* Today in Black History – September 23 *
1667 – In Williamsburg, Virginia, a law was passed, barring
slaves from obtaining their freedom by converting to
1862 – A draft of Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation is
published in Northern Newspapers.
1863 – Mary Church (later Terrell) is born in Memphis,
Tennessee. She will become an educator, civil and
woman’s rights advocate, and U.S. delegate to the
International Peace Conference. She will also be the
first African American to serve on the school board in
the District of Columbia. She will join the ancestors
on July 24, 1954.
1926 – John Coltrane, brilliant jazz saxophonist and composer who
will be considered the father of avant-garde jazz, is
born in Hamlet, North Carolina. He will join the ancestors
on July 17, 1967.
1930 – Ray Charles (Robinson) is born in Albany, Georgia. Blind
by the age of six, he will study music and form his own
band at the age of 24. A recorded performance at the
Newport Jazz Festival in 1958 will establish his career
as one of the premier soul singers in the United States.
Among Charles’s achievements will be three Grammys and
Kennedy Center honors in 1986. He will join the ancestors
on June 10, 2004 after succumbing to liver disease.
1952 – Jersey Joe Walcott, loses his heavyweight title in the
13th round, to Rocky Marciano, in Philadelphia
Pennsylvania. Pay Television for sporting events begins
with the Marciano-Walcott fight, coast to coast, in 49
theatres in 31 cities.
1954 – Playwright George Costello Wolfe is born in Frankfort,
Kentucky. He will become critically acclaimed for the
controversial plays, “The Colored Museum”, “Jelly’s Last
Jam”, and “Spunk”.
1957 – Nine African American students, who had entered Little
Rock Central High School in Arkansas, are forced to leave
because of a white mob outside.
1961 – President Kennedy names Thurgood Marshall to the United
States Circuit Court of Appeals.
1962 – Los Angeles Dodger, Maury Wills, steals record setting
base #97 on his way to 104.
1979 – Lou Brock steals record 935th base and becomes the all-
time major league record holder.
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Rene’ A. Perry.