1879 - British troops invade Zululand from Natal, confident that they
could crush the Zulu forces armed with spears and shields.
However, the well-trained Zulu army repulses the initial
attack, killing over 1300 British troops in the Battle of
Isandlwana. But that success will exhaust the Zulu army, and
before Cetshwayo could mount a counteroffensive into Natal,
British troops from around the Empire will be rushed to
southern Africa, where their advanced weaponry will bring them
ultimate victory in the six-month Anglo-Zulu war. The British
will conclude their aggressive venture by dividing up Zululand
among thirteen pro-British chiefs, effectively destroying the
1890 - Mordecai Wyatt Johnson is born in Paris, Tennessee. He will
become the first African American president of Howard
University in 1926, a position he will hold for 34 years. He
will also be a recipient of the NAACP's Spingarn Medal in 1929.
He will retire in 1960, and will join the ancestors on
September 11, 1976 in Washington, DC.
1920 - James Farmer is born in Marshall, Texas. He will become an
African American civil rights leader and activist. He will
found the Committee on Racial Equality in 1942 and later
change the name of the organization to the Congress of Racial
Equality. Farmer and CORE will be the architects of the
"Freedom Rides" that will lead to the desegregation of over
100 bus terminals in the South. He will become a major player
during the Civil Rights movement. He will be awarded the
Congressional Medal of Freedom in 1998 by President Bill
Clinton. He will join the ancestors on July 9, 1999 in
Fredericksburg, Virginia, at the age of 79.
1946 - George Duke is born in San Rafael, California, and will be
reared in Marin City, a working class section of Marin County.
He will become a major recording artist, heavily influenced by
Miles Davis and the soul-jazz sound of Les McCann and Cal
Tjader. He and a young singer named Al Jarreau will form a
group becoming the house band at San Francisco's Half Note
Club. Over the years, George will work with Sonny Rollins,
Dexter Gordon, Frank Zappa, Cannonball Adderley, Nancy Wilson,
Joe Williams, and Dizzy Gillespie. He will be a prolific
songwriter and producer.
1948 - The United States Supreme Court decision (Sipuel v. Oklahoma
State Board of Regents) said a state must afford African
Americans "an opportunity to commence the study of law at a
state institution at the same time as [other] citizens."
1952 - The University of Tennessee admits its first African American
1959 - Berry Gordy borrows $800 from a family loan fund to form Motown
Records. The record company's first releases will appear on
the Tamla label.
.1964 - Leftist rebels in Zanzibar begin their successful revolt against
1965 - Noted playwright Lorraine Hansberry joins the ancestors, after
succumbing to cancer in New York City at the age of 34, while
her second play, "The Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window," is
playing on Broadway. Her first and most famous work, "A
Raisin in the Sun," brought her wide acclaim on Broadway,
earned her the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for best
play, and became a motion picture starring Sidney Poitier,
Ruby Dee, and Claudia McNeil.
1970 - Raekwon from legendary hip hop group Wu Tang Clan is born
1971 - The Congressional Black Caucus is organized.
1982 - A commemorative stamp of Ralph Bunche is issued by the U.S.
Postal Service as part of its Great Americans series.
1990 - Civil Rights activist Rev. Al Sharpton is stabbed in Brooklyn,
New York, in Bensonhurst.
1995 - In Port-au-Prince, Haiti, an American soldier is killed and
another wounded during a shootout with a former Haitian army
officer who also was killed.
1995 - Qubilah Shabazz, the daughter of Malcolm X, is arrested in
Minneapolis, Minnesota on charges that she had tried to hire
a hit man to kill Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. The
charges will later be dropped.
2010 – A 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastates the island nation of Haiti
1869 - A National Convention of African American leaders meets in
Washington, DC. Frederick Douglass is elected president.
1869 - The first African American labor convention is held when the
Convention of the Colored National Labor Union takes place.
1873 - P.B.S. Pinchback relinquishes the office of governor, saying
at the inauguration of the new Louisiana governor: "I now have
the honor to formally surrender the office of governor, with
the hope that you will administer the government in the
interests of all the people [and that] your administration
will be as fair toward the class that I represent, as mine has
been toward the class represented by you."
1966 - Robert C. Weaver becomes the first African American appointed
to a presidential cabinet position, when President Lyndon B.
Johnson names him to head the newly created Department of
Housing and Urban Development.
1979 - A commemorative stamp of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is issued
by the U.S. Postal Service as part of its Black Heritage USA
commemorative series. The stamp of the slain civil rights
leader is the second in the series.
1979 - Singer Donnie Hathaway joins the ancestors after jumping from
the 15th floor of New York's Essex House hotel.
1982 - Hank Aaron and Frank Robinson are elected to the Baseball Hall
1983 - Citing Muhammad Ali's deteriorating physical condition, the AMA
calls for the banning of prizefighting because new evidence
suggests that chronic brain damage is prevalent in boxers.
1987 - Even Mecham, then governor of Arizona, rescinded the gubernatorial decree by Gov. Bruce Babbit that established the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday.
1989 - Sterling Allen Brown joins the ancestors in Washington, DC. He
had devoted his life to the development of an authentic black
folk literature. He was one of the first scholars to identify
folklore as a vital component of the black aesthetic and to
recognize its validity as a form of artistic expression. He
worked to legitimatize this genre in several ways. As a
critic, he exposed the shortcomings of white literature that
stereotyped blacks and demonstrated why black authors are best
suited to describe the Black experience. As a poet, he mined
the rich vein of black Southern culture, replacing primitive
or sentimental caricatures with authentic folk heroes drawn
from Afro-American sources. He was associated with Howard
University for almost sixty years.
1990 - L. Douglas Wilder of Virginia is inaugurated as governor and
becomes the first elected African American governor in the
United States. Wilder won the election in Virginia by a mere
7,000 votes in a state once the heart of the Confederacy.
Later in the year, he will receive the NAACP's Spingarn Medal
for his lifetime achievements.
2010 - Rhythm & Blues singer Teddy Pendergrass, one of the most electric
and successful figures in music until a car crash 28 years ago
left him in a wheelchair, joins the ancestors after
succumbing to colon cancer at the age of 59.
1810 - The Argentine national hero from Buenos Aires, Argentina,
Antonio Ruiz (El Negro Falucho), joins the ancestors, fighting
for his country.
1820 - The first organized emigration back to Africa begins when
86 free African Americans leave New York Harbor aboard the
Mayflower of Liberia. They are bound for the British colony
of Sierra Leone, which welcomes free African Americans as well as fugitive slaves.
1867 - The Anglo-American merchant George Peabody, founds the $ 2 million Peabody Education Fund. It is the first philanthropy
established in the wake of the Civil War to promote free public
education in 12 Civil War devastated southern states for whites and African Americans. The Peabody Fund will provide funding for construction, endowments, scholarships, teacher and industrial education for newly freed slaves.
1898 - Haywood Hall is born in South Omaha, Nebraska. After
relocating to Minneapolis, Minnesota with his family, he will
join the U.S. Army. He will serve with the 370th Infantry in
France during World War I. Returning to Chicago, Illinois after
the war, he will be active as a Black Nationalist, becoming a
member of the African Blood Brotherhood and the Communist Party of the USA. In 1925, he will adopt the pseudonym, Harry
Haywood. He will be a leading proponent of Black Nationalism,
self-determination, and the idea that American Blacks are a
colonized people who should organize themselves into a nation. From 1926 to 1930, he will study in the Soviet Union, where he will meet several anti-colonial revolutionaries, including
Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh. On his return to the U.S. in 1931, he
will be chosen to lead the Communist Party's Negro Department, and in 1934 will be elected a member of its politburo. The Spanish Civil War will take him to Spain in 1937, where he
will fight in a volunteer Communist brigade against General
Francisco Franco's fascist regime. During World War II, his
belief in black self-determination and territorial autonomy
will put him at odds with Communist Party policy, which had
gravitated away from support for a Black nation in the American south. His agitation on "The Negro Question" led to his
expulsion from the Party in 1959. He will remain in Chicago,
supporting Black Nationalist movements such as the Nation of
Islam. He will publish "Negro Liberation" (1948), a detailed
analysis of the national character of Black oppression,
particularly in the South. In his later years he will write
his memoirs, "Black Bolshevik: Autobiography of an Afro-
American Communist" (1978). Harry Haywood's greatest
contribution will be his central role in developing a
theoretical understanding of the Black nation in the United
States. He will join the ancestors in January, 1985.
1898 - Melvin B. Tolson, author and educator, is born in Moberly,
Missouri. Educated at Fisk, Lincoln, and Columbia
Universities, his first volume of poetry, "Rendezvous with
America," will be published in 1944. He will be best known
for "Libretto for the Republic of Liberia," published in
1931 - The Harlem Experimental Theatre Group performs its first play at St. Philips Parish House. The group's advisory board
includes famed actress Rose McClendon, author Jesse Fauset,
and Grace Nail.
1933 - Walter E. Fauntroy is born in Washington, DC. He will become a
civil rights leader and minister. He will later become the
non-voting delegate to the United States Congress for the
District of Columbia from 1971 to 1991.
1945 - Robert Nesta Marley is born in St. Ann, Jamaica to Captain
Norval and Cedella Marley. He will become a successful singer along with his group, The Wailers. Bob Marley and The Wailers were among the earliest to sing Reggae, a blend of Jamaican dance music and American Rhythm & Blues with a heavy dose of Rastafarianism, the Jamaican religion that blends Christian and African teachings. He will join the ancestors in 1981 at the
age of 36, succumbing to cancer. As a result of his
accomplishments, he will be awarded Jamaica's Order Of Merit, the nation's third highest honor, (April, 1981) in recognition
of his outstanding contribution to the country's culture. He
will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.
1961 - The "jail-in" movement starts in Rock Hill, South Carolina,
when arrested students demand to be jailed rather than pay
1993 - Arthur Ashe, tennis champion, joins the ancestors at the age of 49. He succumbs from complications of AIDS, contracted from a transfusion during a earlier heart surgery.
1635 - America's first public school, the Boston Latin School, opened in Boston. Black students were excluded from attending.
1882 - Henry Highland Garnet, abolitionist, preacher, diplomat and
protest leader, joins the ancestors in Monrovia, Liberia at
the age of 66.
1907 - Wendell P. Dabney establishes "The Union." The Cincinnati,
Ohio paper's motto is "For no people can become great without being united, for in union, there is strength."
1920 - The National Association of Professional Baseball Clubs is
founded by Andrew "Rube" Foster. They will be called the
Negro National League. It will become the first successful
African American professional baseball league. Two other
leagues had previously been started, but failed to last more
than one season.
1923 - The first African American professional basketball team "The Renaissance" is organized by Robert J. Douglas. It is named
after its home court, the Renaissance Casino. They will
play from 1923 to 1939 and have a record of 1,588 wins
against 239 losses. They will become the first African
American team in the Basketball Hall of Fame.
1957 - The Southern Leadership Conference is founded at a meeting of ministers in New Orleans, Louisiana. Martin Luther King, Jr. is elected its first president. Later in the year its name
will be changed to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
1973 - Gertrude E. Downing and William Desjardin Corner Cleaner Attachment, Patent No. 3,715,772 on February 13, 1973
1976 - General Murtala Mohammed, head of Nigeria, who came to power in 1975 after General Gowon is ousted, joins the ancestors
after being killed in an unsuccessful counter-coup. His
chief of staff, General Olusegun Obasanjo, will assume
Mohammed's post and his promise to hand over political power to civilian rule.
1996 - Minister Louis Farrakhan, of the Nation of Islam, visits Iran
to celebrate its 1979 revolution ousting the Shah.
1760 - Richard Allen, is born into slavery in Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania. He will purchase his freedom in 1786 and will
become a preacher the same year. He will become the first
African American ordained in the Methodist Episcopal Church
(1799), and founder of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME)
Church in 1816, and first bishop of the AME Church. He will
join the ancestors on March 26, 1831.
1818 - Possible birth of Frederick Douglass “the Great Emancipator” (some sources say 1817) in Tuckahoe (Talbot County), Maryland, is attributed to this date. He will state, "I have no accurate knowledge of my age, never having seen any authentic record containing it... and it is the wish of most masters within my knowledge to keep their slaves thus ignorant." He will be a great African American leader/orator and "one of the giants of nineteenth century America. He was born Frederick Bailey and will change his name to Douglass after he escapes slavery in 1838. Some accounts say he purchased his freedom in 1845. He became the greatest abolitionist of his time and was also the creator of the “North Star” newspaper. He will join the ancestors on February 20, 1895 in Washington, DC.
1867 - Morehouse College is organized in Augusta, Georgia. The
school will be moved later to Atlanta.
1867 - New registration law in Tennessee abolishes racial
distinctions in voting.
1936 - The National Negro Congress is organized at a Chicago meeting attended by eight hundred seventeen delegates representing more than five hundred organizations. Asa Phillip Randolph of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters is elected
president of the new organization.
1946 - Gregory Hines is born in New York City. A child tap-dancing
star in the group Hines, Hines, and Dad, Hines will lead a
new generation of tap dancers that will benefit from the
advice and teaching of such tap legends as Henry Le Tang,
"Honi" Coles, Sandman Sims, the Nicholas Brothers, and Sammy Davis, Jr. He will also become a successful actor in movies
including "White Knights," "Tap," and "A Rage in Harlem." He
will join the ancestors on August 9, 2003.
1978 - Maxima Corporation, a computer systems and management company, is incorporated. Headquartered in Lanham, Maryland, it will become one of the largest African American-owned companies
and earn its founder, chairman and CEO, Joshua I. Smith, chairmanship of the U.S. Commission on Minority Business Development.
Very informative....Ditto.. Thanks for the information.
Republic Day in Guyana
1841 - Grafton Tyler Brown is born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. A lithographer and painter, he will be considered to be one of the first African-American artists in California. His paintings will be collected by the Oakland (California) Museum of Art, Washington State Museum, and private individuals. He will join the ancestors on March 3, 1918.
1865 - Tennessee adopts a new constitution abolishing slavery. This will allow Tennessee to become the first former confederate state to be re-admitted to the Union.
1868 - On this day Dr.William Edward Burghardt DuBois, (W E B DuBois) educator and civil rights advocate, is born in Great Barrington, Mass. He was also a Black sociologist and one of the most important thinkers of the 20th century. A race riot convinced him that he couldn’t confine himself to scholarly research, but to find a way to protest the worsening conditions of Black life in America.
1888 - Horace Pippin is born in West Chester, Pennsylvania. His right arm crippled in World War I (where he will earn a Purple Heart), Pippin will paint holding the wrist of his practically useless right arm in his left fist. The self-taught artist will win wide acclaim for the primitive style and strong emotional content of his work. He will join the ancestors on July 6, 1946.
1895 - William H. Heard, AME minister and educator, named minister to Liberia.
1898 - The African American postmaster of Lake City, South Carolina joins the ancestors after being lynched. His wife and three daughters are shot and maimed for life.
1915 - Death of Robert Smalls (75), Reconstruction congressman, in Beaufort, South Carolina
1921 - Jean-Bedel Bokassa I is born in Bobangul, Oubangul-Chari, French Equatorial Africa (present-day Central African Republic). He will become a career soldier who will seize power from President David Dacko in a 1965 coup. In 1972 he will proclaim himself president-for-life, ruling the country with brutal repression, using its revenues for personal enrichment, and crowning himself emperor in 1976. He will be deposed in September 1979 and was imprisoned for murder in 1986 after seven years in exile. He will be pardoned in 1993 and will join the ancestors in 1996 at the age of 75.
1938 - Ishmael Reed is born in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He will become a poet (nominated for the National Book Award for "Conjure"), novelist ("Yellow Back," "Radio Broke Down," "Mumbo Jumbo," "Flight to Canada"), and anthologist of the well-received "19 Necromancers from Now" and "The Yardbird Reader, Volume I."
1953 - Bass Singer Melvin Franklin of The Temptations died of complications following a brain seizure in Los Angeles. He was 53.
1972 – Political activist Angela Davis is released from jail. She was not only an activist but also an educator and author and was associated with the Communist Party USA, the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Panthers
1979 - St. Lucia gains its independence from Great Britain.
1964 - Rebecca Lee Crumpler becomes the first black woman to receive an M.D. degree. She graduated from the New England Female Medical College. Rebecca Lee Crumpler was born in 1833. She worked from 1852-1860 as a nurse in Massachusetts.
1966 - Military leaders oust Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana - while on a peace mission, in Beijing, to stop the Vietnam War.
2008 – Raul Castro is elected president of Cuba after his brother Fidel resigns.
In 1939 Japanese General Takahashi met with NOI leader Elijah Muhammad and explained that Japan was committed to the Black man’s struggle and wanted to destroy America for all the crimes it had committed against people of color throughout the world.
2 years later the attack on Pearl Harbor.
4 years later the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and Executive Order 9066
(the irony of some of the info associated with Wheatley and Duncan falling on the same dates is rather odd but nothing spooky at all)
1704 - A school for African Americans is opened in New York City by Elias Neau, a Frenchman.
1708 - A slave revolt occurs in Newton, Long Island in New York State. Seven whites are killed. Two African American male slaves and an Indian slave are hanged, and an African American woman is burned alive.
1776 - George Washington, in his letter of acknowledgment to Phyllis Wheatley for a poem she wrote for his birthday, says, "I thank you most sincerely for...the elegant line you enclosed...the
style and manner exhibit a striking proof of your poetic talents."
1778 - Rhode Island General Assembly in precedent-breaking act
authorizes the enlistment of slaves.
1784 - Phyllis Wheatley, poet, joins the ancestors.
1854 - Some 50 slavery opponents meet in Ripon, Wisconsin, to call for the creation of a new political group, which will become the
1859 - Arkansas legislature requires free African Americans to choose between exile and enslavement.
1879 – The “Exodus of 1879” where many Blacks left the South in large numbers heading North starts.
1932 - Richard Spikes invented/patented automatic gear shift.
1940 - United States population: 131,669,275. Black population: 12,865,518 (9.8 per cent). Richard Wright's Native Son published.
1942 - Riots against African Americans occur in Detroit, Michigan at
the Sojourner Truth Homes.
1943 - "Porgy and Bess" opens on Broadway with Anne Brown and Todd Duncan in starring roles.
1945 - Charles "Bubba" Smith is born in Beaumont, Texas. He will
become a professional football player with the Baltimore Colts, Oakland Raiders and the Houston Oilers. After a successful football career, he will become an actor in the "Police Academy" series. He also will become the president and CEO of Vital Aircraft Company, which solicits the Department of Defense for government contracts. To illustrate his enduring interest in education and work with children, he will endow an engineering scholarship at his alma mater, Michigan State University.
1948 - Sgt. Cornelius F. Adjetey becomes the first martyr for national independence of Ghana.
1977 - Death of comedian Eddie ("Rochester") Anderson (71).
1984 - Singer Michael Jackson wins eight Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, breaking the previous record of six awards won by a single artist in 1965. Jackson's awards stem from his album "Thriller," which became the biggest selling record of all time with 35 million copies sold since its release in 1982.
1990 - Philip Emeagwali awarded the Gordon Bell Prize (computing's Nobel Prize) for solving one of the twenty most difficult problems in the computing field.
1991 - "The Content of our Character," the controversial book on
affirmative action and race relations by Shelby Steele, wins the National Book Critics Circle Award.
1998 - Todd Duncan joins the ancestors at his home in Washington, DC, at the age 95. His ascension is on the fifty-fifth anniversary of his starring role in the Broadway opening of "Porgy and Bess."