Adam Rozen-Wheeler

Independent Historian

Adam Rozen-Wheeler earned his B.A. in Jewish Studies from the University of Washington in 2017. While his focus is in Jewish history, he has studied American history (including African American history) at length. In addition to his article contributions to BlackPast.org, Adam serves as the website’s grant writer, helping raise funds needed to keep BlackPast.org in operation.

Adam grew up in Tacoma, Washington, where he received an Associate’s Degree from Tacoma Community College, and is currently a member of the Orthodox Jewish community in Seattle. He works as a contract grant writer and teacher.

Sharmel Edwards (1962-2012)

Early in the morning on April 21, 2012, Sharmel T. Edwards, a 49-year-old African-American woman, was fatally shot by five Las Vegas, Nevada police officers. Her death occurred while the national discussion of police brutality was gaining publicity in the wake of similar killings and about a year before … Read MoreSharmel Edwards (1962-2012)

Andrew Jackson Smith (1843-1932)

Andrew Jackson Smith was the last black Civil War soldier to receive a Medal of Honor. Smith was born on September 3, 1843, into slavery to Susan, an enslaved African American woman, and her white owner, Elijah Smith, in Lyon County, Kentucky. When his father enlisted in the Confederate army, … Read MoreAndrew Jackson Smith (1843-1932)

Paris Dennard (1982- )

Image Ownership: Public domain Paris Dennard is a prominent conservative Republican strategist and political commentator. He contributes regularly to CNN and NPR, and worked in the White House for George W. Bush’s administration. In addition, he works as Director of Strategic Communications for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, a non-partisan … Read MoreParis Dennard (1982- )

Tarika Wilson (1981-2008)

Image Ownership: Public domain On January 4, 2008, Tarika Wilson, a 26-year-old African-American woman, was fatally shot by Lima, Ohio, police officer Joseph Chavalia. She was unarmed and holding her one-year-old son, who was injured by the shot that killed his mother. The shooting, and the subsequent acquittal … Read MoreTarika Wilson (1981-2008)

Shantel Davis (1989-2012)

Shantel Davis and Unidentified Child Image Ownership: Public domain On June 14, 2012, Shantel Davis, a 23-year-old African-American woman, was fatally shot by New York City, New York Police Department (NYPD) officer Phil Atkins. She was unarmed, and her death occurred while the national discussion of police brutality was … Read MoreShantel Davis (1989-2012)

Jack Greenberg (1924-2016)

Image Ownership: Public domain Jack Greenberg was a prominent civil rights lawyer, directing the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) for 23 years and arguing crucial cases at the U.S. Supreme Court. He was born in New York City, New York on December 22, 1924 to Jewish immigrant parents Max and Bertha … Read MoreJack Greenberg (1924-2016)

Marion, Indiana Lynching (1930)

On August 7, 1930, a mob of ten to fifteen thousand whites abductedthree young black men from the jail in Marion, Indiana, lynchingThomas Shipp and Abram Smith. Sixteen-year-old James Cameronnarrowly survived after being beaten by the mob. Lawrence Beitler’s photograph of the two victims’ hanging bodies is regarded as … Read MoreMarion, Indiana Lynching (1930)

Operations Moses, Joshua, and Solomon (1984-1991)

In three covert military operations, called Moses, Joshua, and Solomon, over twenty thousand Ethiopian Jews were airlifted to Israel to escape hardship. This ancient community, called Beta Israel (House of Israel in English), lived in relative isolation from the rest of the Jewish world for … Read MoreOperations Moses, Joshua, and Solomon (1984-1991)

The Boston Saloon (1864-1875)

Excavation of the Boston Saloon, July 2000 Image Ownership: Public domain The Boston Saloon, which operated in Virginia City, Nevada, is the only black-owned Western saloon to be the subject of an archaeological excavation. During Virginia City’s heyday in the early 1870s, the town supported … Read MoreThe Boston Saloon (1864-1875)