Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Today In Black History


1871*


Birthday in Florence, Alabama, of Oscar De Priest, who became a politician after moving to Chicago. Elected in 1928, De Priest was the first African American from Illinois elected to the House of Representatives.


1891*


North Carolina Agicultural and Technical State University is founded in Greensboro, NC.


1911*

White firemen of the Cincinnati, New Orleans and Texas Pacific Railroad struck to protest the hiring of Black firemen.


1922*


In Asheville, North Carolina, civil rights activist Floyd H. McKissick was born. A lawyer, newspaper columnist and business executive, McKissick attended Morehouse College, the University of North Carolina, and North Carolina Central University.


1931*


Walter F. White named NAACP executive secretary. The NAACP has had many leaders since its beginning in 1910, but none was more determined and devoted than Walter F. White. This fair-skinned, blue-eyed man who wouldn't pass worked a lifetime to defeat the nation's barriers to integration


1961*

Clifton Wharton is sworn in as ambassador to Norway. Clifton Wharton was the 1st Black person to earn a PhD in economics from University of Chicago in as well as the first Black president of Michigan State, predominantly White university.


1966*


Andrew F. Brimmer became the first Black governor of the Federal Reserve Board. 'Upon leaving the Federal Reserve Board in August 1974, I taught courses on capital markets and finance at the Harvard Business School for two years. I established my economic and financial consulting firm (Brimmer & Co. Inc.) in July 1976, and I continue to operate it. I also serve on several corporate boards--including Bank of America and DuPont. From June 1978 through November 1994, I was a public governor of the Commodity Exchange, Inc. In that role, I chaired the Special Silver Committee which resolved the "Hunt Silver Crises" in 1979-80. In 1991-93, I served as co-chairman of the National Commission on Financial Institution Reform, Recovery & Enforcement. Our report, entitled "Origins and Cases of the S&L Debacle: A Blueprint for Reform," was published in July 1993. On June 1, 1995, President Clinton appointed me chairman of the District of Columbia Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority. This "financial control board" was appointed to oversee Washington, D.C.'s fiscal affairs and to help restore the city to financial health. ' - Andrew F. Brimmer from: "Woodrow - The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis." 12/95


1997*

Rap artist the Nortorious B.I.G. is killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. He was 24. His murder still remains unsolved


1999*


The U.S. Supreme Court declared Joseph Cinquez and his fellow mutineers free. In August 1839, in the most famous slave ship revolt in history, Cinquez, the son of an African king, and his Mendi followers had killed the captain and taken over the Spanish slaver the Amistad. The rebels were captured off Long Island, where they had been discovered floating in a "mysterious long black schooner" with tattered sails before trying to sail the Amistad back to Africa.


2002*

Black Troops in the French and Indian War: Even before the Revolutionary War, a pattern had been established in British colonies whereby African Americans were enlisted to defend the colonies when they were attacked, but were excluded from military service in times of peace. When Major General Edward Braddock's forces were defeated in the French and Indian War in 1775, Virginia was forced to utilize free African Americans in its colonial military. Yet the colonial legislature refused to use African Americans in combat positions, preferring to relegate them to labor positions and service as scouts. Once armed, African Americans might, it was feared, turn their weapons on the colony in an attempt to free the slaves. George Gire of Grafton, Massachusetts, fought in the French and Indian War. Because of the injuries he received in that war, he was awarded an annual pension of forty shillings. Gire, along with Benjamin Negro, and Caesar of Rhode Island, was part of an emerging class of free African Americans in the Northeast, where slavery was declining as an agriculturally profitable system of labor. Thus, unlike slaves who were often forced into service by their masters, Gire along with his Black compatriots, represents the first example in American history of free African Americans fighting for the British colonies.

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