Nothing will motivate a man to move forward faster than knowing what's behind Him.

Archive for February, 2011

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For February 29

1.  Jeffrey Atkins, better known by his stage name Ja Rule, is an American rapper, singer, and actor formerly signed to The Inc. and Universal Records, formerly of Def Jam Recordings. A Hollis, New York native, Ja Rule has released six albums and 1 compilation album and has sold more than 35 million albums worldwide.

Events In African American History for February 29

1. In 1940  Hattie McDaniel, known for her supporting roles became the first African American to win the Oscar Award for her role as ‘Mammy’in the movie ‘Gone With The Wind’. Not only was she the first African American to receive this award, but she was the only woman to have received it until Whoopi Goldberg received the same award for her role in the movie ‘Ghost’.

2. In 1968  National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (The Kerner Commission) said white racism was the fundamental cause of the riots in American cities. The commission said America was “moving toward two societies, one Black, one white, separate and unequal.

3. In 1972  Hank Aaron becomes 1st baseball player to sign for $200,000 a year.

4. In 1990  Paula Abdul’s “opposites Attract” is the Number 1 Pop single.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For February 28

 1. Willie Bobo,was the stage name of William Correa, Percussionist, recognized as one of the top Latin-Jazz percussionists in the world.  He worked with Herbie Mann, Miles Davis, Les McCann and Cannonball Adderley.  He also had his own group which included a young keyboardist name Chick Corea. 

 2. Barbara Acklin, R&B and soul singer of the 1960s and 1970s. Her biggest hit was “Love Makes a Woman” in 1968 which reached the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

 3. Bubba Smith, actor and former athlete. He was a professional football player in the 1960s and 1970s For the Baltimore Colts who became an actor in the late 1970s,  (Police Academy) 

 4. Rae Dawn Chong, Actress, The Color Purple.

Events In African American History For February 28

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1. In 1704, Elias Neau, a Frenchman, opened school for Blacks in New York City.

2. In 1708, Slave revolt, Newton, Long Island (N.Y.). Seven whites killed. Two Black male slaves and an Indian slave were hanged, and a Black woman was burned alive.

3. In 1778, Rhode Island General Assembly in precedent-breaking act authorized the enlistment of slaves.

4. In 1859, Arkansas legislature required free Blacks to choose between exile and enslavement.

5. In 1871, Second Enforcement Act gave federal officers and courts control of registration and voting in congressional elections.

6. In 1879, Southern Blacks fled political and economic exploitation in “Exodus of 1879.” Exodus continued for several years. One of the major leaders of the Exodus movement was a former slave, Benjamin (“Pap”) Singleton.

7. In 1899, A. C. Richardson Received Patent for Insect Destroyer

8. In 1932, Richard Spikes patented the automatic gear shift

9. In 1940, United States population: 131,669,275. Black population: 12,865,518 (9.8 per cent).

10. in 1940, Richard Wright’s Native Son published.

11. In 1942, The Sojourner Truth Homes Riot began when whites were enraged by the opening of that project in their neighborhood.  Mobs attempted to keep the black residents from moving into their new homes.  That confrontation laid the foundation for the much larger riot one year later.

12. In 1943, Porgy and Bess opened on Broadway with Anne Brown and Todd Duncan in starring roles.

13. In 1984, Michael Jackson, entertainer wins 8 Grammys. His album, “Thriller”, broke all sales records to-date, and remains one of the top-grossing albums of all time.

14. In 1990, Philip Emeagwali, engineer and computer scientist/geologist who was one of two winners of the 1989 Gordon Bell Prize, a prize from the IEEE, for his use of a Connection Machine supercomputer to help analyze petroleum fields.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For February 27

 1. Prince Hall, Revolutionary War Veteran, abolitionist and a leader of the free black community in Boston. Hall tried to gain New England’s enslaved and free blacks a place in some of the most crucial spheres of society, Freemasonry, education and the military. He is considered the founder of “Black Freemasonry” in the United States, known today as Prince Hall Freemasonry. Hall formed the African Grand Lodge of North America. Prince Hall was unanimously elected its Grand Master and served until his death in 1807. He also lobbied tirelessly for education rights for black children and a back-to-Africa movement. Many historians regard Prince Hall as one of the more prominent African American leaders throughout the early national-period of the United States. 

2. Marian Anderson, The Greatest Contralto in the Worldand one of the most celebrated singers of the twentieth century. Music critic Alan Blyth said “Her voice was a rich, vibrant contralto of intrinsic beauty.”   Most of her singing career was spent performing in concert and recital in major music venues and with major orchestras throughout the United States and Europe between 1925 and 1965. Although she was offered contracts to perform roles with many important European opera companies, Anderson declined all of these, preferring to perform in concert and recital only. She did, however, perform opera arias within her concerts and recitals. She made many recordings that reflected her broad performance repertoire of everything from concert literature to lieder to opera to traditional American songs and spirituals.

3. Dexter Gordon,  jazz tenor saxophonist and an Academy Award-nominated actor (Round Midnight. Warner Bros, 1986). He is regarded as one of the first and most important musicians to adapt the bebop musical language of people like Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Bud Powell to the tenor saxophone. Gordon is one of the most influential and iconic figures in Jazz and is largely credited for establishing the classic, modern sound and stylistic concept for the saxophone in general, and the tenor in particular. His studio and live performance career were both extensive and multifaceted, spanning over 50 years in recorded jazz history.


4. Charlayne Hunter-Gault,   journalist and foreign correspondent for National Public Radio, and the Public Broadcasting Service.

In 1961, Athens, Georgia witnessed part of the civil rights movement when Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes became the first two African American students to enroll in the University of Georgia. Upon her graduation in 1963, she became the university’s first black graduate.

In 1967, she joined the investigative news team at WRC-TV, Washington, D.C., and also anchored the local evening news. In 1968, Charlayne joined The New York Times as a metropolitan reporter specializing in coverage of the urban African American community. She joined The MacNeil/Lehrer Report in 1978 as a correspondent, and became The NewsHour’s national correspondent in 1983. She left The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer in June 1997. She worked in Johannesburg, South Africa as National Public Radio’s chief correspondent in Africa from 1997 to 1999. Hunter-Gault recently left her post as CNN’s Johannesburg bureau chief and correspondent, which she had held since 1999.

During her association with The NewsHour, Hunter-Gault has won additional awards: two Emmys, and a Peabody for excellence in broadcast journalism for her work on Apartheid’s People, a NewsHour series on South Africa. She also received the 1986 Journalist of the Year Award from the National Association of Black Journalists; the 1990 Sidney Hillman Award; the Good Housekeeping Broadcast Personality of the Year Award; the American Women in Radio and Television Award; and two awards from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for excellence in local programming.

Hunter-Gault is author of In My Place (1992), a memoir about her experiences at the University of Georgia. She currently lives in Massachusetts and is working on a first-person memoir detailing the struggle of African Americans in the 1960s.

 5. Stoney Jackson, actor,  was featured in numerous teen magazines in the 1970s and 1980s, including Right On, Teen Beat, and Tiger Beat. He portrayed high school basketball player Jesse Mitchell on the ensemble series The White Shadow, and Travis Fillmore on the sitcom 227. Notably, he was one of the more visible dancers in Michael Jackson’s Beat It, one of the most popular music videos of all time. He appeared in the video “I Can Dream About You” by Dan Hartman as the lead vocalist of the group “The Sorels,” from the film “Streets of Fire” in 1984, along with actors Grand L. Bush, Robert Townsend, & Mykelti Williamson

Stoney also appeared in the film CB4 with actors Chris Rock, and Allen Payne, where Jackson played a minor role as Wacky Dee, a take off on freedom williams.

 6. James Worthy, a retired Hall of Fame American college and professional basketball player. Named as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History, “Big Game James” was a seven time NBA All-Star and three time NBA champion. A standout for the North Carolina Tar Heels, the 6 ft 9 in (2.05 m) small forward was the MOP of the 1982 NCAA Tournament and #1 pick of the 1982 NBA Draft.

Worthy was an All-American high school basketball player at Ashbrook High School in Gastonia, North Carolina. Worthy averaged 21.5 points and 12.5 rebounds during his senior season, for a team that lost in the state championship game.


7. Chilli (Rozonda Ocelean Thomas), R&B singer and actress who rose to fame as one third of the successful R&B/Hip-Hop/Pop girl group TLC.  “Waterfalls

Events In African American History For February 27

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1. In 1833, Maria W. Steward delivered one of the four speeches which confirmed her place in history as the first American-born woman to give public lectures.

2. In 1844, The Dominican Republic Gained it’s Independence.

3. In 1869, Congress adopted the 15th constitutional amendment, making it illegal for the US or any single government to deny or abridge the right to vote “on account of race, color or previous condition of servitude.”

4. In 1869, John W. Menard spoke in Congress in defense of his claim to a contested seat in Louisiana’s Second Congressional District. Congress decided against both claimants. Congressman James A. Garfield of the examining committee said “it was too early to admit a Negro to the U.S. Congress.”

5. In 1872, Charlotte E. Ray graduates from Howard Law School.  She is the first African  American Female lawyer in the U.S.

6. In 1883, Walter B. Purvis Received Patent for Hand Stamp

7. In 1922, Supreme Court unanimously upheld 19th amendment woman’s right to vote.

8. In 1981, Paul McCartney & Stevie Wonder record (Ebony & Ivory)

9. In 1982, Wayne Williams found guilty of murdering 2 of 28 blacks in Atlanta, even after he was arrested,  and during the trial the murders and kidnappings continued.  Today human organs are harvested from young black men, women, boys and girls who are murdered by cops.

10. In 1988, Figure skater Debi Thomas becomes the first African American to win a medal (bronze) at the winter Olympic Games.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For February 26

 1. Congressman James E. O’Hara of North Carolina. First elected March 4, 1833, O’Hara served two terms, the second ending March 3, 1887.   

 2.  Antoine Dominique “Fats” Domino Jr.  R&B and rock and roll pianist and singer-songwriter. He was born and raised in Vacherie, Louisiana.

 3.  Godfrey Cambridge, actor and comedian, Cotton Comes to Harlem, Sweet Sweetback’s Baadassssss Song and Watermelon Man. he was acclaimed by Time magazine in 1965 as “one of the country’s four most celebrated Negro comedians.”

 4.  William Henry “Bill” Duke, Jr. Actor and film director with over 30 years of experience. Known for his physically imposing frame, Duke’s work frequently dwells within the action/crime and drama genres but also includes comedy.  Known for his roll in Carwash

 5. Erica Abi Wright ,  better known by her stage name Erykah Badu Recording artist, record producer and actress. Her work includes elements from R&B, hip hop and jazz.  She is best known for her role in the rise of the neo soul  genre, and for her eccentric, cerebral musical stylings and sense of fashion. She is known as the “First Lady of Neo-Soul” or the “Queen of Neo-Soul”.

 6. Kyle Norman, Rhythm and Blues Artist (Jagged Edge)

Events In African American History For February 26

1. In 1926,  Theodore “Georgia Deacon” Flowers wins middleweight boxing title.

2. In 1930,  The Green Pastures” opened at the mansfield Theater.

3. In 1964,  The Kentucky boxer known to all as Cassius Clay, changed his name to Muhammad Ali as he accepted Islam and rejected Christianity. “I believe in the religion of Islam. I believe in Allah and in peace…I’m not a Christian anymore.”

4. In 1966,  Andrew Brimmer becomes the first African American governor of the Federal Reserve Board when he is appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson

5. In 1985,  On this day at the Grammy Awards ceremony, African-American musicians won awards in several categories. Lionel Richie’s “Can’t Slow Down” won best album of 1984. Tina Turner’s “What’s Love Got to Do With It” took the best record slot and earned her the title Best Female Pop Vocalist. The Pointer Sisters won best Pop Group for “Jump.”

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For February 25

1.  Ida Cox, Blues Artist Singer and vaudeville performer, best known for her blues performances and recordings. a contemporary of the great Besie Smith, is born in Cedartown, Georgia. In her heyday, she was called “the uncrownned queen of the blues” and “the sepia Mae West.”  “Ida Cox tellin’ it like it is

2.  Rashida Leah Jones,  film and television actress, comic book author, screenwriter and occasional singer. She played Louisa Fenn on Boston Public and Karen Filippelli on The Office as well as roles in the films I Love You, Man and The Social Network. Jones currently appears on the NBC comedy series Parks and Recreation as Ann Perkins.

Events In African American History For February 25

1. In 1839,  Seminoles & black allies forced from Tampa Bay Fl., to the West, by foot, horse and wagon which would later be know as the “Trail Of  Tears.”

2. In 1853,   First Black Y.M.C.A.  organized in Washington D.C.

3. In 1870,  Hiram R. Revels, first Black US Senator, took oath of office

4. In 1896,  Jan E. Matzeliger received Patent for Nailing machine

5. In 1928,  One-Man Show of Art by Negro, First of Kind Here, Opens Today,” read the headline of a front-page article in ‘The New York Times’ on this day. The article announced the opening of Archibald J. Motley, Jr’s show at the New Gallery on Madison Avenue. This was the first time in History that an artist had made the front page of ‘The New York Times’ and it was the second one-person show by an African-American artist (the first being Henry O. Tanner).

6. In 1948,  Martin Luther King Jr. graduated from Morehouse with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology, and enrolled in Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania, from which he graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1951

7. In 1964,  Muhammad Ali defeated Sonny Liston for world heavyweight boxing championship.

8. In 1971,  President Nixon met with members of the Congressional Black Caucus and appointed a White House panel to study a list of recommendations made by the group.

9. In 1987,  Michael Jordan, scores Chicago Bull record 58 points in a game

10. In 1987,  US Supreme Court upholds (5-4) affirmative action

11. In 1989,  Boxer Mike Tyson becomes the undisputed Heavyweight Champion of the World by defeating challenger Frank Bruno of England.

12. In 1991,  Adrienne Mitchell, first African American woman to die in combat in the Persian Gulf War is killed in her military barracks in Dharan, Saudi Arabia

13. In 1998,  R. Kelly’s hit single “I Believe I Can Fly” win Best Male R&B Vocal, Best Song Written for TV or a Movie and Best R&B Song Grammy Awards.

14. In 1999,  White supremacist John King, one of three white men accused of chaining James Byrd to a pickup and dragging him along a Texas road until he was decapitated, was sentenced to death by lethal injection. If his death penalty is carried out, he will be the first white Texan executed for killing a Black man.

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