on Fri Jun-01-07 04:41 PM by Lurking_Argyle
The Red Ball Express was one of World War II's most massive logistics operations, manned primarily by African-American soldiers. The trucks kept gasoline and other vital supplies rolling to the front as American troops pushed the Germans out of France and back toward Berlin.

Nearly 75 percent of all Red Ball Express drivers were African-American. That's because well before and during the war, U.S. commanders in general believed African-Americans had no mettle or guts for combat. Consequently, the Army relegated blacks primarily to "safe" service and supply outfits and the Navy assigned them as mess stewards. All Marines are combat troops -- the Corps refused to take blacks at all until 1942.

Army Gen. George S. Patton's bold armored advance across France in 1944 is credited historically as a significant contribution to the Allied victory in Europe in World War II. The Allied breakout from Normandy and the French hedgerow country in the summer started a race to Paris and points north and east. Patton stretched his supply line to near-collapse.

Since an army without gas, bullets and food would quickly be defeated, the Army Transportation Corps created a huge trucking operation called the "Red Ball Express" on Aug. 21, 1944. Supply trucks started rolling Aug. 25 and continued for 82 days. Men like Rookard, then 19, played a major role in the Nazis' defeat by ensuring U.S. and Allied warfighters had what they needed to sweep across France into Germany.

"Red Ball Express" was the Army code name for a truck convoy system that stretched from St. Lo in Normandy to Paris and eventually to the front along France's northeastern borderland. The route was marked with red balls. On an average day, 900 fully loaded vehicles were on the Red Ball route round-the-clock with drivers officially ordered to observe 60-yard intervals and a top speed of 25 miles per hour.

At the Red Ball's peak, 140 truck companies were strung out with a round trip taking 54 hours as the route stretched nearly 400 miles to First Army and 350 to Patton's Third. Rookard recalled convoys rolling all day every day regardless of the weather. Night driving was hard because of blackout rules.

"We had to drive slowly at night because we had to use 'cat eyes,' and you could hardly see," he said. "If you turned on your headlights, the Germans could bomb the whole convoy. So we had to feel our way down the road." "Cat- eyes" were slitted headlight covers that reduced light to a dim beam on the highway.

Nobody wanted to invite air or ground ambushes -- only some trucks had .50-caliber machine guns for defense, he said. The drivers carried only carbines.

The strain on personnel and equipment began to show. Drivers wanted to live up to their growing reputation among combat units and reporters, who sent home news stories about their exploits. They regularly began to ignore speed and weight limits and their own fatigue. The number of one- vehicle accidents climbed. The solution was easy -- the Army assigned relief drivers to ride shotgun.

"We hauled anything Gen. Patton needed," said Rookard, who was drafted into the Army in March 1943 and was discharged in December 1946. "We took supplies all the way to the front line, back and forth, back and forth. Some of the fellows ran into ambushes, but my company, Company C, 514th Quartermaster Regiment, wasn't. We were lucky, because there was shooting all around us. The Germans had 'buzz bombs' (V-1 missiles). They were set to fly a certain amount of miles and (then) drop just like a bomb. We had to watch out for those.

"My worst memories of being in the Red Ball Express were seeing trucks get blown up and being afraid that I might get killed," said Rookard of Maple Heights, Ohio. "There were dead bodies and dead horses on the highways after bombs dropped. I was scared, but I did my job, hoping for the best. Being young and about 4,000 miles away from home, anybody would be scared."

Rookard, who became a Cleveland city truck driver after the war and retired in 1986, said the only fond memory he has is that of the French people, who treated African-Americans nice.

"Some of the white soldiers told the French people that black soldiers had tails and stuff like that," he said. "But other than that, our company didn't have too much trouble with segregation and discrimination."

When the program ended in mid-November 1944, Red Ball Express truckers had delivered 412,193 tons of gas, oil, lubricants, ammunition, food and other essentials. By then, 210,209 African-Americans were serving in Europe and 93,292 of them were in the Quartermaster Corps.

There was a 1952 movie named The Red Ball Express, which, of course, mostly ignored and downplayed the contributions by the black drivers. :eyes: (I cite this source it shows the quantity of material carried by the Red Ball Express, even though it makes no mention of the drivers.)

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-18-07 04:45 PM
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92. Building the Alaska Highway
After the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, the need for an inland route to Alaska prioritized this policy. Manpower was scarce, and segregated troops were shipped north under the leadership of white leaders. The construction of the 1,522-mile long road (the Alcan Highway) from Dawson Creek, British Colombia, to Fairbanks, Alaska through rugged, unmapped wilderness was heralded as a near impossible engineering feat.

Many compared it to the building of the Panama Canal. There was much praise for soldiers who pushed it through in just eight months and twelve days. African-American battalions have seldom been mentioned publicly despite the fact that they numbered 3,695 in troop strength of 10,670. According to their commanders, these men did an exceptional job under severe pressure. Poorly housed, often living in tents with insufficient clothing and monotonous food, they worked 20-hour days through a punishing winter. Temperatures hovered at 40-below-zero for weeks at a time. A new record low of -79 was established.

The Alaska portion of the road, arguably the most difficult and hazardous section, was built by the all-black 93rd, 95th, and 97th General Service Regiments of the Corps of Engineers over the protests of the United States Army commander for Alaska, General Simon Buckner, Jr. African-Americans were initially kept from taking part in the Alaska Highway project because of objections similar to those of General Buckner. However, due to a severe shortage of manpower the Army decided to send the 93rd, 95th, 97th and 388th regiments to Alaska. (NOTE: The 388th Regiment worked primarily on the CANOL Oil Pipeline project.)

African-American regiments in Alaska were forced to endure the frequent bigotry and prejudice that was so much a part of those times and their living conditions while building the highway were especially harsh. Since they were not permitted to visit the nearby settlements or towns, most of the men were forced to live in tents which gave little or no protection from the freezing Alaskan weather. Although they worked on the same highway, the units were kept strictly segregated. The African-American engineers were often shortchanged in their allotment of equipment. In one case, the 95th Engineer Regiment, the final African American unit transferred to the highway, was left without bulldozers and other machinery. Although the 95th had more experience operating the equipment, the machinery was given to the all-white 35th Regiment. The African-Americans were given hand tools to use.

Regardless of race issues, the War Department's plans required enormous effort from everyone who worked on the highway. The grueling schedule and extreme conditions were tremendous challenges. Most of the men had never been in extreme cold. Many of the regiments were from the South or from other warm climates, such as Fort Ord in California, and working in Alaska and northern Canada came as quite a shock. To add to the difficulties, most of the men lacked much experience handling heavy machinery.

In that era, many people in the military felt that the African American engineers, because of their race, could not be as skilled and industrious as Caucasians. At a time when segregation and Jim Crow laws were commonplace, using white and black troops on the same project was seen as experimental. Another military rule that was bent was the stipulation that African Americans were not to be sent to cold climates.

The majority of these Black troops were from the South; yet, they persevered. On the highways completion, many were decorated for their efforts and then sent off to active duty in Europe and the South Pacific. The veterans of the Armys Black Corps of Engineers were members of the 93rd, 95th, 97th and 388th units. To build the Sikanni Chief River Bridge, men waded chest deep into freezing waters to place the trestles. To keep themselves going, some of the men sang. The Duke Chronicle relates a story of the 95th where, "when faced with the challenge of building a bridge, the men decided to place their salaries on the line by betting that they could finish the bridge in four days. Much to the surprise of seasoned engineers, the regiment did just that and completed the task in less than 84 hours, half the time it usually takes to build a bridge of those proportions."

The road, originally called the Alaskan-Canadian Highway, quickly adopted the shortened name Alcan Highway. It was opened to the public on November 11, 1942 and still provides the only land route to Alaska.

Although the Alaska project is remembered in the folklore of the area, one commonly overlooked detail is the remarkable work of the 3,695 black men who were originally deemed unfit for the task. When the road was formally dedicated, Brig. Gen. James A. O'Conner singled out the black troops for their hard work and dedication stating, "Some day the accomplishment of these colored soldiers, achievements accomplished far from their homes, will occupy a major place in the lore of the North country."

Alaska's Lt. Governor, Fran Ulmer speaking at Eilson Air Force Base in Alaska on March 8, 2002, (During Black History Month Ceremonies) praised the efforts of the 4,000 black soldiers of the 93rd, 95th and 97th Army Engineer General Service Regiments who were instrumental in building the Alaska Highway.

"If you've ever driven the Alaska Highway, you might remember a bridge just south of Delta on the way to Tok, that spans the Gerstle River," she said. "There's a sign on both ends displaying its name - the Black Veterans Memorial Bridge. It is a small gesture to name a bridge, but I hope that by doing so we will be reminded of the significance of the contributions of the regiments and of every black soldier since."

Lt. Governor Ulmer further stated, "Without the black soldiers, the Alcan would likely never have been built in such a short time."

Writer's Note: Please click on the links below for further information. Above is only a fraction of the hardships the black engineer regiments had to deal with in faithful service to a most ungrateful country that would rather forget them.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-21-07 04:25 PM
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93. Joseph Rainey, 1st black Member of Congress

Joseph Rainey (1832-1887), 1st black Member of Congress (House of Representatives, S. Carolina, served 1870-1879). Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1870, he was re-elected four times, the longest tenure in the House of any black during the Reconstruction era. While in office he dedicated himself to the passage of civil-rights legislation, pressing the interests not only of Blacks but also of other minorities, including the Indians and the Chinese in California.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-06-08 09:09 AM
Response to Reply #93
145. Edward Brooke III (1919- ), 1st black Senator
Edited on Wed Aug-06-08 09:28 AM by Lurking_Argyle
Edward Brooke was the first black Senator elected by popular vote. He served in the Senate as a Republican from Massachusetts from 1967-1979. Massachusetts has a courthouse dedicated in his honor. There wouldn't be another black Senator until Carol Moseley-Braun (D-IL) in 1993.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-06-07 11:19 AM
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95. The Mann Act of 1910 /

The Mann Act (1910) came about during the "white slavery" hysteria of the turn of the 20th Century. During that time, the Industrial Revolution was bringing rapid changes to US society, along with urbanization, immigration, the changing role of women, and evolving social mores. Moral purists decried declining morals (note: as much as things change, they stay the same. ) as young women left home for the city and away from the "time-honored" and family-centered traditions of courtship and marriage. 19th Century muckraking journalist George Kibbe Turner called prostitution "white slavery" and coined the term. Unfettered immigration provided an endless supply of both foreign prostitutes and foreign men who lured American girls into immorality. Muckraking journalists fueled the hysteria with sensationalized stories of innocent girls kidnapped off the streets by foreigners, drugged, smuggled across the country, and forced to work in brothels.

Although no evidence was ever found for "white slavery" rings, it didn't stop Congress from doing something about it. Representative James R. Mann of Illinois, head of the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee, drafted the Mann Act of 1910 which made it a crime to transport women across state lines "for the purpose of prostitution or debauchery, or for any other immoral purpose." The first application of this law was against boxer Jack Johnson (convicted). Other noted individuals prosecuted under the Mann Act were Chuck Berry (musician, convicted), Charlie Chaplin (actor, charges dropped), Rex Ingram (black actor, convicted), William Thomas (sociologist, acquitted), Frank Lloyd Wright (architect, charges dropped), and Charles Manson (cult leader, charges dropped). Note that only the black men actually went to prison, although the white men had their professional reputations tainted (except Manson, of course). In the case of Thomas, he was targeted by the FBI for his political views. There is no record of any arrest related to the Mann Act with a black woman victm.

This is an excellent illustration of the power of the racial caste system. Congress makes a law that stops a non-existent problem that scares white people (the upper caste), while race riots and lynchings against black people, in addition to land and consumer fraud, are occurring with alarming regularity. All of those crimes did ACTUALLY happen and were (and still are) ACTUALLY illegal, and the halls of government at ALL levels are silent. Black people can't make their pain and fear into government regulations, corporate policies, and front page news.

I've cross-posted this here because I know a lot of people use this thread for reference.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-09-07 06:51 PM
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96. Anti-racist allies
These are white writers who understand and are active in highlighting the evils of racism or anti-racism work and dismantling of white privilege in our society. I list them and their home/main websites here because I know a lot of people use this thread for reference. Their writings are found in various places, google for extra info. They are:

Tim Wise /

Molly Secours /

Joe Feagin /

Paul Street

Robert Jensen

Dave Zirin / Note: Though mainly a sports writer, Dave Zirin takes on racism in popular culture as well as sports.

Mike Males / Note: Mike Males mainly writes about youth issues, he does talk about racism in society.

All are very good writers and can provide facts for dealing with freepers, neo-cons, ignorant liberals, flaming racists, confederate apologists, flag-waving fake patriots, and other time-wasting idiots.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-12-07 04:07 PM
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98. The Scottsboro Boys Trials
No crime in American history-- let alone a crime that never occurred-- produced as many trials, convictions, reversals, and retrials as did an alleged gang rape of two white girls by nine black teenagers on a Southern Railroad freight run on March 25, 1931. Over the course of the two decades that followed, the struggle for justice of the "Scottsboro Boys," as the black teens were called, made celebrities out of anonymities, launched and ended careers, wasted lives, produced heroes, opened southern juries to blacks, exacerbated sectional strife, and divided America's political left.

They were: Roy Wright, 13, Eugene Williams, 13, Andy Wright, 17, Haywood Patterson, 17, Olin Montgomery, 17, Willie Roberson, 17, Ozzie Powell, 16, Charles Weems, 21 and Clarence Norris, 21.

The story of the Scottsboro Boys is one of the most shameful examples of injustice in our nation's history. It makes clear that in the Deep South of the 1930's, jurors were not willing to accord a black charged with raping a white woman the usual presumption of innocence. In fact, one may argue that the presumption seemed reversed: a black was presumed guilty unless he could establish his innocence beyond a reasonable doubt. The cases show that to jurors, black lives didn't count for much. The jurors that in April, 1933 had just voted to sentence Haywood Patterson to death were seen laughing as they emerged from the juryroom. Hannah Arendt wrote of "the banality of evil." Evil rarely comes in the form of monsters, but rather in the form of relatively normal people who, for reasons of careers, ideology, or a desire for society's approval, are indifferent to the human consequences of their actions. Because of the endemic racism of US society in general, (black people don't have rights and aren't entitled to justice because they aren't really people) and the South in particular (the state of Alabama spent millions to the point of almost exhausting the state budget in order to enforce the racial caste system, justice be damned!), indifferent jurors and career-motivated prosecutors, the self-serving and groundless accusations of a single woman were allowed to change forever the lives of nine black teenagers who found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The first link has the events and trials in detail; the second link has a partial timeline of the events.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-14-07 06:23 AM
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99. The 1968 Kerner Report
President Lyndon Johnson formed an 11-member National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders in July 1967 to explain the riots that plagued cities each summer since 1964 and to provide recommendations for the future. The Commissions 1968 report, informally known as the Kerner Report (named for Commission chairman Governor Otto Kerner of Illnois), concluded that the nation was moving toward two societies, one black, one whiteseparate and unequal. Unless conditions were remedied, the Commission warned, the country faced a system of apartheid in its major cities. The Kerner report delivered an indictment of white society for isolating and neglecting African Americans and urged legislation to promote racial integration and to enrich slumsprimarily through the creation of jobs, job training programs, and decent housing. President Johnson, however, rejected the recommendations. In April 1968, one month after the release of the Kerner report, rioting broke out in more than 100 cities following the assassination of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. In the following excerpt from the Kerner Report, the Commission assessed media coverage of the riots and criticized newspapers and television for failing to adequately report on African-American life or to employ more than a token number of blacks.

In 1998, 30 years after the issuance of the Report, former Senator and Commission member Fred R. Harris co-authored a study that found the racial divide had grown in the ensuing years with inner-city unemployment at crisis levels. Opposing voices argued that the Commissions prediction of separate societies had failed to materialize due to a marked increase in the number of African Americans living in suburbs.

Information on the Kerner Report is down the page on the Black Agenda Report link.

Writer's Note: A Google search of "Kerner Commission report" will show a link to a Heritage Foundation presentation criticizing the report (one of the "opposing voices" noted above) as a failure of liberal social policy-- . It makes the same tired idiotic neo-conservative arguments, e.g. there's no more racism since the "colored only" signs came down. All black people have to do is work harder and stop whining and life will be fine. Wow! Nearly 400 years of oppression will be corrected in 20 years! That's swell! :crazy: Neo-cons and other RW'ers have never had a problem with logic, they just ignore it when it gets inconvenient. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-18-07 04:18 PM
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100. The Catholic Church and Slavery
The Catholic Church issued three Papal Bulls that would sanctify and justify colonization and the slave trade. They were, The The Dum Diversas, The Romanus Pontifex, and The Inter Caetera

Pope Nicholas V issued the papal bull Dum Diversas on June 18, 1452. It authorised Alfonso V of Portugal to reduce any Saracens (Muslims) and pagans and any other unbelievers to perpetual slavery. This facilitated the Portuguese slave trade from West Africa.

The same pope wrote the bull Romanus Pontifex on January 5, 1455 to the same Alfonso. As a follow-up to the Dum Diversas, it extended to the Catholic nations of Europe dominion over discovered lands during the Age of Discovery. Along with sanctifying the seizure of non-Christian lands, it encouraged the enslavement of native, non-Christian peoples in Africa and the New World.

The specific text of the Romanus Pontifex:
"We weighing all and singular the premises with due meditation, and noting that since we had formerly by other letters of ours granted among other things free and ample faculty to the aforesaid King Alfonso -- to invade, search out, capture, vanquish, and subdue all Saracens and pagans whatsoever, and other enemies of Christ wheresoever placed, and the kingdoms, dukedoms, principalities, dominions, possessions, and all movable and immovable goods whatsoever held and possessed by them and to reduce their persons to perpetual slavery, and to apply and appropriate to himself and his successors the kingdoms, dukedoms, counties, principalities, dominions, possessions, and goods, and to convert them to his and their use and profit"

In 1493 Alexander VI issued the bull Inter Caetera stating one Christian nation did not have the right to establish dominion over lands previously dominated by another Christian nation, thus establishing the Law of Nations.

These religious declarations essentially created the "white man's burden", in addition to the justification of imperialism and seizing land for colonization and the global slave trade during the Age of Exploration.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-27-07 04:58 PM
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102. The Negro Motorist Green Book
For all of the "new mobility" of the car, driving still posed difficulties for blacks. African American travelers regularly carried buckets or portable toilets in their car trunks because service station bathrooms and roadside rest areas were usually closed to them. Black motorists also found it difficult to find places to stay: most roadside motels--north and south--refused to admit blacks. Diners and fine restaurants alike regularly turned away black customers. By the 1930s, however, black motorists could consult guidebooks to make their way through the countryside with as few hassles as possible. The first of the genre, the Negro Motorist Green Book, in 1936, promised to provide "the Negro traveler information that will keep him from running into difficulties, embarrassments, and to make his trip more enjoyable." Black newspapers also ran advertisements for "race" hotels, restaurants, and resorts where black customers were welcome.

"Driving while Black" is nothing new. :(
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-03-07 04:33 PM
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105. Historically Black Colleges and Universities
or HBCU's for short. Here is a listing of all of the HBCU's in the USA; 98 campuses in 22 states and territories, including DC and US Virgin Islands. Do not perpetrate or allow that lie about how black people do not value education!

Alabama A and M University
Alabama State University
Bishop State Community College
Bishop/Carver Campus
Concordia College
Drake Technical College
Lawson State Community College
Gadsden State C.C. - Valley Street Campus
Miles College
Oakwood College
Shelton State C. C. - Fredd Campus
Stillman College
Talladega College
Trenholm State Tech. College
Tuskegee University

Arkansas Baptist College
Philander Smith College
University of Arkansas/Pine Bluff

Delaware State College

University of the District of Columbia

Bethune-Cookman College
Edward Waters College
Florida A and M University
Florida Memorial College

Albany State College
Clark Atlanta University
Fort Valley State College
Morehouse College
Morris Brown College
Paine College
Savannah State College
Spelman College

Kentucky State University

Dillard University
Grambling State University
Southern Univ A and M College
Southern Univ/New Orleans
Southern Univ/Shreveport
Xavier University

Bowie State University
Coppin State College
Morgan State University
Univ of Maryland/Eastern Shore

Lewis College of Business

Alcorn State University
Coahoma Junior College
Hinds Junior College - Utica Campus
Jackson State University
Mary Holmes College
Mississippi Valley State University
Rust College
Tougaloo College

Harris-Stowe State College
Lincoln University

Barber-Scotia College
Bennett College
Elizabeth City State Univ
Fayetteville State University
Johnson C. Smith University
Livingstone College
North Carolina A and T State Univ
North Carolina Central Univ
St. Augustine's College
Shaw University
Winston-Salem State University

Central State University
Wilberforce University

Langston University

Cheyney State University
Lincoln University

Allen University
Benedict College
Claflin College
Denmark Technical College
Morris College
South Carolina State University
Voorhees College

Fisk University
Lane College
LeMoyne-Owen College
Tennessee State University

Huston-Tillotson College
Jarvis Christian College
Paul Quinn College
Prairie View A and M University
Saint Philip's College
Southwestern Christian College
Texas College
Texas Southern University
Wiley College

University of the Virgin Islands

Hampton University
Norfolk State University
Saint Paul's College
Virginia State University
Virginia Union University

Bluefield State College
West Virginia State College
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-13-11 07:03 PM
Response to Reply #105
236. Adding to the list
Howard University in Washington, DC.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-06-07 04:08 PM
Response to Original message
106. Labor firsts
A. Philip Randolph and Pullman Porters who made up the membership of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters (BSCP) union, founded in 1925. Randolph was the chief organizer and founder of the BSCP, the first African-American labor union in the country to win a collective bargaining agreement. With the help of Randolph, the Pullman Porters fought a valiant battle for employment equality with the corporate giant, the Pullman Rail Car Company.

The first female board member of the United Packinghouse Food and Alliance Workers Union, Addie L. Wyatt was elected vice president of Local 56 in 1953. During her 30-year career as a labor leader Wyatt fought for equality as a campaigner for women's rights in the workplace and as an active protester alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the early 1960s. She served as a member of President John F. Kennedy's Commission on the Status of Women and in 1976 became the first black woman labor leader of an international union when she was elected international vice president of the newly merged United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. A former Time magazine woman of the year (1975), Wyatt was inducted to the Civil Rights Walk of Fame in Atlanta, Georgia, in 2005.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-11-07 04:32 PM
Response to Original message
107. School desegregation, Southern Manifesto, and Massive Resistance
In response to the order for school desegration as ordered in the Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court decision, the South, in essence, began a second Civil War in its avoidance policies. Those policies were contained in The Southern Manifesto and the policies of Massive Resistance.

The Southern Manifesto

On the floor of the U.S. Senate last week (week of March 19, 1956), Georgia's Walter F. George read a manifesto signed by 82 Southern Representatives and 19 Southern Senators. It pledged the signers to exert "all lawful means" toward reversing the Supreme Court's desegregation decision, and it appealed to Southerners "to scrupulously refrain from disorder and lawless acts."

The idea for a "Southern Manifesto" was conceived by South Carolina's Senator Strom Thurmond, who enlisted the powerful aid of Virginia's Senator Harry Byrd. At a caucus of Southern Senators, Thurmond produced mimeographed copies of his own arm-waving call for nullification. The caucus pushed Thurmond aside, ordered the paper rewritten by more temperate Senators. The final version was written mostly by Georgia's Senator Richard Russell, with amendments by Florida's Spessard Holland and Texas' Price Daniel and polishing by Arkansas' highly polished J. William Fulbright, a liberal hero. At that point Strom Thurmond elbowed his way back onto the scene, posed for photographers dictating the final draftwith which he had nothing to doto his wife seated at a typewriter.

Many signers regretted the manifesto and its party-splitting implications. Said one Southern Senator: "Now, if these Northerners won't attack us and get mad and force us to close ranks, most of us will forget the whole thing and maybe we can pretty soon pretend it never happened." It was not that easy: during the week, a succession of Northern Democrats attacked the manifesto. Not a Southerner arose in reply.

Massive Resistance

"If we can organize the Southern States for massive resistance to this order I think that in time the rest of the country will realize that racial integration is not going to be accepted in the South." With these words, Senator Harry Flood Byrd launched "Massive Resistance", a deliberate campaign of delay and obfuscation. As head of the commonwealth's most powerful political organization, known as the "Byrd Machine," Byrd, a former governor (1926-1930), orchestrated Virginia's response to the Brown decision. Massive Resistance was intended to slow to a crawl attempts to integrate Virginia's schools generally and to minimize the effects of integration where it did occur.

The Initial Reaction: 1954-56
Agreeing with Senator Byrd, Governor Thomas Bahnson Stanley appointed a commission in August 1954 to determine possible options for defying the Brown decision. After meeting for more than a year, the Gray Commission, named for State Senator Garland Gray, proposed in November 1955,

-that laws concerning school attendance be amended so that no child would be required to attend an integrated school,

-that funds be allocated as tuition grants for parents who opposed schools comprised of white and black students, and

-that local school boards be authorized to assign white and African American students to particular schools.

This recommendation later became the statewide agency Pupil Placement Board that had the power to assign students to schools and approve requests for transfer.

In January 1956 white Virginians overwhelmingly supported a referendum to call a constitutional convention. After months of debates in the General Assembly, Governor Stanley ruled out control of anti-integration efforts at the local level and proposed to deny state appropriations to schools that integrated. Gray and the other commission members repudiated their report (which recommended what the Governor was proposing) and supported his plan. "Massive Resistance" became enshrined in the new state constitution. Virginians reacted to these decisions by petitioning and corresponding with Governor Stanley and local and state leaders.

Indeed, it was Massive Resistance. In 1958, the Virginia state legislature gave the Governor the power to close any of the state's white public schools scheduled to be integrated. On September 27, when seventeen black students sought to enroll at six of Norfolk 's white public schools, Governor Almond issued an executive order closing all six of Norfolk 's white schools that were to be integrated. Two days later, almost 10,000 white students found that they had no institution to attend. In addition, the seventeen African American students who sought to transfer into the previously all-white schools were locked-out. The Norfolk 17 -- Geraldine Talley, Louis Cousins, Betty Jean Reed, Lolita Portis, Reginald Young, LaVera Forbes, James Turner Jr., Patricia Turner, Edward Jordan, Claudia Wellington, Andrew Heidelberg, Alvarez Gonsouland, Delores Johnson, Johnnie Rouse, Olivia Driver, Carol Wellington, and Patricia Godbolt -- attended school at Bute Street Baptist Church, where they were tutored by local teachers and supervised by the NAACP.

As the school-closing crisis intensified in the winter of 1958, an effort was launched by James G. Martin, IV, and W.I. McKendree, the leaders of the segregationist Tidewater Educational Foundation, to divert public money to white private schools in Norfolk. Fittingly, however, the entire effort fell apart on the anniversary of Robert E. Lee's birth, January 19, 1959. It was at that time, that the Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals declared in Harrison v. Day that the school closings violated section 129 of Virginia 's State Constitution, which required the state to "maintain an efficient system of public free schools." At the same time, the federal district court in Norfolk ruled in James v. Almond -- a case brought by white parents -- that Virginia 's school closing statute violated the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and that it was therefore illegal. After a semester of showdown, then, the Norfolk 17 entered six of the previously all-white schools in the city, and Massive Resistance ended.

Although Norfolk 's six closed schools re-opened in February 1959, on a so-called "integrated" basis, the school closings were important for two reasons. First, the closings in Norfolk affected the largest school district in the state of Virginia, and resulted in the largest school closing crisis in the nation. And second, when Norfolk 's schools were reopened in 1959, it seemed as if a peaceful and legal resolution to the integration crisis might be possible, for Massive Resistance had been bested in the courts. This proposition would be tested over the next three decades, and would ultimately lead to the third major educational showdown in Norfolk -- over busing and desegregation.

While Prince Edward Co. was in many ways typical of other southern rural communities of the time, the community distinguished itself from most other southern towns in response to the Brown decision. To avoid school desegregation, the Prince Edward County School Board closed its schools in 1959, posting No Trespassing signs on the buildings. In the first year, about 1,800 African American children were locked out of their schools. When schools finally reopened in 1964, almost 2,500 African American children had been without public schooling for five years. For white children a segregated system of private academies was hastily organized with tuition grants from public funds. Segregationists elsewhere also gave money to help finance these private academies.

Massive Resistance would continue in the cases of Central High School in Little Rock and Gov. Wallace's obtruction at the University of Alabama to name a few.

Writer's Note: Unlike the 5-year closure of Prince Edward Co. public schools, the Norfolk public schools were closed for only weeks. IMO, the much more populated area of Norfolk could not effectively shut out black students without harming white students in the process. The less-populated Prince Edward County could absorb the area's white students into private academies and still shut out the area's black students.

This entry is to show the extent that the white power structure, with collaboration from a racist and uncaring populace, would go to avoid integration. Racism didn't magically disappear because of the Supreme Court decision. /,9171,824106... (3/26/56 issue)

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-05-07 10:33 AM
Response to Original message
108. The 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion, aka "The Triple Nickles"
The first all-Black paratrooper unit in the US Army during World War II. The "Triple Nickles" was born during a time of complete segregation in the United States and it has survived to what it still stands to be.

The "Triple Nickles" began its trek into airborne history on December 19, 1943, as the 555th Parachute Company. Almost a year later, the unit became a battalion and included riggers, jumpmasters, pathfinders and communications soldiers. The 555th Parachute Infantry Batallion didn't deploy overseas during World War II. It was mobilized to fight a threat closer to home as "smokejumpers," airborne firefighters. Under this mission, soldiers made more than 1,000 jumps, fighting forest fires in Oregon and California, some of which were started by Japanese incendiary balloons. In December 1947 the 555th was redesignated as the 505th Airborne Infantry Regiment and assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division. Members of the original "Triple Nickles" went into combat during the Korean War, joining such other airborne units as the 2nd Ranger Company and the 187th Airborne Combat Team.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-11-07 04:05 PM
Response to Original message
109. Haitian troops that fought for the colonies in the American Revolution
In October 1779, a force of more than 500 Haitian free blacks joined American colonists and French troops in an unsuccessful push to drive the British from Savannah in coastal Georgia.

More than 300 allied soldiers were gunned down charging British fortifications Oct. 9, making the siege the second-most lopsided British victory of the war after Bunker Hill.

Though not well known in the U.S., Haiti's role in the American Revolution is a point of national pride for Haitians. After returning home from the war, Haitian veterans soon led their own rebellion that won Haiti's independence from France in 1804.

It's unclear exactly what role Haitian troops played in the battle at Savannah because Haitian records from that era were destroyed by fire in the 1830s, said Scott Smith, director of Savannah's Coastal Heritage Society, which is dedicating a park on the battlefield site Tuesday.

But surviving records show 545 Haitian soldiers sailed to Savannah in 1779, making them the largest military unit of the Savannah battle. The Haitians are also believed to have been the largest black unit to serve in the American Revolution.

Writer's note: I had never heard of this military involvement by Haiti or any other non-European country. In return, when Haiti became independent, they were thrown under the bus. Can't have those slaves in the US getting ideas about freedom.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-26-07 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
110. Some recent naval history firsts and facts
Erroll Brown, RADM, USCG--1st black Coast Guard Flag Officer

Merle Smith, 1st black graduate of Coast Guard Academy in 1966.

Michael Healy, CAPT, US Cutter Service (predecessor service to US Coast Guard)--1st black ship's commanding officer in US Government service, commanded the Cutter BEAR from 1887-1895.

Wesley Brown, 1st graduate of the Naval Academy in 1949. The new Naval Academy gymnasium Wesley Brown Field House was named in his honor and broke ground in 2006.

J. Paul Reason, 1st black full Admiral (4-stars) in 1996 when appointed Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet.

Lillian Fishburne, 1st black female Navy Flag Officer.

Samuel Lee Gravely, Jr. (1922-2004) has many firsts in his Naval career. He was the first black Naval warship commanding officer, commanding destroyer USS Theodore E. Chandler (DD-717); first black commanding officer in combat commanding destroyer USS Taussig (DD-746) ; first black commanding officer of a heavy warship, commanding cruiser USS Jouett (CG-29). In addition to his noted advancement to Flag Officer (first black Rear (2-stars) and Vice (3-stars) Admiral), he was the first black fleet commanding officer, appointed Commander, US 3rd Fleet. The destroyer USS Gravely (DDG-107) was named in his honor.

George Thompson, CAPT, USN, 1st black commanding officer of the Navy Band in 2007.

Carl Brashear, BMCM (Master Chief Boatswain's Mate), 1st black Navy Master Diver in 1970 whose career was highlighted in the movie "Men of Honor" starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Brashear. Another incredible feat was that he was reinstated to full service as an amputee. He lost the lower portion of his left leg in an salvage operations accident in 1966.

Submitted by (former) _Argyle, LT, USN.
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noiretextatique Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-26-07 06:59 PM
Response to Original message
112. african american female poets
in addition to rita dove, maya angelou, nikki giovanni, sonia sanchez, june jordan, audre lourde, lucy clifton, ntozake shange, alice walker and numerous others, including yours truly.
paying tribute to these poets...

Lucy Terry (17301821) who, at age 16, wrote about an Indian raid on
Deerfield, Massachusetts in 1746

Phillis Wheatley (17351784)
An 18th century slave who was one of the bestknown
poets of her time. She was not only the first female African-
American to have a book of poetry published in America, but the only
female poet published in this country since Anne Bradstreet a century
earlier.15 Wheatley was treated as somewhat of a pet of the cultured
white society of her day who admired her scholarly use of classical
poetic forms without acknowledging the subtle sub-texts of the concerns
of women and children, even African-American women and

Frances Ellen Watkins Harper (1824-1911)
Harper earned financial independence and nationwide
acclaim with her poetry, essays, fiction and public
readings and lectures on behalf of racial equality,
women's and children's rights, Christian morality
and temperance.

Henrietta Cordelia Ray (1850?-1916)
A New York City school teacher for 30 years,
Ray published two collections of 146 poems whose
technique is unusually rich.

Georgia Douglas Johnson (18861966), whose The Heart
of a Woman and Other Poems appeared in 1918. This was the first of
three volumes of poetry representing three stages of a womans life
youth, motherhood, and age.

Angelina Weld Grimk (18801958), and
Anne Spencer (18821975), were published in anthologies, but they produced no
individual volumes of poetry. Grimk was one of our earliest lesbian
poets, and Spencer was a Black Seminole Indian.

Jessie Fauset (18881961), a much anthologized poet, was widely read during the
Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s along with her contemporary
Georgia Douglas Johnson.

Gwendolyn Brooks (19172000 )
Brooks was she the first African-American (male or female) to win the Pulitzer Prize and
the first African-American woman to be widely recognized for her
poetry, Brooks own evolution as a poet mirrored major changes in
African-American art and social consciousness. Her first volume of
poetry, A Street in Bronzeville was published in 1945.

Naomi Long Madgett (1923 ), teacher, publisher, and poet, has
produced seven volumes of her own poetry and edited another collection
of African-American women poets.

Dolores Kendricks (1927 ) The Women of Plums: Poems in the
Voices of Slave Women gives human faces and feelings to often anonymous
slave lives.
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Chovexani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-02-08 05:54 PM
Response to Reply #112
114. Oh dang I didn't know Gwendolyn Brooks died
I was introduced to her work by a very progressive teacher in junior high school. Great, thought-provoking stuff.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-14-08 12:42 PM
Response to Original message
115. Willie O'Ree (1935- ), first black NHL player
from Fredericton, New Brunswick (he's actually Canadian), took to the the ice for the Boston Bruins in 1958. This marks the 50th anniversary of that landmark. In the NPR interview, he talks about the crap he had to put up with because he was black and wanted to play hockey.
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NOLALady Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-21-08 05:50 PM
Response to Original message
116. Voter Intimidation 1876 Style

The testimony of a dying witness to a Senate investigation.

Eaton Logwood was the brother of a direct ancestor.

The Ouachita Telegraph
Friday, November 3, 1876
Page 1, Column 4
Official Report of an Army Officer.
The following report, forwarded from this department to the headquarters of
the Military division of the Missouri, is copied from the Chicago Tribune of
the twenty-fourth:

Monroe, La., October 12, 1876.
Assistant Adjutant General Headquarters
Department of the Gulf:

I have the honor to report that at or about seven o'clock yesterday morning, the eleventh instant, at their residence on the island eight miles above Monroe, Primus Johnson, a colored preacher, was shot and instantly killed, and Eaton Logwood, also colored, shot and very dangerously wounded, by two disguised white mn. At the time of the shooting Johnson was standing on the gallery of his house, holding his infant girl in his arms. Eaton Logwood was employed in front of the house (the two men, Johnson and
Logwood, being joint occupants of the house) in loading seed cotton on his wagon for the purpose of hauling it to a neighbor's gin.

The two disguised and armed white men appeared from behind the bank
of a bayou near the road, and advanced to a picket fence in front of, and about
fifteen yards distant from the house. Resting their guns across the fence,
one of them addressed Logwood, saying: "Eaton, old fellow, is that you? God
damn you, I've got you now!" aiming his gun while saying so. Logwood
attempted to escape by running, but was shot by the disguised man referred
to, as he (Logwood) was about to run around the corner of the house, a full
load of buckshot entering his back, neck and shoulders, inflicting very
dangerous wounds. At about the same time, or an instant later, Primus
Johnson, standing on his gallery, and still holding his child in his arms,
was shot by the other disguised white man, and died in a few moments. The
two disguised whites, after saying that if they had not fixed it all right
hey would return and finish it, walked slowly along the road, crossed into a
field, went down to the bayou and crossed on a log, after which all trace of
them was lost. A number of wagons loaded with cotton passed the house a
short time before, and just after the shooting. Those passing just before
the murder was committed were stopped by three armed and mounted white men
at Shovan bridge, which is some distance beyond Logwood's house, toward
Monroe. The armed men thus picketing the road interrogated the driver of
the wagons, asking whose were the teams, an on being informed that they
belonged to Mr. Tidwell and Mr. Swan, two white planters on the Island,
permitted them to pass. Two physicians living on the Island, when sent for,
refused to visit Logwood.

The brother of Logwood then started to Monroe for one, and while on
the way was stopped by two mounted white men and questioned as to his business, and
his person searched for arms and papers, and when he told them he was going
for a doctor they asked him whether it was for Eaton Logwood, and told him
if it was he could not go. He succeeded in getting away from them and
reached town, but none of the physicians there could be induced to go out.
Logwood had also sent a message to Mr. John H. Dinkgrave, Deputy United
States Marshal and attorney-at-law, that he wished to see him as to matters
pertaining to his property, but Dinkgrave, considering the mission too
dangerous, declined going. These fats were communicated to me at about two
o'clock in the afternoon.

After consultation with Mr. Hardy, the District Attorney, who
considered it important to obtain Logwood's dying declaration (he was then thought to be
mortally wounded,) I deemed it necessary to take such steps as would enable
him to do so in safety, and at 8 P.M., I sent a detachment of eight men,
under command of Lieutenant McCawley, thirtieth Infantry, accompanied by the
District Attorney, to Logwood's house, transporting them in the government
wagon belonging to the post. They reached Logwood's about 10 P.M., and
found a large crowd of colored people there, all of them completely cowed
and subjugated, and in constant apprehension of the return of the murderers
to carry out the threats made in the morning. Logwood in formed the
District Attorney that he had no hope of living, and had no other
expectation than that of dying, and made what he pronounced to be his dying
declaration, which was duly subscribed by him, sworn to and witnessed. The
facts as herein given are taken from that declaration and from the testimony
of the two women, the wives of Logwood and Johnson, both of whom were
present and witnessed the shooting. Lieutenant McCawley returned to this
place with his detachment about three o'clock this morning. Believing there
was danger of a renewal of the attack upon Logwood, and acting under
instructions from me, Lieuenant McCawley left a guard at Logwood's house,
consisting of a corporal and three selected men from his company, (Company
I, Thirteenth Infantry,) with instructions to protect Logwood, his house and
occupants at all hazards, and to allow no one to enter the house or on the
premises ecept those having permission from Logwood, his wife, or the widow
of Primus Johnson. This guard is still at Logwood's house, and I caused
rations for three days, blankets and other necessaries to be sent up this
morning. It is now thought possible that Logwood may recover.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-22-08 08:37 AM
Response to Original message
117. The US Constitution was based on Iroquois Confederation's Constitution
From the article: Benjamin Franklin, one of the original architects of the United States government, introduced as a model for the country's framework document the constitution of the Iroquois Nation, according to a Smithsonian Institution specialist of American Indian history.

The Iroquois, a North American Indian confederacy of several tribes, allied with some of the first European settlers of what later became the United States.

The Iroquois' detailed constitution -- called the Great Law of Peace -- guaranteed freedom of religion and expression and other rights later embraced in the U.S. Constitution, said Jaime Hill, co-editor of "American Indian," a new Smithsonian magazine about the past, present and future of indigenous peoples from throughout the Western Hemisphere.

Writer's Note: This entry is to show that many major historical contributions are distorted, swept away, and/or forgotten if the contributions aren't from the majority demographic group.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-28-08 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
118. Susie King Taylor (1848-1912) teacher and nurse
Susie (Baker) King Taylor was the first African-American to teach openly in a school for former slaves in Georgia. As the author of Reminiscences of My Life in Camp with the 33d United States Colored Troops, Late 1st S.C. Volunteers, she was the only African-American woman to publish a memoir of her wartime experiences. She was considered the first black Civil War nurse.

Susie Baker was born a slave in Georgia in 1848. She became a freedwoman at age fourteen, after first becoming contraband of war when her uncle in April 1862 did what so many slaves had already begun to do across the South. He sought liberation behind Union lines (in his case, boarding a Federal gunboat that was passing near Fort Pulaski). Susie Baker's uncle took as many members of his extended family with him as he could. She was one of these escapees, many of whom later found themselves associated with a newly formed regiment of black soldiers, the 1st South Carolina Infantry Volunteers (later renamed the 33d Regiment, U.S. Colored Troops) organized by Major General David Hunter of the Union's Department of the South and commanded by Colonel Thomas Wentworth Higginson of Massachusetts.

Initially assigned the position of a regimental laundress, Susie Bakers ready demonstration of her many skills--not the least of which was her ability to read and write--soon resulted in the expansion of her responsibilities. During the course of her time with the regiment, Baker continued to do washing and cooking for the men, but she also served as a regimental nurse, making use of both conventional and folk techniques when tending to the sick and wounded and to sustain her own good health. "I was not in the least afraid of the small-pox," she later wrote, "and I drank sassafras tea constantly, which kept my blood purged and prevented me from contracting this dread scourge."

Baker also functioned as the regiments reading and writing instructor, sharing with the other former slaves the lessons she had learned secretly as a child. As for her own learning of new things while in the regiment, Baker rejoiced at the opportunity to master the inner workings of a musket and to develop considerable skill in shooting at a target. At some point during her first year, Susie Baker married a sergeant in the regiment named Edward King. Together they served until the 33ds mustering out in February 1866.

After the war, Susie Baker King and her husband moved to Savannah, Georgia, where she opened a private school for black children. Edward King died suddenly in September 1866, leaving his wife to fend for herself, a task made more difficult by the opening of a free school for blacks in town. By 1868 Susie King was reduced to employment as a domestic servant, the waged job most readily available to African-American women in the postwar period (and into the twentieth century). Although she continued in domestic service, she did not remain in the South, instead heading north in 1874 and settling in Boston, a city she praised for being a far more just environment for blacks than any to be found in her native South.

In 1879 Susie Baker married again, this time to one Russell Taylor. She dedicated much of her later life to the Woman's Relief Corps, a national organization for female Civil War veterans established in 1873. "All this time," she wrote in her 1902 memoir, "my interest in the boys in blue has not abated. My hands have never left undone anything they could do toward their aid and comfort in the twilight of their lives." (online text of her book Reminiscences)
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-01-08 11:05 AM
Response to Original message
119. "The Negro had no rights which the white man was bound to respect..." Roger Taney, Chief Justice
Chief Justice Taney, who presided over the Dred Scott case, is the source of the famous phrase, "The Negro had no rights which the white man was bound to respect; and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit. He was bought and sold and treated as an ordinary article of merchandise and traffic, whenever profit could be made by it."

He said out loud what too many believe--to the present day. :(
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kwassa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-05-08 03:33 PM
Response to Reply #119
120. My wife and I toured Taney's house ...
(I made an interesting typo when I first started this note: I wrote "Cheney" instead of "Taney" hmm)

It is the historic district of Frederick, Maryland, which we were touring one summer day, and we decided to walk in, and managed to do so right when a tour was starting. The tour guide got quite nervous by the presence of my wife, the only person of color on the tour. My wife didn't care, we knew exactly who Taney was, and what he was responsible for.

There are statues of Taney in Frederick, Annapolis, and Baltimore, and there have been moves afoot to remove all three from public view.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-20-08 08:36 AM
Response to Original message
121. Noted all black Army units of World War II
92nd Infantry Division
93rd Infantry Division
366th Infantry Regiment
555th Parachute Infantry Battalion (The Triple Nickels)
761th Tank Battalion
332nd Fighter Group (The Tuskegee Airmen)
614th Tank Destroyer Battalion

Executive Order 9981, signed by President Truman in 1948, officially desegregated the U.S. Armed Forces.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-21-08 09:31 AM
Response to Reply #121
122. 366th Infantry Regiment
attached to the 92nd Infantry Division, was the only all-black combat unit with black officers in charge. All of the other all-black units had white officers.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-09-09 10:19 AM
Response to Reply #121
172. 320th Anti-Aircraft Barrage Balloon Battalion
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-29-08 03:24 PM
Response to Original message
123. Eugenics, the racial purity laws, and the "one-drop" rule
Sir Francis Galton, a relative of Charles Darwin, first coined the term eugenics in 1883. Put simply, eugenics means well-born. Initially Galton focused on positive eugenics, encouraging healthy, capable people of above-average intelligence to bear more children, with the idea of building an improved human race. Some followers of Galton combined his emphasis on ancestral traits with Gregor Mendels research on patterns of inheritance, in an attempt to explain the generational transmission of genetic traits in human beings.

Negative eugenics, as first developed in the United States and later in Germany, played on fears of race degeneration. At a time when the working-class poor were reproducing at a greater rate than successful middle- and upper-class members of society, these ideas garnered considerable interest.

The center of the American eugenics movement was the Eugenics Record Office (ERO) at Cold Spring Harbor, New York. Biologist Charles Davenport established the ERO, and was joined in his work by Director Harry H. Laughlin. Both men were members of the American Breeders Association. Their view of eugenics, as applied to human populations, drew from the agricultural model of breeding the strongest and most capable members of a species while making certain that the weakest members do not reproduce. The pseudo-science of eugenics and its proponents would have incredible and far-reaching influence on politics and social policy for decades to come.

Three major laws passed in 1924 would forever change the racial landscape and the American experience for non-whites and mixed-race individuals. They were: The Immigration Act of 1924, Virginia Eugenical Sterilization Act, and Virginia Racial Purity Act.

The Immigration Act of 1924 lowered that percentage of immigration by nationality to 2 percent of their population in the U.S. based on the 1890 census. That lowered the total amount of new immigrants permitted each year to approximately 150,000 and introduced new restrictions on the immigration of certain nationalities, severely curtailing immigration from southern and eastern Europe and essentially banning immigration from Asia entirely, as well as making those of Asian descent already in the United States ineligible for naturalization.

Virginia's Eugenical Sterilization Act provided for involuntary sterilization of anyone deemed an imbecile or feeble-minded. The famous Supreme Court case Buck vs. Bell was the test case for this law. Along with Dred Scott and Plessy vs. Ferguson, these three decisions are considered among the Courts worst. The plan was that the eugenicists would use this law to sterilize minorities to in the name of racial purity. In accordance with the Sterilization Act, biologically defective or deficient groups were given the choice of segregation or sterilization. Note: Carrie Buck (of the Buck vs. Bell case), her mother, and her daughter were all sterilized in accordance with this law.

Virginia's Racial Purity Act was by far the worst and most damaging. It required that the racial makeup of persons be recorded at birth, with the purpose of preventing intermarriage between races, and thus the degradation of the gene pool of one of the races was white. An interesting side note is that in the original version of the bill, Indians were considered one of the inferior races. However, many influential Virginia families were proud of their descent from Pocohantas, and thus the legislators cleverly devised the Pocohantas exception, exempting white (or nearly white) descendants of Pocohantas from the Indian racial classification. Virginias Racial Purity Act was the source of the infamous one-drop laws. The Racial Purity Act and Eugenical Sterilization Act were the basis of similar eugenics laws that would be passed by 30 states.

The leading proponent of the Racial Purity Act was Walter Plecker. He was a physician and a white supremacist and a zealous advocate of eugenics. Unless this can be done, he once wrote, we have little to hope for, but may expect in the future decline or complete destruction of our civilization.

Plecker was the first registrar of Virginias Bureau of Vital Statistics, which records births, marriages and deaths. He accepted the job in 1912. For the next 34 years, he led the effort to purify the white race in Virginia by forcing Indians and other nonwhites to classify themselves as "colored". It amounted to bureaucratic genocide. He worked with a vengeance.

One of the requirements of federal recognition of any Indian tribe is that the tribe must prove its continuous existence since 1900. Plecker, by purging Indians as a race, has made that nearly impossible. Without those documents, the efforts of Virginia tribes to win federal recognition and a trove of accompanying grants for housing, health care and education will be nearly impossible. Six Virginia tribes are seeking the permission of Congress to bypass the requirement.

During the 1940s, however, eugenical theory came under increasing criticism because of its racial prejudices and its lack of scientific foundation, but the damage had been done. Eugenics policies and Plecker's work helped codify the binary racial caste system into American social consciousness.

Writers Note: The union of Pocahontas (d. 1617) and John Rolfe (d. 1622) left only one son, Thomas, who grew up in England after his mother died. He moved to Virginia and claimed the lands left by his father, and married a colonist, Jane Poythress, with whom he had one daughter, Jane. Jane Rolfe married John Bolling, and that union produced seven children. One cannot help but be appalled by the racist aspect of honoring the good Indian princess that saved John Smith from execution (another incident exaggerated by time and racist revisionism) and disqualifying all other Indian tribes. This writer would definitely question any alleged descent from Pocahontas without proper documentation.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-13-08 12:27 PM
Response to Reply #123
159. Hypodescent is the term
of the practice of determining the lineage of a child of mixed-race ancestry by assigning the child the race of his or her more socially subordinate parent.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-18-09 10:56 AM
Response to Reply #123
174. Racial classifications
These were important as being white had both visual and legal definitions. The legal definitions varied by state, generally the range was one-quarter black to one-sixteenth black, until the passing of the "one-drop" laws in the early 20th Century. They all came from the same reasoning--to determine who was who in the racial caste system. They were:

Mulatto--A person who is one-half Negro, one-half White. The child of one White parent and one Negro parent. From the Spanish and Portuguese word mulato meaning young mule. The mule is of course, one half horse and one half donkey, a hybrid. In Brazil, the term Cafuzo is used to describe a half Indian, half Negro person. Other terms: Half-and-Half or Griff, Griffe, Griffane, Griffin (used in Louisiana.)

Half Breed, Half Blood, Half Blooded--The child of an Indian and a White parent. May be applied to people who are part Black.

Quadroon--A person who is one-quarter Negro, three-quarters White. The child of one White parent and a mulatto. From the Latin quartus;>Spanish cuarto meaning fourth.

Octoroon--A person who is one-eighth Negro, seven-eighths White. The child of one White parent and a quadroon. From the Latin word octo meaning eight.

Sambo or Zambo--A person who is three-quarters Negro, one-quarter White. The child of a mulatto and a Negro; also, the child of an Indian and a Negro. Other terms: Sacatra
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Two Americas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-14-08 01:08 AM
Response to Original message
124. can't say enough
Thank you for this thread, Lurking_Argyle. I can't say enough about your excellent work here. I have spent a couple of hours tonight reading and following the links and reading some more. Very inspiring. Amazingly valuable resource.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-14-08 12:53 PM
Response to Reply #124
125. I'm glad that you find it of value
That's the main reason I did it. I have as much fun researching these as you and everyone else have reading the articles.
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psychmommy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-16-08 10:25 AM
Response to Reply #125
126. we love you lurk.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-24-08 03:00 PM
Response to Original message
127. Brownsville incident of 1906
The Brownsville Affair was a racial incident that grew out of tensions between whites in Brownsville, Texas and black infantrymen stationed at nearby Fort Brown. The infantrymen had been subjected to racial discrimination since they arrived. A shooting incident in town on the night of August 13 left a white bartender dead and a police officer wounded. Although white commanders at Fort Brown affirmed that all black soldiers were in their barracks at the time of the shooting, local whites claimed that black soldiers had been seen firing. They produced spent shells from army rifles to allegedly support their statements. Despite evidence that indicated the shells had been planted, investigators accepted the statements of the white community. Although there was no trial, and the men were not given a hearing or the opportunity to confront their accusers, President Theodore Roosevelt ordered 167 black infantrymen discharged without honor because of their alleged conspiracy of silence. Some of the men dismissed had over twenty years of service and were only a short time away from retirement with pensions. All of this was taken away from them. Blacks were furious at Roosevelt's action, and Booker T. Washington was anguished over the unjust action. Although he did not criticize the president publicly, he protested in private; still, Roosevelt dismissed his plea to reconsider. Even some whites criticized the President. A United States Senate committee investigated the episode in 1907-08 and upheld Roosevelt's action.

The investigation, led by Army Inspector General Ernest Garlington largely convicted the unit out of hand with no reliable eyewitnesses or physical evidence. Garlington ordered the soldiers he felt responsible to turn themselves in. Every man of the detachment came forward and swore under oath that they had noting to do with the incident. On November 9, 1906, by Direction of President Theodore Roosevelt and pursuant to War Department Special Order No. 266, all 167 enlisted men of the detachment at Ft Brown were discharged without honor. This was immediate and meant a forfeiture of all rank, retirement, pay and privileges and disqualification from any federal job. All of the men had been volunteers for service and several had known nothing else their entire lives but being a soldier. Many of the men were highly decorated combat veterans. In 1907 Major Penrose and his adjutant Captain Macklin were court-martialed for dereliction of duty but acquitted.

In 1909-10, the Army appointed a Special Board of Inquiry called for in the mens defense by Ohio Senator Joseph Foraker and Booker T Washington met to review the case. Major General Samuel Baldwin Marks-Young was President of the Board that investigated the alleged riot of black soldiers of the 25th Infantry at Brownsville, Texas, August 13, 1906, and affirmed the subsequent dishonorable discharge of 159 men by order of President Theodore Roosevelt. The eight soldiers whose discharge was not affirmed were allowed to re-enlist in the Army at their former ranks. Seven of them accepted and promptly re-enlisted in the 25th at their former ranks with back pay. The other 159 soldiers were written off to an unjust fate and largely forgotten.

Tragically the Army learned nothing from this incident and in 1917 the 24th Infantry, the other black infantry unit in the Army, rioted in Houston, Texas after being attacked by local police. This tragically left 16 whites killed by the soldiers and a court marshal hanging 19 black soliders and discharging another 108.

After a book by John Weaver profiling the incident was published in 1970, U.S. Congressman Augustus F. Hawkins (D-CA) led a campaign to reopen the investigation into the 25th at Brownsville. In September 1972, the Army found the discharged men involved in the Brownsville affair innocent, and President Nixon endorsed their findings. Roosevelt's order was reversed. The mens service records were amended to show that they were honorably discharged. It was found that two of the veterans, in their 80s were still alive. They were awarded $25,000 in separation pay. Twelve widows of the Brownsville Buffalo Soldiers were given $10,000 each.

All were given an apology. It may never be known what happened that night but everyone agrees that more than one grievance was performed.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-25-08 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #127
129. Houston shootout of 1917
Unfortunately, the Army didn't learn its lesson back in 1906.

In 1917, Congress declared war on Germany. The black community supported the war, but with serious reservations; black soldiers, they knew, would suffer discrimination in a Jim Crow army. In the summer of 1917, soldiers of the all-black Third Battalion, 24th infantry, were assigned to Fort Logan outside of Houston, Texas. Houston had the largest black community in the state of Texas at the time, with a police force that was particularly aggressive towards black people.

Racial conflicts quickly began to escalate, as troops from the 24th began receiving verbal abuse from not only white civilians, but also soldiers from the 5th Infantry of the Texas National Guard temporarily assigned to duty downtown. Clashes developed between the police and the soldiers, many of whom were not Southerners and not used to segregation. The soldiers suffered beatings and unjustified arrests from the police.

On the day of the riot, Houston mounted officers Rufus Daniels and Lee Sparks arrested Private Alonzo Edwards of Company L for interfering in the arrest of a black female. Later that day, Corporal Charles Baltimore, a military policeman with the 24th, approached Officers Daniels and Sparks and began arguing about the treatment of Private Edwards. Officer Sparks became annoyed at a black soldier questioning one of his arrests, and struck him with his pistol, then fired at the fleeing corporal three times as Baltimore ran away. Baltimore was found hiding under a bed at a nearby residence and arrested. He had not been hit by Sparks' gunfire. A rumor spread that Corporal Baltimore had been killed by the police, his fellow soldiers prepared to march into town and take revenge. Baltimore had been beaten by the police but was not dead, but the soldiers had passed their emotional point of no return. They marched into town and opened fire. When the shooting stopped, 16 whites, including police officers, civilians, and Texas and Illinois National Guardsmen were killed. No black civilians were killed, but 4 soldiers from the 24th Infantry were.

In San Antonio, in the largest court martial ever held, 110 soldiers were convicted on a range of charges. Twenty-six were sentenced to death, though nineteen men were executed; forty-three sentenced to life imprisonment. Because it was a rushed and secret court-martial, the first thirteen to die were not told their sentence, nor the date of their execution, until hours before they were to die. They were denied their right to appeal to the president and were hanged on the night of December 11, 1917. The protest against the denial of the men's right of appeal caused President Woodrow Wilson to commute the sentences of some of the other men scheduled to die.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-17-08 10:11 AM
Response to Original message
132. Dr. Charles Drew--the facts
Dr. Charles Richard Drew, MD, was the first person to develop the blood bank. His introduction of a system for the storing of blood plasma revolutionized the medical profession. Drew first utilized his system on the battlefields of Europe and the Pacific during World War II. He organized the world's first blood bank project in 1940 - Blood for Britain. He also established the American Red Cross Blood Bank, of which he was the first director.

Drew was born in Washington, D.C. June 3, 1904 to Richard and Nora Drew, and was the oldest of five children. In his youth he seemed headed for a career in athletics and the coaching field rather than for medicine, starring as a four letter man in Dunbar High School, Washington. He went on to study at Amherst College, where he was a star athlete, all-American half-back and captain of his Amherst College football team.

After graduation, Charles Drew was a coach and a biology and chemistry instructor at Morgan State College, Baltimore, Maryland. But a turning point in his life was at hand. It had become his ambition to enter the field of medicine. He resigned his job at Morgan State and went to Montreal, Canada, where he enrolled in McGill University's Medical School. There he was granted two fellowships and was awarded his doctorate of medicine and master of surgery degrees.

Drew was named the Supervisor of the Blood Transfusion Association for New York City and oversaw its efforts towards providing plasma to the British Blood Bank. He was later named a project director for the American Red Cross but soon resigned his post after the United States War Department issued a directive that blood taken from White donors should be segregated from that of Black donors.

In 1942, Drew returned to Howard University to head its Department of Surgery, as well as the Chief of Surgery at Freedmen's Hospital. Later he was named Chief of Staff and Medical Director for the Hospital.

Dr. Drew's professional awards were many. In 1948 he was awarded the Spingarn Medal from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People for his work on blood plasma. He was also presented with the E. S. Jones Award for Research in Medical Science and became the first Black to be appointed an examiner by the American Board of Surgery. In 1945 he was presented honorary degrees of Doctor of Science from Virginia State College as well as Amherst College where he attended as an undergraduate student. In 1946 he was elected Fellow of the International College of Surgeons and in 1949 appointed Surgical Consultant for the United States Army's European Theater of Operations.

Charles Drew died on April 1, 1950 when the automobile he was driving went out of control and turned over. Drew suffered extensive and massive injuries but contrary to popular legend was not denied a blood transfusion by an all-White hospital - he indeed received a transfusion but was beyond the help of the experienced physicians attending to him. His family later wrote letters to those physicians thanking them for the care they provided. Over the years, Drew has been considered one of the most honored and respected figures in the medical field and his development of the blood plasma bank has given a second chance of live to millions.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-17-08 01:37 PM
Response to Original message
133. Bacon's Rebellion (1675-1676) and the beginning of the racial caste system
Virginia Governor Sir William Berkeley had worked to establish peace with the Indian tribes and successfully negotiated a settlement in which lands east of the Blue Ridge Mountains were reserved for the white settlers. However, during the 1640s and 1650s, the burgeoning population began to spill over into Indian lands west of the mountains. This clear violation of treaty obligations led to deadly clashes between the races.

After the restoration of Charles II to the throne at the end of the English Civil War, Parliament passed the Navigation Acts of 1660-63. The tobacco planters in Virginia were no longer able to sell to customers in France, and Dutch ships were prohibited from trading with Virginia. This was not a new concept; mercantilism was based on the assumption that the mother country should receive most of the benefits from the colonies.

Throughout the 1660's, due to the Navigation Acts, tobacco prices were painfully low and Virginia planters struggled economically. The House of Burgesses passed the first official codes to establish perpetual slavery for blacks, but the costs of producing tobacco remained too high compared to the prices paid for the annual crops. Governor William Berkeley coopted the gentry on the Council, and avoided calling a new election for the House of Burgesses between 1661-1676. As a result, there was no political outlet for the unhappy planters. Not surprisingly, the frustrations would be vented in other ways.

In 1673, Nathaniel Bacon, a distant relative of Governor Berkeley, emigrated from England under murky circumstances and set up a small plantation on the James River. He rose rapidly in public esteem and was appointed to the governors council. The Indian issue soon polarized the two men.

The administration of Governor Berkeley became unpopular with small farmers and frontiersmen, because of the following reasons:

-Restrictions on the right to vote the institution of a new land ownership requirement,
-Higher taxes
-Low tobacco prices
-A pervasive sense of subordination to an aristocratic minority
-Lack of protection from Native American attacks

Berkeley was not opposed to fighting Indians who were considered enemies, but attacking friendly Indians, he thought, could lead to what everyone wanted to avoid: a war with "all the Indians against us." Berkeley also didn't trust Bacon's intentions, believing that the upstart's true aim was to stir up trouble among settlers, who were already discontent with the colony's government.

When Bacon threatened to act without authorization, Berkeley declared him a rebel. The response was a public wave of support for Bacon, frightening Berkeley enough to finally schedule an election for a new House of Burgesses. Bacon was elected, and Berkeley let him take his seat on the Council briefly. Bacon quickly left Jamestown, rallied a mob, and attacked innocent Occaneechi, Tutelo, and Saponi Indians. He pillaged their trading base at modern-day Clarksville at the confluence of the Dan and the Roanoke (Staunton) River, then marched back to the capital. The House of Burgesses, intimidated by the mob, passed legislation demanded by Bacon. The governor fled, along with a few of his supporters, to Virginia's eastern shore.

Each leader tried to muster support. Each promised freedom to slaves and servants who would join their cause. But Bacon's following was much greater than Berkeley's. In September of 1676, Bacon and his men set Jamestown on fire.

Bacon died of a "bloody flux" (very likely dysentary) before he and Berkeley met in battle. His forces dissolved without his charismatic leadership, and the General Assembly quickly repealed most of the liberal laws it had passed.

Berkeley's response was very harsh, hanging nearly two dozen men and seizing their estates to compensate his allies whose plantations had been plundered by Bacon's rebels. Charles II is reported to have been surprised at Berkeley's repression, saying "That old fool has hanged more men in that naked country than I have done here for the murder of my father." Charles recalled Berkeley to England, where the governor died.

Bacon's Rebellion demonstrated that poor whites and poor blacks could be united in a cause. This was a great fear of the ruling class -- what would prevent the poor from uniting to fight them? This fear hastened the transition to racial slavery. It's no coincidence that the next series of slave codes, the laws condemning blacks to permanent and hereditary slavery and creating the racial caste system in the colonies, were enacted in Virginia within 5 years of the end of Bacon's Rebellion.

The Slave Codes (1680-1705):
Slave Laws Reflect racism and the Deliberate Separation of Blacks and Whites. Color becomes the Determining Factor. Conscious efforts to police slave conduct rigidly.

1680 -- Prescription of thirty lashes on the bare back "if any negroe or other slave shall presume to lift up his hand against any Christian."
1680's -- Development of a separate legal code providing distinct trial procedures and harsher punishments for negroes.
1680's -- Status of the child is determined by the status or condition of the mother.
1680's -- Severe punishment for slaves who leave their master's property or for hiding or resisting capture.
1691 -- Banishment for any white person married to a negroe or mulatto and approved a systematic plan to capture "outlying slaves."
1705 -- All negroe, mulatto, and Indian slaves shall be held, taken, and adjudged to be real estate.
1705 -- Dismemberment of unruly slaves was made legal.

Bacon's Rebellion helped bring about the racial caste system that would be the constant festering wound in the flesh and soul of the USA to the present day.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-21-08 10:47 AM
Response to Original message
134. The Orangeburg Massacre
Students from South Carolina State University (HBCU in Orangeburg, SC) led protests in early 1968 protesting the continued segregation of the All-Star Bowling Lanes. On February 8, 1968, violence broke out again, this time on the campus of South Carolina State.

Two days earlier, six black students from South Carolina State College and Clafin College (also an HBCU) organized a small protest in front of the All Star Bowling Alley after being denied entrance into the facility. The following night, the six students, along with other demonstrators, gathered again in protest. Fifteen protesters were arrested. Tensions began to rise.

On Feb. 8, about 200 protesters organized on South Carolina State's campus to demand integration of the bowling alley. Several historical accounts depict what happened next. Wire services reported that the students were firing arms. However, later investigation proved that none of the demonstrators were armed.

Although the details vary, there was a commotion between the demonstrators and the highway patrol officers. The officers responded to the panic by firing their arms, injuring 27 and killing three students, Samuel Hammond Jr., 18, Delano B. Middleton, 17, and Henry R. Smith, 18, according to the school, now known as South Carolina State University. Statues of the students who died were later erected on campus. In the first federal trial of police officers for using excessive force at a campus protest, all nine defendants were acquitted.

Writer's note: The shootings at Orangeburg in 1968 and Jackson State in 1970 received very little press coverage. What little coverage they received was usually by local press and of poor quality and distorted. This was in stark contrast to the vast national coverage of the shootings at Kent State. The difference is obvious--white students were injured and killed protesting an unpopular war as opposed to black students injured and killed protesting for equal rights. Another glaring example of a racist caste system that places great value on white lives and little or no value on non-white lives.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-17-08 09:59 AM
Response to Original message
The acronym for Counter-Intelligence Program. COINTELPRO was the FBI's secret domestic spying program aimed primarily at social activist groups, esp. civil rights and black power groups during the 1960's. The FBI set out to eliminate "radical" political opposition inside the US. When traditional modes of repression (exposure, blatant harassment, and prosecution for political crimes) failed to counter the growing insurgency, and even helped to fuel it, the Bureau took the law into its own hands and secretly used fraud and force to sabotage constitutionally-protected political activity. Its methods ranged far beyond surveillance, and amounted to a domestic version of the covert action for which the CIA has become infamous throughout the world.

Records show that the FBI disclosed six official counterintelligence programs:

Communist Party-USA (1956-71); "Groups Seeking Independence for Puerto Rico" (1960-71); Socialist Workers Party (1961-71); "White Hate Groups" (1964-71); "Black Nationalist Hate Groups" (1967-71); and "New Left" (1968- 71).

The latter operations hit anti-war, student, and feminist groups. The "Black Nationalist" caption actually encompassed Martin Luther King and most of the civil rights and Black Power movements. The "white hate" program functioned mainly as a cover for covert aid to the KKK and similar right-wing vigilantes, who were given funds and information, so long as they confined their attacks to COINTELPRO targets. FBI documents also reveal covert action against Native American, Chicano, Phillipine, Arab-American, and other activists, apparently without formal Counterintelligence programs.


The FBI secretly instructed its field offices to propose schemes to "misdirect, discredit, disrupt and otherwise neutralize "specific individuals and groups. Close coordination with local police and prosecutors was encouraged. Final authority rested with top FBI officials in Washington, who demanded assurance that "there is no possibility of embarrassment to the Bureau." More than 2000 individual actions were officially approved. The documents reveal four main types of methods used to attack groups. They were: Infiltration; Deception; Harassment via the Legal System; and Intimidation and violence.

Once the group in question has been infiltrated, the Deception phase began. The group's integrity, communications, and events would be sabotged. This could take the form of bogus publications, forged correspondence, anonymous letters and telephone calls, false rumors and newsstories, misinformation, including sending false meeting cancellations, bogus lodging information in order to strand out-of-town conference attendees, and similar forms of deceit.

If the Deception phase did not sufficiently weaken or destroy a group, the Legal Harassment phase began. Events of the Harassment phase included:

Conspicuous surveillance: The FBI and police blatantly watch activists' homes, follow their cars, tap phones, open mail and attend political events. The object is not to collect information (which is done surreptitiously), but to harass and intimidate.

Attempted interviews: Agents have extracted damaging information from activists who don't know they have a legal right to refuse to talk, or who think they can outsmart the FBI. COINTELPRO directives recommend attempts at interviews throughout political movements to "enhance the paranoia endemic in these circles" and "get the point across that there is an FBI agent behind every mailbox."

Grand juries: Unlike the FBI, the Grand Jury has legal power to make you answer its questions. Those who refuse, and are required to accept immunity from use of their testimony against them, can be jailed for contempt of court. (Such "use immunity" enables prosecutors to get around the constitutional protection against self incrimination.)

The FBI and the US Dept. of Justice have manipulated this process to turn the grand jury into an instrument of political repression. Frustrated by jurors' consistent refusal to convict activists of overtly political crimes, they convened over 100 grand juries between l970 and 1973 and subpoenaed more than 1000 activists from the Black, Puerto Rican, student, women's and anti-war movements. Supposed pursuit of fugitives and "terrorists" was the usual pretext. Many targets were so terrified that they dropped out of political activity. Others were jailed without any criminal charge or trial, in what amounts to a U.S. version of the political internment procedures employed in South Africa and Northern Ireland.

False arrest and prosecution: COINTELPRO directives cite the Philadelphia FBI's success in having local militants "arrested on every possible charge until they could no longer make bail" and "spent most of the summer in jail." Though the bulk of the activists arrested in this manner were eventually released, some were convicted of serious charges on the basis of perjured testimony by FBI agents, or by co-workers who the Bureau had threatened or bribed.

The object was not only to remove experienced organizers from their communities and to divert scarce resources into legal defense, but even more to discredit entire movements by portraying their leaders as vicious criminals. Two victims of such frame ups, Native American activist Leonard Peltier and 1960s' Black Panther official Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt, have finally gained court hearings on new trial motions.

Others currently struggling to re-open COINTELPRO convictions include Richard Marshall of the American Indian Movement and jailed Black Panthers Herman Bell, Anthony Bottom, Albert Washington (the "NY3"), and Richard "Dhoruba" Moore.

Next, the Intimidation phase began. The events of the Intimidation phase, which often involved violence, included:

Intimidation: One COINTELPRO communiqu urged that "The Negro youths and moderates must be made to understand that if they succumb to revolutionary teaching, they will be dead revolutionaries."

Others reported use of threats (anonymous and overt) to terrorize activists, driving some to abandon promising projects and others to leave the country. During raids on movement offices, the FBI and police routinely roughed up activists and threatened further violence. In August, 1970, they forced the entire staff of the Black Panther office in Philadelphia to march through the streets naked.

Direct interference: To further disrupt opposition movements, frighten activists, and get people upset with each other, the FBI tampered with organizational mail, so it came late or not at all. It also resorted to bomb threats and similar "dirty tricks".

Burglary: Former operatives have confessed to thousands of "black bag jobs" in which FBI agents broke into movement offices to steal, copy or destroy valuable papers, wreck equipment, or plant drugs.

Vandalism: FBI infiltrators have admitted countless other acts of vandalism, including the fire which destroyed the Watts Writers Workshop's multi-million dollar ghetto cultural center in 1973. Late 60's FBI and police raids laid waste to movement offices across the country, destroying precious printing presses, typewriters, layout equipment, research files, financial records, and mailing lists.

Instigation of violence: The FBI's infiltrators and anonymous notes and phone calls incited violent rivals to attack Malcolm X, the Black Panthers, and other targets. Bureau records also reveal maneuvers to get the Mafia to move against such activists as black comedian Dick Gregory.

A COINTELPRO memo reported that "shootings, beatings and a high degree of unrest continue to prevail in the ghetto area of southeast San is felt that a substantial amount of the unrest is directly attributable to this program."

Covert aid to right wing vigilantes: In the guise of a COINTELPRO against "white hate groups," the FBI subsidized, armed, directed and protected the Ku Klux Klan and other right wing groups, including a "Secret Army Organization" of California ex-Minutemen who beat up Chicano activists, tore apart the offices of the San Diego Street Journal and the Movement for a Democratic Military, and tried to kill a prominent anti-war organizer. Puerto Rican activists suffered similar terrorist assaults from anti-Castro Cuban groups organized and funded by the CIA.

Defectors from a band of Chicago based vigilantes known as the "Legion of Justice" disclosed that the funds and arms they used to destroy book stores, film studios and other centers of opposition had secretly been supplied by members of the Army's 113th Military Intelligence Group.

Assassination: The FBI and police were implicated directly in murders of Black and Native American leaders. In Chicago, police assassinated Black Panthers Fred Hampton and Mark Clark, using a floor plan supplied by an FBI informer who apparently also had drugged Hampton's food to make him unconscious during the raid.


COINTELPRO was brought to light in 1971 when a "Citizens Committee to Investigate the FBI" removed secret files from an FBI office in Media, PA and released them to the press. Agents began to resign from the Bureau and blow the whistle on covert operations. That same year, publication of the Pentagon Papers, the Pentagon's top-secret history of the Vietnam War, exposed years of systematic official lies about the war.

The public exposure of COINTELPRO and other government abuses resulted in a flurry of apparent reform in the 1970s, but domestic covert action did not end. It has persisted, and seems a permanent feature of our government. Much of today's domestic covert action can also be kept concealed because of government secrecy that has been restored. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a source of major disclosures of COINTELPRO and other such activities, was drastically narrowed in the 1980s through administrative and judicial reinterpretation, as well as legislative amendment. While restoring such secrecy, the Reagan Administration also reinvigorated covert action, embracing its use at home and abroad. They endorsed it, sponsored it, and even legalized it to a great extent.

Much of what was done outside the law under COINTELPRO was later legalized by Executive Order 12333 (12/4/81). There is every reason to believe that even what was not legalized is still going on as well. Lest we forget, Lt. Col. Oliver North funded and orchestrated from the White House basement break-ins and other "dirty tricks" to defeat congressional critics of U.S. policy in Central America and to neutralize grassroots protest. Special Prosecutor Walsh found evidence that North and Richard Secord (architect of the 1960s covert actions in Cambodia) used Iran-Contra funds to harass the Christic Institute, a church-funded public interest group specializing in exposing government misconduct.

North also helped other administration officials at the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) develop contingency plans for suspending the Constitution, establishing martial law, and holding political dissidents in concentration camps in the event of "national opposition against a U.S. military invasion abroad." There were reports of similar activities and preparations in response to the opposition to the Gulf War in 1991. Even today, there is pending litigation against the FBI involving alleged misconduct in connection with the near-fatal bombing of Judi Bari.

The Impact of COINTELPRO

COINTELPRO's impact is difficult to fully assess since we do not know the entire scope of what was done (especially against such pivotal targets as Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, SNCC and SDS), and we have no generally accepted analysis of the Sixties. It is clear, however, that:

- COINTELPRO distorted the public's view of radical groups in a way that helped to isolate them and to legitimize open political repression.

- It reinforced and exacerbated the weaknesses of these groups, making it very difficult for the inexperienced activists of the Sixties to learn from their mistakes and build solid, durable organizations.

- Its violent assaults and covert manipulation eventually helped to push some of the most committed and experienced groups to withdraw from grass-roots organizing and to substitute armed actions which isolated them and deprived the movement of much of its leadership.

- COINTELPRO often convinced its victims to blame themselves and each other for the problems it created, leaving a legacy of cynicism and despair that persists today.

- By operating covertly, the FBI and police were able to severely weaken domestic political opposition without shaking the conviction of most US people that they live in a democracy, with free speech and the rule of law.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-03-08 02:27 PM
Response to Original message
137. Affirmative Action and its opponents
Affirmative Action has been defined as "any measure, beyond simple termination of a discriminatory practice, adopted to correct or compensate for past or present discrimination or to prevent discrimination from recurring in the future." (U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, Statement on Affirmative Action, October 1977.) Affirmative action means taking positive steps to end discrimination, to prevent its recurrence, and to creative new opportunities that were previously denied minorities and women.

Affirmative Action, as it pertains to black people, is not a 20th Century concept, nor is it not, as some critics charge, a uniquely modern concept fashioned by contemporary liberals in defiance of history or tradition. Although the techniques that we now call "affirmative action" are of fairly recent design, the conceptual recognition of the need to take affirmative, or positive legal action to redress discrimination's impact, rather than simply ending discrimination, has been around since the Civil War. During Reconstruction (the period immediately after the Civil War), the Constitution was amended and other federal initiatives, such as the creation of the Freedman's Bureau, were undertaken to establish equal opportunity for the former slaves. These initiatives were at least modestly successful, bringing about African American participation in elections for the first time.

Sporadic efforts to remedy the results of hundreds of years of slavery, segregation and denial of opportunity have been made since the end of the Civil War.

A significant number of African Americans held public office, including two U.S. senators and 20 members of the House, between 1870 and 1900. But when the federal government withdrew its support for Reconstruction in the late 1800s, the gains made by African Americans were quickly stripped away and replaced by a patchwork system of legal segregation (including, in some instances, legal segregation of Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans as well). By 1896, in Plessy v. Ferguson, the Supreme Court had upheld the cornerstone segregationist doctrine of "separate but equal" - i.e., ruling that the Constitution permitted governments to require separation of the races in schools, public transportation, and elsewhere, so long as the opportunities offered the separate races were characterized as equal.

Affimative Action, has its legal basis in the modern era with President Kennedy's Executive Order #10925 of 1961, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and President Johnson's Executive Order #11246.

The Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 703, forbids discrimination by an employer on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

Kennedy's order required not only that federal contractors pledge non-discrimination but that they "take affirmative action to ensure" equal opportunity, that the now-fractious phrase came into popular discourse. Kennedy's order also included penalties -- including suspension of a contract -- for non-compliance. Johnson's executive order directed the creation of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance in the Department of Labor to enforce its non-discrimination and affirmative action requirements. The Executive Order was amended in 1967 to include prohibitions on sex discrimination by federal contractors, along with a requirement that they engage in good faith efforts to expand job opportunities for women. Executive Order 11246 remains among the most effective and far-reaching federal programs for expanding equal opportunity.

As President Lyndon Johnson said in 1965, "You do not take a person who, for years, has been hobbled by chains and liberate him, bring him up to the starting line of a race and then say you are free to compete with all the others, and still just believe that you have been completely fair."

President Johnson's speech eloquently stated the rationale behind the contemporary use of affirmative action programs to achieve equal opportunity, especially in the fields of employment and higher education.

The emphasis is on opportunity: affirmative action programs are meant to break down barriers, both visible and invisible, to level the playing field, and to make sure everyone is given an equal break. They are not meant to guarantee equal results -- but instead proceed on the common-sense notion that if equality of opportunity were a reality, African Americans, women, people with disabilities and other groups facing discrimination would be fairly represented in the nation's work force and educational institutions.

The continuing need for affirmative action is demonstrated by the data. For example, the National Asian and Pacific American Legal Consortium reports that although white men make up only 48% of the college-educated workforce, they hold over 90% of the top jobs in the news media, 96% of CEO positions, 86% of law firm partnerships, and 85% of tenured college faculty positions. There are studies and reports in the 1990's and 2000's that show regular on-going systemic discrimination against people of color in all major social, economic, scientific, and political areas. The need for it is increasingly pertinent now with the distinct possibility of a non-white male President for the first time in US history. Discrimination will not magically end should Senator Obama be elected President of the US anymore than it did when the Civil War ended, or with the passage of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, or the Brown vs. Board of Education Court decision. Power will not concede willingly; the Jim Crow era is glaring proof of that.

In the modern era, the concept of affirmative action was reborn on June 25, 1941, when President Franklin Roosevelt -- seeking to avert a march on Washington organized by civil rights pioneer A. Philip Randolph -- issued Executive Order 8802 requiring defense contractors to pledge nondiscrimination in employment in government-funded projects. Two years later, President Roosevelt extended coverage of the executive order to all federal contractors and subcontractors. In a 1947 report, the President's Committee on Fair Employment Practices found that, while African Americans comprised only three percent of the workers in defense industries in 1942, their number had increased to eight percent in 1945. But it also found "the wartime gains of Negro, Mexican-American and Jewish workers . . . began to disappear as soon as wartime controls were relaxed."

Implementation of affirmative action started slowly, with the construction industry the site of one of the first tests. In 1965 the Office of Federal Contract Compliance created government-wide programs to redress the years of discrimination in the construction industry. The series of affirmative action programs was designed to boost minority employment by emphasizing hiring results in federally funded construction jobs.

In the 1970s, The Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1972 called for "the preferential employment of disabled veterans and veterans of the Vietnam era ... who are otherwise qualified." The act was amended a year later to require federal agencies and contractors to take affirmative action in employment and promotion for people with disabilities. These changes underscored the use of affirmative action as a balancing of competitive interests. Affirmative action was understood to be the creation of opportunities to compete and not an assurance of outcome or success.

The various programs culminated in the "Philadelphia Plan," implemented under President Nixon. This plan required contractors doing business with the federal government to commit themselves to self-determined numerical goals for minority. By withstanding challenges both in Congress and the courts, the Philadelphia Plan helped establish affirmative action as a way of life for American employers. Indeed, employers often embraced affirmative action as a good business practice, enabling them to tap into larger, more diverse, and more qualified pools of talent.

A key example of business support for affirmative action came early in Ronald Reagan's second term and from what would be considered a very unlikely source -- the conservative National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), which represents 13,500 companies. At issue was a split in the administration over proposals by President Reagan's most conservative appointees to revise and weaken Executive Order 11246 requiring employers with federal contracts to take positive steps -- including establishing goals and timetables -- to include minorities and women in their work force.

NAM, much to the surprise of the administration's conservatives, weighed in on behalf of keeping the executive order intact. In a letter to President Reagan, the business group said it "believes the current executive order provides the framework for an affirmative action policy" and argued that "the business. community is concerned that the elimination of goals and timetables could result in confusing compliance standards on federal, state and municipal levels and a proliferation of reverse discrimination suits."

Affirmative Action has been under legal assault almost from its inception. Decisions and appeals usually have to go to the Supreme Court for final resolution. The make-up of the Court is critical to the use or amending of affirmative action measures due to the precident set by the case brought before it. Important cases will be in follow-on entries.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-08-08 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #137
138. Regents of the University of California vs. Bakke (1978)
Arguably the most famous legal challenge to Affirmative Action. This was the case that brought the term "reverse discrimation" into the national lexicon.

The facts--Allan Bakke, a thirty-five-year-old white man, had twice applied for admission to the University of California Medical School at Davis. He was rejected both times. The school reserved sixteen places in each entering class of one hundred for "qualified" minorities, as part of the university's affirmative action program, in an effort to redress longstanding, unfair minority exclusions from the medical profession. Bakke's qualifications (college GPA and test scores) exceeded those of any of the minority students admitted in the two years Bakke's applications were rejected. Bakke contended, first in the California courts, then in the Supreme Court, that he was excluded from admission solely on the basis of race.

The conclusion--Four of the justices contended that any racial quota system supported by government violated the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr., agreed, casting the deciding vote ordering the medical school to admit Bakke. However, in his opinion, Powell argued that the rigid use of racial quotas as employed at the school violated the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The remaining four justices held that the use of race as a criterion in admissions decisions in higher education was constitutionally permissible. Powell joined that opinion as well, contending that the use of race was permissible as one of several admission criteria. So, the Court managed to minimize white opposition to the goal of equality (by finding for Bakke) while extending gains for racial minorities through affirmative action.

In short, racial numerical quotas were deemed unconstitutional, but race could still be used as a factor for admissions.

Writer's note: This case coined the term "reverse discrimination", as if to say that discrimination against the dominant demographic group is somehow wrong and must NOT be allowed, as opposed to discrimination against traditionally marginalized people, which can inferred as being the norm. This is an example of the "entitlement mentality" fostered by the racial caste system. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-08-08 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #137
139. City of Richmond, VA vs. J. A. Croson Co. (1989)
The Facts--In 1983, the City Council of Richmond, Virginia adopted regulations that required companies awarded city construction contracts to subcontract 30 percent of their business to minority business enterprises. The J.A. Croson Company, which lost its contract because of the 30 percent set-aside, brought suit against the city.

The Conclusion--The Court determined that the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment was violated. In a 6-to-3 decision, the Court held that "generalized assertions" of past racial discrimination could not justify "rigid" racial quotas for the awarding of public contracts. Justice O'Connor's opinion noted that the 30 percent quota could not be tied to "any injury suffered by anyone," and was an impermissible employment of a suspect classification. O'Connor further held that allowing claims of past discrimination to serve as the basis for racial quotas would actually subvert constitutional values: "The dream of a Nation of equal citizens in a society where race is irrelevant to personal opportunity and achievement would be lost in a mosaic of shifting preferences based on inherently unmeasurable claims of past wrongs."

Writer's Note: This is one of the lesser known legal assaults on Affirmative Action, but a major case that affected the construction industry. Also, as stated above, the composition of the members of the Supreme Court become critical in the decision. Data found in the findarticles article shows the institution bias that a minority-owned construction firm has to deal with in order to get contracts. That incredible bias, and fact thereof, was cited in the dissenting opinion of the Court. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-28-08 03:12 PM
Response to Reply #137
143. Gratz vs. Bollinger (2003) and Grutter vs. Bollinger (2003)
Grutter vs. Bollinger is the U. of Michigan Law School admissions case, and Gratz vs. Bollinger is the undergraduate point system admissions case. Lee Bollinger was the President of the University of Michigan at the time and the lead defendant in both cases. Two white women were at the center of the University of Michigan cases. Jennifer Gratz was a top high school student in suburban Detroit in 1995, when Michigan rejected her application. Barbara Grutter, a 49-year-old mother of two, ran her own consulting business. Michigan's prestigious law school rejected her application in 1997. She investigated and found out that African Americans and ethnic minorities who had lower overall admissions scores were admitted. Grutter sued, saying she was a victim of illegal discrimination.

The university acknowledges it has used race as a factor in admissions, relying on a complicated point scale to rate applicants. Grades and academics are most important, but members of "under-represented" racial and ethic minority groups have received extra points, as do children of alumni, athletes and men enrolling in nursing programs. Gratz's lawyers called the points granted for race a "super bonus," equivalent to a full grade point on a student's GPA.

Grutter's lawyers argued that the admissions program at the university's law school was unconstitutional. They based the argument on a 1978 case, Regents of the University of California v. Bakke, where the court ruled that a school could take race and ethnicity into account -- but couldn't use quotas. Instead, admissions programs must be "narrowly tailored" to harm as few people as possible.

Grutter and her supporters won the first round in U.S. District Court, but lost in a close decision in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers the states of Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee. The majority of appellate court justices sided with the university view that a diverse student body has its own benefits, and that a "points" system for admission that takes the race of the applicant into account in an overall score wasn't a quota. Grutter appealed that ruling to the Supreme Court.

Justice Sandra Day O'Connor was the eventual deciding vote in Grutter, saying that affirmative action is still needed in America -- but hoped that its days are numbered. "We expect that 25 years from now, the use of racial preferences will no longer be necessary to further the interest approved today."

In the undergraduate case, Gratz v. Bollinger, the 6-3 majority ruled the points system violated equal protection provisions of the Constitution. Chief Justice William Rehnquist said the use of race was not "narrowly tailored" to achieve the university's diversity goals.

Writer's Note: Notice that not much angers the members of the upper caste, i.e., white people, esp. those with resources, more than their desires are not fulfilled, than not having their desires fulfilled, and a minority person gets what they wanted. Now for a few facts: the major state universities are overwhelmingly white, with black undergraduate enrollment averaging in the range of 5-8%. For the University of Michigan, the freshman class of 5,000 in 2003 was 82% white, 18% non-white. Notice that both plaintiffs did not argue that white students with lower test scores, or extra admissions points, were admitted instead of them. Based on the percentages, a white student was more likely than a black student to be admitted. The 2000 census has the population percentage of Michigan at 80.2% white, 19.8% non-white. According to the admissions point system ( ), an underrepresented minority got 20 points. Overrepresented white people get added points, too, but those points aren't stated that way. A resident of Michigan got 10 points, a resident of an underrepresented Michigan county got 6 points, a legacy got 4 points--all more than likely white. There are the sections with point ranges, SAT/ACT scores, School Factor and Curriculum Factor. One gets more points for higher SAT/ACT scores, School Factor, and Curriculum Factor--again skewed in favor of majority-white schools that tend to have higher performing schools, better curriculum, and better SAT/ACT preparation. The hypocritical basis of both cases highlights the racial caste system and the sense of entitlement that is often held by members of the upper caste. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-30-09 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #137
176. Ricci vs. DeStefano (2009)
better known as the New Haven Firefighters case.

On the final day of the term, a Supreme Court divided along familiar ideological lines held that city officials cannot decline to certify results of a civil service exam that would make disproportionately more white applicants eligible for promotion.

Four years ago, 19 white firefighters and one Hispanic firefighter filed suit against the city of New Haven, Conn., arguing that they would have been promoted if the city hadnt tossed out the results of two tests for lieutenant and captain because no black candidates had performed well enough to qualify. Fourteen of the top 15 candidates for the promotions were white, based on scores.

City officials held that the exams were unfair to minority firefighters and the city faced potential lawsuits if promotions were carried out. A trial judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut upheld the city's action and dismissed the case.

In June, a three-judge panel on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal. Breaking from other courts of appeals, the Second Circuit held that a promotion examinations unintended disproportionate racial results permit city officials to reject successful candidates based on race. The court further held the Equal Protection Clause inapplicable to such actions.

By a vote of 7-6, the full court declined to rehear the case. In a 12-page dissent from that denial, Judge Jose Cabranes wrote that this court has failed to grapple with the questions of exceptional importance raised in this appeal. He added: If the Ricci plaintiffs are to obtain such an opinion from a reviewing court, they must now look to the Supreme Court. Their claims are worthy of that review.

On June 29, the Supreme Court reversed and remanded the case in a 5-4 opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy.

"Fear of litigation alone cannot justify an employer's reliance on race to the detriment of individuals who passed the examinations and qualified for promotions," Kennedy wrote.

In an interesting twist, Supreme Court nominee, Judge Sonia Sotomayor, sat on the Second Circuit panel that dismissed the firefighters' claims.

Justice Antonin Scalia filed a concurring opinion. Justice Samuel A. Alito also filed a concurring opinion, in which Justices Scalia and Clarence Thomas joined.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg filed a dissenting opinion, in which Justices John Paul Stevens, David Souter and Stephen Breyer joined.

In the sharply-worded dissent, Ginsburg noted that the white firefighters "understandably attract this court's sympathy. But they had no vested right to promotion. Nor have other persons received promotions in preference to them."

Question presented: Whether municipalities may decline to certify results of an exam that would make disproportionately more white applicants eligible for promotion than minority applicants, due to fears that certifying the results would lead to charges of racial discrimination.

Writer's Note: This decision puts employers, esp. municial and other govermental organizations, on the defense if they want diversity on the job. This grants an unfair level of legal protection to a demographic group that is not normally targeted for discrimination--white males. To add insult to injury, in spite of the evidence of an obviously flawed exam, the High Court shows disregards the results in favor of "fairness". THIS is a glaring example of judicial activism that the rabid right is so "concerned" about. This also shows the racial caste system at its most malicious. Like the University of Michigan cases, fairness is irrelevant, the point that people of color, black people especially, should be kept "in their place" is the point.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-21-09 02:13 PM
Response to Reply #137
181. State-level anti-affirmative action propositions and initiatives
Ironically called "civil rights initiatives", these are generally state-wide referendums that generally forbid collection of racial data and/or any preferences by race. Listed are the states that have passed anti affirmative action propositions. They are normally under judicial review or have pending lawsuits against them, so their implementation is in question. The propositions are:

Proposition 209 (CA, 1996)
Initiative 200 (WA, 1998)
Proposition 2 (MI, 2006)
Proposition 424 (NE, 2008)

Alaska and Oregon had anti affirmative action bills signed into law in 1997.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-21-10 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #137
206. One thing that escapes notice
esp. in the college admissions cases, is the silence for "affirmative action" for athletes. If you run fast and can catch a ball and win for our school, you're in! If you want to study and graduate--go away! You're taking space from a more "qualified" student. :freak:
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-08-08 01:50 PM
Response to Original message
140. L. Douglas Wilder (1931- ), 1st black state governor
In addition to being the first black state governor (Virginia, 1990-1994), his election as Lt. Governor in 1985 made him also the first black politician elected to state-level executive office and the highest-ranking black state official in the nation. He was elected mayor of Richmond, VA, his hometown, in 2004, and continues in office.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-18-08 12:32 PM
Response to Original message
141. Will Robinson (1911-2008)
Will Robinson was a sports pioneer being both the first black head coach of a NCAA Division I sports team and first black talent scout for the NFL. He was hired as basketball head coach at Illinois State University in 1970. He had a winning record for his 5 years as head coach. He also was the first black scout for the NFL team Detroit Lions. He was a part-time football talent scout and he covered the HBCU's in the South in the late 1960's. He worked for the NBA team Detroit Pistons for 28 years and retired at 92 as Assistant to the President of Basketball Operations. His most prominent role for the Pistons was talent scout.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-04-08 01:58 PM
Response to Original message
144. Jackie Ormes (1911-1985), 1st black woman cartoonist
Jackie Ormes was the first black woman to have a career as a cartoonist. She was also the first nationally syndicated black woman cartoonist, starting in 1937 and ending in her retirement in 1956. Her comics appeared only in black-owned newspapers, including the Pittsburgh Courier and Chicago Defender, thus giving her limited exposure. She tackled subjects such as politics, foreign policy, racism and even environmental justice.

Her characters, Candy, Patty-Jo and Ginger, and Torchy Brown, differed from the usual derogatory depictions of black people. Torchy Brown was one of Ormes' most beloved characters. She was smart. She was classy. And she frequently rebelled against the prescribed social order.

Nationally syndicated black cartoonist Barbara Brandon-Croft says that Ormes' characters and stories were real at a time when blacks were typically portrayed in a derogatory fashion.

"Black women were always fat," she says. "Had bandannas on their heads, you know. Had large lips. Were always porters. We were servants. Think of Gone With The Wind, you know. We didn't speak clear English."

Nancy Goldstein, author of the new book, Jackie Ormes: The First African American Woman Cartoonist, emphasizes that Ormes did a service to the black community by creating role models with her characters.

Readers saw that if Ginger could graduate from college and if Torchy could challenge the era's racist status quo, they were capable of doing the same.

Ormes "was giving voice to what was in the hearts and minds of so many people: to move forward and make progress," says Goldstein.

While Ormes was an inspiration for people in her time, today she is largely forgotten, save by older readers and black cartoonists. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-11-08 10:04 AM
Response to Original message
146. List of black Academy Award (Oscar) winners
Hattie McDaniel, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Gone With the Wind (1939).

James Baskett, Honorary Award "for his able and heart-warming characterization of Uncle Remus, friend and story teller to the children of the world in Walt Disney's Song of the South" (1946).

Sidney Poitier, Best Actor in a Leading Role for Lilies of the Field (1963).

Isaac Hayes, Best Music, Original Song for "Theme from Shaft" from Shaft (1971).

Louis Gossett, Jr., Best Actor in a Supporting Role for An Officer and a Gentleman (1982).

Irene Cara, Best Music, Original Song for "Flashdance...What a Feeling" from Flashdance (1983).

Prince, Best Music, Original Song Score for Purple Rain (1984).

Stevie Wonder, Best Music, Original Song for "I Just Called to Say I Loved You" from The Woman in Red (1984).

Lionel Richie, Best Music, Original Song for "Say You, Say Me" from White Nights (1985).

Herbie Hancock, Best Music, Original Score for 'Round Midnight (1986).

Willie D. Burton, Best Sound for Bird (1988) .

Denzel Washington, Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Glory (1989).

Russell Williams II, Best Sound for Glory (1989) .

Whoopi Goldberg, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Ghost (1990).

Russell Williams II, Best Sound for Dances With Wolves (1990) .

Quincy Jones, 1995 Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.

Cuba Gooding, Jr., Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Jerry Maguire (1996).

Halle Berry, Best Actress in a Leading Role for Monster's Ball (2001).

Denzel Washington, Best Actor in a Leading Role for Training Day (2001).

Sidney Poitier, Honorary Lifetime Achievement Award "for his extraordinary performances and unique presence on the screen and for representing the industry with dignity, style and intelligence."

Jamie Foxx, Best Actor in a Leading Role for Ray (2004).

Morgan Freeman, Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Million Dollar Baby (2004)

Jordan Houston, Cedric Coleman, and Paul Beauregard , Best Music, Original Song for "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow (2005).

Forest Whitaker, Best Actor in a Leading Role for The Last King of Scotland (2006).

Jennifer Hudson, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Dreamgirls (2006).

Willie D. Burton, Best Achievement in Sound Mixing for Dreamgirls (2006) .
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-21-08 07:56 AM
Response to Original message
148. Stephanie Tubbs-Jones (1949-2008)
The first black woman elected to the House of Representatives from Ohio. She succeeded Louis Stokes, first black man elected to the House of Representatives from Ohio. She won the 1998 election and served five consecutive terms until her death of a brain anyeurism at age 58.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-11-08 03:22 PM
Response to Original message
149. List of famous black Americans

This list, with short bios, covers black people from all fields of endeavor throughout US history. Of course, it isn't a complete and total list. There are entries from Crispus Attucks and Benjamin Banneker to Tiger Woods. The list is a good starting point for researching the lives of famous black Americans.

I've found some glaring errors, omissions, and questions. There's an entry for supermodel Iman, who is from Somalia; but no entries for Beverly Johnson or Donyale Luna, the first black US born supermodels. There's no entry for Jackie Ormes, first black woman cartoonist. The entry for Diana Ross has her winning the Best Actress Oscar, in truth, she was nominated for Best Actress (Lady Sings The Blues). The entry on Tiger Woods is open to interpretation; he's the first in the modern professional era of golf to win the Big Four Tournaments. Bobby Jones was the first to do in 1930.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-12-08 08:44 AM
Response to Original message
150. Donyale Luna (1945-1979), first black supermodel
Donyale Luna was the first black supermodel, cover girl and the first model of ethnic origin to appear on Vogue, appearing on the March 1966 issue.

Born Peggy Anne Freeman on Jan. 1, 1945, Luna was described by a relative as a very weird child, even from birth, living in a wonderland, a dream. Her mother wanted her to be a nurse, but after being discovered by British fashion photographer David McCabe, Luna became the first black woman to be featured on a U.S. fashion magazine: the January 1965 issue of Harpers Bazaar.

According to her birth certificate, Luna was born to Peggy and Nathaniel Freeman, but she insisted her biological fathers last name was Luna and her mother was Mexican. Her reportedly abusive father was murdered when she was 18 and after meeting McCabe, she moved to New York City. Described as having the tall strength and pride movement of a Masai warrior, Luna was under exclusive contract to famed photographer Richard Avedon.

Donyale Luna saw her heritage as a thorn in her side. She was known to wear blond wigs and obvious green contact lenses. The journalist Judy Stone wrote a profile for the New York Times in 1968, titled Luna, Who Dreamed of Being Snow White, and described her as secretive, mysterious, contradictory, evasive, mercurial, and insistent upon her multiracial lineage exotic, chameleon strands of Mexican, American Indian, Chinese, Irish, and, last but least escapable, Negro.

She appeared nude in Playboy in April 1975, as photographed by her lover Luigi Cazzaniga. Donyale Luna died in 1979, of an accidental pill overdose in Rome at age 33. Today, Luna is survived by a daughter, Dream Cazzaniga (b. 1976), who works as a professional dancer in Italy. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-15-08 09:54 AM
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151. Ernie Davis (1939-1963), first black Heisman Trophy winner
subject of the movie The Express: The Ernie Davis Story.

The honors came early and often, from the time he started with organized sports. Ernie Davis succeeded at every venue, a three-sport standout in high school, a two-time All-American halfback at Syracuse.

He led Elmira (N.Y.) Free Academy to a 52-game winning streak in basketball and as a Syracuse sophomore helped the Orangemen gain their only national football championship.

He became eligible for the varsity squad in his sophomore year. The season ended with Syracuse earning its first national championship and Ernie led Syracuse to its first bowl victory, for which he was voted the game's most valuable player.

It was Ernie's performance against the University of Pittsburgh that year which inspired the nickname "The Elmira Express." The phrase was coined by Elmira Star-Gazette sports writer Al Mallette.

During his junior year, Ernie set a record of 7.8 yards per carry average and was the third leading rusher in the nation with 877 yards. He rushed for over 100 yards in 6 of 9 games and was named All-American.

Ernie's senior football season included another notable performance and additional awards. He was named Sports Illustrated's 'Back of the Week,' four times weekly All-East, a consensus All-American, and the Heisman Trophy winner. He led Syracuse in rushing for the third consecutive year, gaining over 100 yards three times and over 90 yards on three other occasions. Plus he led the team in scoring with 15 touchdowns.

Ernie was the number one pick for the 1962 National Football League draft following his senior year. He signed with the Cleveland Browns to a three-year no-cut, no-trade $65,000 contract with a $15,000 signing bonus - setting a new record for a rookie. This was less money than the AFL Buffalo Bills had offered him. However, it was reported that Ernie picked the Browns because they were part of the more established NFL, and because of Coach Modell and player Jim Brown.

Davis never realized his dream of playing in the NFL. Ernie was diagnosed with acute monocytic leukemia on Monday, July 30, 1962. He died on Saturday, May 18, 1963 and was mourned by the nation.

His number, 45, worn only in practice, was retired by the Cleveland Browns, and Elmira Free Academy was renamed Ernie Davis Middle School in 1964.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-16-08 08:32 AM
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152. Service academy firsts
Henry O. Flipper was the first black graduate of the US Military Academy in 1877.

Wesley Brown was the first black graduate of the US Naval Academy in 1949.

Frederick C. Branch was the first black US Marine Corps officer, commissioned in 1945.

Merle Smith was the first black graduate of the US Coast Guard Academy in 1966.

The Air Force Academy was founded in 1954 and was integrated from its inception.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-17-08 12:11 PM
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153. Black voter disenfranchisement
Edited on Wed Sep-17-08 12:16 PM by Lurking_Argyle
"Direct" disenfranchisement refers to actions that explicitly prevent people from voting or having their votes counted, as opposed to "indirect" techniques, which attempt to prevent people's votes from having an impact on political outcomes (e.g., gerrymandering, ballot box stuffing, stripping elected officials of their powers).

The 15th Amendment prohibited explicit disenfranchisement on the basis of race or prior enslavement. So Southern states devised an array of alternative techniques designed to disenfranchise blacks and, to a lesser extent, poor whites. There were three broad, overlapping phases of the disenfranchisement process. From 1868-1888, the principal techniques of disenfranchisement were illegal, based on violence and massive fraud in the vote counting process. Starting in 1877, when Georgia passed the cumulative poll tax, states implemented statutory methods of disenfranchisement. From 1888-1908, states entrenched these legal techniques in their constitutions. Here we explore the principal means of direct disenfranchisement, and the attempts to use Federal law to prevent disenfranchisement, through 1965, when the Voting Rights Act was passed. For the most part, until the advent of the Civil Rights Movement in the 20th c., the Supreme Court acquiesced in the methods used to disenfranchise blacks by gutting the Federal laws enacted to protect blacks. Whenever it resisted, the Southern states followed the motto "if at first you don't succeed. . . ."

The techniques for disenfranchisement included: violence, fraud, poll taxes, literacy tests, restrictive and arbitrary registraton practices, the white primary, and gerrymandering.


Violence was a principal means of direct disenfranchisement in the South before Redemption. In 1873, a band of whites murdered over 100 blacks who were assembled to defend Republican officeholders against attack in Colfax, Louisiana. Federal prosecutors indicted 3 of them under the Enforcement Act of 1870, which prohibited individuals from conspiring "to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any citizen with intent to prevent or hinder his free exercise and enjoyment of any right or privilege granted or secured to him by the constitution or laws of the United States." The Supreme Court dismissed the indictments in U.S. v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1875), faulting them for failure to identify a right guaranteed by the federal government that had been violated in the slaughter: (1) Conceding that the right to assemble for the purpose of petitioning Congress or vote in federal elections was derived from the federal government, the Court argued that the right to participate in state politics was derived from the states, so individuals could look only to the states for protection of this right. (2) Conceding an exception, that the U.S. Constitution grants individuals the right against racial discrimination in the exercise of their rights to participate in state politics, the Court faulted the indictment for failure to charge a racial motivation for interference in the victims' right to vote (even though the racial motive was obvious). (3) In any event, the Court ruled that this federal right against racial discrimination was enforceable against the states only, not against individuals. (4) Other rights violated in the slaughter, such as the rights to life and against false imprisonment, were not derived from the federal government, so individuals had to resort to the states for protection of these rights. Cruikshank "rendered national prosecution of crimes against blacks virtually impossible, and gave a green light to acts of terror where local officials either could not or would not enforce the law." (Eric Foner, Reconstruction, 1989, 531).


Electoral fraud by ballot box stuffing, throwing out non-Democratic votes, or counting them for the Democrats even when cast for the opposition, was the norm in the Southern states before legal means of disenfranchisement were entrenched. Between 1880 and 1901, Congress seated 26 Republican or Populist congressional candidates who had been "defeated" through electoral fraud. (Kousser, Shaping of Southern Politics, 263). In a key test of federal power to prohibit fraud in state elections, prosecutors brought indictments, under the Enforcement Act of 1870, against two inspectors of elections in Kentucky, for their refusal to receive and count the vote of a black elector in a city election. The Supreme Court dismissed the indictments in U.S. v. Reese, 92 U.S. 214 (1875). It eviscerated the Enforcement Act by throwing out its provisions for punishing election officials for depriving citizens of their voting rights, on the ground that they exceeded Congress' power to regulate elections. (The provisions stated that officials shall be punished for failure to count the votes of eligible electors, when the 15th Amendment granted Congress only the power to punish officials for depriving electors of the right to vote on account of race.) Although electoral fraud remained common in the South, it brought its practitioners under the glare of unfavorable publicity. This motivated a turn to legal means of disenfranchisement.

Poll Taxes

Georgia initiated the poll tax in 1871, and made it cumulative in 1877 (requiring citizens to pay all back taxes before being permitted to vote). Every former confederate state followed its lead by 1904. Although these taxes of $1-$2 per year may seem small, it was beyond the reach of many poor black and white sharecroppers, who rarely dealt in cash. The Georgia poll tax probably reduced overall turnout by 16-28%, and black turnout in half (Kousser, The Shaping of Southern Politics, 67-8). The purpose of the tax was plainly to disenfranchise, not to collect revenue, since no state brought prosecutions against any individual for failure to pay the tax. In 1937, a white man brought suit against Georgia's poll tax, alleging violations of the 14th Amendment and the 19th Amendment (prohibiting discrimination in the right to vote on account of sex). (Women not registered to vote were exempt from the poll tax). The Supreme Court rejected his arguments in Breedlove v. Suttles, 302 U.S. 277 (1937), disingenuously claiming that it was unrelated to any attempt to disenfranchise. It held that the poll tax was a legitimate device for raising revenue, and that the 19th Amendment regulated voting, not taxation. Although the 24th Amendment prohibited the poll tax in Federal elections, even that wasn't enough to prevent a last-ditch attempt to burden the right to vote with a tax. In Harman v. Forssenius, 380 U.S. 528 (1965), the Court struck down a Virginia law requiring federal electors to file burdensome paperwork if they did not pay a poll tax. It took the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to prohibit the poll tax in state elections. The Supreme Court independently declared poll taxes an unconstitutional violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment in Harper v. Virginia State Bd. of Elections, 383 U.S. 663 (1966).

Literacy Tests

The first implicit literacy test was South Carolina's notorious "eight-box" ballot, adopted in 1882. Voters had to put ballots for separate offices in separate boxes. A ballot for the governor's race put in the box for the senate seat would be thrown out. The order of the boxes was continuously shuffled, so that literate people could not assist illiterate voters by arranging their ballots in the proper order. The adoption of the secret ballot constituted another implicit literacy test, since it prohibited anyone from assisting an illiterate voter in casting his vote. In 1890, Southern states began to adopt explicit literacy tests to disenfranchise voters. This had a large differential racial impact, since 40-60% of blacks were illiterate, compared to 8-18% of whites. Poor, illiterate whites opposed the tests, realizing that they too would be disenfranchised. To placate them, Southern states adopted an "understanding clause" or a "grandfather clause," which entitled voters who could not pass the literacy test to vote, provided they could demonstrate their understanding of the meaning of a passage in the constitution to the satisfaction of the registrar, or were or were descended from someone eligible to vote in 1867, the year before blacks attained the franchise. Discriminatory administration ensured that blacks would not be eligible to vote through the understanding clause. However, illiterate whites also felt the impact of the literacy tests, since some of the understanding and grandfather clauses expired after a few years, and some whites were reluctant to expose their illiteracy by publicly resorting to them. The Supreme Court struck down Oklahoma's grandfather clause in Guinn v. U.S., 238 U.S. 347 (1915), as an obvious ruse to evade the 15th Amendment. Oklahoma responded to Guinn by passing a law requiring all those who had not voted in the 1914 election (when the grandfather clause was still in effect) to register to vote within 11 days, or forever forfeit the franchise. The Supreme Court invalidated this arrangement in Lane v. Wilson, 307 U.S. 268 (1939). None of this touched the literacy tests, only the white exemption from it. Not until 1949 in Davis v. Schnell, 81 F. Supp. 872, did a Federal court strike down discriminatory administration of a literacy test. In Lassiter v. Northampton Cty. Bd. of Ed., 360 U.S. 45 (1959), the Court upheld the Constitutionality of literacy tests, notwithstanding their differential racial impact, provided states were willing to have their impact fall on illiterate whites as well. Congress abolished literacy tests in the South with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and nationwide in 1970.

Restrictive and Arbitrary Registraton Practices

Southern states made registration difficult, by requiring frequent re-registration, long terms of residence in a district, registration at inconvenient times (e.g., planting season), provision of information unavailable to many blacks (e.g. street addresses, when black neighborhoods lacked street names and numbers), and so forth. When blacks managed to qualify for the vote even under these measures, registrars would use their discretion to deny them the vote anyway. Alabama's constitution of 1901 was explicitly designed to disenfranchise blacks by such restrictive and fraudulent means. Despite this, Jackson Giles, a black janitor, qualified for the vote under Alabama's constitution. He brought suit against Alabama on behalf of himself and 75,000 similarly qualified blacks who had been arbitrarily denied the right to register. The Supreme Court rejected his claim in Giles v. Harris, 189 U.S. 475 (1903). In the most disingenuous reasoning since Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896) (rejecting a challenge to state-mandated racial segregation of railroad cars, on the ground that blacks' claims that segregation was intended to relegate them to inferior status was a figment of their imaginations), Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes put Giles in a catch-22: if the Alabama constitution did indeed violate the 15th Amendment guarantee against racial discrimination in voting, then it is void and Giles cannot be legally registered to vote under it. But if it did not, then Giles' rights were not violated. But, in the face of Giles' evidence of fraud, the Court cannot assume that the constitution is valid and thereby order his registration in accordance with its provisions. Holmes also held that Federal courts had no jurisdication over state electoral practices, and no power to enforce their judgements against states. Undaunted, Giles filed suit for damages against the registrars in state court, and also petitioned the court to order the registrars to register him. The state court dismissed his complaints and the Alabama Supreme Court affirmed, offering another catch-22: if Alabama's voting laws violated the 14th and 15th Amendments as Giles alleged, then the registrars had no valid laws under which they could register him. But if the laws were valid, then the registrars enjoyed immunity from damages for the ways they interpreted them. The Supreme Court affirmed this decision in Giles v. Teasley, 193 U.S. 146 (1904).

The White Primary

Disenfranchisement brought about one-party rule in the Southern states. This meant that the Democratic nominee for any office was assured of victory in the general election, shifting the real electoral contest to the party primary. This fact provided yet another opportunity to disenfranchise blacks. Texas passed a law forbidding blacks from participating in Democratic primary elections. The Supreme Court struck down this law as a plain violation of the 14th and 15th Amendments in Nixon v. Herndon, 273 U.S. 536 (1927). So Texas passed another law providing for each party's state executive committee to determine who could vote in its primaries. Accordingly, the Texas Democratic Party Executive Committee resolved to permit only white Democrats to participate in its primary. The idea was that, as a private association, the party executive committee was not subject to the 14th and 15th Amendments, which applied only to the states. The Supreme Court rejected this reasoning in Nixon v. Condon, 286 U.S. 73 (1932), holding that the Texas Democratic Party Executive Committee got its power to determine party membership from the state of Texas, and so acted as state officials. The State Democratic Convention promptly met and passed a resolution limiting party membership to whites. This was enough to satisfy the Supreme Court that only private parties, not the state, were involved in determining primary electors (despite the fact that the state required and regulated primaries). It therefore upheld the exclusion of blacks from the Texas Democratic primary in Grovey v. Townsend, 295 U.S. 45 (1935). However, in U.S. v. Classic, 313 U.S. 299, a case involving electoral fraud in a primary election, the Supreme Court acknowledged that primary elections were such an integral part of the selection of government officeholders that federal laws guaranteeing the right to vote applied to them. The conflict between Grovey and Classic was resolved in Smith v. Allwright, 321 U.S. 649 (1944), which found that primary elections were so pervasively regulated by the state that, in doing their part to run primaries, political parties were state actors and thus subject to the 14th and 15th Amendments. Texas Democrats evaded this ruling by arrangement with the all-white Jaybird Democratic Association (a leadership caucus within the party), which held elections unregulated by the state. The winner of the Jaybird Party election would enter the Democratic party primary, and the Democratic party would put up no opposition, thus ensuring victory to the Jaybird Party candidate. The Supreme Court saw through this ruse in Terry v. Adams, 345 U.S. 461 (1953), finally putting an end to the white primary after 9 years of acquiescence and 26 years of litigation.


Gerrymandering is a term that describes the deliberate rearrangement of the boundaries of voting districts to influence the outcome of elections. The original gerrymander was created in 1812 by, and named for, Massachusetts governor Elbridge Gerry, who crafted a district for political purposes that looked like a salamander. Voting districts have been drawn to dilute black voting strength or disenfranchise black voters altogether. In the case of Gomillion vs. Lightfoot (1960) - Supreme Court rules that drawing of election districts so blacks constitute a minority in all districts violates the 15th Amendment.

The history of black disenfranchisement demonstrates that it was a product not simply of the actions of Southern states and individuals, but of a failure to uphold and exercise federal power. Congress failed to fully exercise its powers under the 14th amendment (for example, it never reduced Southern states' congressional representation in proportion to its illegal disenfranchisement, as it was authorized to do). The Supreme Court actively undermined federal executive powers to protect black voting rights, refused to acknowledge racial discrimination even when it was obvious, and acquiesced in blatant constitutional violations by resorting to specious reasoning. Although it slowly came around in some cases, historian Eric Foner's judgment, that reconstruction is "America's unfinished revolution" remains true to this day.

Writer's Note: Some of the Supreme Court's most egregious decisions in regards to race and civil rights are highlighted above. They highlight the racial caste system in that the law even interpreted to not extend all civil and legal rights to black people simply because they were black. Just because poor whites were affected in no way means they suffered as severely as black people. They weren't subjected to violence for voting nor were their civil rights endangered.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-17-08 12:19 PM
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154. Landmark Supreme Court Decisions
Dred Scott vs. Sanford (1857) - Supreme Court holds that Congress cannot prohibit slavery in the territories, that black people are not citizens, and residence in a free state does not confer freedom on them. The decision hastens start of the Civil War by sweeping aside legal barriers to expanding slavery and inciting anger in the North.

Civil Rights Cases (1883) - Declaring the Civil Rights Act of 1875 unconstitutional, the Supreme Court strikes it down. The court said social rights beyond federal control, but black people cannot be excluded from juries. Congress introduced the statute in 1870 and it became law on March 1, 1875. It held that all persons, regardless of race, color, or previous condition, were entitled to full and equal employment or accommodation in inns, public conveyances on land or water, theaters and other places of public amusement.

Plessy vs. Ferguson (1896) - Supreme Court decides that if segregated railroad cars offer equal accommodations then such segregation is not discriminatory and does not deprive black people of 14th Amendment rights to equal protection. The separate but equal doctrine is not struck down until 1954 in Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka.

Guinn vs. United States (1915) - Supreme Court rules that the grandfather clause that disenfranchised most black Americans is unconstitutional. The clause adopted by Oklahoma and Maryland exempted citizens from certain voter qualifications if their grandparents had voted; obviously, this did not apply to those whose grandparents lived before the 15th Amendment ratified.

Hansberry vs. Lee (1940) - Supreme Court rules that black citizens cannot be prevented from buying homes in white neighborhoods.

Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka (1954) - Supreme Court unanimously overturns Plessey vs. Ferguson and declares that segregated public schools violate the 14th Amendments equal protection clause.

Gomillion vs. Lightfoot (1960) - Supreme Court rules that drawing of election districts so blacks constitute a minority in all districts violates the 15th Amendment.

Griggs vs. Duke Power Co. (1971) - Supreme Court makes its first ruling on the job-bias provisions of Civil Rights Act of 1964, declaring objective criteria, unrelated to job skills, for hiring workers are discriminatory if minorities end up disadvantaged.

Swann vs. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education (1971) - Supreme Court upholds school busing for the purpose of ensuring racial balance in areas where segregation has been official policy and school authorities have not come up with a viable alternative to busing.

University of California Regents vs. Bakke (1978) - Supreme Court rules that the University of California Medical School at Davis must admit white applicant Allan Bakke, who argued that the schools minority admissions program made him a victim of reverse discrimination.

City of Richmond vs. J.A. Croson (1989) - Supreme Court declares illegal a Richmond, Va., set-aside program mandating that 30 percent of the citys public works funds go to minority-owned firms. Such programs only legal if they redress identified discrimination.

Busing Cases (1991-92) - Supreme Court issues Oklahoma and Georgia rulings, saying school systems don't have to bus students to overcome school segregation caused by segregated housing patterns.

Cappachione vs. Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools et al. (1999) - Federal District Court Judge Robert Potter bars Charlotte-Mecklenburg school system from using race to assign students to schools, effectively ending court-ordered busing mandated in landmark Swann vs. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education case in 1971.

Tuttle vs. Arlington County (Va.) school board (1999) - Supreme Court rules the board cannot use a weighted admission lottery to promote racial and ethnic diversity.

Eisenberg vs. Montgomery County (Md.) Public Schools (1999) - Supreme Court rules that the school board could not deny a students request to transfer to a magnet school because of his/her race.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-26-10 11:05 AM
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217. The combined court cases
These are the court cases that were combined into the final Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case.

They were:
 Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, KS (KS):
 Gebhart v. Belton (DE)
 Briggs v. Elliott (SC)
 Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County (VA)
 Bolling v. Sharpe (DC)

The NAACP was involved in all the above cases.

Addendum: Court case Mendez v. Westminster School District (1946, CA) was important not only because it desegregated California state schools, but then California Governor Earl Warren signed the law repealing segregation in the state education code. Governor Earl Warren would become Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren and preside over the Brown v. Board of Education case. /

On the Mendez case,
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-23-08 02:40 PM
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155. A Short History of Haiti

Christopher Columbus lands and claims the island of Hispaniola for Spain. The Spanish build the New World's first settlement at La Navidad on Haiti's north coast.

Spanish control over the colony ends with the Treaty of Ryswick, which divided the island into French-controlled St. Domingue and Spanish Santo Domingo.
For over 100 years the colony of St. Domingue (known as the Pearl of the Antilles) was France's most important overseas territory, which supplied it with sugar, rum, coffee and cotton. At the height of slavery, near the end of the 18th century, some 500,000 people mainly of western African origin, were enslaved by the French.

A slave rebellion is launched by the Jamaican-born Boukman leading to a protracted 13-year war of liberation against St. Domingue's colonists and later, Napoleon's army which was also assisted by Spanish and British forces. The slave armies were commanded by General Toussaint Louverture who was eventually betrayed by his officers Jean-Jacques Dessalines and Henri Christophe who opposed his policies, which included reconciliation with the French. He was subsequently exiled to France where he died.

The Haitian blue and red flag is devised at Arcahie, by taking the French tricolor, turning it in its side and removing the white band. The Battle of Vertires marks the ultimate victory of the former slaves over the French.

The hemispere's second Republic is declared on January 1, 1804 by General Jean-Jacques Dessalines. Haiti, or Ayiti in Creole, is the name given to the land by the former Taino-Arawak peoples, meaning "mountainous country."

Emperor Jean-Jacques Dessalines is assassinated.

Civil war racks the country, which divides into the northern kingdom of Henri Christophe and the southern republic governed by Alexandre Ption. Faced with a rebellion by his own army, Christophe commits suicide, paving the way for Jean-Pierre Boyer to reunify the country and become President of the entire republic in 1820.

President Boyer invades Santo Domingo following its declaration of independence from Spain. The entire island is now controlled by Haiti until 1844.

France recognizes Haitian independence in exchange for a financial indemnity of 150 million francs. Most nations including the United States shunned Haiti for almost forty years, fearful that its example could stir unrest there and in other slaveholding countries. Over the next few decades Haiti is forced to take out loans of 70 million francs to repay the indemnity and gain international recognition.

The United States finally grants Haiti diplomatic recognition sending Frederick Douglass as its Consular Minister.

President Woodrow Wilson orders the U.S. Marines to occupy Haiti and establish control over customs-houses and port authorities. The Haitian National Guard is created by the occupying Americans. The Marines force peasants into corve labor building roads. Peasant resistance to the occupiers grows under the leadership of Charlemagne Peralt, who is betrayed and assassinated by Marines in 1919.

Since the signing of the Treaty of Ryswick between the kingdoms of Spain and France in 1697, the island of Hispaniola (La Isla Espaola) has played host to two separate and distinct societies that we now know as the nations of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. At first encounter, and without the benefit of historical background and context, most students or observers find it incongruous that two such disparate nations--one speaking French and Creole, the other Spanish--should coexist within such limited confines. When viewed in light of the bitter struggle among European colonial powers for wealth and influence both on the continent and in the New World, however, the phenomenon becomes less puzzling. By the late seventeenth century, Spain was a declining power. Although that country would maintain its vast holdings in mainland North America and South America, Spain found itself hard pressed by British, Dutch, and French forces in the Caribbean. The Treaty of Ryswick was but one result of this competition, as the British eventually took Jamaica and established a foothold in Central America. The French eventually proved the value of Caribbean colonization, in an economic as well as a maritime and strategic sense, by developing modern-day Haiti, then known as Saint-Domingue, into the most productive colony in the Western Hemisphere, if not the world.

Although the other European powers envied the French their island jewel, Saint-Domingue eventually was lost not to a colonial rival, but to an idea. That idea, inspired by the American Revolution and the French Revolution, was freedom; its power was such as to convince a bitterly oppressed population of African slaves that anything--reprisal, repression, even death-- was preferable to its denial. This positive impulse, liberally leavened with hatred for the white men, who had seized them, shipped them like cargo across the ocean, tortured and abused them, and forced women into concubinage and men into arduous labor, impelled the black population of Saint-Domingue to an achievement still unmatched in history: the overthrow of a slaveholding colonial power and the establishment of a revolutionary black republic.

The saga of the Haitian Revolution is so dramatic that it is surprising that it has never served as the scenario for a Hollywood production. Its images are varied and intense: the voodoo ceremony and pact sealed in the Bois Cayman (Alligator Woods) in anticipation of the slave revolt of 1791; the blazing, bloody revolt itself; foreign intervention by British and Spanish forces; the charismatic figure of Franois-Dominique Toussaint Louverture, his rise and fateful decision to switch his allegiance from Spain to France, his surprisingly effective command of troops in the field, the relative restraint with which he treated white survivors and prisoners, the competence of his brief stint as ruler; the French expedition of 1802, of which Toussaint exclaimed, "All France has come to invade us"; Toussaint's betrayal and seizure by the French; and the ensuing revolution led by Jean-Jacque Dessalines, Henri (Henry) Christophe, and Alexandre Ption.

Given the distinctive and auspicious origins of the Haitian republic, there is some irony in that the Dominicans commemorate as their independence day the date of their overthrow of Haitian rule. The Dominican revolt, however, came as a response to annexation by a Haitian state that had passed from the promise of orderly administration under Toussaint to the hard-handed despotism of Dessalines and had then experienced division, both racial and political, between the forces of Christophe and Ption. By the time of its conquest of Santo Domingo (later to become the Dominican Republic), Haiti had come under the comparatively stable, but uninspired, stewardship of Jean-Pierre Boyer. Although viewed, both at the time and today, by most Dominicans as a crude and oppressive state dominated by the military, the Haiti that occupied both eastern and western Hispaniola from 1822 to 1844 can itself be seen as a victim of international political and economic isolation. Because they either resented the existence of a black republic or feared a similar uprising in their own slave-owning regions, the European colonial powers and the United States shunned relations with Haiti; in the process, they contributed to the establishment of an impoverished society, ruled by the military, guided by the gun rather than the ballot, and controlled by a small, mostly mulatto, ruling group that lived well, while their countrymen either struggled to eke out a subsistence-level existence on small plots of land or flocked to the banners of regional strongmen in the seemingly never-ending contest for power. To be sure, the French colonial experience had left the Haitians completely unprepared for orderly democratic self-government, but the isolation of the post-independence period assured the exclusion of liberalizing influences that might have guided Haiti along a somewhat different path of political and economic development. By the same token, however, it may be that Western governments of the time, and even those of the early twentieth century, were incapable of dealing with a black republic on an equal basis. The United States occupation of Haiti (1915-34) certainly brought little of lasting value to the country's political culture or institutions, in part because the Americans saw the Haitians as uncivilized lackeys and treated them as such.

Writer's Note: I limited the chronological coverage to the beginning of the 20th Century. I wanted to emphasize the early history of Haiti and the international political and economic isolation it suffered then and to the present. Haiti did not become one of the world's poorest countries by sheer accident. The rest of the world shunned Haiti (especially the US) in order to avoid unrest in their slaveholding regions. The political and economic isolation created the conditions for poor and tyrannical leadership that created the economic and social downward spiral. Power and money is held by the rich elite few while the rest struggle to survive.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-08 12:12 PM
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156. Neil deGrasse Tyson, Ph.D (1958- )
Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History since 1996. He has studied astronomy since his youth. His books, honors, and appearances are numerous and it would be a great injustice to try to cram them into a single entry. His website is at
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Chovexani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-04-08 09:05 AM
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157. Black Women of the Old West
This was an impulse buy from a museum in Phoenix before I moved back home to NY. The minute I finished this book, I had to post in here about it. It's by William Katz, and it's a phenomenal coffee table book telling the story of black women in the pioneer days, stories that just don't get told. Did you know that a black woman owned Beverly Hills back then, and a lot of other land in the LA area? I sure as hell didn't. It's some fascinating stuff. It talks about black women in the Indian tribes, black women who were entrepreneurs and such. Hell, the pictures in this book alone are worth the price of admission--seeing black and white photos of black women in pioneer dress is a powerful image. So often when Hollywood spins tales of the old West, black women are invisible. As the author says on his website, we're not even maids and nannies in those stories. It's like we never existed back then. But the truth is in those photos and stories. It's powerful stuff.

My only beef with the book is that it's way too short! It definitely left me wanting more. It's well-written and Katz's writing style is not dry at all.

This is the author's website, and it links to an excerpt on so you can get an idea of what it's like.
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NOLALady Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-04-08 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #157
158. Thanks.
I ordered this book along with others at the site.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-03-08 10:48 AM
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160. Reverend John and Jean Rankin, Abolitionists
Reverend John Rankin (1793-1886) and his wife Jean (d. 1876), and their neighbors in Ripley, Ohio, a small town in the southwest corner of the state on the Ohio River, helped thousands of people escaping to freedom. A Presbyterian minister, John Rankin organized antislavery groups on a local and state level. Their home, sitting above the Ohio River, was known as Liberty Hill.
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Two Americas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 02:39 PM
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161. "the real McCoy"
The phrase "the real McCoy" is used throughout the English speaking world to describe something on the highest quality, or an authentic and reliable item or person. But few know who the actual "McCoy" was.

From an introduction to a play produced in Canada honoring McCoy's life:

Born in Canada to runaway slaves, McCoy became a leading expert in the field of thermo-dynamics whose inventions revolutionized steam engine travel. When others tried to imitate his achievements, people began asking if what they were buying was the real McCoy. When railroad engineers especially asked for a lubricating joint, they always wanted McCoys invention and asked for the real McCoy. McCoys move to Detroit in the United States exposed him to adversity and eventually stripped him of his inventions, his sanity and his life.

From CanadaWiki:

Black Canadian engineer, inventor, whose name came to be synonymous for genuine quality, or the real thing, born in Colchester, Ontario on May 2, 1844, the son of former slaves George McCoy and Mildred Goins from Kentucky, who escaped on the Underground Railroad; died October 10, 1929 in Detroit, Michigan. Educated in Edinburgh, Scotland as a mechanical engineer,
First page of McCoy's patent on steam engine lubricators.

McCoy returned to Canada and got a job as a locomotive fireman/oilman for the Michigan Central Railroad. Working in a home-based machine shop in Ypsilanti, Michigan, McCoy identified new ways to lubricate engines to prevent overheating; July 23, 1872 obtained his first US patent, for "Improvement in Lubricators for Steam-Engines". McCoy went on to develop over 80 patents; he invented and marketed 57 different kinds of devices and machine parts including a folding ironing board, rubber show heels and a lawn sprinkler.

Elijah McCoy (1843?-1929) made important contributions to the design of railroad locomotives after the Civil War. He kept pace with the progress of locomotive design, devising new lubricating systems that served the steam engines of the early twentieth century. These were demanding indeed, for they operated at high temperatures and pressures.

The date of McCoy's birth is not known; various sources give it as March 27, 1843; May 2, 1843; and May 2, 1844. His parents, George McCoy and the former Mildred Goins, were fugitive slaves who had escaped to Canada from Kentucky. At the time, Canada was part of the British Empire, which had abolished slavery in 1833. When the Canadian leader, Louis Riel, launched a rebellion in 1837, the British government used troops to defeat the rebels. George McCoy enlisted with the British force. In return for his loyal service, he received 160 acres of farmland near Colchester, Ontario. Here, he raised a family of 12 children.

His father's ties to Britain proved useful as young McCoy pursued his education. As a boy, he was fascinated with tools and machines. At the age of 16, he traveled to Edinburgh, Scotland, to serve an apprenticeship in mechanical engineering. In Edinburgh, McCoy won the credentials of a master mechanic and engineer. Following the Civil War, the McCoys returned to the United States and settled near Ypsilanti, Michigan, outside of Detroit. Young Elijah sought work as an engineer, but met with defeat due to racial prejudice. Nevertheless, he obtained a job as a fireman and oiler on the Michigan Central Railroad in 1870. This was a responsible position, for service as a fireman was a customary prelude to promotion to the post of locomotive driver. Work as a fireman was a far cry from engineering, and it proved to be a physically demanding job. As a fireman, McCoy had to shovel coal into the firebox of his locomotive, at the rate of two tons per hour. He also had to walk around the locomotive and lubricate its moving parts using an oilcan during frequent stops, while it took on water.

In reviewing the life of this inventor, writers and essayists often note that railroad purchasing agents commonly insisted on buying "the real McCoy." Other inventors were offering lubricators that competed with those of McCoy, but these agents would accept no substitutes. Many of these authors assert that the phrase "real McCoy" passed out of the specialized world of railroad engineering and entered general usage, where it came to mean "the genuine article."

While McCoy's inventions made millions of dollars, little of this money reached his pockets. Lacking the capital with which to build his lubricators in large numbers, he sold many of his patent rights to well-heeled investors. In return, he was given only the modest sums that allowed him to continue his work. McCoy received at least 72 patents during his lifetime, most of which dealt with lubricating devices, but retained ownership of only a few of them.

Elijah McCoy ended up obtaining at least fifty-seven patents in his lifetime. Most of the patents were lubrication devices that saved human time and labor. Unfortunately, Elijah didn't have the money to finance the manufacturing of his inventions. Therefore, he was forced to sell the rights to investors. His inventions probably earned millions of dollars, but Elijah only received a very small portion of that.
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Catherine Vincent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-07-08 03:20 PM
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162. This one sure will!
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 08:54 AM
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163. Racist HOA covenants and the SCOTUS case Shelley vs. Kraemer (1948)
The Kraemers were a white couple who owned a residence in a Missouri neighborhood governed by a restrictive covenant. This was a private agreement that prevented blacks from owning property in the Kraemers' subdivision. The Shelleys were a black couple who moved into the Kraemers neighborhood. The Kraemers went to court to enforce the restrictive covenant against the Shelleys. This case was combined with a similar case, McGhee vs. Sipes. Thurgood Marshall was one of the lawyers on the case.

The Supreme Court voted 6-0 in favor of the Shelleys. State courts could not constitutionally prevent the sale of real property to blacks even if that property is covered by a racially restrictive covenant. Standing alone, racially restrictive covenants violate no rights. However, their enforcement by state court injunctions constitute state action in violation of the 14th Amendment.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-06-09 02:05 PM
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164. The Niagara Movement and the beginning of the NAACP
It can be argued that the 20th Century Civil Rights Movement began in Western New York and adjoining Fort Erie, Canada, in 1905. An African-American organization created here espoused for the first time a modern program of uncompromising protest and demand for change, and led the way for the formation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) five years later. (note: Here we are using 1910 as the official opening year of the NAACP, though there were preliminary meetings in 1909.)

In 1905, W.E.B. Du Bois, a professor at Atlanta University, exasperated by Booker T. Washington's continued conciliatory policies towards whites and his enormous power within the black community, called for a meeting of Washington's critics of at Niagara Falls, New York. The purpose of the meeting was to form an organization that would offer a militant alternative to Washington. Du Bois called his organization the Niagara Movement, named after the falls where the first meeting was held. The group was representative of some of the intellectual elite of the African-American community. Altogether, 29 men answered Du Bois' call. Thirty others who were invited failed to make it. The Niagara Movement renounced Booker T. Washington's policy of accommodation and conciliation, and his refusal to speak out on behalf of black rights. Washington was the undisputed leader of black America in the eyes of white America, a position he assumed with his famous 1895 speech in Atlanta accepting (for the time being, at least) segregation, eschewing politics, and focusing on hard work, vocational education and black self-help. The group issued a manifesto that demanded the rights of black people to vote, to not be segregated in public transportation or discriminated against elsewhere, and to enjoy all those liberties white citizens enjoyed. The manifesto read in part: "We claim for ourselves every single right that belongs to a freeborn American, political, civil and social; and until we get these rights we will never cease to protest and assail the ears of America. The battle we wage is not for ourselves alone but for all true Americans. It is a fight for ideals, lest this, our common fatherland, false to its founding, become in truth the land of the thief and the home of the slave -- a byword and a hissing among the nations for its sounding pretensions and pitiful accomplishment."

The protesters came to Buffalo because it was the eighth largest city in America, with excellent rail connections, and because it was a place associated with the struggle for freedom from slavery. Western New York was remembered as a major crossing point on the Underground Railroad for runaways headed to safety in Canada.

Though Buffalo's black population at that time was small, fewer than 2,000 souls, local people played an important role in the Niagara Movement. Buffalo's Michigan Avenue Baptist Church, its pastor, J. Edward Nash, and one of its leading parishioners, Mary B. Talbert, gave great assistance to the protesters. William Talbert, Mary's husband, was a correspondent of Du Bois'. Many accounts say the Niagarites met in the Talberts home (located next door to the church), though we know that the three days of business meetings (July 11-14, 1905) took place at the Erie Beach Hotel in Canada. It seems that the group did meet at least once at the Talberts', however, probably before crossing the river. Later, in 1922, Mary Talbert became the first black woman to win the NAACP's prestigious Spingarn Medal. Her medal is in the collection of the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society.

At their meetings the Niagarites formed a network for communication and research and set out to make America aware of the shameful plight of its black citizens. Specifically, they condemned the rising tide of violence (between 50 and 100 lynchings of black men in a typical year), legal segregation (the Supreme Court approved the formula of separate but equal facilities in the 1896 case Plessy vs. Ferguson), and voter disenfranchisement. After being founded here, the Niagara Movement went on to hold annual meetings at sites representative of the struggle for freedom, Harpers Ferry, WV; Faneuil Hall, Boston; Oberlin, OH., and issued annual manifestoes detailing the sorry situation in civil rights. "We are men!" Du Bois thundered. "We want to be treated as men. And we shall win."


The Niagara Movement lasted only a few years, and never had more than about 200 active members, but its impact was tremendous. By sensitizing Americans to black discontent over worsening racial conditions in the nation, the Niagara Movement paved the way for the creation of the powerful, interracial NAACP in 1910. A murderous race riot in Springfield, Illinois, in 1908, the year before the centennial of Lincoln's birth, galvanized liberal whites who had connections to the Niagara Movement, people like Mary White Ovington, whom Du Bois had invited to be the first white member of the group in 1908. The Niagarites were a prime component of the group invited to organize the NAACP. The key Niagarite, Du Bois, became the only black member of the founding Board of Directors of the NAACP, and their director of research and publicity.

And a footnote: Booker T. Washington, the powerful opponent of the Niagarites, their ideas and their tactics, sent a spy to report on the meetings in Buffalo. Clifford Plummer, an African-American attorney from Boston, couldn't find them in Buffalo, and so concluded that the meeting must have fallen through. He did, however, visit the local offices of the Associated Press and the result was an almost complete blackout of news of the Niagarites in the white press. With Washington pressuring the black press, the protesters found publicity hard to come by - and future historians have found it hard to pin down some details of the organization of the Niagara Movement.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-06-09 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #164
165. The 1895 Atlanta Compromise speech
Here is the text of the speech by Booker T. Washington that so enraged W.E.B. DuBois that he began down the path that would lead to the Niagara Movement.

Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Board of Directors and Citizens:

One-third of the population of the South is of the Negro race. No enterprise seeking the material, civil, or moral welfare of this section can disregard this element of our population and reach the highest success. I but convey to you, Mr. President and Directors, the sentiment of the masses of my race when I say that in no way have the value and manhood of the American Negro been more fittingly and generously recognized than by the managers of this magnificent Exposition at every stage of its progress. It is a recognition that will do more to cement the friendship of the two races than any occurrence since the dawn of our freedom.

Not only this, but the opportunity here afforded will awaken among us a new era of industrial progress. Ignorant and inexperienced, it is not strange that in the first years of our new life we began at the top instead of at the bottom; that a seat in Congress or the state legislature was more sought than real estate or industrial skill; that the political convention or stump speaking had more attractions than starting a dairy farm or truck garden.

A ship lost at sea for many days suddenly sighted a friendly vessel. From the mast of the unfortunate vessel was seen a signal,Water, water; we die of thirst! The answer from the friendly vessel at once came back, Cast down your bucket where you are. A second time the signal, Water, water; send us water! ran up from the distressed vessel, and was answered, Cast down your bucket where you are. And a third and fourth signal for water was answered, Cast down your bucket where you are. The captain of the distressed vessel, at last heeding the injunction, cast down his bucket, and it came up full of fresh, sparkling water from the mouth of the Amazon River. To those of my race who depend on bettering their condition in a foreign land or who underestimate the importance of cultivating friendly relations with the Southern white man, who is their next-door neighbor, I would say: Cast down your bucket where you are cast it down in making friends in every manly way of the people of all races by whom we are surrounded.

Cast it down in agriculture, mechanics, in commerce, in domestic service, and in the professions. And in this connection it is well to bear in mind that whatever other sins the South may be called to bear, when it comes to business, pure and simple, it is in the South that the Negro is given a mans chance in the commercial world, and in nothing is this Exposition more eloquent than in emphasizing this chance. Our greatest danger is that in the great leap from slavery to freedom we may overlook the fact that the masses of us are to live by the productions of our hands, and fail to keep in mind that we shall prosper in proportion as we learn to dignify and glorify common labour, and put brains and skill into the common occupations of life; shall prosper in proportion as we learn to draw the line between the superficial and the substantial, the ornamental gewgaws of life and the useful. No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem. It is at the bottom of life we must begin, and not at the top. Nor should we permit our grievances to overshadow our opportunities.

To those of the white race who look to the incoming of those of foreign birth and strange tongue and habits for the prosperity of the South, were I permitted I would repeat what I say to my own race,Cast down your bucket where you are. Cast it down among the eight millions of Negroes whose habits you know, whose fidelity and love you have tested in days when to have proved treacherous meant the ruin of your firesides. Cast down your bucket among these people who have, without strikes and labour wars, tilled your fields, cleared your forests, builded your railroads and cities, and brought forth treasures from the bowels of the earth, and helped make possible this magnificent representation of the progress of the South. Casting down your bucket among my people, helping and encouraging them as you are doing on these grounds, and to education of head, hand, and heart, you will find that they will buy your surplus land, make blossom the waste places in your fields, and run your factories. While doing this, you can be sure in the future, as in the past, that you and your families will be surrounded by the most patient, faithful, law-abiding, and unresentful people that the world has seen. As we have proved our loyalty to you in the past, in nursing your children, watching by the sick-bed of your mothers and fathers, and often following them with tear-dimmed eyes to their graves, so in the future, in our humble way, we shall stand by you with a devotion that no foreigner can approach, ready to lay down our lives, if need be, in defense of yours, interlacing our industrial, commercial, civil, and religious life with yours in a way that shall make the interests of both races one. In all things that are purely social we can be as separate as the fingers, yet one as the hand in all things essential to mutual progress.

There is no defense or security for any of us except in the highest intelligence and development of all. If anywhere there are efforts tending to curtail the fullest growth of the Negro, let these efforts be turned into stimulating, encouraging, and making him the most useful and intelligent citizen. Effort or means so invested will pay a thousand per cent interest. These efforts will be twice blessedblessing him that gives and him that takes. There is no escape through law of man or God from the inevitable:

The laws of changeless justice bind Oppressor with oppressed;

And close as sin and suffering joined We march to fate abreast...

Nearly sixteen millions of hands will aid you in pulling the load upward, or they will pull against you the load downward. We shall constitute one-third and more of the ignorance and crime of the South, or one-third its intelligence and progress; we shall contribute one-third to the business and industrial prosperity of the South, or we shall prove a veritable body of death, stagnating, depressing, retarding every effort to advance the body politic.

Gentlemen of the Exposition, as we present to you our humble effort at an exhibition of our progress, you must not expect overmuch. Starting thirty years ago with ownership here and there in a few quilts and pumpkins and chickens (gathered from miscellaneous sources), remember the path that has led from these to the inventions and production of agricultural implements, buggies, steam-engines, newspapers, books, statuary, carving, paintings, the management of drug stores and banks, has not been trodden without contact with thorns and thistles. While we take pride in what we exhibit as a result of our independent efforts, we do not for a moment forget that our part in this exhibition would fall far short of your expectations but for the constant help that has come to our educational life, not only from the Southern states, but especially from Northern philanthropists, who have made their gifts a constant stream of blessing and encouragement.

The wisest among my race understand that the agitation of questions of social equality is the extremest folly, and that progress in the enjoyment of all the privileges that will come to us must be the result of severe and constant struggle rather than of artificial forcing. No race that has anything to contribute to the markets of the world is long in any degree ostracized. It is important and right that all privileges of the law be ours, but it is vastly more important that we be prepared for the exercise of these privileges. The opportunity to earn a dollar in a factory just now is worth infinitely more than the opportunity to spend a dollar in an opera-house.

In conclusion, may I repeat that nothing in thirty years has given us more hope and encouragement, and drawn us so near to you of the white race, as this opportunity offered by the Exposition; and here bending, as it were, over the altar that represents the results of the struggles of your race and mine, both starting practically empty-handed three decades ago, I pledge that in your effort to work out the great and intricate problem which God has laid at the doors of the South, you shall have at all times the patient, sympathetic help of my race; only let this he constantly in mind, that, while from representations in these buildings of the product of field, of forest, of mine, of factory, letters, and art, much good will come, yet far above and beyond material benefits will be that higher good, that, let us pray God, will come, in a blotting out of sectional differences and racial animosities and suspicions, in a determination to administer absolute justice, in a willing obedience among all classes to the mandates of law. This, coupled with our material prosperity, will bring into our beloved South a new heaven and a new earth.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-09 04:06 PM
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166. Racism, the Interstate Highway System, and Urban Renewal
In the light of the 50th Anniversary of the Interstate Highway Program, there are some historical facts that have been left out. There's no question that the Interstate Highways have been a boon to commerce and economic growth, but, the cost of that has been overlooked. Especially, because racism has caused the greatest cost to be paid by those that benefitted the least.

In Racial Zoning to Community Empowerment, Charles Connerly traces how the city of Birmingham, Alabama used zoning laws, slum clearance, segregated housing projects, urban renewal, and particularly the design and development of interstate highways were used to segregate black residents from whites. The neighborhoods that lost the greatest populations were all black and all had interstate and federal highway projects running through them. In East Birmingham, highway planners actually made a stretch of highway less safe for drivers by routing it through a black neighborhood - a routing that would require an unexpected decrease in car velocity and potentially cause accidents. Complaints from residents of other black neighborhoods like College Hills fell on deaf ears. Looking at this in 2008, it seems obvious that city officials and city planners worked together to disenfranchise and ultimately destroy black neighborhoods. Highways were constructed in this city to re-enforce pre-existing racial boundaries. It seems so much more subtle (and therefore hard to challenge) than outright, unabashed racism. The creation of Interstate 59 through the Tuxedo neighborhood was one of the more frustrating examples of this because the justification was tearing it down (under the 1949 Housing Act) was that it was "blighted." Similarly, Gans' account of West End residents in Boston, though they were Italian or of other European ancestry, faced developers and planners that were unwilling to listen to working-class, "ethnic," city residents. Though Gans actively tries not to romanticize the reality of West End residents, I felt it was such a shame that this part of Boston history was destroyed in an attempt to "beautify" an area. Though the residents never successfully organized on their own behalf - nor did they cultivate an effective representative from their communities, it is obvious in their accounts that the West End was a community where the residents felt kinship between themselves.

In Detroit, as in the nation, federally-funded highway construction (and later expansion and maintenance projects) dwarfed public works projects of the past. Buses and trolleys languished, expressway construction boomed, particularly after the passage of the Interstate Highway Act of 1956. Huge swaths of city were demolished to make way for expressways--and as was the case with so many urban redevelopment projects, black working-class neighborhoods were most heavily impacted. The Chrysler Freeway blasted through the heart of Paradise Valley, replacing Hastings Street, one of black Detroit's main shopping and entertainment districts. The Lodge and Ford Freeways cut through the city's most established black west side neighborhoods. By the end of the 1960s, it was possible to pass through vast sections of the city at sixty or seventy miles per hour on submerged, limited access highways.

It was a story repeated throughout the U.S. during this time: by the mid-1960s, interstate construction in urban areas was destroying roughly 37,000 residences annually; this, in addition to the 40,000 more that were being torn down each year in the name of "urban renewal," which translated into the building of shopping malls, office parks and parking lots. By 1969, nearly 70,000 homes, mostly occupied by blacks and Latinos, were being destroyed for the interstate program alone, in virtually every medium and large city in the country.

As Tim Wise notes, the reasons for "urban renewal" using the Interstate Highway construction was far more blatant than simply access to the city from the suburbs. Indeed, displacement was no coincidence or mere unintended consequence of the highway program. To the contrary, it was foreseen and accepted as a legitimate cost of progress. In 1965, for example, a Congressional Committee acknowledged that the highway system was likely to displace a million people before it was finished. This displacement was not only expected, but indeed it was championed as a way to "clear out" black and brown ghettos. The American Road Builders Association a lobby with obvious interests in the creation of tens of thousands of miles of interstates praised the construction as a way to eliminate "slum and deteriorated areas," thereby countering the "threat posed by slum housing to the public health, safety, morals and welfare of the nation." One federal official even admitted in 1972 that the interstate program was seen as a good way to "get rid of the local niggertown."

The destruction of urban residential space prompted citizen protests, also known as "highway revolts", across the nation: in the South (Miami, Montgomery, Columbia, Birmingham, Charlotte, Tampa, Jacksonville, Orlando, and Atlanta, in addition to Nashville), the North (South Bronx, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Camden, NJ), the Midwest (Kansas City, St. Paul, Indianapolis, Columbus, Cleveland, Milwaukee and Chicago), and the West (Los Angeles, Pasadena, and Seattle). In fact, opposition to many of the proposed interstate routes forced the government to pass new regulation in the late 60s, ostensibly ensuring relocation assistance or new housing construction to replace units destroyed: a promise that would go largely unfulfilled in each and every community affected.

But there was a problem for those persons being cleared out: due to racial discrimination in suburban and outlying areas, persons of color displaced in this fashion had nowhere to turn for housing. Certainly the white builders, developers, and others who supported the destruction of so-called slums, weren't thinking of challenging the blatant racism in lending or zoning that was keeping their suburban spaces all-white. In fact, at the same time black and brown housing was being destroyed, millions of white families were procuring government guaranteed and subsidized loans (through the FHA and VA loan programs), that were almost entirely off-limits to people of color. So, ironically, the government was reducing the housing stock for people of color at the same time it was deliberately expanding it for whites: and, in fact, since the interstate program made "white flight" easier and cheaper than ever before, it can even be said that white middle-class housing access was made possible because of the destruction of housing for African American and Latino communities.

So rather than eliminate slums, the interstate program facilitated their worsening causing black and brown neighborhoods to become even more cut off from the rest of their respective cities, as highways cut through the hearts of their communities, negatively effecting commerce in the place where it was needed most. Their deterioration was assured due to red-lining and other racist policies.

In New Orleans, for example and take note of it, all those who thought Katrina's displacement of black folks was unique, or who have chosen to blame the black community there for the condition of its neighborhoods the I-10 sliced and diced through the main artery of two of the city's largest black communities: the Trem and the Seventh Ward.

The Trem--the oldest free black community in the United States was (still is) bordered on one side by Claiborne Avenue, above which the I-10 would be constructed. The Claiborne corridor was home to as many as 200 black-owned businesses in its day, and included a wide median (known to locals as a "neutral ground"), lined with huge oak trees and plenty of space for recreation, community picnics, family gatherings and cultural events. Once completed, the I-10 had destroyed what was, for all intent and purposes, a public park 6,100 feet long and 100 feet wide, along with hundreds of business and homes. In the Seventh Ward, home to the city's old-line Creole community, residents saw the same kind of devastation, also from the construction of the I-10 along Claiborne, including the virtual elimination of what was once the nation's most prosperous black business district. I've seen that area personally, before Hurricane Katrina. One can see the pilings of the elevated I-10 highway and easily imagine what could have been there before the highway, and see the sad conditions of the aftermath. /
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-09-09 01:06 PM
Response to Original message
167. COAHR and "An Appeal for Human Rights" full-page ad
Committee on Appeal for Human Rights (COAHR) took out a full-page advertisement on March 9, 1960 in various Atlanta newspapers, including the Atlanta Constitution. It listed racial inequalities in education, employment, housing, and other social categories. It was a thrown gauntlet to both the white-based social structure and the "old guard" black community leadership that insisted on slow change through negotiation and litigation. The appeal was the prelude to a series of sit-ins that would begin later that month and continue through most of the year.


We, the students of the six affiliated institutions forming the Atlanta University Center Clark, Morehouse, Morris Brown, and Spelman Colleges, Atlanta University, and the Interdenominational Theological Center have joined our hearts, minds, and bodies in the cause of gaining those rights which are inherently ours as of the human race and as citizens these United States.

We pledge our unqualified support to those students in this nation who have recently been engaged in the significant movement to secure certain long-awaited rights and privileges. This protest, like the bus boycott in Montgomery, has shocked many people throughout the world. Why. Because they had not quite realized the unanimity of spirit and purpose which motivates the thinking and action of the great majority of the Negro people. The students who instigate and participate in these sit-down protests are dissatisfied, not only with the existing conditions, but with the snail-like speed at which they are being ameliorated. Every normal being wants to walk the earth with dignity and abhors any and all proscriptions placed upon him because of race or color. In essence, this is the meaning of the sit-down protests that are sweeping this nation today.

We do not intend to wait placidly for those which are already legally and morally ours to be meted out to us at a time. Today's youth will not sit by submissively, while being denied all of the rights, privileges, and joys of life. We want to state clearly and unequivocally that we cannot tolerate in a nation professing democracy and among people professing democracy, and among people professing Christianity, the discriminatory conditions under which the Negro is living today in Atlanta Georgia supposedly one the most progressive cities in the South.

Among the inequalities and injustices in Atlanta and in Georgia against which we protest, the following are outstanding examples:


In the Public School System, facilities for Negroes and whites are separate and unequal, Double sessions continue in about half of the Negro Public Schools, and many Negro children travel ten miles a day in order to reach a school that will admit them.

On the University level, the state will pay a Negro to attend a school out of state rather than admit him to the University of Georgia, Georgia Tech, the Georgia Medical School, and other tax-supported public institutions.

According to a recent publication, in the fiscal year 1958 a total of $31,632,057.18 was spent in the State institutions of higher education for white only. In the Negro State Colleges only $2,001,177.06 was spent.

The publicly supported institutions of higher education are inter-racial now, except that they deny admission to Negro Americans.

(2) JOBS:

Negroes are denied employment in the majority of city, state, and federal governmental jobs, except in the most menial capacities.


While Negroes constitute 32% of the population of Atlanta, they are forced to live within 16% of the area the city.

Statistics also show that the bulk of the Negro population is still:

a. locked into the more undesirable and overcrowded areas of the city;

b. paying a proportionally higher percentage of income for rental and purchase of generally lower quality property;

c. blocked by political and direct or indirect restrictions in its efforts to secure better housing.


Contrary to statements made in Congress by several Southern Senators, we know that in many counties in Georgia and other southern states, Negro college graduates are declared unqualified to vote and are not to register,


Compared with facilities for other people in Atlanta and Georgia, those for Negroes are unequal and totally inadequate.

Reports show that Atlanta's 14 general hospitals and 9 related institutions provide some 4,000 beds. Except for some 430 beds at Grady Hospital, Negroes are limited to the 250 beds in three private Negro hospitals. Some of the hospitals barring Negroes were built with federal funds.


Negroes are barred from most movies and segregated in the rest.

Negroes must even sit in a segregated section of the Municipal Auditorium.

If a Negro is hungry, his hunger must wait until he comes to a "colored" restaurant, and even his thirst must await its quenching at a "colored" water fountain.


There are grave inequalities in the area of law enforcement. Too often, Negroes are maltreated by officers of the law. An insufficient number of Negroes is employed in the law-enforcing agencies. They are seldom, if ever promoted. Of 830 policemen in Atlanta only 35 are Negroes.

We have briefly mentioned only a few situations in which we are discriminated against. We have understated rather than overstated the problems. These social evils are seriously plaguing Georgia, the South, the nation, and the world.


(1) The practice of racial is not in keeping with the ideals of Democracy and Christianity.

(2) Racial segregation is robbing not only the segregated but the segregator of his human dignity. Furthermore, the propagation racial prejudice is unfair to the generations yet unborn.

(3) In times of war, the Negro has fought and died for his country; yet he still has not been accorded first-class citizenship.

(4) In spite of the fact that the Negro pays his share of taxes, he does not enjoy participation in city, county and state government at the level where laws are enacted.

(5) The social, economic, and political progress of Georgia is retarded by segregation and prejudices.

(6) America is fast losing the respect of other nations by the poor example which she sets the area of race relations.

It is unfortunate that Negro is being forced to fight, in any way, for what is due him and is freely accorded other Americans, It is unfortunate that even today some people should hold to the erroneous idea of racial despite the fact that the world is fast moving toward an integrated humanity.

The time has come for the people of Atlanta and Georgia to take a good look at what is really happening in this country, and to stop believing those who tell us that everything is fine and equal, and that the Negro is happy satisfied.

It is to be regretted that there are those who still refuse to recognize the over-riding supremacy of the Federal Law.

Our churches which are ordained by God and claim to be the houses of all people, foster segregation of the races to the point of making Sunday the most segregated day of the week.

We, the students of the Atlanta University Center, are driven by past and present events to assert our feelings to the citizens of Atlanta and to the world.

We, therefore, call upon all people in authority State, County, and City officials; all leaders in civic life ministers, teachers, and business men; and all people of good will to assort themselves and abolish these injustices. We must say in all candor that we plan to use every legal and non-violent means at our disposal to secure full citizenship rights as members of this great Democracy of ours.

President of Council For the Students of Atlanta University

President of Student Government Association For the Students of Clark College

President of Student Association For the Students of Interdenominational Theological Center

President of Student Body For the Students of Morehouse College

Secretary of Student Government Association For the Students of Morris Brown College

President of Student Government Association For the Students of Spelman College

More information are at the listed links. (the original text) ionID=1
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-16-09 12:57 PM
Response to Original message
168. Claudette Colvin
From the article: Few people know the story of Claudette Colvin: When she was 15, she refused to move to the back of the bus and give up her seat to a white person nine months before Rosa Parks did the very same thing.

Most people know about Parks and the Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott that began in 1955, but few know that there were a number of women who refused to give up their seats on the same bus system. Most of the women were quietly fined, and no one heard much more.

Colvin was the first to really challenge the law.
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Raineyb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-16-09 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #168
169. I think I remember hearing about her
There wasn't the outcry at the time at her treatment because she wasn't considered a good public face for the movement or so the story goes if I remember correctly.

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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-12-09 07:33 AM
Response to Original message
170. recent history I'm surprised many Americans still don't know:
Lewis Hamilton (Great Britain), first black driver to win the Formula 1 World Driver's Championship in 2008
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-12-09 11:47 AM
Response to Reply #170
171. Nice
And dating a Pussycat Doll too
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Princess Turandot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-21-09 06:35 AM
Response to Original message
was a Haitian slave who came to NYC in 1787. Freed at the death of his master in 1807, he became very wealthy as a highly sought after hairdresser. He used his own money to buy the freedom of the woman he would marry, Juliette Toussaint. They used their profits for charitable works including the building of what was NYC's first Catholic Cathedral, now called Old St. Patricks, at Mulberry and Prince Streets (near Little Italy for those of you unfamiliar with NYC.) He and his wife were buried in its graveyard. They also funded a school and care for orphans.

In 1990, his remains were disinterred and laid to rest in the crypt under the altar at St. Patrick's Cathedral on Fifth Avenue. I believe he is one of only a few people who were not Archbishops of the Cathedral or other clerics long associated with the Cathedral to be given that honor. (He actually may be the only non-priest interred there.)

This was done because it is widely expected that he will eventually be named the first Black American Saint of the Catholic Church. In 1996, he was given the title of 'Venerable' by John Paul II, which is the 2nd of 4 steps to being named a Saint.

In 1995, during a visit with clergy at St. Pat's, JP II explicitly referred to Toussaint: Beneath the high altar of this Cathedral, together with the former Cardinals and Archbishops of New York, there is buried the Servant of God Pierre Toussaint, a married man, a one-time slave from Haiti. What is so extraordinary about this man?...........................In the face of constant, painful discrimination he understood, as few have understood, the meaning of the words: "Father, forgive them; they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:34: the words spoken by Jesus shortly before he died).

I only learned of him when I was doing some research on cemeteries which still exist in Manhattan (and I happen to be a Catholic.)


There are 2 photos of the church which he helped fund here:

It has a beautiful interior which has likely been seen by some of you. It was the church where Michael Corleone stood as Godfather to his nephew as his minions murdered every one of his rivals!
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-08-09 05:01 PM
Response to Reply #175
179. Beautiful. Thanks, Princess
it is widely expected that he will eventually be named the first Black American Saint of the Catholic Church

Spectacular. :)
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-08-09 10:22 AM
Response to Original message
177. Funded by slavery
There are many corporations and institutes of higher education that were directly or indirectly funded by slavery. Slavery was such an incredibly lucrative enterprise that slaveowners were willing to risk rebellion, death, and other dangers dealing with a captive population. Slavery was also called the "peculiar institution" and the word itself was not spoken in polite company. Note that there are no direct references to slavery in the Constition and definitely NOT in the Declaration of Independence. Such was the schizophrenic relationship that the US had with slavery and the slave trade.

The worst part is not that slavery and the slave trade happened, but that the country wants to erase it from history and its consciousness. If a terrible act never happened, there's no problem to deal with--because it never happened.

The following are the colleges and universities that have admitted to, or evidence found of, funding with money from slavery and the slave trade. The most famous of the self investigations was by Brown University ( ) Many institutions don't want to investigate this part of their history. This is a partial listing. More will be added as they are found.

College of William and Mary
University of Virginia
Harvard University
Yale University
University of Maryland
University of Alabama
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-08-09 04:59 PM
Response to Reply #177
178. Holy crap.
Shocking. And not so shocking at the same time.

Thanks for posting this, Brew. I was intrigued when I saw your post in Fire1's thread but was unable to find anything about specific institutions owning up to having profited from the slave trade. Thank you for this.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 02:21 AM
Response to Reply #177
188. I see Ivy Leagues, are present...
Edited on Thu Jul-23-09 02:22 AM by bliss_eternal
:cry: :( :thumbsdown: :scared:
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-27-10 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #177
221. Corporate collusion
Here are some major corporations that have admitted their ties to and profits from slavery...

JP Morgan Chase & Co. admit links to slavery

Wachovia Apologizes for ties to slavery /

Aetna Apologizes for Slave-Era Ads
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-11 09:12 AM
Response to Reply #177
232. Emory University in Atlanta issues its declaration of regret for slavery involvement
Emory University, and its predecessor, Oxford College (still in existence as a part of Emory U.) issued a "statement of regret" acknowledging the university's earlier involvement with slavery.

From the article: On the eve of Emory University's 175th anniversary year, the executive committee of the Board of Trustees has adopted a formal statement of regret over the history of the school's involvement with slavery.

Emory was founded in 1836 by a group of enterprising Methodists in a small town they dubbed Oxford after the famous seat of higher learning in England. The college itself was named for John Emory, a Maryland bishop who owned slaves, and a growing body of research has revealed the important role of slaves in helping to build and support the young institution.

The founders and early leaders of Emory were, by and large, supporters of slavery who were influential in bringing about a North-South schism in the Methodist Episcopal Church as the Civil War neared.

By consensus vote at the board's Jan. 13 meeting, the trustees' committee adopted a resolution declaring that:

Emory acknowledges its entwinement with the institution of slavery throughout the College's early history. Emory regrets both this undeniable wrong and the University's decades of delay in acknowledging slavery's harmful legacy. As Emory University looks forward, it seeks the wisdom always to discern what is right and the courage to abide by its mission of using knowledge to serve humanity.

A conference entitled Slavery and the University: Histories and Legacies is being held this weekend at Emory, the conference website is /

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BlooInBloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-09-09 12:16 AM
Response to Original message
180. Good thread.
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 12:20 AM
Response to Original message
185. Black Indians and Black Cowboys in the Old West
awesome books and required reading imho /

I worked with AIM and a tribe of "black Indians" and the books here blew my mind.

The first permanent colony in the continental US was a group of about Africans brought by the Portuguese in 1535 (almost 100 years before jamestown and Plimouth Rock) near the Peedee River in North/South Carolina (Cherokee territory more or less).

Thet immediately ran away and the native people took them in.

By the time Plimout plantation was established and Jamestown there were already several generations of "Black Indians" living here before any white men (except maybe Norsemen who got here around 990 AD) for almost 100 years.

Great unknown history
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 12:23 AM
Response to Original message
186. Africans in the New World Before Columbus (Malian sailors in 1300's)

awesome info and documentation of early explorations.

Columbus's navigator was an African and had been here already.
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 12:24 AM
Response to Original message
187. Eugene Bullard. WWI Flying and fighter ace pilot
Eugene Bullard. WWI Flying and fighter ace pilot

Edited on Thu Jul-23-09 01:06 AM by Liberation Angel
see his wikipedia page.

amazing story.

Ameria would not let him be a fighter pilot. but Franc did.

Part native American and an ex patriot in Paris, he had to flee the Nazis in 1940-1 as they were STILL pissed at him for shooting down their pilots in WWI.

He ended up an elevator operator on wall steet, i believe.

and died in relative obscurity.

I am working on a screenplay which deals with his story.I have done a lot of research on him.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 03:48 AM
Response to Reply #187
189. Great stuff, L_A! Thanks for posting.
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 09:55 AM
Response to Reply #189
190. Y'welcome!
I try
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Liberation Angel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-23-09 08:18 PM
Response to Original message
191. Black GI's Liberated Nazi death Camps during Holocaust and died in Nazi death camps too

while there is some debate about when Black GI's got to some camps, they definitely were enslaved and murdered in Nazi camps and liberated at last one (at Mauthhausen Austria) and probably more than one death camp (witnesses place them at Buchenwald and Dachau but documentary evidence is not solid ebnough for them to get credit as "liberators" (first divisions in w/in 48 hours of liberation)

Mauthausen is one camp where they are well documented as libeators of Jews and other Nazi prisoners

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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-03-09 02:44 PM
Response to Original message
192. bttt.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-18-09 04:45 PM
Response to Original message
193. Blue_Tires article on the Buffalo Soldiers would be a good fit here
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cato287 Donating Member (2 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-19-09 10:29 AM
Response to Original message
194. Prince Hall, a "founding father of America" and the first Black American Citizens
Prince Hall (the founder of the "Black Masons" in
America and the oldest black fraternity) petitioned and was
granted by George Washington (Who was also a Mason) permission
to allow blacks to fight in the revolutionary war.  He was
also one of the first blacks in MA to petition congress for
the abolition of slavery.  (He did so on three occasions
before it was approved).  The first memorial in the nation is
currently being erected in his behalf in Cambridge MA as
"a founding father of America." 
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-15-09 10:25 AM
Response to Original message
195. The Red Summer Riots
The term, coined by author James Weldon Johnson, refers to the series of race riots that took place in the summer and fall of 1919. The greatest number of race riots occurred during and just after World War I. During this period the North was concerned with the tremendous migration of Blacks from the South, and the displacement of some whites by Blacks in jobs and residences, which escalated social tensions between the races. The South was concerned about the possible demands of returning Negro soldiers, who were unwilling to slip quietly back into second-class citizenship. Race riots exploded in 26 towns and cities of both North and South, with the most violent outbreaks in Chicago, Washington, DC, and Elaine, AR.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-02-10 10:56 AM
Response to Original message
196. Shirley Franklin (1945- ), Mayor of Atlanta
Shirley Franklin was the first black woman to serve as major of a major Southern city. She served as Mayor of Atlanta from 2001-2009.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-02-10 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #196
197. Brew, thank you for keeping this thread open and for contributing (and allowing others to as well).
It is a really valuable resource on this site and a heck of a good read.
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fishwax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-07-10 10:34 PM
Response to Original message
198. Wyoming's "Black 14" and the mormon church's policies on race
The 2009 football season marked the 40th anniversary of the "Black 14" -- fourteen African American football players at the University of Wyoming who were dismissed from the team for talking about wearing black armbands in a game against Brigham Young University. The players wanted to protest racist policies of the LDS church, including not allowing African Americans to hold the priesthood. When they first raised the possibility to coach Lloyd Eaton, they were told that there was a team rule against participating in protests. A few days later, wearing black armbands, they visited Eaton again to ask him to reconsider, and were immediately kicked off the team. So basically they were kicked off the team not for protesting, but for *asking* if they could protest.

There was a great deal of national media attention, and the players (with the ACLU) filed a lawsuit. And there was significant fallout for both schools.

Wyoming rallied to beat BYU, but without the 14 (seven of whom were starters and all but one of whom was an underclassmen), the Cowboys lost the next four and then went 1-9 the next year. Coach Eaton was "reassigned" within the athletic department, and his successors (surprise surprise) had difficulty recruiting African American talent to Laramie for several years. The Cowboys had won three straight WAC championships, finished the previous season ranked in the top 10, and were ranked #16 the week before the BYU game. But they would only have one winning season in the 1970s, and the program never returned to its former prominence.

BYU signed their first black scholarship player the next year, and the attention and pressure from such incidents as the Black 14 and other athletic protests (Bob Beamon, for instance, lost his track scholarship at UTEP for refusing to compete against BYU) almost certainly pushed the church towards reversing their stance on refusing the priesthood in 1978.

According to one of the articles below, 10 of the 14 wound up finishing their degrees, either at Wyoming or elsewhere. A few played in the NFL. One became a high school principal in Wyoming. The 40th anniversary, as I said, was this past season, and there was a symposium honoring the players at the University of Wyoming. There were also retrospective stories in various newspapers. Here are a few articles from the web, documenting the event and the aftermath.

The first article appears to be a scholarly article, though I can't tell if it was ever published in the journal of Wyoming History:

The second article is from the Denver Post, and focuses on the players:

The third is from the Salt Lake City Tribune, and has some interesting info, but it's also pretty revolting the way that the article treats the BYU players as victims who had to endure such horrendous religious bigotry :eyes:. I found the comments of the then-head coach of BYU to be particularly repugnant:
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 03:37 PM
Response to Original message
199. Story: The other night our sat teevee was down
Edited on Sun Jan-10-10 03:37 PM by EFerrari
so I pulled up Skip Gates' "Africana" presentation out of the CSPAN archives so my mom could watch something really good.

And I found out that as a Sociology major in the 70s, Mom knew exactly who W.E.B. DuBois was. That was pretty cool. She's 77 and was a radical Latina back in the day. lol
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 06:44 PM
Response to Reply #199
202. "She's 77 and was a radical Latina back in the day."
Edited on Sun Jan-10-10 06:56 PM by Number23
SERIOUSLY sounds like my kind of gal... :)

And your participation in this group has been much appreciated as well.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 11:00 PM
Response to Reply #202
205. Why, thank you very much.
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TheBigotBasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 05:07 PM
Response to Original message
200. Wow
I have to thank Number23 for the invite the other day, I have just spent all day reading threads on LGBT and here, learning.

This page should be at the front of DU.

And don't worry number 23, I will carry on riding PUMA arse.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 06:37 PM
Response to Reply #200
201. I'm glad you're here. And your participation is welcome in this forum
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TheBigotBasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 06:56 PM
Response to Reply #201
203. I'm looking forward to.
I'm just happy I spent a day being very productive.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-10-10 06:58 PM
Response to Original message
204. Percy E. Sutton (1920-2009)
"Percy E. Sutton, a pioneering figure who represented Malcolm X as a young lawyer and became one of the nations most prominent black political and business leaders, died in a Manhattan nursing home on Saturday, his family said. He was 89.

Entering politics in the early 1950s, Mr. Sutton rose from the Democratic clubhouses of Harlem to become the longest-serving Manhattan borough president and, for more than a decade, the highest-ranking black elected official in New York City."
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-04-10 09:52 AM
Response to Original message
207. Desegregation of the US Military
from 1945 to 1953. The desegregation process took years, it wasn't overnight.

The timeline:


September 1945: Secretary of War Robert P. Patterson appoints a board of three general officers to investigate the Army's policy with respect to African-Americans and to prepare a new policy that would provide for the efficient use of African-Americans in the Army. This board is called the Gillem Board, after its chairman, General Alvan C. Gillem, Jr.

October 1, 1945: The Gillem Board holds its first meeting. Four months of investigation follow.


February 1946: African-American World War II veteran Isaac Woodard is attacked and blinded by policemen in Aiken, South Carolina.

April 1946: The report of the Gillem Board, "Utilization of Negro Manpower in the Postwar Army Policy," is issued. The report concludes that the Army's future policy should be to "eliminate, at the earliest practicable moment, any special consideration based on race." The report, however, does not question that segregation would continue to underlie the Army's policy toward African-Americans. Secretary of the Army Kenneth Royall later characterized the policy recommended by the Gillem Board as "equality of opportunity on the basis of segregation."

July 1946: Two African-American veterans and their wives are taken from their car near Monroe, Georgia, by a white mob and shot to death; their bodies are found to contain 60 bullets.

July 30, 1946: Attorney General Tom Clark announces that President Truman has instructed the Justice Department to "proceed with all its resources to investigate and other crimes of oppression so as to ascertain if any Federal statute can be applied."

September 12, 1946: In a letter to the National Urban League, President Truman says that the government has "an obligation to see that the civil rights of every citizen are fully and equally protected."

December 6, 1946: President Truman appoints the President's Committee on Civil Rights.


May 1947: The President's Advisory Commission on Universal Training gives a report to the President in which it concludes that "nothing could be more tragic for the future attitude of our people, and for the unity of our Nation, than a program in which our Federal Government forced our young manhood to live for a period of time in an atmosphere which emphasized or bred class or racial difference."

October 29, 1947: The President\'s Committee on Civil Rights issues its landmark report, To Secure These Rights. The report condemns segregation wherever it exists and criticizes specifically segregation in the armed forces. The report recommends legislation and administrative action "to end immediately all discrimination and segregation based on race, color, creed or national origin in...all branches of the Armed Services."

November 1947: Clark Clifford presents a lengthy memorandum to President Truman which argues that the civil rights issue and the African-American vote are important elements in a winning strategy for the 1948 campaign.

November 1947: A. Philip Randolph and Grant Reynolds organize the Committee Against Jim Crow in Military Service and Training..


January 1948: President Truman decides to end segregation in the armed forces and the civil service through administrative action (executive order) rather than through legislation.

February 2, 1948: President Truman announces in a special message to Congress on civil rights issues that he has "instructed the Secretary of Defense to take steps to have the remaining instances of discrimination in the armed services eliminated as rapidly as possible."

March 22, 1948: African-American leaders meet with President Truman and urge him to insist on antisegregation amendments in the legislation being considered in Congress that would reinstitute the draft..

March 27, 1948: Twenty African-American organizations meeting in New York City issue the "Declaration of Negro Voters," which demands, among other things, "that every vestige of segregation and discrimination in the armed forces be forthwith abolished."

March 30, 1948: A. Philip Randolph, representing the Committee Against Jim Crow in Military Service and Training, testifies to the Senate Armed Services Committee that African-Americans would refuse to serve in the armed forces if a proposed new draft law does not forbid segregation.

April 26, 1948: Sixteen African-American leaders tell Secretary of Defense James V. Forrestal that African-Americans will react strongly unless the armed forces end segregation.

May 1948: President Truman's staff considers advising the President to create a committee to oversee the integration of the armed forces.

June 26, 1948: A. Philip Randolph announces the formation of the League for Non-Violent Civil Disobedience Against Military Segregation. Randolph informed President Truman on June 29, 1948 that unless the President issued an executive order ending segregation in the armed forces, African-American youth would resist the draft law.

July 13, 1948: The platform committee at the Democratic National Convention rejects a recommendation put forward by Mayor Hubert H. Humphrey of Minneapolis calling for abolition of segregation in the armed forces. President Truman and his advisors support and the platform committee approves a moderate platform plank on civil rights intended to placate the South.

July 14, 1948: Delegates to the Democratic National Convention vote to overrule the platform committee and the Truman administration in favor of a liberal civil rights plank, one that called for, among other things, the desegregation of the armed forces.

Immediately following July 14, 1948: While his staff is drafting an executive order that would end segregation in the armed forces, President Truman decides to include in the order the establishment of a presidential committee to implement the order.

July 26, 1948: President Truman signs Executive Order 9981, which states, "It is hereby declared to be the policy of the President that there shall be equality of treatment and opportunity for all persons in the armed services without regard to race, color, religion, or national origin." The order also establishes the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and opportunity in the Armed Services.

July 26, 1948: Army staff officers state anonymously to the press that Executive Order 9981 does not specifically forbid segregation in the Army.

July 27, 1948: Army Chief of Staff General Omar N. Bradley states that desegregation will come to the Army only when it becomes a fact in the rest of American society.

July 29, 1948: President Truman states in a press conference that the intent of Executive Order 9981 is to end segregation in the armed forces.

August 2, 1948: Democratic National Committee chairman J. Howard McGrath meets with A. Philip Randolph and other leaders representing an organization called the League for Non-violent Civil Disobedience Against Military Segregation and assures them that the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services would seek to end segregation in the armed forces. A short time after this meeting, Randolph announced that his organization's civil disobedience campaign had ended.

August 14, 1948: Secretary of the Army Kenneth Royall is reported in the press to have admitted that "segregation in the Army must go," but not immediately.

September 18, 1948: The White House announces the names of the members of the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services (called the Fahy Committee, after its chairman, Charles Fahy). The committee's five active members include two African-Americans.

Ca. October 9, 1948: The Navy announces that it is extending the policy of integration that it had begun in the closing months of World War II.

December 1948: Secretary of the Army Kenneth Royall proposes to the Secretary of Defense James V. Forrestal that the Army create an experimental integrated unit that would test how integration would affect the Army.

December 1948: Secretary of the Air Force Stuart Symington submits an integration plan to President Truman that proposes assigning African-Americans on the basis of merit alone..


January 12, 1949: The Fahy Committee holds its first meeting with President Truman and the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Defense. "I want the job done," the President said, "and I want it done in a way so that everyone will be happy to cooperate to get it done."

January 13, 1949: The Fahy Committee holds its first hearings. Representatives of the Army defend segregation of African-Americans. The Marine Corps also defends its segregation policy and admits that only one of its 8,200 officers is African-American. The Navy and Air Force both indicate they will integrate their units. The Navy admits that only five of its 45,000 officers are African-American.

Ca. January 22, 1949: The Air Force tells the press it has completed plans for full integration of its units.

March 28, 1949: The three service secretaries testify before the Fahy Committee. Secretary of the Air Force Stuart Symington and Secretary of the Navy John L. Sullivan both testify that they are opposed to segregation and are pursuing policies to integrate their services. Secretary of the Army Kenneth Royall argues in favor of maintaining segregation, saying that the Army "was not an instrument for social evolution."

April 1, 1949: Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson issues a directive to the Secretaries of the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force which says it is the Department of Defense's policy that there should be equality of treatment and opportunity for all in the armed services, and that "qualified Negro personnel shall be assigned to fill any type of position...without regard to race."

May 11, 1949: Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson approves the integration plans of the Air Force, but rejects those of the Army and the Navy.

Following May 11, 1949: The Fahy Committee makes recommendations to the Army and Navy regarding changes in their integration plans. The committee recommended to the Army, among other things, that it desegregate its units and abolish its 10% enlistment quota for African-American recruits.

Ca. June 7, 1949: Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson accepts a revised Navy integration plan.

June 7, 1949: Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson rejects the Army's revised integration plan and formally asks the Army to consider the Fahy Committee\'s recommendations when drafting another revision of its plan.

July 5, 1949: Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray and Army Chief of Staff General Omar N. Bradley present a revised plan to the Fahy Committee which would maintain segregation in Army units and continue the 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans.

July 25 and 27, 1949: Charles Fahy advises President Truman, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson, and Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray that the proposed Army integration policy should not be accepted as fulfilling the provisions of Executive Order 9981.

August to September, 1949: Discussions between the Fahy Committee and the Army bring no resolution to their differences over the issues of segregation in Army units and the 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans.

September 27, 1949: The Army informs the Fahy Committee that it is sending its revised integration plan to the Secretary of Defense. A copy of the plan was not provided to the Fahy Committee.

September 30, 1949: Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson approves the Army's integration plan, which would maintain segregated units and the 10% enlistment quota for African-Americans.

October 6, 1949: President Truman, as a press conference, calls the Army's integration plan "a progress report" and says that his goal is the integration of the Army.

October 11, 1949: Charles Fahy writes President Truman that the Army's integration plan would in fact maintain segregation.

Ca. late November 1949: The Army completes another revision of its integration plan and submits it for approval. The plan still includes provisions that would maintain segregated units and the 10% recruitment quota for African Americans.

Ca. late November 1949: Charles Fahy warns the Army that the Fahy Committee will not approve the Army's revised integration plan and will release a statement to the press condemning it.

Ca. early December 1949: The White House asks the Fahy Committee not to issue its threatened statement condemning the Army's integration plan, and instead to make recommendations for modifications to the plan.

December 15, 1949: The Fahy Committee submits to the White House its recommendations for modifications to the Army's integration plan, including the elimination of segregated units and the 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans.

December 27, 1949: Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray meets with Charles Fahy to discuss changes in the Army's integration plan. Gray agrees to integrate the Army's units, but wants to do so gradually..


January 14, 1950: The Fahy Committee approves the Army's integration plan, despite the issue of the 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans being still unresolved.

January 16, 1950: The Fahy Committee informs President Truman of its approval of the Army's integration plan, and the Army officially issues its new integration policy in Special Regulations No. 600-629-1.

Ca. February 1, 1950: President Truman decides the Fahy Committee should stay in existence until the Army's use of the 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans is ended.

March 1, 1950: Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray informs President Truman that, based on earlier conversations, he understands that if the Army abandons its 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans, and if a disproportional number of African-Americans enters the Army as a result, then the Army has the President's approval to reinstate the 10% quota.

Ca. March 13, 1950: The Army agrees to abolish its 10% recruitment quota for African-Americans, effective in April 1950.

March 27, 1950: President Truman tells Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray that he appreciates the Army's abolishing its 10% quota for African-Americans. "I am sure everything will work out as it should," Truman said.

May 22, 1950: The Fahy Committee submits its final report, "Freedom to Serve," to the President, who says in receiving it that he is confident the committee's recommendations will be carried out and that "within the reasonably near future, equality of treatment and opportunity for all persons within the armed services would be accomplished."

Ca. June 1950 and following: Commanders at Army training facilities find it impossible to predict how many African-American recruits they will receive, with the result that the Army decides unofficially to integrate basic training.

Ca. June 1950 and following: Segregation in Army units serving in Korea gradually breaks down as white combat units suffer combat casualties and as large numbers of African-American recruits cannot be absorbed into segregated black service units.

July 6, 1950: President Truman informs the Fahy Committee that, against the wishes of most of its members, it is being discontinued. "The necessary programs having been adopted," Truman wrote the committee, "I feel that the Armed Services should now have an opportunity to work out in detail the procedures which will complete the steps so carefully initiated by the Committee."

President Truman shakes hands with Air Force Staff Sgt. Edward Williams, at a casual meeting in St. Louis during the President's morning walk, October 13, 1950. Acme photograph courtesy Harry S. Truman Library..


Ca. January 1951: The Eighth Army in Korea adopts an unofficial policy of integrating African-American soldiers who cannot be effectively absorbed into segregated African-American units.

March 18, 1951: The Department of Defense announces that all basic training within the United States has been integrated.

April 1951: General Matthew B. Ridgway, head of the United Nations Command in Korea, requests that the Army allow him to integrate all African-Americans within his command.

July 26, 1951: The Army announces that the integration of all its units in Korea, Japan and Okinawa will be completed within six months..


October 1953: The Army announces that 95% of African-American soldiers are serving in integrated units..

The complete timeline is found at

Too many are under the mistaken impression that the military was magically and immediately desegregated then everyone held hands and sang "kumbaya". US history has shown over and over again that this has NEVER happened. Too much of the unpleasant and unflattering parts of US history have been never taught and are usually glossed over, esp. in race relations.
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NOLALady Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-04-10 02:16 PM
Response to Reply #207
208. When my Mom first told me
Black WW2 Veterans were hung while in uniform, I thought she may have been exaggerating a bit.
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-04-10 02:34 PM
Response to Original message
209. Amelia Boynton Robinson first African American woman from Alabama to run for Congress

I know; she's down with LaRouche...we can at least honor her early work...
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-07-10 12:07 AM
Response to Original message
211. Garvey and Griggs
Thought I'd add this here as well as the current GD thread ...

Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Jr., ONH (17 August 1887 10 June 1940) was a publisher, journalist, entrepreneur, Black Nationalist, Pan-Africanist, and orator. Marcus Garvey was founder of the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA-ACL).

Prior to the twentieth century, leaders such as Prince Hall, Martin Delany, Edward Wilmot Blyden, and Henry Highland Garnet advocated the involvement of the African diaspora in African affairs. Garvey was unique in advancing a Pan-African philosophy to inspire a global mass movement focusing on Africa known as Garveyism.<2> Promoted by the UNIA as a movement of African Redemption, Garveyism would eventually inspire others, ranging from the Nation of Islam, to the Rastafari movement (which proclaims Garvey as a prophet). The intention of the movement was for those of African ancestry to "redeem" Africa and for the European colonial powers to leave it. His essential ideas about Africa were stated in an editorial in the Negro World titled African Fundamentalism where he wrote:

"Our union must know no clime, boundary, or nationality let us hold together under all climes and in every country ..."

Sutton Griggs was an author, minister, and educator who used his skills and professions to further the cause of social justice in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. A contemporary of Garvey and other notables such as WEB DuBois, Griggs staked out his own special place in the history of activism as neither a radical nor a conservative, caught somewhere between the then seemingly opposing viewpoints of accommodation and armed resistance. Griggs's most lingering contribution to the cause of raising awareness and inspiring individual agency is his best-selling novel Imperium in Imperio. Through the characters in this work of fiction, Griggs paints a vibrant, multi-dimensional portrait of a people struggling with different approaches of rising above the inherent racism of his day.

A Wiki article on Griggs:

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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-09-10 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
212. Feb. 2010 - Greensboro, NC sit-ins turn 50
"On Feb.1, 1960, Franklin McCain and three fellow African American college students walked into the F.W. Woolworth store in downtown Greensboro, N.C., sat down at the lunch counter and ignited a movement that re-shaped American society."
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-09-10 04:12 PM
Response to Original message
213. David Levering Lewis - first author to win two Pulitzer Prizes for biography for back-to-back volume
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-10-10 03:29 AM
Response to Original message
214. The Myth of the Negro Past, a monograph by Melville J. Herskovitz (1941)
Edited on Wed Feb-10-10 03:32 AM by EFerrari
may be the first clear articulation by the white academy, in this case by an anthropologist, that disappearing black history and culture and replacing them with "a myth" of that erased past was the principal mechanism underpinning discrimination. The five points laid out on pp. 1-2 are the thesis of the work.

This is the relevant text:


Chapter I

The myth of the Negro past is one of the principal supports of race
prejudice in this country. Unrecognized in its efficacy, it rationalizes
discrimination in everyday contact between Negroes and whites, in-
fluences the shaping of policy where Negroes are concerned, and
affects the trends of research by scholars whose theoretical approach,
methods, and systems of thought presented to students are in har-
mony with it. Where all its elements are not accepted, no conflict
ensues even when, as in popular belief, certain tenets run contrary
to some of its component parts, since its acceptance is so little sub-
ject to question that contradictions are not likely to be scrutinized
too closely. The system is thus to be regarded as mythological in
the technical sense of the term, for, as will be made apparent, it
provides the sanction for deep-seated belief which gives coherence to

This myth of the Negro past, which validates the concept of
Negro inferiority, may be outlined as follows:

j. Negroes are naturally of a childlike character, and adjust easily
to the most unsatisfactory social situations, which they accept readily
and even happily, in contrast to the American Indians, who pre-
ferred extinction to slavery;

2. Only the poorer stock of Africa ivas enslaved, the more intelli-
gent members of the African communities raided having been clever
enough to elude the slavers' nets;

j. Since the Negroes were brought from all parts of the African
continent, spoke diverse languages, represented greatly differing
bodies of custom, and, as a matter of policy, were distributed in the
New World so as to lose tribal identity, no least common denom-
inator of understanding or behavior could have possibly been worked
out by them;


4. Even granting enough Negroes of a given tribe had the oppor-
tunity to live together, and tltat they had the will and ability to con-
tinue their customary modes of behavior, the cultures of Africa were
so savage and relatively so low in the scale of human civilization
that the apparent superiority of European customs as observed in
the behavior of their masters, would hazrc caused and actually did
cause them to give up such aboriginal traditions as they may other-
wise have desired to preserve;

5. The Negro is thus a man without a past.

Naturally, there have been reactions against this point of view,
and in such works as Carter Woodson's The African Background
Outlined and W. E. B. Du Bois' Black Folk, Then and Now
serious attempts have been made to comprehend the entire picture
of the Negro, African and New World, in its historical and func-
tional setting. In still another category of those who disagree with
this system are writers whose reactions, presented customarily with
little valid documentation, center attention on Africa principally to
prove that "Negro culture" can take its place among the "higher"
civilizations of mankind. Scientific thought has for some time ab-
jured attempts at the comparative evaluation of cultures, so that
these works are significant more as manifestations of the psychology
of interracial conflict than as contributions to serious thought. They
are in essence a part of the literature of polemics, and as such need
be given little attention here.

It must also be recognized that not every writer who has made
statements of the type oulined above has accepted or, if he has ac-
cepted, has stressed all the elements in the system ; and that popular
opinion often underscores the African character of certain aspects
of the behavior of Negroes, emphasizing the savage and exotic
nature of the presumed carry-overs. Yet on the intellectual level, a
long line of trained specialists have reiterated, in whole or in part,
the assumptions concerning the Negro past that have been sketched.
As a consequence, diverse as are the contributions of these writers
in approach, method, and materials, they have, with but few excep-
tions, contributed to the perpetuation of the legend concerning* the
quality of Negro aboriginal endowment and its lack of stamina
under contact. We may best begin our documentation of this system
with a series of citations concerning the final, culminating element,
leaving to later pages excerpts which demonstrate the tenaciousness
of the other propositions that lead up to this last point.

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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-02-10 04:10 AM
Response to Original message
215. Black Men Built the Capitol. (BookTv presentation)
Black Men Built the Capitol: Discovering African-American History In and Around Washington, D.C.

Jesse Holland

About the Program

Jesse Holland, Associated Press reporter who covers Congress, presents a history of the slave labor that was used to complete the construction of the United States Capitol and the White House. Mr. Holland discusses his book at the Moultrie Courthouse in Washington, DC.

Program Information
Black Men Built the Capitol: Discovering African-American History In and Around Washington, D.C.

* * *

Up now here:

Will be moved to the archives here and will likely include a transcript:
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-11-10 09:07 PM
Response to Original message
216. Two interviews, MLK and Malcolm, on line at PBS.
The New Negro -- MLK, 1957 /

Race Relations in Crisis -- Malcolm X, others, 1963 /

There seem to be transcripts listed but I haven't checked them out myself.
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-17-10 08:47 AM
Response to Original message
218. The Sweet Trials, 1925 and 1926
The most important civil rights trial of the 1920s arose from events occurring at this bungalow at the corner of Garland and Charlevoix. The African American population of most northern cities was modest before World War I, and racial residential segregation was not enforced. Low-income blacks lived with poor immigrants, while a few prosperous black families lived with whites in Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago and other cities.

German submarines cut off the flow of immigrants from eastern and southern Europe as World War I began, but the booming industries of the North needed many more workers to produce munitions. White and black migrants from the US South filled that need, so the African American population of Detroit grew rapidly for the first time. As soon as they arrived, real estate brokers, city officials and most whites attempted to establish an American Apartheid system. Although no law or city ordinance mandated residential segregation in Detroit, blacks coming to the city during World War I were confined to Paradise Valley neighborhoods along Hastings Street, or to blocks west of Grand Boulevard between Michigan and Tireman or to a remote, rural area near Wyoming and Eight Mile where a wall separating blacks from white still stands.

As the black population grew and prospered, African American merchants and professionals prospered. Dr. Ossian Sweetthe oldest of ten childrenwas raised in Barstow, Florida, attended segregated Wilberforce College in Ohio and then earned his medical degree from Howard University. He recognized opportunities in Detroit and started a practice here, specializing in gynecology. In the early 1920s, Dr. Sweet recognized his need for further medical training and spent about a year in Europe doing post-graduate work in Vienna and then studying the use of radium treatment to reduce cancer at Madame Curies institute in Paris. He returned to Detroit in 1924.

Detroit and other northern cities were riven by racial conflict in the 1920s. Neighborhoods, public schools and jobs were contestedsometimes violently. If whites could restrict blacks to their own neighborhoods, public schools would also be segregated, although in many cities, including Detroit, there was an effort to formally establish Jim Crow schools. After the U. S. Supreme Court, in 1917, ruled that cities could not enact ordinances preventing blacks from living in specified neighborhoods, restrictive covenants were commonly written into property deeds. These specified that a designated racial minority such as African Americans could never live in or own the property with such a restrictive covenant. Several black lawyers challenged the constitutionality of restrictive covenants in Michigan, but the states Supreme Court upheld them with several decisions. Just after World War I, the Ku Klux Klan was revived and moved north where their leaders found sympathetic supporters in southern white migrants. The KKK targeted Catholic and Jewish immigrants and blacks. Charles Bowels, the KKK candidate in Detroits 1924 mayoralty election, won the most votes. However, he was a write-in candidate and election officials ruled that votes for him would be counted only if the voter clearly wrote his name and spelled it entirely correctly.

A few prosperous blacks in Detroit tried to escape their residential confinement by buying homes in white neighborhoods. A handful moved in successfully but other faced great hostility; in some cases, white neighbors promptly bought them out, others were told to leave or risk the chance of having their home firebombed. In the early summer of 1925, a black doctor, A. L. Turner, purchased a home on Stockton in northeast Detroit and moved there. Shortly after his arrival, his white neighbors, apparently with the assistance of the Detroit police, invaded his home, loaded his furnishings on a truck and told him to get out and never come back.

After returning from Berlin and Paris, Dr. Sweet bought a home for his family commensurate with his statusthe one at 2905 Garland. Ironically, the family selling the homethe Smithswas interracial, but Mr. Smith was so light-skinned that his neighbors assumed he was white; Sweet anticipated no troubles. Indeed, his wifes parents lived in a white neighborhood. However, as soon as the residents near 2905 Garland learned of his race, trouble began. The Smiths were condemned for selling the home to a black and they warned the Sweets of the difficulties they would face. As soon as he purchased the residence, a block club was formed to keep him out. Dr. Sweet consulted other professional blacks who attempted integration, and realized that the Detroit police would likely offer little protection. Nevertheless, he informed the police of his intent to move into his new home. He expected trouble, so on his first night in this homeSeptember 8, 1925he asked his two brothers and a number of friends, including a federal narcotics agent, to spend the night with him. He and his friends prepared for hostilities by arming themselves with six revolvers, two rifles, a shotgun and, perhaps, as many as two thousand rounds of ammunition.

A crowd of whites gathered at the corner of Garland and Charlevoix on that evening, but there were eleven police officers present and no violence. Dr. Sweet still feared trouble would escalate, so he asked an additional three friends to join him for the evening of September 9. At some point, the crowd apparently became aggressive, loudly proclaimed that they would drive the Sweets out and began stoning the home. Dr. Sweet and the other armed men inside believed that the home was under siege, that they might be burned to death when the house was incinerated and that the Detroit police would offer no assistance. Shots rang out from the second-story dormer that you see. Instantly, one member of the crowd on Garland, Leon Breiner, was killed and another, Eric Hougberg, wounded in the thigh. At this point, police officers rushed the home and arrested all occupants, who were held without bail.

The citys police chief demanded first degree murder charges but before going to trial, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People realized the fundamental importance of these events and came to Detroit to protect Dr. Sweets rights. Lynching was still frequently used in the South to kill blacks who were presumed guilty of criminal behavior or violating local racial mores. The NAACP feared that lynching would spread to the North and that blacks who did such things as moving into a white neighborhood would be killed. Spurning local black lawyers, the NAACP recruited former University of Michigan student, Clarence Darrow, to defend the occupants of Dr. Sweets home.

In the first trial, held in November, 1925, two contrasting views of the events of September 9 were presented to jurors. Dr. Sweet testified that the hostile crowd grew to 2,000 and that the police provided no protection. He contended that the 11 people in his home would have been murdered had they not defended themselves. He said that his home was pelted with rocks for at least 20 minutes before the gunfire. Police officials testified that the crowd was peaceful and much smallerperhaps as few as 15. Newspaper reports estimated the crowd at 600. The strong card of the defense was to stress that the prosecution could not identify who fired the fatal shot. The all-white and all-male jury deliberated, but could reach no decision. Frank Murphy, a Detroit resident educated at the University of Michigan who later served as Mayor of Detroit, Governor of Michigan and on the US Supreme Court, presided over the trail and was praised for his equitable treatment of all parties.

The retrial was very different. Clarence Darrow had each of the occupants of the home tried separately, beginning with Dr. Sweets younger brotherHenrywho admitted to firing the shots that killed Breiner and wounded Hougberg. Darrow then raised a civil rights defense, stressing that Dr, Sweet grew up in Florida where he had witnessed lynchings. He argued that Dr. Sweet had the responsibility and duty to protect his family and his property from the violence of the crowd that attacked his home with stones, and that he could not rely upon police protection. In the second trial also in front of Frank Murphy, another all-white, all-male jury acquitted Henry Sweet with just four hours of deliberation. Subsequently, charges against all others in the home were dropped.

This litigation was a tremendous victory for the civil rights movement since it asserted the right of African Americans in the North to defend their person and property, even if it required the use of violence. However, it was a pyrrhic victory. It conveyed the unambiguous message to middle-class blacks in northern cities that if they tried to escape confinement to the ghetto, they would likely face indifferent police officials and extremely hostile crowds of whites who would try to forcefully drive them back to black neighborhoods. Darrow claimed that the two victories that gave him greatest satisfaction were his defense of the teaching of evolution in the Scopes Monkey trial and his defense of the property rights of blacks in the Sweet case.
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-18-10 11:38 PM
Response to Original message
219. Darrell Wallace makes history as first African-American to win NASCAR Pro Series
Darrell Wallace Jr. made his debut in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East a memorable one.
Wallace pulled away from the field on a green-white-checkered finish at Greenville Pickens Speedway to take the victory on Saturday night. He is the youngest driver and first African-American to win in series history. He gave Drive for Diversity its first East victory and third overall in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series.
We were solid all day from practice to qualifying. Everything, Wallace said. I cant thank the guys from Revolution Racing enough. They worked their tails off to get this car ready for this race.
Wallace led three times for 22 laps. At 16 years, 5 months, 19 days, Wallace eclipsed the mark set by Brett Moffitt (16 years, 9 months, 27 days) when he won at South Boston (Va.) Speedway last season.
Fellow rookie Andrew Smith finished second, followed by Jody Lavender and rookies Cole Whitt and Ryan Gifford. Gifford is Wallaces teammate with Revolution Racing, the four-car operation for Drive for Diversity.
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-08-10 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
220. Ralph Gilles, President and CEO of Dodge
and Senior Vice President of Design at Chrysler Group LLC, Gilles initially styled the 2005 Chrysler 300
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-14-10 10:31 AM
Response to Original message
222. Reverend Vernon Johns (1892-1965)
One of the pioneers of the Civil Rights movement, Vernon Johns was a controversial figure noted for his eccentricities as well as his activism, who often spoke out against Blacks as well as Whites. Despite being a preacher, he was not a believer in non-violence and believed in taking whatever action is necessary to achieve God-given or civil rights.

Vernon Johns was born in Darlington Heights, VA, on April 22, 1892 the son of Willie Johns, a farmer, peddler and Baptist preacher, and Sallie Branch Price Johns. His fathers example fixed the sons ambition to be the best farmer, peddler, and preacher that he could be.

In 1911, he enrolled at Virginia Union University in Richmond. After a year there, Johns transferred to Virginia Theological Seminary and College in Lynchburg. The transfer was crucial to his development and would shape his career for another two decades, for Virginia Seminary challenged Virginia Unions cooperation with Northern white Baptists with coeducation of men and women, an emphasis on the liberal arts, and unceasing devotion to African-American autonomy. Apparently expelled before he graduated from Virginia Seminary, Johns nonetheless won admission to the theological school at Oberlin College and became the student pastor of a small Congregational church in Painesville, Ohio. At Oberlin, Johns sampled experience and learning that no one of color might have found anywhere in Virginia and won honors among his classmates. He gave the annual student oration at Oberlin's Memorial Arch in 1918, received a B.D. from the Oberlin School of Religion and was ordained in the Baptist ministry. In further preparation for a career in teaching and ministry, he studied for a summer at the University of Chicago. Coincidentally, it was the summer of Chicagos race riot of 1919.

In 1919, Johns returned to Lynchburg to teach homiletics (the application of the general principles of rhetoric to public preaching.) and New Testament at Virginia Theological Seminary. Continuing to teach at the seminary, he became the pastor of the city's large, historic Court Street Baptist Church, where he served from 1920 to 1926. His denunciation of Virginia Seminarys administration in 1923 for offering public relations sham in lieu of substantial nurture prompted his departure from its faculty, the withdrawal of "the hand of fellowship" by his state convention, and the disappearance of his name in the states influential black press. Yet, by then, he was often speaking beyond Virginia. Already, within the small circle of the countrys well educated and most prominent Afro-Baptist preachers, a hallmark of Vernon Johns preaching was the range and abundance of its learned literary references. In a single sermon, he might demonstrate his mastery of obscure biblical texts, sample classical allusions, quote William Shakespeare, cite a range of Anglo-American and Afro-American poets, visit authorities from Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln to William James and H. G. Wells, and seal the case with an illustration from contemporary fiction.

In 1926, Vernon Johns preached for the first of many times at Howard University's Rankin Memorial Chapel and was the first African-American preacher to have a sermon, "Transfigured Moments," published with those of Harry Emerson Fosdick, Reinhold Niebuhr and other luminaries in Joseph Fort Newton's Best Sermons. After launching a pamphlet series, Negro Pulpit Opinion, Johns left Lynchburg early in 1927 to succeed Mordecai Johnson as pastor of First Baptist Church in Charleston, West Virginia, serve as director of Harlems Baptist Educational Center in New York City and pursue his hearts darling from the piedmont to the mountains of North Carolina. At the end of 1927, he married Altona Trent, the daughter of William Johnson Trent, the president of Livingstone College in Salisbury, North Carolina. Johns resigned his West Virginia pastorate and settled in New York. Vernon and Altona Trent Johns became the parents of six children, first three boys and, then, three girls.

In the summer of 1929, Johns left New York to become the president of Lynchburgs Virginia Theological Seminary and College. His impoverished alma maters financial problems had become critical since his departure and the school entered the depression already deeply in debt. Despite his best efforts to raise money, conditions at the school worsened and, in 1933, Johns left office in the face of student and faculty demands for his resignation. Briefly, he was interim pastor of Holy Trinity Baptist Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but in 1934 Johns retired to the family farm in Prince Edward County, Virginia. There, he farmed, cut and sold pulpwood, operated a grocery store in Darlington Heights, and traveled, lecturing and preaching on the black church and college circuits. While Altona Trent Johns supplemented the family income by teaching public school in a one-room public school four miles from the family home, he led a struggle to get school buses for the countys African-American students.

In 1937 Johns was called again as the pastor of First Baptist Church in Charleston, West Virginia. A former college president, the published pastor of an important African-American congregation, and son-in-law of a college president, Vernon Johns seemed bound to a secure position in the African-American elite. Yet, he was rooted in the hard economic realities of Prince Edward County and grew contemptuous of the social pretense of the black bourgeoisie. As pastor of Charleston's First Baptist Church, he supplemented his income as a fishmonger. "I don't apologize for it," he later told students at Howard University, "because for every time I got one call about religion, I got forty calls about fish." It was a pattern of offense Johns would repeat. In 1941, Johns returned to Lynchburg as pastor of Court Street Baptist Church. Shortly after he was officially installed there, a struggle with lay authorities led to his ouster. At 51, Vernon Johns was back on the family farm and back out on the preaching circuits. As the youngest of his children entered school during World War II, his wife was still teaching in Prince Edward County. She would finish a graduate program at Teachers College of Columbia University and publish several books on music.

He became the preacher of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery in 1948 and often upset its very conservative congregation. Titles of his sermons included "Segregation After Death", "Constructive (or Creative) Homicide", and "When The Rapist Is White". In 1949 following a string of murders and other violent acts against blacks, Johns changed the name of his planned sermon to "It Is Safe To Kill Negroes In Montgomery". This outraged the white community and led to him being summoned before the grand jury.

He strongly opposed segregation, on one occasion he refused to move into the 'Colored' section of a bus he was riding, and on another, walked into a 'White' restaurant and ordered a sandwich, knowing fully that he was putting his life at risk in doing so.

He believed that Black people should support each other economically and encouraged the Black people of Montgomery to sell produce such as fruit and vegetables to each other, instead of buying goods from the White man. He would sell fruit, vegetables and even fish to the congregation.

Over time, his relationship with Dexter Avenue Board of Deacons became increasingly strained and on several occasions, he resigned his position. The final straw came when he drove onto the campus of Alabama State University and sold a truckload of watermelons. The deacons were highly upset and the church finally accepted his fifth resignation.

Vernon Johns moved back to Virginia, and in 1953 Dexter Avenue Baptist Church finally appointed their new preacher, a young man by the name of Martin Luther King. When King became the pastor, he identified himself as Vernon Johns successor. Subsequent events made it inevitable that Johns would ever thereafter be known as Martin Luther Kings predecessor.

Vernon Johns was never the pastor of a church again. From 1953 to 1955, he shuttled between his Prince Edward County farm, where he raised livestock, and his wife's home in Petersburg, where he became a mentor to Wyatt Tee Walker, the pastor of Gillfield Baptist Church. In 1956, Johns succeeded John Tilley, executive director of Martin Luther Kings young Southern Christian Leadership Conference, as director of the Maryland Baptist Center in Baltimore. Walker in turn succeeded Tilley at SCLC. By then, the legend of Vernon Johns was fixing itself in the firmament of the Afro-Baptist preachers who were the core of Kings SCLC. He was, after all, Kings predecessor, mentor of Ralph Abernathy and Wyatt Walker, and successor of John Tilley. Apart from Johns commanding presence, nothing entertained his fellow Baptist preachers more than Wyatt Walkers perfect mime of Vernon Johns rural Virginia accent or Ralph Abernathys latest Vernon Johns story. As for the man himself, Johns was forced to resign as director of the Maryland Baptist Center in 1960 after publicly rebuking white Baptist preachers in Baltimore for their failure of nerve in race relations. Thereafter, he still rode the preaching circuits and occasionally addressed mass meetings of the Lynchburg and Petersburg Improvement Associations. In 1961 and 1962, he edited Second Century, an annual magazine published in anticipation of the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation.

After preaching his last sermon, "The Romance of Death," in Howard University's Rankin Chapel, Vernon Johns died on June 10, 1965 in Washington, D.C., just 3 months after the movements last great march, from Selma to Montgomery.

A made-for-TV movie based on his life was released in 1994 called The Road To Freedom--The Vernon Johns Story with James Earl Jones in the title role.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-26-10 04:20 PM
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223. Hands on the Freedom Plow
Former SNCC women tell their story.

Video about an hour 20, transcript.
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fortyfeetunder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-28-10 11:00 PM
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224. Va Tech to honor school's first black graduate
"Charlie Yates earned a degree in mechanical engineering with honors in 1958. He became a researcher at Johns Hopkins before returning to Tech in 1979 to teach mechanical engineering and then aerospace and ocean engineering until 2000.

He served four years on the school's board of visitors, beginning in 1983.

Yates was the first black undergraduate to receive a degree from a historically white university in a former Confederate state. He died in Norfolk in August <2010> at 74."
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-05-10 04:48 AM
Response to Reply #224
225. this was no small accomplishment... a city/state that didn't even allow black men on their lawns. a relative who was born and raised in the area about that time, told me signs on lawns said,"NO dogs, NO sailors, No N****s!" If a sailor exited their vessel/boat, speaking french or had an another exotic accent, exceptions were frequently made for them.

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-20-11 11:51 AM
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229. Juliette Hampton Morgan (1917-1957)
Juliette Hampton Morgan was a Montgomery librarian, was a member of a small group of white liberal southerners who advocated racial justice in the 1940s and 1950s, a time of great social and political upheaval in Alabama. In her letters to the editor of the Montgomery Advertiser, in essays, and in private correspondence with friends, family members, and colleagues, Morgan made some of the most insightful observations in the historical record about Montgomery's racial crises. She wrote as a seventh-generation southerner, not as an outside agitator, and her work to eliminate racial segregation came with great personal sacrifice and at a high cost.

In 1930, after graduating from Sidney Lanier High School, Morgan studied English literature and political science at the University of Alabama. While she was working on her master's degree in 1935, her journalism professor, Dr. Clarence Cason-a man haunted by his ambivalence to the southern way of life-wrote a book of essays called Ninety Degrees in the Shade. In that book Cason observed:

Upon hearing adverse criticisms of conditions as they are, I feel a resentment and an impulse to defend my state and my people; but then I have to ask myself whether a deeper loyalty does not place me under a compulsion to wrestle with these disagreeable challenges until the truth which they contain has been separated from what is false or merely sensational about them. I wonder whether this is not the sort of thing that is taking place in the minds of many other southerners today.

A few days before the publication of his book, Dr. Cason committed suicide. he had concluded that he could not live with the ostracism that criticizing the southern way of life would inevitably bring. Cason's expression of his dilemma and inability to find a resolution left a lasting impression on Morgan.

She returned to Montgomery in 1936 and for the next decade taught English at Lanier High School, coached drama at Capitol Heights junior High School, worked in Neeley's bookstore on Perry Street, and served as a librarian for both the Carnegie and the Montgomery City public libraries. Away from work Morgan had many friends and enjoyed entertaining; loved literature, theater, and music; and lived at home with her mother and grandmother. In most ways Juliette Morgan was a typical genteel southern woman.

One thing-and it seemed a very small thing-that separated her from many of her friends was her inability to drive a car. Unlike most Montgomery whites, Morgan used the city buses to commute to work because disabling anxiety attacks prevented her from driving. It was while riding the buses and watching white bus drivers threaten and humiliate black men and women (who paid the same ten cent fare that Morgan did) that she began to seriously consider the cost of certain traditional southern practices. Segregation and racism became something more to her than a theoretical problem to discuss over coffee.

In 1946, Morgan's involvement with a Montgomery interracial women's prayer group brought her to an even more activist phase of her life. The prayer meetings had to be scheduled in black churches because no white congregation would risk hosting an integrated gathering, which violated the city's municipal code. After participating in the group, she began to put her convictions into action on the city buses. For years she had witnessed white bus drivers mistreat black men and women who paid the same 10-cent fare that she did. Although Morgan had been raised to accept the principles of white supremacy, she was outraged when she saw drivers refuse to pick black people up in the rain, throw their change on the floor rather than hand it to them, and call them ugly names.

One evening on her way home from the library, Morgan watched a black woman pay her fare and leave the bus to enter by the back door, as black people were required to do. Before the woman could re-enter, however, the driver pulled away. Morgan had seen actions like this before, but this evening she jumped up and pulled the emergency cord. When the bus stopped, she demanded that the driver open the back door and let the woman board. For the next several years, she disrupted service every time she witnessed an abuse. In 1952, three years before the start of the city's famous bus boycott, she wrote a letter to the Montgomery Advertiser warning white residents that African Americans were tired of remaining silent about Montgomery's segregation statutes and that things had to change.

Morgan's activism eventually threatened her position at the library. Her critiques of the city's segregation laws outraged many white residents, including some of her own friends, neighbors and colleagues. A few were so angry that they questioned her sanity. Former students, members of her church, shopkeepers, and people she had known all her life began to shun her. Under mounting pressure, Montgomery mayor William A. Gayle urged the library's board of trustees to fire her. Although they refused, the library director warned Morgan not to write any more provocative letters.

On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery city bus, beginning the Montgomery Bus Boycott. On December 12, 1955, Morgan wrote the following letter to the editor published in the Montgomery Advertiser: "The Negroes of Montgomery seem to have taken a lesson from Gandhi... Their own task is greater than Gandhi's however, for they have greater prejudice to overcome. One feels that history is being made in Montgomery these days... It is hard to imagine a soul so dead, a heart so hard, a vision so blinded and provincial as not to be moved with admiration at the quiet dignity, discipline and dedication with which the Negroes have conducted their boycott."

As she continued writing to the Montgomery Advertiser, Morgan began to receive threatening letters and telephone calls, and the mayor demanded the library fire her. While library officials did not fire Morgan, they did tell her she couldn't write any more letters. She promised to comply. She was silent for more than a year. Even though whites opposed to integration were bombing black homes and churches, Morgan restrained from writing letters to the Montgomery Advertiser.

On January 5, 1957, Buford Boone, editor of the Tuscaloosa News, addressed a meeting of Tuscaloosa's White Citizens' Council and implored the leaders to stop supporting the violence. The complete text of his speech was published in the Tuscaloosa News, and Morgan finally broke her silence and wrote him a congratulatory note. With her permission, he published it. Her letter outraged Montgomery's own White Citizens' Council. A furious Mayor Gayle, a WCC member himself, vowed to remove her from the library. But the library trustees remained steadfast in their decision that firing Juliette Morgan would violate her First Amendment right of free speech. Their support provoked fury, and many white residents tore up their cards and boycotted the library. On July 15, 1957, someone burned a cross on Morgan's front lawn. She resigned the following day and that night apparently took her own life with an overdose of sleeping pills.

The large number of people who attended her funeral service on July 16 demonstrated the remorse felt by Montgomery residents. Many who had refused to support Morgan while she lived, and several who had shunned and criticized her, came to pay their respects. Five years later, on August 13, 1962, the Montgomery public library was peacefully integrated.

On March 3, 2005, Juliette Hampton Morgan was inducted into the Alabama Women's Hall of Fame in Marion, and eight months later the City County Library Board and the Montgomery County Commission voted unanimously to name the capital city's central branch on High Street the Juliette Hampton Morgan Memorial Library.

Her life is chronicled in the book titled Juliette Morgan and the Montgomery Bus Boycott by Mildred Perry Miller / - (add the dash at the end of the string in the address field to reach the article)
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-09-11 02:56 PM
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233. Black-American winners of the Nobel Prize
of which there are 4 as of this entry. They are:

1950 Peace--Ralph Bunche

1964 Peace--Martin Luther King, Jr.

1993 Literature--Toni Morrison

2009 Peace--Barack Obama (as President of the USA)

P.S. Some notable black people that probably should have won Nobel prizes, incl. George Washington Carver, are found here at
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-15-11 09:55 AM
Response to Original message
234. The immortal legacy of Henrietta Lacks
From the article: In 1951, an African-American woman named Henrietta Lacks was diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer. She was treated at Johns Hopkins University, where a doctor named George Gey snipped cells from her cervix without telling her. Gey discovered that Lacks' cells could not only be kept alive, but would also grow indefinitely.

For the past 60 years Lacks' cells have been cultured and used in experiments ranging from determining the long-term effects of radiation to testing the live polio vaccine. Her cells were commercialized and have generated millions of dollars in profit for the medical researchers who patented her tissue.

Lacks' family, however, didn't know the cell cultures existed until more than 20 years after her death. Medical writer Rebecca Skloot examines the legacy of Lacks' contribution to science and effect that has had on her family in her new book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

What's really sad is that her family can't afford health insurance. :(
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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-27-11 11:34 AM
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235. Mass deportations of Mexican-Americans in the 1930's
From the article

His father and oldest sister were farming sugar beets in the fields of Hamilton, Mont., and his mother was cooking tortillas when 6-year-old Ignacio Pia saw plainclothes authorities burst into his home.

"They came in with guns and told us to get out," recalls Pia, 81, a retired railroad worker in Bakersfield, Calif., of the 1931 raid. "They didn't let us take anything," not even a trunk that held birth certificates proving that he and his five siblings were U.S.-born citizens.

The family was thrown into a jail for 10 days before being sent by train to Mexico. Pia says he spent 16 years of "pure hell" there before acquiring papers of his Utah birth and returning to the USA.

The deportation of Pia's family tells an almost-forgotten story of a 1930s anti-immigrant campaign. Tens of thousands, and possibly more than 400,000, Mexicans and Mexican-Americans were pressured through raids and job denials to leave the USA during the Depression, according to a USA TODAY review of documents and interviews with historians and deportees. Many, mostly children, were U.S. citizens.

If their tales seem incredible, a newspaper analysis of the history textbooks used most in U.S. middle and high schools may explain why: Little has been written about the exodus, often called "the repatriation."

That may soon change. As the U.S. Senate prepares to vote on bills that would either help illegal workers become legal residents or boost enforcement of U.S. immigration laws, an effort to address deportations that happened 70 years ago has gained traction:


The USA took the land from Mexico, which is half of its former size, but never forgave the Mexicans for being there in the first place, taking space that belonged to good white Americans. :eyes:

Once again, a serious injustice done to POC, and the history books are wiped clean of any negative imagery of the USA as the "great good land". The USA is, but too often ONLY for the "right" people. :(
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