* Today in Black History – January 19 *
1918 – John Harold Johnson is born in Arkansas City, Arkansas.
He will become the founder and president of Johnson
Publishing Company, Inc., the most prosperous African
American publishing company in America. His company will
publish the “Negro Digest”(his first), “Ebony,” “Jet,”
“Black Star,” “Black World” and “Ebony Jr.” magazines. He
will receive numerous awards, including the Horatio Alger
Award, the NAACP Spingarn Medal and the National Newspaper
Publishers Association’s Henry Johnson Fisher Award for
outstanding contributions to publishing. He will be the
first Black person to appear on the Forbes 400 Rich List,
and have a fortune estimated at close to $500 million. He
will join the ancestors on August 8, 2005.
1952 – The PGA Tournament Committee votes to allow African American
golfers to compete in sanctioned golf tournaments.
1959 – In a letter to her mother shortly before the opening of her
first play, “A Raisin in the Sun,” Lorraine Hansberry says
“Mama, it is a play that tells the truth about people,
Negroes, and life and I think it will help a lot of people
to understand how we are just as complicated as they are–
and just as mixed up–but above all, that we have among our
miserable and downtrodden ranks–people who are the very
essence of human dignity. That is what, after all the
laughter and tears, the play is supposed to say.”
1970 – The California state board of regents fires Angela Davis
from her teaching position at the University of California
at Los Angeles for being a Communist. This will be done at
the urging of then Governor Ronald Reagan. Her dismissal
will be overturned later by the courts, but the board of
regents will refuse to renew her contract at the end of the
1969-1970 academic year.
1983 – In its “State of Black America” annual report, the National
Urban League warns that the recession had disproportionately
hurt African Americans: “A major question facing the nation
in 1983 is whether the inevitable restructuring of the
American economy will include Black people.”
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Mr. Rene’ A. Perry.