Moment in Black History: Names You May Not Recognize

If you have never heard of these names that's ok. There are a lot of Black History figures that are little know or seldom talked about 

  • Ida B. Wells: On July 16th, 1862, journalist and editor Ida B. Wells was born. Wells began a professional career in publishing but would become best known for her anti-lynching crusade in the 1890s. Wells was prompted to fight the common Southern practice when two of her friends were lynched after being accused of raping a white woman. She died of uremia in Chicago on March 25th, 1931, at age 68.

  • Mr. Washington Goes to Washington: On October 16th, 1901, Booker T. Washington's autobiography, Up From Slavery, garnered him an invitation to the home of then-president Theodore Roosevelt, making Washington the first black man who wasn't cleaning the silver to visit the White House. A chorus of objections from Southern politicians and publications ensued.

  • Honoring George Washington Carver: January 5th is George Washington Carver Day, which honors the brilliant agricultural chemist who died on that day in 1943. Nicknamed "the Peanut Man" and the "Wizard of Tuskegee," Carver headed the agricultural department of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama and was one of the most prominent scientists of his day. Renowned for finding new uses for everyday items, Carver's research in farming techniques helped to revolutionize farming in America. He once wrote, "I wanted to know the name of every stone and flower and insect and bird and beast."

  • First Black Man to Win the Nobel Peace Prize: On December 10th, 1950, Dr. Ralph J. Bunche became the first African-American to win the Nobel Peace Prize. The political scientist and diplomat received the honor for his late 1940s mediation in Palestine. Bunche was also involved in formation and administration of the United Nations.  In 1963, he received the Medal of Freedom from President John F. Kennedy.

  • The Kings Marry: On June 18th, 1953, Martin Luther King Junior married Coretta Scott on the lawn of her parents' house in Heiberger, Alabama. The couple would have four children together -- Yolanda King, Martin Luther King the Third, Dexter Scott King and Bernice King -- and become synonymous with the civil rights movement.

  • Dr. Clark Gets the Spingarn Award: On December 15th, 1961, Dr. Kenneth B. Clark, a psychologist and educator, was awarded the NAACP Spingarn Award for his pioneering studies that influenced the Supreme Court decision in Brown Vs. Board of Education. Clark's study involving black and white dolls helped show the court that separate but equal did in fact have a negative impact on black children and that U.S. schools were anything but equal.

  • Malcolm X Leaves the Nation of Islam: On March 8th, 1964, Malcolm X announced his break with the Nation of Islam. Although he retained his Muslim faith, he felt the Nation of Islam had "gone as far as it can" because of its rigid religious teachings. His stated goal was to pursue black nationalism and "heighten the political consciousness" of African-Americans. He also had a desire to work with civil rights leaders but claimed Nation leader Elijah Muhammad had prevented him from doing so.

  • Angela Davis Among FBI's Most Wanted: On August 18th, 1970, professor Angela Davis became the third woman and the 309th individual to make the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List. A California warrant issued for Davis charged her as an accomplice to conspiracy, kidnapping and homicide for her involvement in the Black Panthers' efforts to gain support for the imprisoned George Jackson, Fleeta Drumgo and John Clutchette by kidnapping the judge in their case at gunpoint. She was acquitted of all charges in 1972 when the court ruled that her owning the guns used in the crime wasn't sufficient to establish her responsibility for the scheme.

  • First Black DAR: On December 28th, 1977, Karen Farmer became the first African-American member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She was able to trace her ancestry back to William Hood, a solider in the Revolutionary War.


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