Tuesday, February 28, 2017



  Today marks the end of Black History month.  However, as stated in January I will continue to post black history through the year.  The link below provide the top 23 books in regarding black history.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/black-history-book-list_us_58acc348e4b03d80af706cb1

Monday, February 27, 2017

Pharaoh Akhenaten 



Pharaoh Akhenaten of Ancient Egypt (ruled 1501-1474 BC)The most extraordinary figure in Ancient Egyptian history

Akhenaten (1501-1474 BC), of the Eighteenth Egyptian Dynasty, is best known as a religious reformer. Of this great man J. A. Rogers, the great Jamaican historian, says the following: "Lord Supreme of the then civilized world, with the mightiest army at his command, he preached a gospel of peace and preached it so consistently that when subject nations rebelled he refused to attack them. Living centuries before King David, he wrote psalms as beautiful as the Judean monarch. [Several] hundred years before Christ, he preached and lived a gospel of perfect love, brotherhood, and truth. Two thousand years before Mohammed he taught the doctrine of the One God. Three thousand years before Darwin, he sensed the unity that runs through all living things. Akhenaton [sic], too was the richest man on earth."
Having dispatched the High Priest of Amen to oversee a quarrying expedition, he promoted the minor deity, Aten, to the position of sole deity throughout the country. In the city of Karnak, he built a temple to this deity enforcing a more strict monotheism. The king surrounded himself with a new set of officials. Many of these were foreigners or Egyptians of the lower orders. In this way the Amen priesthood/civil service were sidestepped.
Unhappy with Waset, the king built a new capital further north called Akhetaten. The American urban planner, Earl Faruq, in an interesting essay, noted that: "Great importance was attached to cleanliness in Amarna [i.e. Akhetaten], as in other Egyptian cities. Toilets and sewers were in use to dispose waste. Soap was made for washing the body. Perfumes and essences were popular against body odor. A solution of natron was used to keep insects from houses … Amarna was landscaped with flowers and beautiful gardens as part of Akhenaton's [sic] land use scheme. Amarna may have been the first planned "garden city" … The temples and personal chapels built throughout the city were open to the air. This allowed for the worship of the sun which was contrasted with the closed temples of Thebes. Officials laid out great estates, attractively incorporating nature into their plans. Workman['s] houses were erected on well ordered streets in grid iron fashion."
By 1493 or 1492 BC the king's religious revolution was complete. He changed his name from Amenhotep IV to Akhenaten and instituted a revolution in Egyptian art. Gone were the old stylised representations. In some of the new statues, Akhenaten is portrayed as father and mother to the nation with an appropriate synthesis of male and female body shapes.
All of this information is extracted from When We Ruled. To find out more about this book



Sunday, February 26, 2017



History of the Black Church
Black Churches During the colonial period, the Christianization of slaves
was erratic and generally ineffective until the 1740s.
Then evangelical revivals began to attract significant numbers of black converts,
largely because they enabled the lower classes,
including slaves, to pray and preach in public.
In the emotional fervor of the revival meetings
whites and blacks preached to and converted one another.
Baptists and Methodists licensed black men to preach, and by the 1770s some black ministers,
slave as well as free, were pastoring their own congregations.
Black churches in the South were subject to restrictions
intended to prevent unsupervised slave assemblies.
But despite occasional white harassment, southern black churches survived
and provided a limited religious independence.
In the antebellum years, Christianity spread gradually among the slaves.
Some attended church with whites or under white supervision,
but the majority had little if any access to formal church services.
Nevertheless slaves often conducted their own religious meetings,
with or without their owners' consent.
They developed a distinctive Christianity in which blacks figured as
God's chosen people awaiting their exodus from American bondage.
The spirituals, which expressed the slaves' religious traditions,
were also a way of transmitting these traditions to future generations.
In the North, the abolition of slavery gave blacks more leeway to exercise their religious preferences.
Roused by discriminatory treatment in white-dominated churches,
blacks in Philadelphia founded two influential churches,
Bethel African Methodist and St. Thomas African Episcopal in 1794.
Bethel's pastor, Richard Allen, and St. Thomas's pastor,
Absalom Jones, both former slaves, exercised civic leadership
in the black community in Philadelphia.
Over the next decade, separate black congregations sprang
up in free black communities across the North.
In 1816, the first major black denomination, the African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) church,
was formed under the leadership of Richard Allen.
Because the church was the only institution that African-Americans controlled,
it served as the primary forum for addressing their
social and political, as well as religious, needs.
Many of the leading black activists in the abolition movement
were ministers.
And when the first National Negro Convention was organized in 1830,
it met at Bethel A.M.E. church in Philadelphia with Richard Allen presiding.
Black churches were overwhelmingly Protestant
because blacks had little contact with Roman Catholicism
outside of Maryland and Louisiana.
Some blacks did become Catholics, however,
and because other religious orders refused black candidates,
two communities of black nuns were founded-
-the Oblate Sisters of Providence in 1829 and the
Holy Family Sisters in 1842.
The first black American priest, James Augustine Healy,
was ordained in 1854.
Black church membership was predominantly female,
but its clergy was exclusively male since black women
were barred from ordination until the twentieth century.
Exceptional laywomen preachers like Jarena Lee and Amanda Berry Smith
were approved as traveling evangelists by the A.M.E. church,
but women were not allowed to head congregations.
Women led home prayer meetings and served on auxiliary,
missionary, and Sunday school boards.
The first Americans to embark on foreign missions were
two Virginia-born black Baptists.
In the 1780s, George Liele established churches in Jamaica,
and David George founded congregations in Nova Scotia and Sierra Leone.
With support from the American Colonization Society, the A.M.E. missionary Daniel Coker
sailed to Sierra Leone in 1820 and the black Baptist Lott Carey
began work in Liberia in 1821.
The A.M.E. church also established missions in Haiti and Canada.
During the Civil War, northern missionaries headed South
in the wake of the Union armies to organize schools and churches among the former slaves.
The increase in southern members enlarged the size of northern black
denominations and made them national in scope.
When Reconstruction opened electoral politics
to black participation, ministers took active roles,
Subsequently, violence and disfranchisement drove blacks
out of politics and relegated black leaders primarily to the church.
In the late nineteenth century, worsening race relations
prompted some black Americans to encourage large-scale emigration to Africa.
One of the most forceful proponents of emigration was A.M.E. bishop Henry McNeal Turner,
whose ordination of South African ministers contributed to
the development of an independent African church movement.
Few black Americans emigrated, but the belief in pan-African unity
inspired prominent black clergy like the Episcopalian Alexander Crummell,
a former missionary to Liberia,
to preach that it was the divinely appointed
destiny of African-Americans to convert Africa to Christianity.
Black church membership at the end of the century
stood at 2.7 million out of a population of 8.3 million.
Baptists constituted the largest denomination.
In 1895, they formed the National Baptist Convention, Inc.,
which split into two branches twelve years later.
As time passed, new Holiness and Pentecostal churches disrupted older
black denominations by emphasizing doctrines of
sanctification and speaking in tongues.
A black preacher, William J. Seymour, led the 1906 Azusa Street Revival in
Los Angeles that gave rise to Pentecostal churches across the nation.
Beginning in the 1890s and mounting steadily during and after World War I,
rural southern blacks migrated to cities
in the North as well as the South. Larger city churches,
like Abyssinian Baptist in New York and Olivet Baptist in Chicago,
developed extensive social services to assist the newcomers.
Migrants strained the resources of existing urban churches
and transported rural congregations into the small home
and storefront churches that proliferated in the growing ghettos.
Urbanization also presented new religious alternatives.
Catholicism attracted significant numbers of blacks,
primarily because of parochial schools.
Esoteric versions of Judaism and Islam flourished,
asserting that Christianity was a religion exclusively for whites.
Charismatic religious leaders like Father Divine gained followers
with promises of health and happiness in this world as well as the next.
Twentieth-century urbanization and modernization challenged
the black church as a conservative and apolitical institution.
At the same time, black intellectuals celebrated
Despite secular competition, the church retained
a strong influence in black social, cultural, and political life.
Secular organizations, such as the Universal Negro Improvement Association
and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
depended heavily upon the support of local ministers and churches,
as did the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s.
The career of Martin Luther King, Jr., epitomized for many the
religious basis of the political struggle for racial equality,
and two decades later, Rev. Jesse Jackson's campaigns
for the presidency demonstrated the organizational
strength of the black churches.
In the 1960s and 1970s black militants claimed that Christianity
was incompatible with black identity and power.
Some were attracted by the separatist ideals of the
Nation of Islam as articulated by Malcolm X.
In response, some black clergy formulated a black theology
that emphasized liberation from oppression as the central gospel message.
Recently, black women theologians have condemned sexism in the church.
The black church is no longer the only institution
in which black Americans exercise control.
The authority of the church, according to some social analysts,
has weakened, especially among the urban poor,
but statistically black church membership has remained high.
Bibliography:
C. Eric Lincoln and Lawrence H. Mamiya,
The Black Church in the American Experience (1990);
Albert J. Raboteau, Slave Religion: The "Invisible Institution" in the Antebellum South (1978).
Author:
Albert J. Raboteau



Saturday, February 25, 2017



The Lesser-Known History of African-American Cowboys



In his 1907 autobiography, cowboy Nat Love recounts stories from his life on the frontier so cliché, they read like scenes from a John Wayne film. He describes Dodge City, Kansas, a town smattered with the romanticized institutions of the frontier: “a great many saloons, dance halls, and gambling houses, and very little of anything else.” He moved massive herds of cattle from one grazing area to another, drank with Billy the Kid and participated in shootouts with Native peoples defending their land on the trails. And when not, as he put it, “engaged in fighting Indians,” he amused himself with activities like “dare-devil riding, shooting, roping and such sports.”
Though Love’s tales from the frontier seem typical for a 19th-century cowboy, they come from a source rarely associated with the Wild West. Love was African-American, born into slavery near Nashville, Tennessee.


Few images embody the spirit of the American West as well as the trailblazing, sharpshooting, horseback-riding cowboy of American lore. And though African-American cowboys don’t play a part in the popular narrative, historians estimate that one in four cowboys were black. 
The cowboy lifestyle came into its own in Texas, which had been cattle country since it was colonized by Spain in the 1500s. But cattle farming did not become the bountiful economic and cultural phenomenon recognized today until the late 1800s, when millions of cattle grazed in Texas. 
White Americans seeking cheap land—and sometimes evading debt in the United States—began moving to the Spanish (and, later, Mexican) territory of Texas during the first half of the 19th century. Though the Mexican government opposed slavery, Americans brought slaves with them as they settled the frontier and established cotton farms and cattle ranches. By 1825, slaves accounted for nearly 25 percent of the Texas settler population. By 1860, fifteen years after it became part of the Union, that number had risen to over 30 percent—that year’s census reported 182,566 slaves living in Texas. As an increasingly significant new slave state, Texas joined the Confederacy in 1861. Though the Civil War hardly reached Texas soil, many white Texans took up arms to fight alongside their brethren in the East.  
While Texas ranchers fought in the war, they depended on their slaves to maintain their land and cattle herds. In doing so, the slaves developed the skills of cattle tending (breaking horses, pulling calves out of mud and releasing longhorns caught in the brush, to name a few) that would render them invaluable to the Texas cattle industry in the post-war era. 
But with a combination of a lack of effective containment— barbed wire was not yet invented—and too few cowhands, the cattle population ran wild. Ranchers returning from the war discovered that their herds were lost or out of control. They tried to round up the cattle and rebuild their herds with slave labor, but eventually the Emancipation Proclamation left them without the free workers on which they were so dependent. Desperate for help rounding up maverick cattle, ranchers were compelled to hire now-free, skilled African-Americans as paid cowhands.  
Right after the Civil War, being a cowboy was one of the few jobs open to men of color who wanted to not serve as elevator operators or delivery boys or other similar occupations,” says William Loren Katz, a scholar of African-American history and the author of 40 books on the topic, including The Black West
Freed blacks skilled in herding cattle found themselves in even greater demand when ranchers began selling their livestock in northern states, where beef was nearly ten times more valuable than it was in cattle-inundated Texas. The lack of significant railroads in the state meant that enormous herds of cattle needed to be physically moved to shipping points in Kansas, Colorado and Missouri. Rounding up herds on horseback, cowboys traversed unforgiving trails fraught with harsh environmental conditions and attacks from Native Americans defending their lands. 
African-American cowboys faced discrimination in the towns they passed through—they were barred from eating at certain restaurants or staying in certain hotels, for example—but within their crews, they found respect and a level of equality unknown to other African-Americans of the era. 
Love recalled the camaraderie of cowboys with admiration. “A braver, truer set of men never lived than these wild sons of the plains whose home was in the saddle and their couch, mother earth, with the sky for a covering,” he wrote. “They were always ready to share their blanket and their last ration with a less fortunate fellow companion and always assisted each other in the many trying situations that were continually coming up in a cowboy's life.”

...You can read more by clicking on the link below.




When We Ruled
By Robin Walker


1. The human race is of African origin. The oldest known skeletal remains of anatomically modern humans (or homo sapiens) were excavated at sites in East Africa. Human remains were discovered at Omo in Ethiopia that were dated at 195,000 years old, the oldest known in the world.

2. Skeletons of pre-humans have been found in Africa that date back between 4 and 5 million years. The oldest known ancestral type of humanity is thought to have been the australopithecus ramidus, who lived at least 4.4 million years ago.

3. Africans were the first to organise fishing expeditions 90,000 years ago. At Katanda, a region in northeastern Zaïre (now Congo), was recovered a finely wrought series of harpoon points, all elaborately polished and barbed. Also uncovered was a tool, equally well crafted, believed to be a dagger. The discoveries suggested the existence of an early aquatic or fishing based culture.

4. Africans were the first to engage in mining 43,000 years ago. In 1964 a hematite mine was found in Swaziland at Bomvu Ridge in the Ngwenya mountain range. Ultimately 300,000 artefacts were recovered including thousands of stone-made mining tools. Adrian Boshier, one of the archaeologists on the site, dated the mine to a staggering 43,200 years old.

5. Africans pioneered basic arithmetic 25,000 years ago. The Ishango bone is a tool handle with notches carved into it found in the Ishango region of Zaïre (now called Congo) near Lake Edward. The bone tool was originally thought to have been over 8,000 years old, but a more sensitive recent dating has given dates of 25,000 years old. On the tool are 3 rows of notches. Row 1 shows three notches carved next to six, four carved next to eight, ten carved next to two fives and finally a seven. The 3 and 6, 4 and 8, and 10 and 5, represent the process of doubling. Row 2 shows eleven notches carved next to twenty-one notches, and nineteen notches carved next to nine notches. This represents 10 + 1, 20 + 1, 20 - 1 and 10 - 1. Finally, Row 3 shows eleven notches, thirteen notches, seventeen notches and nineteen notches. 11, 13, 17 and 19 are the prime numbers between 10 and 20.

6. Africans cultivated crops 12,000 years ago, the first known advances in agriculture. Professor Fred Wendorf discovered that people in Egypt’s Western Desert cultivated crops of barley, capers, chick-peas, dates, legumes, lentils and wheat. Their ancient tools were also recovered. There were grindstones, milling stones, cutting blades, hide scrapers, engraving burins, and mortars and pestles.

7. Africans mummified their dead 9,000 years ago. A mummified infant was found under the Uan Muhuggiag rock shelter in south western Libya. The infant was buried in the foetal position and was mummified using a very sophisticated technique that must have taken hundreds of years to evolve. The technique predates the earliest mummies known in Ancient Egypt by at least 1,000 years. Carbon dating is controversial but the mummy may date from 7438 (±220) BC.

8. Africans carved the world’s first colossal sculpture 7,000 or more years ago. The Great Sphinx of Giza was fashioned with the head of a man combined with the body of a lion. A key and important question raised by this monument was: How old is it? In October 1991 Professor Robert Schoch, a geologist from Boston University, demonstrated that the Sphinx was sculpted between 5000 BC and 7000 BC, dates that he considered conservative.

9. On the 1 March 1979, the New York Times carried an article on its front page also page sixteen that was entitled Nubian Monarchy called Oldest. In this article we were assured that: “Evidence of the oldest recognizable monarchy in human history, preceding the rise of the earliest Egyptian kings by several generations, has been discovered in artifacts from ancient Nubia” (i.e. the territory of the northern Sudan and the southern portion of modern Egypt.)

10. The ancient Egyptians had the same type of tropically adapted skeletal proportions as modern Black Africans. A 2003 paper appeared in American Journal of Physical Anthropology by Dr Sonia Zakrzewski entitled Variation in Ancient Egyptian Stature and Body Proportions where she states that: “The raw values in Table 6 suggest that Egyptians had the ‘super-Negroid’ body plan described by Robins (1983). The values for the brachial and crural indices show that the distal segments of each limb are longer relative to the proximal segments than in many ‘African’ populations.”

11. The ancient Egyptians had Afro combs. One writer tells us that the Egyptians “manufactured a very striking range of combs in ivory: the shape of these is distinctly African and is like the combs used even today by Africans and those of African descent.”

12. The Funerary Complex in the ancient Egyptian city of Saqqara is the oldest building that tourists regularly visit today. An outer wall, now mostly in ruins, surrounded the whole structure. Through the entrance are a series of columns, the first stone-built columns known to historians. The North House also has ornamental columns built into the walls that have papyrus-like capitals. Also inside the complex is the Ceremonial Court, made of limestone blocks that have been quarried and then shaped. In the centre of the complex is the Step Pyramid, the first of 90 Egyptian pyramids.

13. The first Great Pyramid of Giza, the most extraordinary building in history, was a staggering 481 feet tall - the equivalent of a 40-storey building. It was made of 2.3 million blocks of limestone and granite, some weighing 100 tons.

14. The ancient Egyptian city of Kahun was the world’s first planned city. Rectangular and walled, the city was divided into two parts. One part housed the wealthier inhabitants – the scribes, officials and foremen. The other part housed the ordinary people. The streets of the western section in particular, were straight, laid out on a grid, and crossed each other at right angles. A stone gutter, over half a metre wide, ran down the centre of every street.

15. Egyptian mansions were discovered in Kahun - each boasting 70 rooms, divided into four sections or quarters. There was a master’s quarter, quarters for women and servants, quarters for offices and finally, quarters for granaries, each facing a central courtyard. The master’s quarters had an open court with a stone water tank for bathing. Surrounding this was a colonnade.

16 The Labyrinth in the Egyptian city of Hawara with its massive layout, multiple courtyards, chambers and halls, was the very largest building in antiquity. Boasting three thousand rooms, 1,500 of them were above ground and the other 1,500 were underground.

17. Toilets and sewerage systems existed in ancient Egypt. One of the pharaohs built a city now known as Amarna. An American urban planner noted that: “Great importance was attached to cleanliness in Amarna as in other Egyptian cities. Toilets and sewers were in use to dispose waste. Soap was made for washing the body. Perfumes and essences were popular against body odour. A solution of natron was used to keep insects from houses . . . Amarna may have been the first planned ‘garden city’.”

18. Sudan has more pyramids than any other country on earth - even more than Egypt. There are at least 223 pyramids in the Sudanese cities of Al Kurru, Nuri, Gebel Barkal and Meroë. They are generally 20 to 30 metres high and steep sided.

19. The Sudanese city of Meroë is rich in surviving monuments. Becoming the capital of the Kushite Empire between 590 BC until AD 350, there are 84 pyramids in this city alone, many built with their own miniature temple. In addition, there are ruins of a bath house sharing affinities with those of the Romans. Its central feature is a large pool approached by a flight of steps with waterspouts decorated with lion heads.

20. Bling culture has a long and interesting history. Gold was used to decorate ancient Sudanese temples. One writer reported that: “Recent excavations at Meroe and Mussawwarat es-Sufra revealed temples with walls and statues covered with gold leaf”.

21. In around 300 BC, the Sudanese invented a writing script that had twenty-three letters of which four were vowels and there was also a word divider. Hundreds of ancient texts have survived that were in this script. Some are on display in the British Museum.

22. In central Nigeria, West Africa’s oldest civilisation flourished between 1000 BC and 300 BC. Discovered in 1928, the ancient culture was called the Nok Civilisation, named after the village in which the early artefacts were discovered. Two modern scholars, declare that “[a]fter calibration, the period of Nok art spans from 1000 BC until 300 BC”. The site itself is much older going back as early as 4580 or 4290 BC.

23. West Africans built in stone by 1100 BC. In the Tichitt-Walata region of Mauritania, archaeologists have found “large stone masonry villages” that date back to 1100 BC. The villages consisted of roughly circular compounds connected by “well-defined streets”.

24. By 250 BC, the foundations of West Africa’s oldest cities were established such as Old Djenné in Mali.

25. Kumbi Saleh, the capital of Ancient Ghana, flourished from 300 to 1240 AD. Located in modern day Mauritania, archaeological excavations have revealed houses, almost habitable today, for want of renovation and several storeys high. They had underground rooms, staircases and connecting halls. Some had nine rooms. One part of the city alone is estimated to have housed 30,000 people.

(source: By Robin Walker © 2006, http://aalbc.com/authors/robin-walker.html )



Friday, February 24, 2017

The following is a recent article on Queen Nefertiti Remains.

Queen Nefertiti Remains Found? Egypt Probes King Tut's Tomb For Hidden Chamber

Tuesday, February 21, 2017




William Hastie
(1904-1976)
1949 – William Henry Hastie became a federal appeals judge, the first black appointed to the federal bench. He presided over Delaware, New Jersey, Pennslyvania, and the Virgin Islands. In his new position Hastie frequently spoke out against racism and segregation. He was appointed district judge in the Virgin Islands. He was also the first black governor of the Virgin Islands in 1944. Hastie served as civilian aide to the Secretary of War (1941-43). He resigned to protest the lack of a positive commitment to recruit black pilots. Hastie was born in Knoxville, Tennessee. He graduated from Amherst College (B.A., 1925) and Harvard University (LL. B.,1930 and S.J.D, 1933). He was in private law practice, then became assistant solicitor fo the Department of Interior (1933-37). He was the dean of Howard University's law school (1939-40), civilian aid to the Secretary of War (1940-43). He was fovernor of the Virgin Islands before being named appeals judge.
(Sources: Contemporary Black Biography, vol 8. pp. 107-10; Negro Almanac, 1976, p. 281; Robinson, Historical Negro Biographies,p. 199; Smith, Notable Black American Men, p. 519-22)




Monday, February 20, 2017





Florence Mills
(1896 -1927)

The first black woman to headline at a Broadway venue was Florence Mills. She became the preeminent woman jazz dancer during the Harlem Renaissance. Born in Washington, D.C., she demonstrated her talent as a singer and dancer early and was called a child prodigy. By age eight, she was a stage phenomenom, having been guided by the accomplished performer Aida Overton Walker, Mills sang “Miss Hannah from Savannah” in the musical comedy Sons of Ham that led to her work with a vaudeville company beginning 1905. In 1921 Mills joined Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake's production of Shuffle Along. Her success in the musical led Lew Leslie to hire her to perform at the Plantation Club on Broadway. When the musical comedy From Dixie to Broadway pen in New York in October 1924, Mills sang “I'm a Little Blackbird Looking for a Bluebird” and was a show stopper. The revue along with the work of Mills and other black performers, helped eradicate the racial stereotypes that up to this time characterize blacks. Mill's heavy workload contribute to her declining health and eventual death on November 1, 1927. During her grand funeral in Harlem, it has been said that a flock of blackbirds flew over her procession as it made its way up Seventh Avenue to Woodland Cemetery in the Bronx.

(Source: Contemporary Black Biography, vol. 22, pp. 149-51; Smith, Notable Black American Women, pp. 752-56)

Friday, February 17, 2017






John S. Rock
(1825-1866)
1865 - John Sweat Rock, lawyer was the first black man admitted to practice before the Supreme Court, but not the first to argue a case. Following his admission to the court, he may have been the first black lawyer received on the floor of the House of Representatives. Born to free parents in Salem, New Jersey, Rock received a medical degree in 1852; the American Medical College in Philadelphia may have awarded him the degree. Later he was admitted into the Massachusetts Medical Society. Rock gained prominence first as an abolitionist. In 1858 he went to France where he spent eight months studying French literature and language. Since Rock experienced problems with his throat, he also use that time to give his voice relief from his many speaking engagements. Although he practiced both dentistry and medicine, when he returned from Paris he curtailed his medical practice. His health forced him to give up his practice and study law.
(Sources: Logan and Winston, Dictionary of American Negro Biography, pp. 529-31; Garrett, Famous First Facts about Negroes, p. 23, 93; Journal of Negro History 52 (July 19670, pp.169-75; Kane, Famous First Facts, p. 345)



Tuesday, February 14, 2017

On this Day



1900 – Negro national anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” performed
To celebrate President Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, James Weldon Johnson wrote the poem Lift Every Voice and Sing, which was turned into a song that was first performed by a group of 500 students in Jacksonville, Florida. It was later adopted by the NAACP as its official song.
1909 – NAACP founded
Founded in 1909 in New York City by a group of black and white citizens committed to social justice, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is one of the nation’s largest civil rights organization. The NAACP seeks to remove all barriers of racial discrimination through democratic processes.
1934 – Happy birthday, Bill Russell
William Felton “Bill” Russell is considered the greatest of all time in the NBA. He was player-coach of the Boston Celtics in 1968 and 1969. Russell was born in Monroe, Louisiana. The five-time MVP holds more championship rings than other player. His Celtics won 11 NBA championships and went to 12 finals during his 13 seasons. From 1959-1966, they won eight straight.
1956 – Happy birthday, Arsenio Hall
Hall was the first black late-night talk show host. The Arsenio Hall Show ran from 1989-1994.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Queen Ahmose-Nefertari of Ancient Egypt (flourished c.1709 BC)The most venerated figure in the history of Ancient Egypt
Pharaoh Ahmose (ruled 1709-1683 BC) founded the Negro Eighteenth Egyptian Dynasty. Ahmose-Nefertari, his wife, was highly distinguished and did much to help reconstruct the country after centuries of foreign rule. She held the position of Second Prophet of Amen and also that of Divine Wife. In these roles she performed various civil and religious duties. She maintained a college of priestesses, controlled the divine offerings to the deity Amen, was in charge of the workers of the temple fields and also controlled a number of dignitaries. She later ruled the country as Queen-Regent for Amenhotep I, her son. Some building projects date back to her time such as the reconstruction of the Deir-el-Medina necropolis. Amenhotep I succeeded her when he became of age. Of this great woman, Sir Flinders Petrie, master of the British archaeologists, wrote that she was "the most venerated figure of Egyptian history."