Independent Historian

Robert Fikes, Jr., a 1970 graduate of Tuskegee Institute, earned graduate degrees in modern European history and library science at the University of Minnesota. A reference librarian at San Diego State University where he is also subject bibliographer for Africana Studies and for American, Middle Eastern, and African history, Fikes has published journal articles, essays, encyclopedia entries, bibliographies, and monographs pertaining to history and literature.

Mikhail Milhailovich Egypteos (1861-1932)

The details of the birth and appearance of Russian shipbuilder and military Gen. Mikhail M. Egypteos remain uncertain. There are two competing stories: One is that as a teenager from an aristocratic Ethiopian family he was taken, perhaps by force, to the Russian Empire by … Read MoreMikhail Milhailovich Egypteos (1861-1932)

Wladyslaw Franciszek Jablonowski (1769-1802)

The astonishing appearance of a high-ranking Black military officer in late 18th century Poland who led troops across Europe and in the Caribbean is further evidence of the breadth of the African diaspora. The product of an illicit affair in Paris between British-born Princess Maria … Read MoreWladyslaw Franciszek Jablonowski (1769-1802)

William Lee (aka Billy Lee/ Will Lee) (1752?-1810)

The mulatto slave William Lee appears together with his owner, U.S. President George Washington, in two and quite possibly three paintings, including the iconic Washington Crossing the Delaware by the artist Emanuel Leutze, where he is seen third from left in the boat where Washington … Read MoreWilliam Lee (aka Billy Lee/ Will Lee) (1752?-1810)

Saad Al-Salim Al-Sabah (aka Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Salim Al-Sabah) (1930-2008)

For nine days in early 2006, Saad Al-Salim Al-Sabah headed the government of Kuwait. He was born in 1930, the son of a Ethiopian slave named Jameela (or Jamila) who was one of the five wives of his father, Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salim Al-Sabah, the 11th ruler … Read MoreSaad Al-Salim Al-Sabah (aka Sheikh Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Salim Al-Sabah) (1930-2008)