Josephine Leavell Allensworth (1855-1938)

Born 1855 in Trenton, Kentucky, Josephine Leavell was an accomplished pianist, organist and music teacher before marrying prominent Baptist minister, Rev. Allen Allensworth, in 1877.  From 1886 to 1906, Josephine lived with her husband, one of the few African American chaplains in the U.S. Army, … Read MoreJosephine Leavell Allensworth (1855-1938)

James Andrew “Jimmy”Rushing (1902-1972)

James Andrew “Jimmy” Rushing—affectionately known as “Mister Five-By-Five” for being “five feet tall and five feet wide”—was a blues shouter born in Oklahoma City to a musical family on August 26, 1902 (give or take a year according to different sources). His father played trumpet … Read MoreJames Andrew “Jimmy”Rushing (1902-1972)

Langston Hughes (1902-1967)

Poet, novelist, playwright, librettist, essayist, and translator, James Mercer Langston Hughes was born in Joplin, Missouri on February 1, 1902, to parents Caroline (Carrie) Mercer Langston, a school teacher, and James Nathaniel Hughes, an attorney. His parents separated before Langston was born and he spent … Read MoreLangston Hughes (1902-1967)