Year: 2022

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Josephine Baker, legend

Born Freda Josephine McDonald in St. Louis, Missouri, Josephine Baker (1906–1975) was an African-American dancer and singer who was “the most successful music hall performer ever to take the stage” (Ebony magazine). Josephine Baker was larger than life: She was the toast of Paris in the 1920s with her trademark banana skirt, a star of stage and […]

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The Untold Story of the Integration of Pro Football

(The Forgotten Four (clockwise from top left): Marion Motley, Bill Willis, Kenny Washington, Woody Strode) The story of how Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier in 1947 is the stuff of legend. But there’s another story about the desegregation of a professional sport that hardly gets told. A year before Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers, […]

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Untold Stories of Black Women in the Suffrage Movement

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Whitewashed: Unmasking the World of Whiteness

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Gladys Bentley was a non-conforming icon of the 1920’s

Gladys Bentley was a non-conforming icon of the 1920s. Born in Philadelphia in 1907, she moved to New York at age sixteen after being harassed in her community for dressing in boys’ clothes and having feelings for her female teacher. Bentley heard that Harry Hansberry’s Clam House in Manhattan was looking for a male pianist […]

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The Midnight Ride of Sybil Ludington

he British are coming, the British are coming!” This cry likely brings to mind the name of Paul Revere, immortalized in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poetry. Students learn about the legendary ride as early as elementary school, but Revere’s younger, female counterpart is rarely mentioned: Sybil Ludington. On April 26, 1777, when she was just 16 […]

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