* Today in Black History – October 7 *
1821 – William Still is born in Burlington County, New Jersey.
He will become an abolitionist and will be involved in
the anti-slavery movement working for the Pennsylvania
Society for the Abolition of Slavery. After the Civil
War, he will chronicle the personal accounts of former
runaway slaves, who had traveled on the Underground
Railroad. His publication, “Underground Railroad,”
published in 1872, will provide a revealing look into
the activities of the flight of fugitive slaves. Still
will be a civil rights activist, researcher and writer,
until he joins the ancestors on July 14, 1902.
1857 – Moses Fleetwood Walker is born in Steubenville, Ohio.
He will become a baseball player when he and his brother
Welday join the first baseball team at Oberlin College.
He will become a professional baseball player after
leaving Oberlin when he joins the Toledo Blue Stockings
of the Northwestern League in 1883. When he plays his
first game for the Blue Stockings in the American
Association the next year, he will become the first
African American to play in the major leagues. He will
join the ancestors on May 11, 1924. After the 1884 season,
no other African Americans will play in the major leagues
until Jackie Robinson in 1947.
1873 – Henry E. Hayne, secretary of state, is accepted as a
student at the University of South Carolina. Scores of
African Americans will attend the university in 1874 and
1886 – Spain abolishes slavery in Cuba.
1888 – Sargent C. Johnson is born in Boston, Massachusetts. He
will be a pioneering artist of the Harlem Renaissance,
known for his wood, cast stone, and ceramic sculptures.
Among his most famous works will be “Forever Free” and
1889 – Clarence Muse is born in Baltimore, Maryland. He will
become a pioneer film and stage actor. He will appear
in the second talking movie ever made and go on to appear
in a total of 219 films. His career will span over 60
years. He will join the ancestors on October 13, 1979.
1891 – Archibald John Motley, Jr. is born in New Orleans,
Louisiana. He will become one of the more renowned
painters of the 1920’s and 1930’s. He will join the
ancestors on January 16, 1981.
1897 – Elijah Poole is born in Sandersville, Georgia. He will
become better known as The Honorable Elijah Muhammad,
one of the most influential leaders in the Nation of
Islam. Poole will be trained by Master Wallace Fard
Muhammad, founder of the Nation of Islam, and will lead
the organization to become the largest African American
movement since Garveyism until he joins the ancestors
on February 25, 1975.
1931 – Desmond Mpilo Tutu is born in Klerksdorp, South Africa.
He will become the Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1984, and
Archbishop of the Anglican Church (First Anglican bishop
of African descent) of Johannesburg, South Africa.
1934 – LeRoi Jones is born in Newark, New Jersey. He will be
better known as Amiri Baraka, influential playwright,
author, and critic of the African American experience.
1954 – Marian Anderson becomes the first African American singer
hired by the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York.
1981 – Egypt’s parliament names Vice President Hosni Mubarak to
succeed the assassinated Anwar Sadat.
1984 – Walter Payton passes Jim Brown as NFL’s career rushing
1985 – Lynette Woodward, is chosen as the first woman to play
with the Harlem Globetrotters.
1989 – Ricky Henderson steals a record 8 bases in a play off
1993 – Writer, Toni Morrison, is awarded the Nobel Prize in
1995 – Coach Eddie Robinson, of Grambling State University, wins
his 400th game and sets a NCAA record that clearly
establishes him as a legend.
1997 – MCA Records offers, for sale, fifteen previously
unreleased tracks of legendary guitarist, Jimi Hendrix.
Hendrix joined the ancestors in 1970.
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Rene’ A. Perry.