February 22: Educator Octavius V. Catto Was Born on This Date in 1839

0 Posted by - February 22, 2022 - Birthdays, Black History, On This Date

By Victor Trammell

Photo credits: YouTube screenshot

On February 22, 1839, in Charleston, South Carolina, Octavius Valentine Catto (pictured) was born to a free mother.

Catto was a civil rights activist, educator, and intellectual in Philadelphia. He rose to the position of principal of all-male students at the Institute for Colored Youth, where he had previously received his education.

He was born into a well-to-do mixed-race family. Catto and the rest of his household migrated north when he was still very young. He completed his education and worked as a teacher before becoming involved in civil rights.

Catto was also a well-known cricket and baseball player in nineteenth-century Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

On October 10, 1871, he was shot and died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Catto was tragically killed during election-day violence.

Ethnic Irish members of the Democratic Party were a cross-section of individuals who were anti-Reconstruction and opposed black voting rights.

They assaulted and killed black males on election day to prevent them from voting for Republican candidates.

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