Category: Education

March 29 1993- Shirley K. Turner

GM – FBF – As we draw to a close of National Woman’s Month it would be remiss of me if I did not reconize our women of Trenton, NJ. and we have many – TRENTON MAKES THE WORLD TAKES!

Remember – “Women have to pay the same amount to buy gasoline or food as men. We don’t get a discount because we are not being paid the same salaries as men,” – (Shirley K. Turner – D- N.J. Senator)

Today in our History – March 29, 1993 – Shirley K. Turner decides to run for N.J.’s lower house – The General Assembly.

Senator Shirley Kersey Turner (born July 3, 1941) is serving her seventh term in the New Jersey Senate. Prior to serving in the Senate, Shirley served two terms in the Assembly in 1993 and 1995. During the 208th Legislature, Senator Turner became the first woman and first African-American to be elected as Senate President Pro Tempore.

Senator Turner is Vice Chair of the Senate Education Committee and the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism, and Historic Preservation Committee. She is a member of the Legislative Black Caucus and a Commissioner of the Education Commission of the States, a national, nonpartisan interstate compact devoted to education. She serves on the Education Commission of the States’ Steering and Finance Committees.

Senator Turner has worked in a bipartisan fashion to build a significant record of legislative accomplishments, working to enhance the health, safety, and well-being of New Jersey’s children, strengthen families, promote public education and affordable health care, develop and support small businesses, and also fostering economic development, and job growth. The breadth of legislation she has sponsored reflects the needs and interests of her diverse district.

Among Senator Turner’s legislative accomplishments, she has created laws to require that the health and safety of a child be the State’s paramount concern in cases where a child is placed outside the home; require criminal history checks of child care center employees, and school employees and volunteers; establish procedures for the placement of a minor child whose caretaker is incarcerated; enhance school bus safety; provide more scholarship opportunities, including allowing students to attend two-year and four-year state colleges at no cost; establish nutrition standards and eye exams for students; and promote mentoring and after-school programs for at-risk youth. Senator Turner has been critical of the State’s practice of placing at-risk children out of state and away from the support of their families. As Chair of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Turner has overseen legislation which has improved education for children in primary and secondary schools and helped to keep New Jersey’s schools among the highest performing in the nation. She has worked to expand public school choice by permanently establishing an Interdistrict Public School Choice program in the Department of Education.

Senator Turner received national acclaim for her efforts to protect jobs by preventing publicly-funded jobs from being outsourced to foreign countries, setting the precedent for 21 other states that followed Senator Turner’s lead. She has also established laws to provide MicroCredit Business loans for women; mandate insurance coverage of minimum hospital stays for mastectomies and child birth; and protect consumers from identity theft, predatory lending, and telemarketing calls. She also pioneered the legislation that eventually established bars and restaurants as smoke-free. Senator Turner has also worked to create increased opportunities for affordable housing and homeownership.

Senator Turner was at the forefront of legislation to abolish the death penalty and worked to create drug court programs statewide for first-time, non-violent offenders to receive treatment instead of incarceration. In the fight against opioid addiction, Senator Turner’s legislation would help to curb addictions and expand treatment opportunities. She has fought to reduce gun and gang crimes and violence by establishing zero tolerance for illegal weapons and ammunition sales and transfers. She has fought to reform unfair and unaffordable motor vehicle surcharge laws, with a goal of restoring drivers’ licenses and removing the barrier to employment. Senator Turner has been a strong voice for government reform. She was the prime sponsor of the legislation that created the clean elections pilot programs and has been active in her support for other ethics and campaign reforms. Her voting record consistently reflects her efforts to reduce patronage and promote efficiency and transparency in government spending. She is continuing the fight to help reform New Jersey’s regressive property tax system and to promote and encourage shared services and consolidation of school districts and municipalities in order to reduce property taxes.

As a career educator, Senator Turner has been dedicated to New Jersey’s youth, helping them to build bright futures. She is a former Trenton public school teacher, a former EOF counselor to disadvantaged youth who are first-generation college students, and a former counselor for the New Jersey Youth Corps to help prepare youth for employment. She is the former Director of Career Services at Rider University, where she worked advising college students and alumni in their career plans. She received a B.S. in education from The College of New Jersey (formerly Trenton State College) and a M.A. in guidance and counseling from Rider University. She earned doctoral credits in education at Rutgers University. Senator Turner is a former Mercer County Freeholder and Freeholder vice president. She and her husband Donald live in Lawrenceville. They have two children, daughter, Jacqueline and son-in-law Gregory and son, Chet and daughter-in-law Tonia, and five grandchildren, Deron, Briana, Bryson, Faith, and Chandler. Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

March 25, 1931- Wells Bennett

GM – FBF – “No nation, savage or civilized, save only the United States of America, has confessed its inability to protect its women save by hanging, shooting, and burning alleged offenders.” – Ida B. Wells

Remember – “There is nothing we can do about the lynching now, as we are out-numbered and without arms.” – Ida B. Wells

Today in our History – Ida B. Wells-Barnett, known for much of her public career as Ida B. Wells, was an anti-lynching activist, a muckraking journalist, a lecturer, and a militant activist for racial justice. She lived from July 16, 1862 to March 25, 1931.

Born into slavery, Wells-Barnett went to work as a teacher when she had to support her family after her parents died in an epidemic. She wrote on racial justice for Memphis newspapers as a reporter and newspaper owner.

She was forced to leave town when a mob attacked her offices in retaliation for writing against an 1892 lynching.

After briefly living in New York, she moved to Chicago, where she married and became involved in local racial justice reporting and organizing. She maintained her militancy and activism throughout her life.

Early Life
Ida B. Wells was enslaved at birth. She was born in Holly Springs, Mississippi, six months before the Emancipation Proclamation. Her father, James Wells, was a carpenter who was the son of the man who enslaved him and his mother. Her mother, Elizabeth, was a cook and was enslaved by the same man as her husband was. Both kept working for him after emancipation. Her father got involved in politics and became a trustee of Rust College, a freedman’s school, which Ida attended.

A yellow fever epidemic orphaned Wells at 16 when her parents and some of her brothers and sisters died.

To support her surviving brothers and sisters, she became a teacher for $25 a month, leading the school to believe that she was already 18 in order to obtain the job.

Education and Early Career
In 1880, after seeing her brothers placed as apprentices, she moved with her two younger sisters to live with a relative in Memphis.

There, she obtained a teaching position at a black school, and began taking classes at Fisk University in Nashville during summers.

Wells also began writing for the Negro Press Association. She became editor of a weekly, Evening Star, and then of Living Way, writing under the pen name Iola. Her articles were reprinted in other black newspapers around the country.

In 1884, while riding in the ladies’ car on a trip to Nashville, Wells was forcibly removed from that car and forced into a colored-only car, even though she had a first class ticket. She sued the railroad, the Chesapeake and Ohio, and won a settlement of $500. In 1887, the Tennessee Supreme Court overturned the verdict, and Wells had to pay court costs of $200.

Wells began writing more on racial injustice and she became a reporter for, and part owner of, Memphis Free Speech. She was particularly outspoken on issues involving the school system, which still employed her. In 1891, after one particular series, in which she had been particularly critical (including of a white school board member she alleged was involved in an affair with a black woman), her teaching contract was not renewed.

Wells increased her efforts in writing, editing, and promoting the newspaper.

She continued her outspoken criticism of racism. She created a new stir when she endorsed violence as a means of self-protection and retaliation.

Lynching in Memphis
Lynching in that time had become one common means by which African Americans were intimidated. Nationally, in about 200 lynchings each year, about two-thirds of the victims were black men, but the percentage was much higher in the South.

In Memphis in 1892, three black businessmen established a new grocery store, cutting into the business of white-owned businesses nearby. After increasing harassment, there was an incident where the business owners fired on some people breaking into the store. The three men were jailed, and nine self-appointed deputies took them from the jail and lynched them.

Anti-Lynching Crusade
One of the lynched men, Tom Moss, was the father of Ida B.

Wells’ goddaughter, and Wells knew him and his partners to be upstanding citizens. She used the paper to denounce the lynching, and to endorse economic retaliation by the black community against white-owned businesses as well as the segregated public transportation system. She also promoted the idea that African Americans should leave Memphis for the newly-opened Oklahoma territory, visiting and writing about Oklahoma in her paper. She bought herself a pistol for self-defense.

She also wrote against lynching in general. In particular, the white community became incensed when she published an editorial denouncing the myth that black men raped white women, and her allusion to the idea that white women might consent to a relationship with black men was particularly offensive to the white community.

Wells was out of town when a mob invaded the paper’s offices and destroyed the presses, responding to a call in a white-owned paper. Wells heard that her life was threatened if she returned, and so she went to New York, self-styled as a “journalist in exile.”

Anti-Lynching Journalist in Exile
Ida B. Wells continued writing newspaper articles at New York Age, where she exchanged the subscription list of Memphis Free Speech for a part ownership in the paper. She also wrote pamphlets and spoke widely against lynching.

In 1893, Wells went to Great Britain, returning again the next year. There, she spoke about lynching in America, found significant support for anti-lynching efforts, and saw the organization of the British Anti-Lynching Society.

She was able to debate Frances Willard during her 1894 trip; Wells had been denouncing a statement of Willard’s that tried to gain support for the temperance movement by asserting that the black community was opposed to temperance, a statement that raised the image of drunken black mobs threatening white women — a theme that played into lynching defense.

Move to Chicago
On returning from her first British trip, Wells moved to Chicago. There, she worked with Frederick Douglass and a local lawyer and editor, Frederick Barnett, in writing an 81-page booklet about the exclusion of black participants from most of the events around the Colmbian Exposition.

She met and married Frederick Barnett who was a widower. Together they had four children, born in 1896, 1897, 1901 and 1904, and she helped raise his two children from his first marriage. She also wrote for his newspaper, the Chicago Conservator.

In 1895 Wells-Barnett published A Red Record: Tabulated Statistics and Alleged Causes of Lynchings in the United States 1892 – 1893 – 1894. She documented that lynchings were not, indeed, caused by black men raping white women.

From 1898-1902, Wells-Barnett served as secretary of the National Afro-American Council. In 1898, she was part of a delegation to President William McKinley to seek justice after the lynching in South Carolina of a black postman.

In 1900, she spoke for woman suffrage, and worked with another Chicago woman, Jane Addams, to defeat an attempt to segregate Chicago’s public school system.

In 1901, the Barnetts bought the first house east of State Street to be owned by a black family. Despite harassment and threats, they continued to live in the neighborhood.

Wells-Barnett was a founding member of the NAACP in 1909, but withdrew her membership, criticizing the organization for not being militant enough. In her writing and lectures, she often criticized middle-class blacks including ministers for not being active enough in helping the poor in the black community.

In 1910, Wells-Barnett helped found and became president of the Negro Fellowship League, which established a settlement house in Chicago to serve the many African Americans newly arrived from the South. She worked for the city as a probation officer from 1913-1916, donating most of her salary to the organization. But with competition from other groups, the election of an unfriendly city administration, and Wells-Barnett’s poor health, the League closed its doors in 1920.

Woman Suffrage
In 1913, Wells-Barnett organized the Alpha Suffrage League, an organization of African American women supporting woman suffrage. She was active in protesting the strategy of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, the largest pro-suffrage group, on participation of African Americans and how they treated racial issues. The NAWSA generally made participation of African Americans invisible — even while claiming that no African American women had applied for membership — so as to try to win votes for suffrage in the South. By forming the Alpha Suffrage League, Wells-Barnett made clear that the exclusion was deliberate, and that African American women and men did support woman suffrage, even knowing that other laws and practices that barred African American men from voting would also affect women.

A major suffrage demonstration in Washington, DC, timed to align with the presidential inauguration of Woodrow Wilson, asked that African American supporters march at the back of the line. Many African American suffragists, like Mary Church Terrell, agreed, for strategic reasons after initial attempts to change the minds of the leadership — but not Ida B. Wells-Barnett. She inserted herself into the march with the Illinois delegation, after the march started, and the delegation welcomed her. The leadership of the march simply ignored her action.

Wider Equality Efforts
Also in 1913, Ida B. Wells-Barnett was part of a delegation to see President Wilson to urge non-discrimination in federal jobs. She was elected as chair of the Chicago Equal Rights League in 1915, and in 1918 organized legal aid for victims of the Chicago race riots of 1918.

In 1915, she was part of the successful election campaign that led to Oscar Stanton De Priest becoming the first African American alderman in the city.

She was also part of founding the first kindergarten for black children in Chicago.

Later Years and Legacy
In 1924, Wells-Barnett failed in a bid to win election as president of the National Association of Colored Women, defeated by Mary McLeod Bethune. In 1930, she failed in a bid to be elected to the Illinois State Senate as an independent.

Ida B. Wells-Barnett died in 1931, largely unappreciated and unknown, but the city later recognized her activism by naming a housing project in her honor. The Ida B. Wells Homes, in the Bronzeville neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago, included rowhouses, mid-rise apartments, and some high-rise apartments. Because of the housing patterns of the city, these were occupied primarily by African Americans. Completed in 1939 to 1941, and initially a successful program, over time neglect and other urban problems led to their decay including gang problems. They were torn down between 2002 and 2011, to be replaced by a mixed-income development project.

Although anti-lynching was her main focus, and she did achieve considerable visibility of the problem, she never achieved her goal of federal anti-lynching legislation. Her lasting success was in the area of organizing black women.

Her autobiography Crusade for Justice, on which she worked in her later years, was published in 1970, edited by her daughter Alfreda M. Wells-Barnett.

Her home in Chicago is a National HIstoric Landmark, and is under private ownership. Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

March 24, 1912- Dorothy Irene Height

GM – FBF – “Greatness is not measured by what a man or woman accomplishes, but by the opposition he or she has overcome to reach his goals.” – Dorothy Height

REMEMBER – “We’ve got to work to save our children and do it with full respect for the fact that if we do not, no one else is going to do it.” – Dorothy Height

Today in our History – Dorothy Irene Height (March 24, 1912 – April 20, 2010 was an American administrator and educator who worked as a civil rights and women’s rights activist, specifically focused on the issues of African-American women, including unemployment, illiteracy, and voter awareness. She was the president of the National Council of Negro Women for forty years and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1994 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 2004.

Dorothy Height was born in Richmond, Virginia. When she was 5 years old, she moved with her family to Rankin, Pennsylvania, a steel town in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, where she graduated from Rankin High School in 1929. Height received a scholarship from the Elks, which helped her to attend college. She was admitted to Barnard College in 1929, but upon arrival was denied entrance because the school had an unwritten policy of admitting only two black students per year. She enrolled instead at New York University, earning an undergraduate degree in 1932 and a master’s degree in educational psychology the following year. She pursued further postgraduate work at Columbia University and the New York School of Social Work (the predecessor of the Columbia University School of Social Work).

Height started working as a caseworker with the New York City Welfare Department, and at the age of 25, she began a career as a civil rights activist, joining the National Council of Negro Women. She fought for equal rights for both African Americans and women. In 1944 she joined the national staff of the YWCA. She was also an active member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority, throughout her life, developing leadership training programs and ecumenical education programs. She was initiated at Rho Chapter at Columbia University. She served as national president of the sorority from 1947 to 1956.

In 1957, Height was named president of the National Council of Negro Women, a position she held until 1997. During the 1960s Civil Rights Movement, she organized “Wednesdays in Mississippi,” which brought together black and white women from the North and South to create a dialogue of understanding. Height was also a founding member of the Council for United Civil Rights Leadership. In his autobiography, civil rights leader James Farmer described Height as one of the “Big Six” of the Civil Rights Movement, but noted that her role was frequently ignored by the press due to sexism.

American leaders regularly took her counsel, including First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.[clarification needed] Height encouraged President Dwight D. Eisenhower to desegregate schools and President Lyndon B. Johnson to appoint African-American women to positions in government. In the mid-1960s, she wrote a column called “A Woman’s Word” for the weekly African-American newspaper the New York Amsterdam News, and her first column appeared in the issue of March 20, 1965, on page 8.

Height served on a number of committees, including as a consultant on African affairs to the Secretary of State, the President’s Committee on the Employment of the Handicapped, and the President’s Committee on the Status of Women. In 1974, she was named to the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research, which published the Belmont Report a response to the infamous “Tuskegee Syphilis Study” and an international ethical touchstone for researchers to this day.

In 1990, Height, along with 15 other African Americans, formed the African-American Women for Reproductive Freedom. Height was recognized by Barnard for her achievements as an honorary alumna during the college’s commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education decision in 2004.

The musical stage play If This Hat Could Talk, based on her memoirs Open Wide The Freedom Gates, debuted in 2005. The work showcases her unique perspective on the civil rights movement and details many of the behind-the-scenes figures and mentors who shaped her life, including Mary McLeod Bethune and Eleanor Roosevelt.

Height was the chairperson of the Executive Committee of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the largest civil rights for women’s rights organization in the USA. She was an honored guest at the inauguration of President Barack Obama on January 20, 2009, and was seated on the stage.

She attended the National Black Family Reunion that was celebrated on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., every year until her death in 2010. According to a family history DNA analysis performed by African Ancestry Inc., Height’s maternal line has a root among the Temne people of modern-day Sierra Leone. Dorothy Height was never married and never had children. On March 25, 2010, Height was admitted to Howard University Hospital in Washington D.C. for unspecified reasons. She died six weeks later, on April 20, 2010, at the age of 98. Her funeral service at the Washington National Cathedral on April 29, 2010 was attended by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, as well as many other dignitaries and notable people. She was later buried at Fort Lincoln Cemetery in Colmar Manor, Maryland. Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

March 17, 1955- Billy McKinney

GM – FBF- “The United States has far more to offer the world than our bombs and missiles and our military technology.” -Rep. Cynthia McKinney (US Congress – D – GA)

Remember – “Eight generations of African-Americans are still waiting to achieve their rights – compensation and restitution for the hundreds of years during which they were bought and sold on the market. ( US Congress – D – GA) – Rep. Cynthia McKinney

Today in oue History – 
Cynthia Ann McKinney was born on March 17, 1955 in Atlanta, Georgia to parents Billy McKinney, who was a police officer and to a mother, Leola Christion McKinney, who was a nurse. Her father was a political activist who challenged his employer, the Atlanta Police Department, for its practice of racial discrimination. This desire to use activism in the cause of racial justice was inherited by Cynthia McKinney who initiated her first petition against racism while still in school. In 1971 she challenged a teacher at the Catholic institution for using racist language. Meanwhile, her father, Billy McKinney was elected to the Georgia State Legislature in 1973 as a Democrat.
After completing St. Joseph’s High School in Atlanta in 1973, McKinney in 1978 received a degree in international relations from the University of Southern California. This degree would serve her well in the future as became increasingly concerned about the role and impact of U.S. foreign around the world. McKinney then entered the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. There she met and Jamaican politician Coy Grandison and returned to Jamaica with him. 
McKinney’s political career began in 1986 when her father, Billy McKinney persuaded his 31-year-old daughter become a write-in campaign for another legislative seat. Without any campaigning because she lived in Jamaica at the time, and little help from other Democrats, Cynthia McKinney still managed to get 20% of the total vote. Two years later she decided to mount an all-out campaign for the seat. Elected in 1988 at the age of 33, McKinney was one of the youngest members of the state legislature. She and her father became the first father-daughter pair in the Georgia legislature. 
McKinney soon became controversial in the Georgia legislature for opposing the Gulf War and for challenging the chamber’s dress code by wearing slacks instead of dresses. She also joined Georgia civil rights leaders in a lawsuit to increase the number of black judges appointed in the state.
In 1992, McKinney ran for Georgia’s Fourth Congressional District seat. She won and remained in the U.S. House of Representatives for a decade. While in Congress McKinney was appointed to the Armed Services Committee and the International Relations Committee where she served as Ranking Member on its International Operations and Human Rights Subcommittee. A member of the Congressional Black Caucus, she also led the Women’s Caucus Task Force on Children, Youth and Families.
While agreeing with most of the Clinton administrations policies, she challenged the Administration on the North American Free Trade Agreement. She also called for the end of U.S. arms sales to nations with a history of human rights violations. She also continued to be a strong voice for racial justice issues. She opposed welfare reform in 1996 because she felt it would intensify the conditions facing impoverished black women and children. She called for election reform after the 2000 presidential election partly because of what she termed the disfranchisement of many Florida African American voters. 
In 2002, McKinney was defeated in the Democratic Primary race by DeKalb County Judge Denise Majette. An estimated 40,000 Republicans voted in the Democratic Primary to defeat McKinney, angry over a controversial interview she had given earlier that year at a Berkeley, California radio station where she alleged that the Bush Administration had prior knowledge about the 9-11 attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.
In 2004, McKinney returned to Congress where she became most noted for her criticism of the Bush Administration for its lack of support for Hurricane Katrina victims. In 2006 McKinney lost in the Democratic Primary to DeKalb County attorney Hank Johnson. On December 8, 2006, in her last major act as a member of Congress, McKinney introduced legislation to Impeach President George Bush because of his conduct of the Iraq War. Reserch more about black women in congress and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!

March 2, 1971 – The Riot at Zion Baptist Church

GM – FBF – “The markers are going to bring to bear some of the feelings that need to be brought to bear, and it really puts our city back on the map on really being a forward and progressive city.”

Remember – “I think the magnitude of what happened here is just beginning to be realized.” – Edward Donaldson

Today in our History – March 2, 1961 – 187 petitioners consisted of African-American high school and college students who peacefully assembled at the Zion Baptist Church in Columbia, South Carolina. The students marched in separate groups of roughly 15 to South Carolina State House grounds to peacefully express their grievances regarding civil rights of African-Americans. The crowd of petitioners did not engage in any violent conduct and did not threaten violence in any manner, nor did crowds gathering to witness the demonstration engage in any such behavior. Petitioners were told by police officials that they must disperse within 15 minutes or face arrest. The petitioners failed to disperse, opting to sing religious and patriotic songs instead. Petitioners were convicted of the common law crime of breach of the peace.

The Supreme Court held that in arresting, convicting and punishing the petitioners, South Carolina infringed on the petitioners’ rights of free speech, free assembly and freedom to petition for a redress of grievances. The Court stated that these rights are guaranteed by the First Amendment and protected by the Fourteenth Amendment from invasion by the States.

The Supreme Court argued the arrests and convictions of 187 marchers were an attempt by South Carolina to “make criminal the peaceful expression of unpopular views” where the marchers’ actions were an exercise of First Amendment rights “in their most pristine and classic form.” The Court described the common law crime of breach of the peace as “not susceptible of exact definition.”

While the majority in Edwards distinguished Feiner v. New York (1951), based on the absence of violence or threats from the petitioners’ march to the state capital, Justice Clark stated that the breach of the peace convictions upheld in Feiner presented “a situation no more dangerous than that found here.” Justice Clark noted that Edwards was more dangerous because Feiner involved one person and was limited to a crowd of about 80, whereas the Edwards demonstration involved around 200 demonstrators and 300 onlookers. He argued that the City Manager’s action may have averted a catastrophe because of the “almost spontaneous combustion in some Southern communities in such a situation. Research more about Black protests in America and make it a champion day!

February 23, 1868 – William Edward Burghardt

GM – FBF – “Most men today cannot conceive of a freedom that does not involve somebody’s slavery.” W. E. B. Du Bois

Remember – “Education is the development of power and ideal.” W. E. B. Du Bois

Today in our History – February 23, 1868 – Throughout his career as a sociologist, historian, educator, and sociopolitical activist, William Edward Burghardt (W.E.B.) Du Bois argued for immediate racial equality for African-Americans. His emergence as an African-American leader paralleled the rise of Jim Crow laws of the South and the Progressive Era.

One of Du Bois’ most famous quotes encapsulates his philosophy, “Now is the accepted time, not tomorrow, not some more convenient season.

It is today that our best work can be done and not some future day or future year. It is today that we fit ourselves for the greater usefulness of tomorrow. Today is the seed time, now are the hours of work, and tomorrow comes the harvest and the playtime.”

Major Nonfiction Works:
The Study of the Negro Problems (1898)
The Philadelphia Negro (1899)
The Souls of Black Folk (1903)
The Talented Tenth, second chapter of The Negro Problem, a collection of articles by African Americans (September 1903).
Voice of the Negro II (September 1905)
Atlanta University’s Studies of the Negro Problem (1897-1910)
The Negro (1915)
The Gift of Black Folk (1924)
Africa, Its Geography, People and Products (1930)
Africa: Its Place in Modern History (1930)
Black Reconstruction in America (1935)
Black Folk, Then and Now (1939)
The Encyclopedia of the Negro (1946)
Africa in Battle Against Colonialism, Racialism, Imperialism (1960)

Early Life and Education:

Du Bois was born in Great Barrington, Mass on February 23, 1868. Throughout his childhood, he excelled in school and upon his graduation from high school, members of the community awarded Du Bois with a scholarship to attend Fisk University. While at Fisk, Du Bois experienced racism and poverty that was very different to his experiences in Great Barrington.

As a result, Du Bois decided that he would dedicate his life to ending racism and uplifting African-Americans.

In 1888, Du Bois graduated from Fisk and was accepted to Harvard University where he earned a master’s degree, a doctorate and a fellowship to study for two years at the University of Berlin in Germany. Following his studies in Berlin, Du Bois argued that through racial inequality and injustice could be exposed through scientific research. However, after observing the remaining body parts of a man who was lynched, Du Bois was convinced that scientific research was not enough.

“Souls of Black Folk”: Opposition to Booker T. Washington:
Initially, Du Bois agreed with the philosophy of Booker T. Washington , the preeminent leader of African-Americans during the Progressive Era. Washington argued that African-Americans should become skilled in industrial and vocational trades so that they could open businesses and become self-reliant.

Du Bois, however, greatly disagreed and outlined his arguments in his collection of essays, Souls of Black Folk published in 1903. In this text, Du Bois argued that white Americans needed to take responsibility for their contributions to the problem of racial inequality, proved the flaws in Washington’s argument, argued that African-Americans must also take better advantage of educational opportunities to uplift their race.

Organizing for Racial Equality:

In July of 1905, Du Bois organized the Niagara Movement with William Monroe Trotter. The purpose of the Niagara Movement was to have a more militant approach to fighting racial inequality. Its chapters throughout the United States fought local acts of discrimination and the national organization published a newspaper, Voice of the Negro.

The Niagara Movement dismantled in 1909 but Du Bois, along with several other members joined with white Americans to establish the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Du Bois was appointed director of research and also served as the editor of the NAACP’s magazine Crisis from 1910 to 1934. In addition to urging African-American readers to become socially and politically active, the publication also showcased literature and visual artistry of the Harlem Renaissance.

Racial Upliftment:

Throughout Du Bois’ career, he worked tirelessly to end racial inequality. Through his membership and later leadership of the American Negro Academy, Du Bois developed the idea of the “Talented Tenth,” arguing that educated African-Americans could lead the fight for racial equality in the United States.

Du Bois’ ideas about the importance of education would be present again during the Harlem Renaissance. During the Harlem Renaissance, Du Bois argued that racial equality could be gained through the arts. Using his influence as editor of the Crisis, Du Bois promoted the work of many African-American visual artists and writers.

Pan Africanism:

Du Bois also concerned with people of African descent throughout the world. Leading the Pan-African movement, Du Bois organized conferences for the Pan-African Congress for many years. Leaders from Africa and the Americas assembled to discuss racism and oppression–issues that people of African descent faced all over the world. Research more about this great American and share with your babies. Du Bois died on August 27, 1963 at the age of 95. Make it a champion Day!

February 3, 1964- Public Schools Boycott

GM – FBF – America preaches integration and practices segregation.

Remember – N.Y.C. is not that big that it can not follow the law and Intergrate it’s public school system – Minister Milton Galamison.

Today in our History – February 3, 1964 – N.Y.C. Public Schools Boycott by Black and Purto Rican students. After negotiations failed, New York City’s civil rights organizations planned a one day march and boycott of the city’s school sytems, in protest of the ongoing segregation of schools.
As part of the boycott, several students skipped school on February 3 and the protesters spent the day marching to several of the city’s schools and to the Board of Education in Brooklyn.

The turn out for the boycott exceeded the expectations of many. Despite this the boycott was not successful in integrating the public school system.

Segregation in schools had been outlawed in New York City in 1920 and the Brown v. Board of Education decision made school segregation illegal on a national level. Despite this, New York City schools were still segregated in 1964 and provided unequal learning environments. Several states delayed the desegregation of their schools and many were able to keep segregated schools due to surrounding segregated communities. This was the case in New York City; segregation was not practiced by law, but it was still a reality in communities that had been traditionally black and white. The kids that lived in these neighborhoods would then attend the schools closest to where they lived, leading to segregated schools across the city. The city had promised the schools an integration plan for several years and the Board of Education released a plan to draw out new districts just a few days before the boycott, but activists said it was not enough.

In the early 1960s the boycott was proposed by Presbyterian minister Milton Galamison who had previously served as the president of Brooklyn’s NAACP branch. He created a civil rights organization called the Parents’ Workshop for Equality in New York City Schools that consisted of parents, teachers, and the city’s civil rights advocates. The group attempted to convince the Board of Education to create a plan for the integration of the city’s African American and Puerto Rican schools. The organization was unable to do so and by 1964 they requested that Bayard Rustin plan the boycott; Rustin helped plan the 1963 March on Washington and the Freedom Ride of 1947. Along with the city’s civil rights organizations and pastors, Rustin planned the boycott for February 3 and provided freedom schools for students to attend if they planned to partake in the boycott. These civil rights organizations included the City-Wide Committee for Integrated Schools, CORE, NAACP, Parents’ Workshop for Equality, and the Harlem Parents Committee.

On February 3 the boycott began when 464,000 students refused to attend school and several protesters marched to the city’s schools and to the Board of Education. At the Freedom Schools, students were taught about slavery, what it meant to be free, and sang songs like the popular “We Shall Overcome.” While there was a fear of violence, the boycott remained peaceful, and received more support than people thought it would. However, it did not succeed in integrating the city’s African American and Puerto Rican schools and communities. Even today several schools in the city are still segregated due to the Board of Education’s failure to fully address the issue. Research more about school Integration in America and share with your babies. Make it a champion day!