Banjos belong to a family of instruments that are very old. Drums with strings stretched over them can be traced throughout the Far East, the Middle East and Africa almost from the beginning. They can be played like the banjo, bowed or plucked like a harp depending on their development. These instruments were spread, in […]

Noah Davis was a Baptist minister and author of an emancipation narrative, “A Narrative of the Life of Rev. Noah Davis, a Colored Man.” The narrative was published in 1859. Davis was born in slavery in Madison County in March 1904, and learned about farming and carpentry at an early age. He later joined the […]

Tammi Terrell was an African-American Rhythm and Blues singer. She made her debut at the age of 15 with the song “If You See Bill.” Terrell was born as Thomasina Winifred Montgomery on April 29, 1945, to Jennie Graham and Thomas Montgomery in Philadelphia. After winning a number of local talent contest by the age of […]

3 Highlights About Edmond Dédé Free-born Creole musician and composer Child prodigy on the violin Dédé’s melody Mon Pauvre Coeur is the oldest surviving piece of sheet music by a New Orleans Creole of color Edmond Dédé was a free-born Creole musician and composer. He moved to Europe to study in Paris in 1855 and […]

Corling’s Corner in Petersburg, Virginia, was a site where enslaved blacks were taken and held in slave pens. The slaves would be held until they were sold or hired out. During the antebellum period, it was quite common for slaves to be hired out to work as domestics and laborers. Most of the slaves worked […]

The Muse brothers had an incredible career. The story of the two black albino brothers from Roanoke, Virginia is unique even in the bizarre world of freaks and sideshow. They were initially exploited and then later hailed for their unintentional role in civil rights. Born in the 1890’s the pair were scouted by sideshow agents […]

C. Delores Tucker was a renowned civil rights activist and politician who tirelessly served on behalf of historically-oppressed minorities and women. She was an active participant in the Civil Rights Movement as a part of the Selma-to-Montgomery March in 1965, and a delegate to the historic White House Conference on Civil Rights. Tucker was born […]

The American Negro Academy was organized by Rev. Alexander Crummell on March 5, 1897, in Washington, D.C. Charter members included Paul Lawrence Dunbar, the distinguished poet, and W.E.B. Du Bois, who succeeded Crummell as president of the black brotherhood of academics in 1908. The American Negro Academy brought together persons of African ancestry from around […]

Albert George Hibbler had one of the most distinctive voices of jazz. He was noted for having a strong, emotive, masculine, and steady vibrato sound. Hibbler was born blind on August 16, 1915, in Tyro, Mississippi. His family moved to Little Rock, Arkansas, when he was 12. Soon after the move, Hibbler began singing soprano […]

The colored woman feels that a woman’s cause is one and universal; and that not till the image of God, whether in parian or ebony, is sacred and inviolable; not till race, color, sex, and condition are seen as the accidents, and not the substance of life; not till the universal title of humanity to […]

Whitman Mayo was an African-American actor best known for his role as “Grady” on Sanford & Son, starring Redd Foxx. Mayo was born in New York City and later moved to Los Angeles. From 1951 to 1953, he served in the United States Army in the Korean War. He returned home and attended Los Angeles […]

The Tuskegee Time Machine was a popular expression used during the early twentieth century by black intellectuals including Monroe Trotter, and W. E. B. Du Bois. The Tuskegee Machine referred to the financial control used over black education, particularly, over black newspapers and periodicals by Booker T. Washington. By 1904, Washington had successfully surrounded himself […]

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