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African-American Facts for Week of: August 31st

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Know Your History!

Up to the early 20th century, most American knowledge of Black history was limited to the African American struggle through slavery and emancipation. The significance of Black history is recognition of the advancements and accomplishments of a group of people once defined by the Constitution as three-fifths of a person. While slavery in America hosts the background of Black history, the African American impact on history reaches beyond the country’s early history, as African Americans have made significant contributions to every field of endeavor, including politics, science, culture, social causes, arts, literature, athletics and the economy.

African-American Facts for Week of:  August 31th

August 31, 1935


First black manager in Major League Baseball

On August 31, 1935, in Beaumont, Texas, U.S., American professional baseball player and manager Frank Robinson was born. He was the first black manager in major league baseball.

September 1, 1867

The first Black person to graduate from Harvard Dental School

The first Black person to graduate from Harvard Dental School is Robert T Freeman, 1867.

September 2, 1945


Blacks In Armed Services

A total of 1,154, 720 Blacks were inducted or drafted into the armed services. Official records listed 7,768 Black commissioned officers on August 31, 1945. At the height of the conflict 3,902 Black women (115 officers) were enrolled in the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WACS) and 68 were in the Navy auxiliary, the WAVES. The highest ranking Black women were Major Harriet M. West and Major Charity E. Adams. Distinguished Unit Citations were awarded the 969th Field Artillery Battalion, the 614th Tank Destroyer Battalion and the 332nd Fighter Group.

September 3, 1868


Henry McNeal Turner delivers a speech before the Georgia Legislature defending African Americans’ rights to hold state office.

September 4, 1923


George Washington Carver of Tuskegee Institute received the Spingarn Medal, the NAACP’s highest award, for distinguished research in agricultural chemistry.


September 5, 1804


Absalom Jones was ordained a priest in the Protestant Episcopal Church.

September 6, 2001

Rafer Johnson won the Olympic Decathlon

On Sept. 6, 1960 – Rafer Johnson won the Olympic Decathlon–the first for an African American.

To me, the omission of any group from history teachings results in a limited understanding of history’s relationship with the present and future. Know your history.

Comments, I can be reached at:


Twitter: @Annette92J

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