March 23 African American Historical Events

* Today in Black History – March 23 *

1784 – Tom Molineaux, who will become America’s most celebrated
early boxing success, is born into slavery in Virginia.
He will emigrate to London after winning money to purchase
his freedom in a fight. He will challenge champion Tom
Cribb in a fight attended by 10,000 spectators in 1810,
which he will apparently win but is ruled against, by a
partisan referee. After a subsequent loss to Cribb in
1811, he will sink into alcoholism and will join the
ancestors penniless in Galway, Ireland, in 1818 at the age
of 34.

1938 – Maynard Jackson is born in Dallas, Texas. He will be elected
the first African American mayor of Atlanta, Georgia for
two terms, 1974 to 1982, and be re-elected in 1989 for an
unprecedented third term. He will join the ancestors on June
23, 2003.

1953 – Yvette Marie Stevens is born in Great Lakes, Illinois. She
will become better known as Chaka Khan, lead singer of the
rock group Rufus (winner of a 1974 Grammy) and a three-time
Grammy-winning soloist.

1955 – Moses Malone is born in Petersburg, Virginia. He will begin
his career in professional basketball in 1974 when he
becomes the first player in ABA basketball history to make
the move directly from high school ball to playing in a
professional league. He will join the now-defunct American
Basketball Association’s Utah Stars. His career will peak
during his seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers. Matched
with Julius Erving, Maurice Cheeks, Bobby Jones and Andrew
Toney in the 1982-83 season, the 76ers will lead the league
with a 65-17 regular-season record and win the championship.
He will win both NBA MVP and NBA Finals MVP that year. His
other achievements will include NBA MVP (1979, ’82), All-NBA
first team (1979, ’82, ’85), All-NBA second team (1980, ’81,
’84, ’87), NBA All-Defensive first team (1983) and NBA
All-Defensive second team (1979). He will also hold career
records for the most consecutive games without a
disqualification (1,212), most free throws made (8,531),
most offensive rebounds (6,731) and most turnovers (3,804).
He will achieve the milestone of playing his 45,000th
minute, on Dec. 14, 1994, against the Boston Celtics. He
will be recognized not only for greatness as an all-around
player, but also for his longevity, as he will play for two
ABA teams and eight NBA teams over 22 years.

1968 – Rev. Walter Fauntroy, a former aide of Martin Luther King
Jr., becomes the first non-voting congressional delegate
from the District of Columbia since the Reconstruction
period.

1985 – Patricia Roberts Harris, Cabinet Member, ambassador and
first African American woman to head a law school, joins
the ancestors in Washington, DC.

1985 – “We Are The World”, by USA for Africa, a group of 46 pop
stars, enters the music charts for the first time at number
21.

1998 – President Bill Clinton hails “the new face of Africa” as he
opens a historic six-nation tour in Ghana.

Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Mr. Rene’ A. Perry

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