Independent Historian

Jimmy B. Fenison is a 2009 graduate in history from the University of Washington.  He was born in Lexington, Kentucky in 1978.  He served four years active duty in the U.S. Army and would like to express thanks for an influential African American in his life: “I would like to thank my Command Sergeant Major, Leon Hite III, in the Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, for his honor and integrity towards all 2500 (approx.) soldiers of mixed race and ethnicity under his leadership including me, his driver for three years.”

Earl B. Dickerson (1891-1986)

Earl Burrus Dickerson was a member of President Roosevelt’s Fair Employment Practices Commission between 1941 and 1943 and a prominent civil rights attorney in Chicago.  He was also one of the founders of the Supreme Liberty Life Insurance Company with headquarters in Chicago, Illinois. Dickerson … Read MoreEarl B. Dickerson (1891-1986)

Charles W. Anderson, Jr. (1907-1960)

In 1935, Charles W. Anderson became the first black legislator in Kentucky and in the South since the Reconstruction.  He championed the cause of civil rights in Kentucky including greatly improving the access of African Americans to education during six terms as a legislator. Anderson … Read MoreCharles W. Anderson, Jr. (1907-1960)

Kansas Industrial and Educational Institute (1895-1919)

The institute was known in Topeka as the “Western Tuskegee,” was the result of  the work of Lizzie Riddick, a prominent member of the Colored Women’s Suffrage Association, and Edward Stephens.  Riddick and Stephens successfully enlisted the support of Booker T. Washington and later the … Read MoreKansas Industrial and Educational Institute (1895-1919)

Guion (Guy) Stewart Bluford Jr. (1942- )

Guy Bluford, a member of the SDS-8 space shuttle Challenger crew in 1983, was the first African American in space. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Bluford was interested in math and science and knew he wanted to work in aerospace engineering before graduating high school. His … Read MoreGuion (Guy) Stewart Bluford Jr. (1942- )