* Today in Black History – July 10 *
1775 – General Horatio Gates, George Washington’s adjutant
general issues an order excluding African Americans from
serving in the Continental Army.
1875 – Mary McLeod Bethune is born in Mayesville, South Carolina.
She will become a noted educator and founder of Daytona
Normal and Industrial Institute in Daytona Beach, Florida
in 1904 (now Bethune-Cookman College). With the help of
benefactors, she will attend college hoping to become a
missionary in Africa. When that did not materialize, she
will establish a school for African American girls in
Daytona Beach, Florida. From six students it will grow
and merge with an institute for African American boys and
eventually became the Bethune-Cookman School. Its quality
far surpassed the standards of education for African
American students, and rivaled those of schools for white
students. She will work tirelessly to ensure funding for
the school, and use it as a showcase for tourists and
donors, to exhibit what educated African Americans could
do. She will be president of the college from 1923 to 1942
and 1946 to 1947, one of the few women in the world who
will serve as a college president at that time. She will
also be active in women’s clubs, and her leadership in
them will allow her to become nationally prominent. She
will work for the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in
1932, and become a member of Roosevelt’s “Black Cabinet,”
sharing the concerns of Black people with the Roosevelt
administration while spreading Roosevelt’s message to
Blacks, who had been traditionally Republican voters. Upon
her ascension to the ancestors on May 18, 1955, columnist
Louis E. Martin will say, “She gave out faith and hope as
if they were pills and she some sort of doctor.” Her home
in Daytona Beach will become a National Historic Landmark,
and her house in Washington, D.C., in Logan Circle, will
be preserved by the National Park Service as a National
Historic Site. A stature will be placed in Lincoln Park
in Washington, D.C.
1927 – David Norman Dinkins is born in Trenton, New Jersey. He
will move as a child to Harlem. He will serve as a marine
during World War II and will attend and graduate from
Howard University after the war. He will receive his law
degree from Brooklyn Law School in 1956. He was in private
practice until 1975, even though he was active in politics
and held some office. He began full time elective office
in New York City that year and held the offices of City
Clerk and Manhattan Borough President. In 1989 he will be
elected as the first African American mayor of the city of
New York, defeating three-time mayor Ed Koch. He will
serve one term, being defeated in 1993 by Rudolph Giuliani.
1936 – Billie Holiday records “Billie’s Blues” for Okeh Records in
New York. Bunny Berigan, Artie Shaw and Cozy Cole supported
Holiday, instrumentally, on the track.
1941 – Ferdinand “Jelly Roll” Morton joins the ancestors in Los
Angeles, California at age 56. The innovative piano
soloist, composer, and arranger claims to have invented
jazz and makes a series of recordings for the Library of
Congress that immortalizes his style. Fifty years after
his death, playwright George C. Wolfe will present a well-
regarded play on Morton’s life, “Jelly’s Last Jam.”
1943 – Arthur Ashe is born in Richmond, Virginia. He will become a
professional tennis player winning 33 career titles. In
winning his titles, he will become the first African
American male to win Wimbledon (1975) and the U.S. Open
(1968) and will be the first African American enshrined in
the International Tennis Hall of Fame. He will also be the
author of “A Hard Road to Glory: A History of the African-
American Athlete,” and “Days of Grace.” During a second
heart surgery in 1983, it is likely that he was given blood
tainted with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which
causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). After
acknowledging his disease, he became an active fundraiser
and speaker on behalf of AIDS research. He will join the
ancestors on February 6, 1993.
1945 – Ronald E. ‘Ron’ Glass is born in Evansville, Indiana. He will
graduate from the University of Evansville with a major in
Drama and Literature. His acting career will begin at the
Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He will move to
Hollywood after four years in Minneapolis. He will be best
known for his television role as Sgt. Harris on the long-
running series, “Barney Miller.” His other television credits
will be roles in “The New Odd Couple,” “Rhythm & Blues,” “All
in the Family,” “Sanford & Sons,” “Streets of San Francisco,”
“Family Matters,” and “Murder, She Wrote.” His feature film
credits include “It’s My Party” and “House Guest.”
1949 – Frederick M. Jones patents a starter generator.
1951 – Sugar Ray Robinson is defeated for only the second time in
133 fights as Randy Turpin takes the middleweight crown.
1960 – Roger Timothy Craig is born in Davenport, Iowa. He will
become a professional football player, being drafted in the
second round of the 1983 NFL Draft out of the University of
Nebraska by the San Francisco 49ers. He will play for the
49ers eight years, claiming three Super Bowl titles and
selected for the Pro Bowl four times. In 1985, he will
become the first player to surpass 1,000 yards rushing and
receiving in the same season. By the end of his career, he
will become the 49ers’ second leading rusher all-time with
7,064 yards. He will also become co-Super Bowl record holder
for Most Points Per Game (18 vs. Miami, 1985) and Most TDs
Per Game (3).
1962 – Martin Luther King Jr. is arrested during a civil rights
demonstration in Albany, Georgia.
1966 – Martin Luther King, Jr. begins a Chicago campaign for fair
housing. It is his first foray into a northern city for
1972 – The Democratic convention opens in Miami Beach, Florida.
African Americans constitute 15 per cent of the delegates.
Representative Shirley Chisholm receives 151.95 of 2,000-
plus ballots on the first roll call.
1973 – The Bahamas attain full independence within the British
Commonwealth having been a British colony almost
uninterruptedly since 1718.
1984 – Dwight ‘Doc’ Gooden of the New York Mets becomes the youngest
player to appear in an All-Star Game as a pitcher. Gooden is
19 years, 7 months and 24 days old. He leads the National
League to a 3-1 win at Candlestick Park in San Francisco,
1993 – Kenyan runner Yobes Ondieki becomes the first human to run 10
km (6.25 miles) in less than 27 minutes. Ondieki, known for
his extremely arduous training sessions, will say after
setting his world record, “My world-record race actually felt
easier than my tough interval workouts.”
Information retrieved from the Munirah Chronicle and is edited by Mr. Rene’ A. Perry.