* Today in Black History – October 4 *
1864 – The National Black Convention meets in Syracuse, New York.
1864 – The New Orleans Tribune, the first African American daily
newspaper, is founded by Dr. Louis C. Roudanez. The
newspaper, published in both English and French, starts
as a tri-weekly, but soon becomes an influential daily.
1934 – Malvin Gray Johnson joins the ancestors in New York City.
His deceptively simple paintings, with their warm colors
and serene, sensuous charm, had earned him a large and
loyal group of admirers during the Harlem Renaissance.
1935 – Joe Walcott, World Welterweight Boxing Champion during
the early 1900’s, joins the ancestors after being struck
and killed by a car. He is perhaps the only West Indian
(from Barbados), universally recognized as a boxing
legend. Walcott stood at five feet, one and a half
inches, his fighting weight at 142 pounds, basically a
midget version of Mike Tyson. His short powerful
physique enabled him to bob and weave, catching his
opponent’s punches on his powerful shoulders and his
1937 – Lee Patrick Brown is born in Wewoka, Oklahoma. He will
become one of the top-ranking law-enforcement executives
in the United States, first as Public Safety Commissioner
in Atlanta, Georgia, then as the first African American
police chief in Houston, Texas, the second African
American police commissioner for New York City, and the
first African American mayor of Houston.
1943 – Hubert Gerold Brown is born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
He will be better known as H. Rap Brown, become a Black
nationalist and chairman of the Student Nonviolent
Coordinating Committee in the 1960s, and later the
Justice Minister of the Black Panther Party. He will be
most famous for his proclamation during that period that
“violence is as American as cherry pie”, as well as once
stating that “If America don’t come around, we’re gonna
burn it down”. He is also known for his autobiography “Die
Nigger Die!”. He will spend five years (1971-1976) in
New York’s Attica Prison after a robbery conviction. While
in prison, he will convert to Islam and change his name to
Jamil Abdullah al-Amin. After his release, he will open a
grocery store in Atlanta, Georgia and become a Muslim
spiritual leader and community activist, preaching against
drugs and gambling in Atlanta’s West End neighborhood. He
will be sentenced to life in prison, without the possibility of
parole, for the 2000 shooting of two Fulton County Sheriff’s
deputies, one of whom joins the ancestors.
1944 – Dancer Pearl Primus makes her Broadway debut at the
Belasco Theater. She will become widely known for
blending the African and American dance traditions.
1944 – Patricia Holt is born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She
will become a singer known as Patti LaBelle and will be
a lead with the Ordettes, the Bluebells, and LaBelle.
She will eventually debut a solo career performing over
90 concerts a year. She will publish her life story,
“Don’t Block The Blessings: Revelations of a Lifetime.”
1945 – Clifton Davis is born in Chicago, Illinois. He will
become an actor and singer, performing in “That’s My
Mama,” and “Amen” on television. He will also become a
minister in the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
1966 – Lesotho (Basutoland) gains its independence from Great
1976 – Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz resigns in the wake
of a controversy over a joke he had made about Blacks.
1991 – The Harold Washington Library in Chicago, Illinois is
dedicated in the memory of its beloved former mayor.
1994 – Exiled Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide vows in
an address to the U.N. General Assembly, to return to
Haiti in 11 days.
1994 – President Clinton welcomes South African President Nelson
Mandela to the White House.
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Rene’ A. Perry.