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Sunday, February 1, 2009

Black history month help me name 50 great African Americans

As I was reading one of my blog buddies blog I was reminded that it's black history month. How important is this to remember our history, to remember all the great things that black Americans contributed to our country, and most of all our most recent Black history of our first black president. At the same time we must remember the history of how people black people were treated through the years so we continue to make a change and don't repeat history.

1.Rosa Parks
Sometimes called "The Mother of the Freedom Movement," Rosa Parks set the stage for the Montgomery Bus Boycott when she refused to give a White man her seat on a bus on Dec. 1, 1955. Her protest triggered a 381-day bus boycott that catapulted Martin Luther King Jr. to national prominence and led to the ending of segregation on Montgomery buses. The Montgomery Bus Boycott was the opening act in the Freedom Movement.

2.Maya Angelo, poet, author, singer, actress, activist and educator became a national cultural icon in the '90s, capping three decades of cultural leadership. the former aide to Martin Luther King Jr. and the author of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, and other works, electrified a national audience

3-12 Thelma Mothershed, Elizabeth Eckford, Gloria Ray, Jefferson Thomas, Melba Pattilo, Ernest Green, Carlotta Walls, Minnijean Brown and Terrance Roberts. The nine who broke segregation in the high schools in Little Rock 1957.

13. Bill Cosby
The cosby show, helping black men understand how important is to stand up and be men.

The first Black to win the Academy Award for best performance as an actor, Poitier changed the image of Black in films and paved the way for the breakthroughs of the `70s and `80s. He won the 1964 Oscar for best actor for his performance in Lilies of the field and later produced and directed films. In 1995 he was elected to the board of directors of the Disney Corporation.

15. Will Smith What better of a role model could you have for your boys?

16. Bishop T. D. Jakes, whose multimedia ministry reaches millions

Talk Show Host
Entertainment Executive

18. Condelesa Rice

19. President Obama

20, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Perhaps the most influential African American leader of his time. King is known for his freedom marches and calls for nonviolence and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Today, Dr. King’s birthday (Jan. 20) is a national holiday and serves as a tribute to his legacy.

21. Harriet Tubman
Tubman was a former slave, abolitionist, and women’s suffragist. She is perhaps best known for her role in the Underground Railroad. Commonly referred to as the Moses of slaves, Tubman entered the South 13 times and led over 300 people to freedom. Additionally, Tubman served as a Union spy during the Civil War.

22.Sojourner Truth
Truth, a former slave, made it her life’s mission to use her gifted speaking abilities to speak for abolitionist and women’s suffragist causes. She recruited black soldiers into the Union Army and also spoke about prison reform and abolishing the death penalty. As a highly spiritual individual Truth believed her actions reflected the will of God and often said, “The Spirit calls me, and I must go.”

23.Charles Richard Drew
The idea of a blood bank was pioneered by Dr. Charles Richard Drew (1904-1950). Dr. Drew was an American medical doctor and surgeon who started the idea of a blood bank and a system for the long term preservation of blood plasma (he found that plasma kept longer than whole blood). His ideas revolutionized the medical profession and saved many, many lives. Dr. Drew set up and operated the blood plasma bank at the Presbyterian Hospital in New York City, NY. Drew's project was the model for the Red Cross' system of blood banks, of which he became the first director.

George Washington Carver (1865?-1943) was an American scientist, educator, humanitarian, and former slave. Carver developed hundreds of products from peanuts, sweet potatoes, pecans, and soybeans; his discoveries greatly improved the agricultural output and the health of Southern farmers. Before this, the only main crop in the South was cotton. The products that Carver invented included a rubber substitute, adhesives, foodstuffs, dyes, pigments, and many other products.

The potato chip was invented in 1853 by George Crum. Crum was a Native American/African American chef at the Moon Lake Lodge resort in Saratoga Springs, New York, USA. French fries were popular at the restaurant and one day a diner complained that the fries were too thick. Although Crum made a thinner batch, the customer was still unsatisfied. Crum finally made fries that were too thin to eat with a fork, hoping to annoy the extremely fussy customer. The customer, surprisingly enough, was happy - and potato chips were invented!

The street letter drop mailbox with a hinged door that closed to protect the mail was invented by Philip B. Downing. Downing, an African-American inventor, patented his new device on October 27, 1891 (US Patent # 462,096).

Light BulbLewis Howard Latimer (1848-1928) was an African-American inventor who was a member of Edison's research team, which was called "Edison's Pioneers." Latimer improved the newly-invented incandescent light bulb by inventing a carbon filament (which he patented in 1881).

MorganGarrett Augustus Morgan (March 4, 1877 - August 27, 1963), was an African-American inventor and businessman. He was the first person to patent a traffic signal. He also developed the gas mask (and many other inventions). Morgan used his gas mask (patent No. 1,090,936, 1914) to rescue miners who were trapped underground in a noxious mine. Soon after, Morgan was asked to produce gas masks for the US Army.

1527-1539 Estevanico explores the Southwestern US
1619 The first African slaves are brought to Virginia
1808 The US bans the import of slaves
1820 Harriet Tubman born
1857 Dred Scott Supreme Court decision - slaves do not have the right to bring a case to court and cannot be citizens
1861 Abraham Lincoln becomes President of the US; Civil War starts
1863 Lincoln issues Emancipation Proclamation
1865 Civil War ends; Lincoln is assassinated; 13th amendment to Constitution abolishes slavery
1868 14th amendment to Constitution grants citizenship to former slaves
1870 15th amendment to Constitution prohibits states from denying the right to vote because of race
1909 Peary and Henson reach the North Pole
1929 Martin Luther King, Jr. born on January 15, in Atlanta, Georgia
1936 Jesse Owens wins 4 gold medals at the Olympics in Berlin, Germany
1947 Jackie Robinson is the first black man to play major league baseball
1955 Rosa Parks refuses to give her seat up on a bus in Alabama; Supreme Court orders schools to desegregate with "deliberate speed"
1963 Dr. King gives "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
1964 The Civil Rights Acts prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, or gender; Dr. King is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
1967 Thurgood Marshall appointed to the Supreme Court
1968 Dr. King is assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee
1969 The Supreme Court orders schools to desegregrate
1986 Martin Luther King Jr. Day is declared a national holiday in the U.S.
2009 first African American president


Kelli Gray said...

You are so FUN...I love the name 50!! I am here at home trying to name 50 and its challenging but not as hard as naming 50 Chinese =)
Kelli Gray

Laura said...

Are you going to help me get the other 12?