Harriet Hayden (ca. 1820-1893)

Harriet Bell Hayden and her husband Lewis Hayden (c.1811-1889) escaped slavery in Kentucky in 1844, traveling first to Ohio, then Michigan and finally settling in Massachusetts, where they became active abolitionists in Boston.  In addition to caring for their two children, Joseph and Elizabeth, Harriet … Read MoreHarriet Hayden (ca. 1820-1893)

Jean-Baptiste-Point DuSable (1745-1818)

Jean-Baptiste-Point DuSable, a frontier trader, trapper and farmer is generally regarded as the first resident of what is now Chicago, Illinois. There is very little definite information on DuSable’s past. It is believed by some historians that he was born free around 1745 in St. … Read MoreJean-Baptiste-Point DuSable (1745-1818)

Vincent Lushington (“Roi”) Ottley

Vincent Lushington “Roi” Ottley was born in Harlem in 1906 to parents Jerome P. and Beatrice (Brisbane) Ottley who were immigrants from Grenada.  Ottley attended New York City public schools where he became known as an exceptional athlete in basketball, baseball and track. Ottley won … Read MoreVincent Lushington (“Roi”) Ottley

O’Neil R. Collins (1931-1989)

The eighth child of a cotton farmer, O’Neil Ray Collins, born March 9, 1931 in Opelousas, Louisiana, rose to become one of the most distinguished African American botanists, a world renowned expert on slime-mold genetics.  Upon completing his bachelor’s degree in botany at Southern University … Read MoreO’Neil R. Collins (1931-1989)