1. In 1794, Richard Allen a minister, educator, writer, and one of America’s most active and influential black leaders founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME), the first independent black denomination in the United States. He opened his first AME church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2. In 1819 Congress passed Legislation authorizing the return of freed Black Slaves to their “Motherland”. The American Colonization Society group of freed slaves arrived at Sherbro Island in 1821 before being driven by circumstance to Providence Island at Cape Mesurado in present day Liberia in April 1822.
Seven years prior In 1815 Paul Cuffe settled a group of 88 freed slaves on Sherbro Island. Sherbro Island is the site of an early 19th-century British post against the slave trade. The island was acquired from the Sherbro people by the colony at Freetown in 1861.
3. In 1820, Missouri Compromise enacted. The measure prohibited slavery to the north of southern boundary of Missouri.
4. In 1821, Thomas L. Jennings Becomes the first African American to be granted a patent in the United States by receiving a patent for his technique to “Dry” clothes.
5. In 1863, Draft Act Passed, During the height of the Civil War, Congress passed this act which mandated military service for all men between the ages of twenty and forty-five.
6. In 1865, Congress chartered Freedmen’s Savings and Trust Bank with business confined to Blacks.
7. In 1865, The Freeman’s Bureau was established by Congress. The bureau was designed to protect the interests of former slaves. This included helping them to find new employment and to improve educational and health facilities. In the year that followed the bureau spent $17,000,000 establishing 4,000 schools.
8. In 1869, The 38th and 41st Infantry regiments were joined and became the 24th Infantry Regiment, the third of four proposed African American regiments in the U.S. Army. Following the Civil War the regiment was posted in Texas from 1869 to 1880.
9. In 1869, University of South Carolina opened to all races. Two African Americans, B.A. Boseman and Francis L. Cardozo were elected to a seven-man board of trustees.
10. In 1886, Robert F. Flemming, Jr. received patent for a guitar.
11. In 1947, Louis Jordan’s “Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens” is the #1 R&B Single.
12. In 1963, COINTELPRO, A memorandum sent to field offices of the FBI set goals for what was termed as a new “counterintelligence program” against African American Nationalist groups. The objective was to block attempts by targeted groups to coalesce, grow and exist. The agency believed unity was the “first step toward a Mau-Mau-style uprising” in the United States and the beginning of a “Black Revolution.” The FBI hierarchy further believed their efforts would prevent the rise of a “Black Messiah” who could unify and “electrify” the masses. Top candidates for this leadership position were Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. Both Men were eventually assassinated.
13. In 1991, a group of white LA police severely beat Rodney King for speeding in a Yugo.
14. In 2002, Roberta Flack’s “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” is named Song and Record of the Year at the Grammys.
15. In 2020, Manuel “Mannie” Elijah Ellis a 33-year-old black man, died while in handcuffs, after being restrained by officers on the ground. The county medical examiner ruled his death a homicide while in police custody. Video footage of the violent arrest emerged showing Tacoma police officers beating Ellis on the side of the road. The footage also shows officers telling him to “just put your hands behind your back” while they are already on top of him.