Month: July 2018

July 31 1930- Wallace D. Fard

GM – FBF – a salaam alaikum, today I want to share with you the begining of one of the most transforming organizations in helping the Black Race understand who they are in America and the knowledge of self.

Remember – “Anarchy may await America, due to the daily injustices suffered by the people.” – Louis Farrakhan

Today in our History – July 31, 1930 – Street vendor Wallace D. Fard appeared in Detroit, Michigan’s Paradise Valley community, proclaiming himself to be the leader of the Nation of Islam (NOI) and proselytizing among his customers according to his Islamic beliefs.

Fard’s doctrine revolved around the claim that Islam was the true religion for blacks and Christianity only the faith of the “white devils” who were inferior to blacks. His preaching of freedom, justice and equality for people of African descent rapidly gained him followers and within three years Fard developed a cohesive organization, renting a Detroit meeting hall as the NOI’S first Temple.

One of his earliest disciples was Elijah Poole, who later changed his name to Elijah Muhammad. When Fard left the United States in 1934, Muhammad seized control over the organization, running it with absolute authority. By the early 1950s, the NOI had several thousand members and Temples in Detroit, Chicago (Illinois), Milwaukee (Wisconsin), Washington, D.C. and other major cities.

During the spring of 1952, ex-convict Malcolm Little, later known as Malcolm X, joined the NOI. A charismatic orator, he soon became the Nation’s chief spokesman, created the organization’s newspaper Muhammad Speaks, and gaining wide-spread attention for the organization until he broke with the NOI in 1964 and was assassinated one year later.

In 1959 the American public learned about the NOI for the first time when New York’s WNTA-TV produced a documentary titled “The Hate that Hate Produced”, depicting the NOI as a black supremacist organization whose goal was the separation of blacks from the United States into a separate homeland in five Southern states. The reaction to the NOI’s ideas was overwhelmingly negative and civil rights leaders as well as other African Americans who were Muslims actively disassociated themselves from the organization’s ideology.

The attacks on Elijah Muhammad and his organizations continued until his death in 1975 when his son Wallace D. Muhammad assumed the leadership of the NOI. He engineered a series of conceptual changes that brought the NOI in line with Orthodox Islamic practices and abandoned the theory of racial superiority.

Dissidents within the organization who were dissatisfied with its new direction rallied around Minister Louis Farrakhanwho in 1978 created the “new” Nation of Islam. The new Nation in fact returned to the original teachings of to the teachings of Elijah Muhammad. In 1995 Farrakhan and the new Nation of Islam convened the Million Man March on Washington D.C., an effort to publicly challenge the disintegration of both the black family and African Ameican communities. The March may have attracted nearly one million participants although the actual figure is disputed. It clearly registered the Nation of Islam as an influential force among huge segments of the African American community even if the actual NOI membership remained less than 30,000.

Today the Nation of Islam owns hundreds of businesses nationwide and operates its own farm to support its members. Research more about NOI and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 30 1945- Adam Clayton Powell Jr.

GM – FBF – Today, I will share with you the man who took Washington, D.C. by his quick wit and frank talk. As, on this day Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. is elected to the United States House of Represenatives (D- NY).

Remember – “Where Negroes provide 20 percent of the vote, they should have 20 per cent of the jobs.” – Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.

Today in our History – July 30, 1945 – Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.
made a successful run for Congress; as he took a Democratic seat in the House of Representatives on July 30, 1945, becoming the first African American hailing from New York to be elected to the House.

Born on November 29, 1908, Adam Clayton Powell Jr. succeeded his father, Adam Clayton Powell Sr., to become minister of Abyssinian Baptist Church, and worked as a community activist for Harlem. Powell was elected to the House of Representatives in the mid-1940s. He became a champion civil rights reformer, also making great strides in education and labor. He faced controversy for some of his behavior and commentary. Powell died in Florida in 1972.

Adam Clayton Powell Jr. was born on November 29, 1908, in New Haven, Connecticut, to Mattie Fletcher Schaffer and Adam Clayton Powell Sr. The family, which included daughter Blanche, moved to New York City when the senior Powell took on a clergy position at Abyssinian Baptist Church, a historical African-American institution that would eventually move to Harlem. The junior Powell went on to attend City College before transferring to Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, where he graduated in 1930. Two years later (1932), he earned a master’s degree in religious education from Columbia University, and then furthered his divinity studies at Shaw University.

During the 1930s, Powell worked as an assistant minister and business manager at Abyssinian—taking over his father’s position as pastor in 1937—and became a staunch community activist for Harlem residents.
Powell married Isabel Washington in 1933, and the couple later divorced. Powell would remarry and divorce two more times over the following decades.

Powell later decided to enter local politics and, in 1941, won a seat to the New York City Council, becoming the first African American elected to the position. A few years later, Powell made a successful run for Congress; he took a Democratic seat in the House of Representatives in July 30, 1945, becoming the first African American hailing from New York to be elected to the House. The outspoken, electrifying leader and orator would go on to serve 12 terms as a U.S. representative.

During his congressional service, Powell served on a number of committees and continued to agitate for African-American human rights, calling for an end to lynching in the South and Jim Crow laws. He angered Southern segregationists, including those within his own party, by integrating congressional restaurants, recreational facilities and press stations; critiquing anti-Semitism; and advocating for independence for African and Asian nations. In 1956, Powell went against party lines to support Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower’s presidential campaign, though he later critiqued Eisenhower for his conservatism on civil rights issues.
In 1961, Powell became chair of the House Committee on Education and Labor. The special group was able to create an unprecedented array of legislative reforms, including a minimum-wage increase, educational resources for the deaf, funding for student loans, library aid, work-hour regulations and job training.

Still, Powell’s personal life and professional tactics stirred up controversy. He was indicted for tax evasion in 1958 (the subsequent trial ended in a hung jury), was accused of defraying traveling costs as a public expense, and developed a spotty attendance record in Congress. Additionally, he was sued by Esther James after making a 1960 slanderous televised statement about her in relation to municipal corruption. The turmoil seemed to have little effect on Powell’s loyal Harlem constituency, however, and he continued to win re-election to his House seat.

Powell’s career would eventually take a turn for the worse in the mid-1960s, when the congressman was accused of being in contempt of court by New York State over the James charges. In light of the newly garnered negative publicity, Powell retreated to Bimini in the Bahamas. The House of Representatives voted Powell out of office in 1967, though the Supreme Court would rule two years later that Congress had no jurisdiction to remove him from his seat.

Powell was re-elected to Congress in 1968; he lost the Democratic primary in 1970, however, to Charles Rangel by a very slim margin.

On April 4, 1972, Powell died from cancer in Miami, Florida. His ashes were scattered over Bimini. The Harlem community continues to remember the politician and religious leader for his advocacy of the neighborhood; among its many memorials of historic African-American figures, Harlem established an iconic state office building and boulevard in Powell’s name. One of Powell’s sons, Adam Clayton Powell IV, chose to follow in his father’s footsteps and enter politics, becoming a member of the New York State Assembly; Powell IV unsuccessfully campaigned against Rangel (his father’s earlier congressional opponent) in 1994 and 2010. Research more about Black politicians and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 29 1918- Congressional Record Petition Of The National Liberty Congress

GM – FBF – Today, we take a look back at lynchings of Black People. 100 years ago the United States Congress took a close look by entering a petition but it was loss and never got to commettie. In 1870, when President Ulysses S. Grant approved legislation to subdue the actions of white-supremacist groups such as the Ku Klux Klan, but he is in the Exeutive Branch and it died in Congress. People like Ida B. Wells kept the lynchings of Black People in the eyes of the public but you need both the Senate and the House to agree in order to pass a Federal Law. In Washington, D.C. today has a Justice for Victims of Lynching Act of 2018 if passes, lynching would finally become a federal crime. The new bill proposed by the three black senators — Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.) — is largely symbolic, as lynchings are seemingly part of the nation’s past.

Remember – “Our country’s national crime is lynching. It is not the creature of an hour, the sudden outburst of uncontrolled fury, or the unspeakable brutality of an insane mob.” Ida B. Wells

Today in our History – July 29,1918 – On this date there was entered in the Congressional Record petition of the National Liberty Congress of Colored Americans petition asked among other things that congress pass legislation the protection of the Federal Government to all citizens of United States of America at home by enacting that mob murders be a crime against the Federal Government subject to the jurisdiction of the Federal courts.

Between 1882 and 1968, 4,745 people were lynched. In many States laws did not address the violence perpetrated by ordinary white citizens. Lynch mobs killed immigrants, women and teenagers for a variety of reasons, including defending a black woman, knocking on the door of a white woman’s home and not calling an Alabama police officer “Mr.”

“In one day and night on Barrow Island, I see more rare species than most biologists get to see on the mainland in their career.”

“Lynch law has spread its insidious influence till men in New York State, Pennsylvania and on the free Western plains feel they can take the law in their own hands with impunity, especially where an Afro-American is concerned,” wrote investigative journalist Ida B. Wells in 1892. “The South is brutalized to a degree not realized by its own inhabitants, and the very foundation of government, law and order, are imperiled.”

Some Southern jurisdictions “passed their own anti-lynching laws to demonstrate that federal legislation was unnecessary, but refused to enforce them,” according to an Equal Justice Initiative report.

Eighteen years after the first federal anti-lynching proposal, Rep. Leonidas Dyer (R-Mo.) in 1918 introduced a bill that would fine officials who were hesitant to prosecute lynch mob participants and provide financial relief for families affected, according to government archives. The obstructionist tactics of Southern Democrats kept the proposal from becoming law.

With the help of the NAACP, Dyer’s bill passed the House of Representatives and made it through a Senate committee. Its momentum was halted, however, when Southern Democratic senators filibustered the proposal.

On the floor of the Senate, Sen. Lee Slater Overman (D-N.C.) alleged that the bill was written by a “Negro” with the intent to solidify the African American voting bloc for northern Republicans, according to a 1922 New York Times article.

“The decent, hard-working Negroes of the South enjoy every safeguard of the law,” Overman said. “They own property, their children go to public schools, and for such as they (sic) this proposed legislation is absolutely uncalled for.”

According to the Tuskegee Institute, 3,168 black people were lynched before Overman’s statement, and at least 278 more would be lynched in the coming years.

In 2005, the Senate formally apologized for having failed to enact federal anti-lynching legislation decades earlier.

As The Post reported at the time:
In passing the measure, the senators in essence admitted that their predecessors’ failure to act had helped perpetuate a horror that took the lives of more than 4,700 people from 1882 to 1968, most of them black men. At the turn of the last century, more than 100 lynching incidents were reported each year, many of them publicly orchestrated to humiliate the victims and instill fear in others. Lynching occurred in all but four states in the contiguous United States, and less than 1 percent of the perpetrators were brought to justice, historians say.

The U.S. House of Representatives three times passed measures to make lynching a federal offense, but each time the bills were knocked down in the Senate. Powerful southern senators, such as Richard B. Russell Jr. (D-Ga.), whose name was given to the Senate office building where the resolution was drafted, used the filibuster to block votes.

“There may be no other injustice in American history for which the Senate so uniquely bears responsibility,” then-Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) said at the time.

The new bill proposed by the three black senators — Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.) — is largely symbolic, as lynchings are seemingly part of the nation’s past.

In a statement, Harris said that “lynching is a dark, despicable part of our history, and we must acknowledge that, lest we repeat it. From 1882 to 1986 there have been 200 attempts that have failed to get Congress to pass federal anti-lynching legislation; it’s time for that to change.”

The new bill, Booker said, would “right historical wrongs.”

A similar bill was introduced in the House last month by Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) and co-sponsored by 35 members of the Congressional Black Caucus.

“It is never too late for our nation to express our sorrow for the decades of racial terror that traumatized millions in this country,” Equal Justice Initiative Director Bryan Stevenson said in a statement. “Passing an anti-lynching law is not just about who we were decades ago; it’s a statement about who we are now that is relevant, important and timely.” Research more about Lynchings and racial terror in the U.S. and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 28 1868-

GM – FBF – Today, I want to share with you an article that I wrote for a newspaper back in 1996 – 128 years since the admendment was passed. Now it’s has been 150 years is there any changes since the article?

Remember – ” We as a people need all of the support of this President as the Civil War is ending and slaves will truely be free” – Frederick Douglass

Today in our History – July 28, 1868 – The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was adoped by all states.

This is an artilce that I wrote back in 1996 when I was Teaching at Red Bank Regional High School in Little Silver, New Jersey as Director of Black Studies:

What will it take for African-Americans to gain their citizenship? Brought to the shores of this land for the sole purpose of hard labor and a permanent, inherited and inherent state of servitude, Black people never were meant to become citizens. And yet this is what happened on July 28,1868, when the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was adopted. It was on that day that Secretary of State William Seward issued a proclamation in which he certified the ratification of the 14th Amendment by the states.

Since that time, it has been an uphill battle for the descendants of slaves to remove the badge of slavery, even when the physical shackles were removed.

Malcolm X articulated the extent of the problem of citizenship for African-Americans in a 1963 interview, when journalist Louis Lomax pressed the issue.

“If they were citizens, you wouldn’t have a race problem. If the Emancipation Proclamation was authentic, you wouldn’t have a race problem. If the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments to the Constitution were authentic, you wouldn’t have a race problem,” Malcolm insisted. “If the Supreme Court desegregation decision was authentic, you wouldn’t have a race problem. All of this hypocrisy that has been practiced by the so-called white so-called liberal for the past 400 years, that compounds the problem, makes it more complicated, instead of eliminating the problem.”

Civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer said, “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.” And Hamer wanted to become a “first-class citizen,” as she testified at the 1964 Democratic Convention as a founder of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, in opposition to her state’s whites-only delegation. She spoke of the beatings, harassment and threats she faced from white supremacists for attempting to exercise her rights as a citizen.

“Is this America, the land of the free and the home of the brave, where we have to sleep with our telephones off of the hooks because our lives be threatened daily, because we want to live as decent human beings, in America?” she asked.

Black people in America are constantly made to fight for their rights, and are subjected to the whims of a hostile white majority. Being a citizen on paper and under the law proves illusory when the institutional racism against us has not abated.

New movements are necessary every few decades or so in order to secure the rights we were told we already have. And even today, there is a struggle among Black people, who are fighting for an existence free from state violence, mass incarceration and institutional racism.

Section 1 of the amendment says the following:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

With the enactment of the 14th Amendment, the infamous Dred Scott v. Sanford decision — which held that the descendants of African people could not be citizens — was no more. In Dred Scott, Blacks, according to Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, “had no rights which the white man was bound to respect; and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit. He was bought and sold and treated as an ordinary article of merchandise and traffic, whenever profit could be made by it.”

“The Citizenship Clause of the 14th Amendment guaranteed formal citizenship to ‘all persons born in the United States’ including African Americans.

In its original conception, the 14th Amendment was an anti-subordination law designed to lift African-Americans out of slavery and allow them to be equal citizens. This requires remedial action ordered by the courts or passed by Congress (see Section 5). However, when the U.S. Supreme Court took a conservative turn in the 1970s, it began viewing the 14th Amendment as an anti-classification law, which meant that remedial actions designed to help African-Americans attain true citizenship became suspect. We saw this through the Court’s hostility toward desegregation and affirmative action.

Slavery was abolished in part to promote the industrial future of America and steer it away from being an agrarian society. De jure segregation was eliminated because it was an international embarrassment after World War II, when the United States wanted to expand its global influence and, in the wake of the Cold War, to prevent African-Americans from being drawn to communism.

So in my view, laws are not enough. Activism is not enough. But we need both laws and activism, and at the right historical moment, African-Americans will gain some more citizenship rights. It will not be full citizenship, and it is a slow climb — certainly not satisfying to advocates of racial justice. But this is the unfortunate reality in my view. Research more about this and the other Civil Rights Admendments and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 27 1816- The Battle Of Fort Negro

GM – FBF – Today I would like to share with you a lesson that many have not heard about, where Black Soulders and Native Americans were beatin in a fight at Fort Negro, FL. One man lived and his name was Abraham. I don’t have in this post to tell his story. What a hidden secret that is not in your history books.

Remember – ” Once the cannon ball hit the power for the cannons. We were through” – Abraham

Today in our History – July 27, 1816 – Black Soulders massacurd at Fort Negro!

The Battle of Negro Fort was a short military siege during 1816 in which forces of the United States assaulted and managed to blow up African-American fortified stronghold in the frontier of northern Spanish Florida. The act was the first major engagement of the Seminole Wars period and was the beginning in which General Andrew Jackson’s Conquest of Florida. In 1814, during the War of 1812, the British Royal Marines established what was known as the Negro Fort on Prospect Bluff this was along the Spanish side of the Apalachicola River.

The base location initially included about 1,000 Britons, and several hundred African Americans. These people had been recruited as a detached unit of the Corps of Colonial Marines, they had the strength of four infantry companies. After the war in 1815, the British paid off the Colonial Marines, withdrew from the post, and left the black population in occupation. Over the next few years the “fort became a colony for escaped slaves from Pensacola and Georgia.

By 1816 over 600 freedmen and women had settled around the fort. There were some friendly natives in the area as well. Following the construction of Forst Scoot on the Flint River by Colonel Duncan Lamont Clinch of the United States Army, Andrew Jackson decided that to resupply the post they would need to use the navy transport goods via the Apalacicola through the sovereign territory of Spain without their permission.

During one of these resupply missions, a party of sailors from gunboats 149 and 154 stopped along the river near Negro Fort to fill their canteens with water. While doing so, they were attacked by the garrison of the fort and all but one of the Americans were killed. In response Andrew Jackson requested permission to attack the fort, they then dispatched gunboats to reduce Negro Fort.

Secretary of State John Quincy Adams justified the attack and subsequent seizure of Spanish Florida by Andrew Jackson as national “self-defense,” a response to alleged Spanish and British complicity in fomenting the “Indian and Negro War.” Adams even produced a letter from a Georgia planter complaining about “brigand Negroes” who made “this neighborhood extremely dangerous to a population like ours.”

Southern leaders worried that even a small, impoverished island of rebel slaves in the Caribbean or a parcel of Florida land occupied by a few hundred blacks could threaten the institution of slavery. According to Historian William Cooper Nell, the Freedmen who occupied the fort “caught the spirit of liberty,–at that time so prevalent throughout our land” and “they were slain for adhering to the doctrine that ‘all men are endowed by their Creator with the inalienable right to enjoy life and liberty. Read more about the battle and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 26 1848- Douglas M’Clintock

GM – FBF – Today I would like to share with you a man who also spoke in behalf of women. He was one of the best speakers of truth during his time. Enjoy!

Remember – “There are to many great women speaking out for rights for women, Let me show them the way” – Frederick Douglasss

Today in our History – July 26, 1848, M’Clintock invited Douglass to attend the First Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, NY.

Born into slavery in February 1818, Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) became one of the most outspoken advocates of abolition and women’s rights in the 19th century. Believing that “Right is of no sex, truth is of no color,” Douglass urged an immediate end to slavery and supported Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and other women’s rights activists in their crusade for woman suffrage.

In his autobiography Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, published in 1845, Douglass recounted his childhood as a slave in Maryland, detailing all the cruel treatment to which he and other slaves were subjected. In 1838 Douglass escaped from bondage and fled to New York City. His autobiography described the joy he felt upon his arrival in the North:

“I have been frequently asked how I felt when I found myself in a free State. I have never been able to answer the question with any satisfaction to myself. It was a moment of the highest excitement I ever experienced. I suppose I felt as one may imagine the unarmed mariner to feel when he is rescued by a friendly man-of-war from the pursuit of a pirate.”

Douglass joined the abolitionist movement in 1841 and put his considerable oratorical skills to work as a speaker for the American Anti-Slavery Society. By 1847 he had moved to Rochester, NY, where he published the North Star, a weekly abolitionist newspaper.

Douglass was also active with the Western New York Anti-Slavery Society, and it was through this organization that he met Elizabeth M’Clintock. In July 26, of 1848, M’Clintock invited Douglass to attend the First Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, NY. Douglass readily accepted, and his participation at the convention revealed his commitment to woman suffrage. In an issue of the North Star published shortly after the convention, Douglass wrote,

“In respect to political rights, we hold woman to be justly entitled to all we claim for man. We go farther, and express our conviction that all political rights which it is expedient for man to exercise, it is equally so for women. All that distinguishes man as an intelligent and accountable being, is equally true of woman; and if that government is only just which governs by the free consent of the governed, there can be no reason in the world for denying to woman the exercise of the elective franchise, or a hand in making and administering the laws of the land. Our doctrine is, that “Right is of no sex.”

Douglass continued to support the cause of women after the 1848 convention. In 1866 Douglass, along with Elizabeth Cady Stantonand Susan B. Anthony, founded the American Equal Rights Association, an organization that demanded universal suffrage. Though the group disbanded just three years later due to growing tension between women’s rights activists and Africa-American rights activists, Douglass remained influential in both movements, championing the cause of equal rights until his death in 1895. Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 25 1941- Emmit Till Wes

GM – FBF – Today, I want to share with you a story about a 14 year old young man who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. While visiting my grandmother in Perry, GA. during those days in the ’50’s and early ’60’s, I was told to not look at or talk to white people. She always reminded me that this could happen to you if you act and talk like you do back home in Trenton, NJ. A sad story that has been given a new Investigation.

Remember – “It never occurred to me that Bobo would be killed for whistling at a white woman.” — Simeon Wright, Emmett Till’s Cousin

Today in our History – July 25,1941 – Emmit Till wes born.

Emmett Till was born in 1941 in Chicago and grew up in a middle-class black neighborhood. Till was visiting relatives in Money, Mississippi, in 1955 when the fourteen-year-old was accused of whistling at Carolyn Bryant, a white woman who was a cashier at a grocery store.

Four days later, Bryant’s husband Roy and his half-brother J.W. Milam kidnapped Till, beat him and shot him in the head. The men were tried for murder, but an all-white, male jury acquitted them.

Till’s murder and open casket funeral galvanized the emerging civil rights movement. More than six decades later, in January 2017, Timothy Tyson, author of The Blood of Emmett Till and a senior research scholar at Duke University, revealed that in a 2007 interview Carolyn admitted to him that she had lied about Till making advances toward her. The following year, it was reported that the Justice Department had reopened an investigation into Till’s murder.

Emmett Louis Till was born on July 25, 1941, in Chicago, the only child of Louis and Mamie Till. Till never knew his father, a private in the United States Army during World War II.

Mamie and Louis Till separated in 1942, and three years later, the family received word from the Army that the soldier had been executed for “willful misconduct” while serving in Italy.
Emmett Till’s mother was, by all accounts, an extraordinary woman. Defying the social constraints and discrimination she faced as an African-American woman growing up in the 1920s and ’30s, Mamie Till excelled both academically and professionally.

She was only the fourth black student to graduate from suburban Chicago’s predominantly white Argo Community High School, and the first black student to make the school’s “A” Honor Roll. While raising Emmett Till as a single mother, she worked long hours for the Air Force as a clerk in charge of confidential files.

Emmett Till, who went by the nickname Bobo, grew up in a thriving, middle-class black neighborhood on Chicago’s South Side. The neighborhood was a haven for black-owned businesses, and the streets he roamed as a child were lined with black-owned insurance companies, pharmacies and beauty salons as well as nightclubs that drew the likes of Duke Ellington and Sarah Vaughan.

Those who knew Till best described him as a responsible, funny and infectiously high-spirited child. He was stricken with polio at the age of 5, but managed to make a full recovery, save a slight stutter that remained with him for the rest of his life.

With his mother often working more than 12-hour days, Till took on his full share of domestic responsibilities from a very young age. “Emmett had all the house responsibility,” his mother later recalled. “I mean everything was really on his shoulders, and Emmett took it upon himself. He told me if I would work, and make the money, he would take care of everything else. He cleaned, and he cooked quite a bit. And he even took over the laundry.”

Till attended the all-black McCosh Grammar School. His classmate and childhood pal, Richard Heard, later recalled, “Emmett was a funny guy all the time. He had a suitcase of jokes that he liked to tell. He loved to make people laugh. He was a chubby kid; most of the guys were skinny, but he didn’t let that stand in his way. He made a lot of friends at McCosh.”

In August 1955, Till’s great uncle, Moses Wright, came up from Mississippi to visit the family in Chicago. At the end of his stay, Wright was planning to take Till’s cousin, Wheeler Parker, back to Mississippi with him to visit relatives down South, and when Till, who was just 14 years old at the time, learned of these plans, he begged his mother to let him go along.

Initially, Till’s mother was opposed to the idea. She wanted to take a road trip to Omaha, Nebraska, and tried to convince her son to join her with the promise of open-road driving lessons. 
But Till desperately wanted to spend time with his cousins in Mississippi, and in a fateful decision that would have grave impact on their lives and the course of American history, Till’s mother relented and let him go.

On August 19, 1955—the day before Till left with his uncle and cousin for Mississippi—Mamie Till gave her son his late father’s signet ring, engraved with the initials “L.T.” 
The next day she drove her son to the 63rd Street station in Chicago. They kissed goodbye, and Till boarded a southbound train headed for Mississippi. It was the last time they ever saw each other.

Three days after arriving in Money, Mississippi—on August 24, 1955—Emmett Till and a group of teenagers entered Bryant’s Grocery and Meat Market to buy refreshments after a long day picking cotton in the hot afternoon sun.

What exactly transpired inside the grocery store that afternoon will never be known. Till purchased bubble gum, and in later accounts he was accused of either whistling at, flirting with or touching the hand of the store’s white female clerk—and wife of the owner—Carolyn Bryant.

Four days later, at approximately 2:30 a.m. on August 28, 1955, Roy Bryant, Carolyn’s husband, and his half brother J.W. Milam kidnapped Till from Moses Wright’s home. They then beat the teenager brutally, dragged him to the bank of the Tallahatchie River, shot him in the head, tied him with barbed wire to a large metal fan and shoved his mutilated body into the water.

Moses Wright reported Till’s disappearance to the local authorities, and three days later, his corpse was pulled out of the river. Till’s face was mutilated beyond recognition, and Wright only managed to positively identify him by the ring on his finger, engraved with his father’s initials—”L.T.”
“It never occurred to me that Bobo would be killed for whistling at a white woman.” — Simeon Wright, Emmett Till’s cousin
“It would appear that the state of Mississippi has decided to maintain white supremacy by murdering children.” — Roy Wilkins, head of the NAACP.

Till’s body was shipped to Chicago, where his mother opted to have an open-casket funeral with Till’s body on display for five days. Thousands of people came to the Roberts Temple Church of God to see the evidence of this brutal hate crime. 
Till’s mother said that, despite the enormous pain it caused her to see her son’s dead body on display, she opted for an open-casket funeral in an effort to “let the world see what has happened, because there is no way I could describe this. And I needed somebody to help me tell what it was like.”

“With his body water-soaked and defaced, most people would have kept the casket covered. [His mother] let the body be exposed. More than 100,000 people saw his body lying in that casket here in Chicago. That must have been at that time the largest single civil rights demonstration in American history.” — Jesse Jackson

The weeks that passed between Till’s burial and the murder and kidnapping trial of Roy Bryant and J.W. Milam, two black publications, Jet magazine and the Chicago Defender, published graphic images of Till’s corpse.

By the time the trial commenced—on September 19, 1955—Emmett Till’s murder had become a source of outrage and indignation throughout the country. Because blacks and women were barred from serving jury duty, Bryant and Milam were tried before an all-white, all-male jury.

In an act of extraordinary bravery, Moses Wright took the stand and identified Bryant and Milam as Till’s kidnappers and killers. At the time, it was almost unheard of for blacks to openly accuse whites in court, and by doing so, Wright put his own life in grave danger.

Despite the overwhelming evidence of the defendants’ guilt and widespread pleas for justice from outside Mississippi, on September 23, the panel of white male jurors acquitted Bryant and Milam of all charges. Their deliberations lasted a mere 67 minutes.

Only a few months later, in January 1956, Bryant and Milam admitted to committing the crime. Protected by double jeopardy laws, they told the whole story of how they kidnapped and killed Emmett Till to Look magazine for $4,000.
“J.W. Milam and Roy Bryant died with Emmett Till’s blood on their hands,” Simeon Wright, Emmett Till’s cousin and an eyewitness to his kidnapping (he was with Till the night he was kidnapped by Milam and Bryant), later stated. “And it looks like everyone else who was involved is going to do the same. They had a chance to come clean. They will die with Emmett Till’s blood on their hands.”
“I thought about Emmett Till, and I couldn’t go back [to the back of the bus].” — Rosa Parks

Coming only one year after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education mandated the end of racial segregation in public schools, Emmett Till’s death provided an important catalyst for the American civil rights movement.

One hundred days after Till’s murder, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on an Alabama city bus, sparking the yearlong Montgomery Bus Boycott. Nine years later, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, outlawing many forms of racial discrimination and segregation. In 1965, the Voting Rights Act, outlawing discriminatory voting practices, was passed.

[Emmett Till’s murder was] one of the most brutal and inhuman crimes of the 20th century. — Martin Luther King Jr.
Though she never stopped feeling the pain of her son’s death, Mamie Till (who died of heart failure in 2003) also recognized that what happened to her son helped open Americans’ eyes to the racial hatred plaguing the country, and in doing so helped spark a massive protest movement for racial equality and justice.

“People really didn’t know that things this horrible could take place,” Mamie Till said in an interview with Devery S. Anderson, author of Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelled the Civil Rights Movement, in December 1996. “And the fact that it happened to a child, that make all the difference in the world.”

Timothy Tyson’s Book and Revived Investigation
Over six decades after Till’s brutal abduction and murder, in January 2017, Timothy Tyson, author of The Blood of Emmett Till and a senior research scholar at Duke University, revealed that in a 2007 interview Carolyn Bryant Donham (she had divorced and remarried) admitted to him that she had lied about Till making advances toward her.

As of Last Week, July 15, 2018 – the case is re-opened and new Information is being viewed. The Justice Department declined to comment on Thursday, but it appeared that the government had chosen to devote new attention to the case after a central witness, Carolyn Bryant Donham, recanted parts of her account of what transpired in August 1955. Two men who confessed to killing Emmett, only after they had been acquitted by an all-white jury in Mississippi, are deadResearch more about this great American and share with your babies as it was told to me. Make it a champion day!

July 24 1954- Mary Eliza Church

GM – FBF – Today, I would like to share with you a story of an American social activist who was co – founder and first president of the National Association of Colored Women. She was an early civil rights advocate, an educator, an author, and a lecturer on woman suffrage and rights for African Americans. Enjoy!

Remember – “”Keep on going, keep on insisting, keep on fighting injustice.” – Mary Eliza Church Terrell

Today in our History – July 24,1954 – Mary Eliza Church Terrell Annapolis, MD.. Born Sept. 23, 1863, Memphis, Tenn.,

Civil rights activist and suffragist. She was born in Memphis, Tennessee,the daughter of Robert Church and Louisa Ayers, both former slaves. Robert was the son of his white master, Charles Church. During the Memphis race riots in 1866 Mary’s father was shot in the head and left for dead.

He survived the attack and eventually became a successful businessman. He speculated in the property market and was considered to be the wealthiest black man in the South. Although she was fair skinned enough to “pass” as a white person if she had so chosen, she placed herself firmly in the struggle for African American empowerment. She was an outstanding student and after graduating from Oberlin College, Ohio, in 1884, she taught at a black secondary school in Washington and at Wilberforce University in Ohio.

Through her father, Mary met Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington. She was especially close to Douglass and worked with him on several civil rights campaigns. After a two year traveling and studying in France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and England (1888-1890), Mary returned to the United States where she married Robert Heberton Terrell, a lawyer who was later to become the first black municipal court judge in Washington. In 1892 Church’s friend, Tom Moss, a grocer from Memphis, was lynched by a white mob. Church and Frederick Douglass had a meeting with Benjamin Harrison concerning this case but the president was unwilling to make a public statement condemning lynching.

Terrell was an active member of the National American Woman Suffrage Association and was particularly concerned about ensuring the organization continued to fight for black women getting the vote. With Josephine Ruffin she formed the Federation of Afro-American Women and in 1896 she became the first president of the newly formed National Association of Colored Women. In 1904 she was invited to speak at the Berlin International Congress of Women. She was the only black woman at the conference and, determined to make a good impression, she created a sensation when she gave her speech in German, French and English.

During the First World War Terrell and her daughter Phillis joined Alice Paul and Lucy Burns of the Congressional Union for Women Suffrage (CUWS) in picketing the White House. She was particularly upset when in one demonstration outside of the White House, leaders of the party asked the black suffragist, Ida Wells-Barnett, not to march with other members. It was feared that identification with black civil rights would lose the support of white women in the South. Despite pressure from people like Mary White Ovington, leaders of the CUWS refused to publicly state that they endorsed black female suffrage. In 1909 Terrell joined with Ovington to form the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

The first meeting of the NAACP was held on 12th February, 1909. Early members included Josephine Ruffin, Jan Addams, Inez Milholland, William B. DuBois, Charles Darrow, Charles Edward Russell, Lincoln Steffens, Ray Stannard Baker, and Ida B. Wells-Barnett. Terrell wrote several books including her autobiography, “A Colored Woman in a White World” (1940). In the early 1950s she was involved in the struggle against segregation in public eating places in Washington. Her motto was “Keep on going, keep on insisting, keep on fighting injustice.” Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 23 2013- Emlie Griffin

GM – FBF – Today I would like to share with you a story of a boxer who killed a man in the ring, which hurt his career from that to his last in the ring. Enjoy!

Remember – ” I did not want to kill him because we were friends but he called me a word that I would hurt anybody because that is not a good way to live.” – Emile Griffith.

Today in our History – July 23, 2013 – Boxer Emlie Griffith dies. Considered to be one of the best during his era.

Emile Griffith, in full Emile Alphonse Griffith, (born February 3, 1938, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands—died July 23, 2013, Hempstead, New York, U.S.), professional American boxer who won five world boxing championships—three times as a welterweight and twice as a middleweight.

Griffith came to the United States as a teenager and was encouraged to become a boxer by his employer, the owner of a hat factory. In 1958, after winning the New York Daily News and Intercity Golden Gloves amateur welterweight (147-pound) titles, he began his professional career. In his first 24 bouts as a professional, Griffith lost only twice, at which point he was given his first chance at a title bout. Griffith, who would hold the welterweight professional championship three times, first won it from Benny (“Kid”) Paret in a 13-round knockout on April 1, 1961; he lost it to Paret in a rematch by a 15-round decision on September 30, 1961; and he regained it by a knockout of Paret on March 24, 1962. This last fight resulted in tragedy when in the 12th round Griffith backed Paret into a corner and continued to punch him as he slumped against the ropes until the referee finally stepped in to stop the fight. Paret lapsed into a coma and died 10 days later. Griffith, who insisted that the brutality was not associated with remarks Paret had made prior to the bout about his sexuality, was shaken by the death and was never as aggressive in the ring. Despite this, Griffith successfully defended his world welterweight title twice in 1962 before surrendering it to Luis Rodríguez by a 15-round decision on March 21, 1963. On the rematch Griffith recaptured the title once more by a 15-round decision over Rodríguez on June 8, 1963.

On April 25, 1966, Griffith won the world middleweight (160-pound) title by outpointing champion Dick Tiger in 15 rounds. His attempt to retain both championships (contrary to U.S. boxing rules) was disallowed, and he relinquished the welterweight title. On April 17, 1967, he was defeated by Nino Benvenuti on points in a 15-round middleweight title match. On September 29 of that year, he won the middleweight championship for the second time by outscoring Benvenuti in 15 rounds, but he lost it again to Benvenuti by a 15-round decision on March 4, 1968. Griffith retired from the ring in 1977, with 85 wins (23 knockouts), 24 losses, and 2 draws. He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990. Research more about Black boxers and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

July 22 1939-Jane Matilda Bolin

GM – FBF – Today I would like to share with you the story of Jane M. Bolin a trailblazing attorney who became the first African-American female judge in the United States, serving on New York’s Family Court for four decades. Enjoy!

Remember – “I’d rather see if I can help a child than settle an argument between adults over money” – Jane Matilda Bolin

Today in our History – July 22,1939 -Jane Matilda Bolin made history as the first African-American female judge in the United States.

Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, on April 11, 1908, Jane Bolin graduated from Yale Law School and, after relocating to New York City, became sworn in by Mayor Fiorello La Guardia as the first African-American female judge in the U.S. She served on the Family Court bench for four decades, advocating for children and families via outside institutions as well. She died at age 98 on January 8, 2007.

Jane Matilda Bolin was born in Poughkeepsie, New York, on April 11, 1908, to an interracial couple, Matilda Ingram Emery and Gaius C. Bolin. Her father was an attorney who headed the Dutchess County Bar Association and cared for the family after his wife’s illness and death, which occurred when Bolin was a child.

Jane Bolin was a superb student who graduated from high school in her mid-teens and went on to enroll at Wellesley College. Though facing overt racism and social isolation, she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1928 and was officially recognized as one of the top students of her class. She then attended Yale Law School, contending with further social hostilities, yet nonetheless graduating in 1931 and thus becoming the first African-American woman to earn a law degree from the institution.

Bolin worked with her family’s practice in her home city for a time before marrying attorney Ralph E. Mizelle in 1933 and relocating to New York. As the decade progressed, after campaigning unsuccessfully for a state assembly seat on the Republican ticket, she took on assistant corporate counsel work for New York City, creating another landmark as the first African-American woman to hold that position.

On July 22, 1939, a 31-year-old Bolin was called to appear at the World’s Fair before Mayor Fiorello La Guardia, who—completely unbeknownst to the attorney—had plans to swear her in as a judge. Thus Bolin made history again as the first African-American female judge in the United States.

Having already been assigned to what would be known as Family Court, Bolin was a thoughtful, conscientious force on the bench, confronting a range of issues on the domestic front and taking great care when it came to the plight of children. She also changed segregationist policies that had been entrenched in the system, including skin-color based assignments for probation officers.

Additionally, Bolin worked with first lady Eleanor Roosevelt in providing support for the Wiltwyck School, a comprehensive, holistic program to help eradicate juvenile crime among boys.
Bolin faced personal challenges, as well. Her first husband died in 1943, and she raised their young son, Yorke, for several years on her own. She remarried in 1950 to Walter P. Offutt Jr.

Bolin was reinstated as a judge for three additional terms, 10 years each, after her first, also serving on the boards of several organizations, including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the New York Urban League. Though she preferred to continue, Bolin was required to retire from the bench at the age of 70, subsequently working as a consultant and school-based volunteer, as well as with the New York State Board of Regents. She died in Long Island City, Queens, New York, on January 8, 2007, at the age of 98.

A 2011 biography was published on Bolin’s career—Daughter of the Empire State: The Life of Judge Jane Bolin by Jacqueline A. McLeod for the University of Illinois Press. The cover of the book features a mid-1940s painting of Bolin by Betsey Graves Reyneau, which is part of the National Portrait Gallery’s collection. Research more about black woman lawer’s and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!