1. In 1865, 146 Years ago Today, John H. Rock (1825-1866), a noted Boston lawyer, became the first African-American to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court and the first Black person to speak before the U.S. House of Representatives.
2. In 1865, 146 Years ago Today, The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery, was adopted by the 38th Congress. Ratification was completed December 6, 1865.
3. In 1865, 146 Years ago Today, the same day Congress approved the 13th Amendment ending slavery, Charles Sumner introduced a motion that made John Rock the first black attorney to be admitted to argue in the Supreme Court of the United States. There was celebration the day he appeared before them.
4. In 1870, 141 Years ago Today, Jonathan Jasper Wright is elected to the South Carolina Supreme Court. He is the first African American to hold a major judicial position.
5. In 1871, 140 Years ago Today, Jefferson Long of Georgia became the first Black to make an official speech in the House of Representatives. He opposed leniency to former Confederates.
6. In 1876, 135 Years ago Today, Elijah McCoy Received Patent for Steam Cylinder Lubricator
7. In 1887, 124 Years ago Today, J. Robinson patents Dinner Pail Patent No. 356,852
8. In 1926, 85 Years ago Today, What is now known as Black History Month, was first celebrated on this date as Negro History Week by Carter G. Woodson. It became a month long celebration in 1976.
9. In 1960, 51 Years ago Today, Four students form North Carolina A&T College started Sit-in movement at Greensboro, N.C., five-and-dime store. By February 10th the movement had spread to fifteen Southern cities in five states.
10. In 1965, 46 Years ago Today, Actress Ruby Dee was the first African American actress to play a major role at the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford Conn.
11. In 1965, 46 Years ago Today, More than seven hundred demonstrators, including Martin Luther King Jr., arrested in Selma.
12. In 1974, 37 Years ago Today, “Good Times” premieres on CBS starring Ester Rolle, John Amos, Jimmy Walker, Bern Nadette Stanis, Ralph Carter Ja’net Du Bois and later in the fifth season Janet Jackson.
13. In 1976, 35 Years ago Today, Colin Luther Powell Promoted to the rank of Colonel:
14. In 1978, 33 Years ago Today, The first stamp of the U.S. Postal Service’s Black Heritage USA series honors Harriet Tubman, famed abolitionist and “conductor” on the Underground Railroad
15. In 1990, 21 Years ago Today, Ida Wells, a black reformer who compiled records on lynching, is the subject of a United States Postal Service stamp.
16. In 1990, 21 Years ago Today, In Greensboro, North Carolina, Joseph McNeil, Jibreel Khazan (Ezell Blair), Franklin McCain and David Richond repeated the original sit-in of 30 years prior, by having breakfast at the Greensboro Woolworth store.
17. In 1997, 14 Years ago Today, BET Holdings and Encore Media Corp. launch BET Movie/Starz the first 24 hour Black Movie channel.
18. In 1997, 14 Years ago Today, Black Facts Online, the premiere spot for Black history goes online.