* Today in Black History – January 29 *
1837 – Aleksandr Sereyevich Pushkin, a Russian of African ancestry
who is considered the “Shakespeare of Russian Literature,”
joins the ancestors after being killed in a duel.
Technically one-eighth African or an octoroon, Pushkin was
by all accounts Negroid in his appearance. His verse novel
“Eugene Onegin” and other works are considered classics of
Russian literature and inspiration for later great Russian
writers such as Gogol, Dostoyevski, and Tolstoy.
1850 – Henry Clay introduced in the Senate a compromise bill on
slavery which included the admission of California into the
Union as a free state.
1872 – Francis L. Cardoza is elected State Treasurer of South
1908 – Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, founded at Cornell University in
1906, is incorporated in the state of New York.
1913 – Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, founded at Howard University in
1908, is incorporated in Washington, DC.
1913 – African Americans celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the
Emancipation Proclamation. Major celebrations are held in
Jackson, Mississippi, New Orleans, Louisiana and Nashville,
Tennessee. Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey
appropriate money for official celebrations of the event.
1926 – Violette Neatley Anderson is the first African American woman
admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.
1954 – Oprah Winfrey is born in Kosciusko, Mississippi. She will
become the first African American woman to host a nationally
syndicated talk show and will be nominated for an Academy
award for best supporting actress in 1985 for her role in
“The Color Purple.” Following in the footsteps of Oscar
Micheaux and others, she will also form her own film and
television production company, Harpo Studios, in Chicago,
Illinois. In 1988, Harpo Studios will take over ownership
and production of the “Oprah Winfrey Show,” making her the
first African American woman to own and produce her own
national talk show.
1966 – Charles Mahoney, the first African American delegate to the
United Nations, joins the ancestors.
1981 – William R. “Cozy” Cole joins the ancestors in Columbus, Ohio.
A jazz drummer who played with Cab Calloway and Louis
Armstrong, he was known as a versatile percussionist who
played in big bands, comedy jazz groups, and Broadway
musicals. In 1958, his recording of “Topsy” became the only
drum solo to sell more than one million records.
1999 – Ronnie Lott, formally of the San Francisco 49’ers, is elected
to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Mr. Rene’ A. Perry.