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Archive for the ‘Black Olympians’ Category

Events In African American History For October 16


1. In 1849, Avery College established in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.  Rev Charles Avery  established the Allegheny Institute and Mission Church north of Pittsburgh, with the aim of offering elementary and advanced education to qualified African-American students without regard to sex. Both the racial and the coeducational features of the program were controversial, and the school’s connection to Pittsburgh’s A.M.E. Zion Church assured a strong religious influence in the officially nonsectarian institute. (Religious affiliation was not to be a consideration in admission decisions, but instructors were expected to be professing Christians.)

2. In 1855, John Mercer Langston, probably the first black elected to public office in America, wins the race for clerk of the Brownhelm Township, Lorain County, Ohio.

3. In 1859, Harpers Ferry Insurrection.

4. In 1883,  S. E. Thomas Received Patent for Waste Trap

5. In 1895, The nation’s leading African American medical group, the National Medical Association, is founded in Atlanta.

6. In 1901, Booker T. Washington becomes the first black leader to dine at the White House with the president when Theodore Roosevelt invites him. Some black leaders charge Washington’s invitation was a result of his policies that they charge tended to accommodate racism. Nevertheless, the invitation and dinner served to crown Washington as the black leader of the period.

7. In 1940, Benjamin Oliver Davis Sr. was named the first Black General in The U.S. Army.

John Carlos and Tommie Smith

8. In 1968, Sprinters John Carlos and Tommie Smith give the clenched-fist black power salute when accepting their medals at the Mexico City Olympics as a protest against racism in America.  The white Australian sprinter in the historic picture also wore a human rights badge in support of their protest.

9. In 1973, Maynard Jackson, elected mayor of Atlanta.  He served three terms, two consecutive terms from 1974 until 1982 and a third term from 1990 to 1994. He became the first African American mayor of Atlanta in the same week that Coleman Young became the first African-American mayor of Detroit.

10. In 1984, Archbishop  Desmond Tutu is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his work to end white-minority rule in South Africa.

11. In 1995, Nation of Islam leader, Minister Louis Farrakhan, leads the Million Man March to the Nation’s Capital in Washington, D.C. Over a million black men gather to “atone” and organize.

Events In African American History For October 15


1. In 1883, U.S. Supreme Court declared Civil Rights Act of 1875 unconstitutional.  

This decision was spurred by the end of Reconstruction and helped to usher in the Jim Crow era in the South whereby black rights won during Reconstruction were taken away.

2. In 1949, William Hastie nominated for the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. He was the first Black to sit on the court.

3. In 1968, Wyomia Tyus becomes the first person to win a gold medal in the 100 meter race in two consecutive Olympic games.

4. In 1991, Judge Clarence Thomas is confirmed as the 106th associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Events In African American History For October 06


1. In 1847, National Black convention met in Troy, N.Y., with more than sixty delegates from nine states. Nathan Johnson of Massachusetts was elected president.

2. In 1868, Black state convention at Macon, Georgia, protested expulsion of Black politicians from Georgia legislature.

3. In 1871, The Fisk Jubilee Singers an acappella ensemble, consisting of students at Fisk University was organized to tour and raise funds for their college. Their early repertoire consisted mostly of traditional spirituals, but included some Stephen Foster songs. The original group toured along the Underground Railroad path in the United States, as well as performing in England and Europe. Later nineteenth-century groups also toured in Europe.

In 2002 the Library of Congress honored their 1909 recording of “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” by adding it in the United States National Recording Registry.   In 2008 they were awarded a National Medal of Arts.

4. In 1896, H. A. Jackson received Patent for Kitchen Table (variations)

5. In 1896, K. Morehead Received Patent for Reel carrier

6. In 1896, W. D. Davis received Patent for Riding Saddles

7. In 1983, Wilma Rudolph inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame.

Events In African American History For Sept 30


1. In 1750, Crispus Attucks escaped from his master in Framingham Mass.

2. In 1975, Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier fight in the “Thrilla in Manilla”. Ali wins.

3. In 1975, Virgie Ammons patents fireplace damper actuator, “Inside the fireplace chimney is a device called a “Damper”.

4. In 1991, Mike Powell broke the long jump world record when he jumped 8.95 meters at a meet in Tokyo. The previous mark-8.90 meters-was set by Bob Beamon at the 1968 Olympics.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For Sept 12

Gus Cannon

1. Gus Cannon, blues musician who helped to popularize jug bands (such as his own Cannon’s Jug Stompers) in the 1920s and 1930s.

Alger Alexander

2. Alger “Texas” Alexander,  blues singer from Jewett, Texas. In November 1928, Alexander recorded what has been believed by some to be the earliest version of “The House of the Rising Sun.” However it is actually a completely different song called The Rising Sun. Other songs he recorded include “Mama’s Bad Luck Child,” “Sittin’ on a Log,” “Texas Special,” “Broken Yo Yo” and “Don’t You Wish Your Baby was Built Up Like Mine?”.  He was the cousin and uncle of Texas country blues guitarists Lightnin’ Hopkins and Frankie Lee Sims respectively.

Jesse Owens

3. Jesse Owens, Track and field athlete who specialized in the sprints and the long jump. He participated in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, where he achieved international fame by winning four gold medals: one each in the 100 meters, the 200 meters, the long jump, and as part of the 4×100 meter relay team. He was the most successful athlete at the 1936 Summer Olympics, a victory more poignant and often noted because Adolf Hitler had intended the 1936 games to showcase his Aryan ideals and prowess.

He has the Jesse Owens Award accolade named after him in honor of his significant career.

jewel akens

4. Jewel Akens, singer and record producer. He first recorded with Eddie Daniels as Jewel and Eddie on the Silver Records label in 1960. A number of his recordings featured Eddie Cochran on guitar.

He later went solo and recorded “The Birds And The Bees” in 1965, on the Era Records label. The single went to Number 3 in the Billboard Hot 100 chart that year, and Number 2 on the Cash Box chart.

Barry White

5. Barry White, Composer, record producer and singer-songwriter.  A five-time Grammy Award-winner known for his rich bass voice and romantic image, White’s greatest success came in the 1970s as a solo singer and with his Love Unlimited Orchestra, crafting many enduring hit soul, funk, and disco songs. Worldwide, White had many gold and platinum albums and singles, with combined sales of over 100 million.

Vernon Maxwell

6. Vernon Maxwell,  retired  professional basketball player who played in the NBA from 1988-2001, with his longest tenure being with the Houston Rockets. The nickname “Mad Max” was bestowed upon Maxwell by color commentators for his clutch three-point shooting, which reached its pinnacle in the deciding game of the 1994 NBA Finals between Houston and New York.

Jesse Powell

7. Jesse Powell, Grammy-nominated American R&B/soul songwriter-singer. His sisters, Trina & Tamara Powell are also singers as well.

Ruben Studdard

8. Christopher Theodore Ruben Studdard , best known as Ruben Studdard, is an American R&B, pop, and gospel singer. He rose to fame as winner of the second season of American Idol. He received a Grammy Award nomination in December 2003 for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for “Superstar.”

Jennifer Kate Hudson

9. Jennifer Kate Hudson,  recording artist, actress and spokesperson.[1] She came to prominence in 2004 as one of the finalists on the third season of American Idol coming in seventh place. She made her film debut in the 2006 film Dreamgirls, which won her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, a Golden Globe Award, a BAFTA Award, an NAACP Image Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award.

She won a Grammy Award for her eponymous debut album, Jennifer Hudson, which was released in 2008 on Arista Records and was certified gold by the RIAA for selling over 800,000 copies in the US; sales exceeded 1 million copies worldwide. Additionally, it spawned the hit single Spotlight. Her second album I Remember Me was released in March 2011, and has reached number two on the Billboard 200, selling 165,000 copies in its first week of release.

In late 2008, after Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew were killed in a shooting, Hudson stepped out of the limelight for three months. Hudson resumed her public appearances in 2009, and has since performed at the Super Bowl XLIII, the Grammy Awards, American Idol, and The Oprah Winfrey Show.  Hudson has been described as a friend of President Barack Obama, who invited her to appear with him at a fundraiser in Beverly Hills in May 2009.  She also performed at the White House at the “Celebration of Music from the Civil Rights Movement” event.   Her vocal range is mezzo-soprano

Events In African American History For Sept 06


1. In 1988, Lee Roy Young Jr., a 15 year veteran of the State Department of Public Safety, Became the First Black Texas Ranger in modern history. Wilbert Scott was the first Black Texas Ranger in 1865 and served until 1867.

2. In 1967, President Lyndon B. Johnson named Walter E. Washington commissioner and “unofficial” mayor of Washington, D.C.

3, In 1960,  Rafer Johnson won the Olympic Decathlon the first for an African American.

4. In 1905, Atlanta Life Insurance Company established by A.F. Herndon.

5. in 1892, George “Little Chocolate’ Dixon, a black, faced off against Jack Skelly in the featherweight championship. Dixon easily defeated Skelly in the eighth round. African Americans celebrated for two days. The White’s reaction to the Dixon-Skelly match demonstrates their  racist attitude that prevailed during this time. The editor of the New Orleans Times-Democrat said that it was “a mistake to match a negro and a white man, a mistake to bring the races together on any terms of equality, even in the prize ring.’ After this fight, segregation appeared in the boxing ring..  

6. In 1865, Thaddeus Stevens, powerful U.S. congressman, urged confiscation of estates of Confederate leaders and the distribution of land to adult freedmen in forty-acre lots.

7. In 1826, John Brown Russwurm became the first Black to graduate college in America when he graduated from Bowdoin College on this date. 

NOTE: It is often confused with the first to graduate from Amherst College in Massachusetts.  Edward Jones a mullato passing for white graduated from Amherst College in Massachusetts. Edward Jones’s father, Jehu Jones, was a wealthy free mulatto hotel owner who associated himself with the elite white people of Charleston and “seldom kept the company of even light-complexioned free blacks and never of slaves.” Edward Jones however, claimed to be proud of his African heritage and attempted to proved it by joining and becoming a member of the (not black but)  Brown Fellowship society in Charleston.

Events In African American History For Sept 03


1. In 1838, Frederick Douglass escapes from slavery disguised as a sailor.

2. In 1960, Wilma Goldean Rudolph First American Woman to Win Three Gold Medals in the Olympics. (Rome)

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