Claude McKay (1889-1948)

Harlem Renaissance writer Festus Claudius McKay was born on September 15, 1889, in Sunny Ville, in the Clarendon Hills of Jamaica, to peasant farmers Hannah Ann Elizabeth Edwards  and Thomas Frank McKay. Young Claude was tutored by his elder schoolmaster brother, Uriah Theodore McKay, who introduced … Read MoreClaude McKay (1889-1948)

Centralia, Washington (1875– )

Located in southwest Washington, the town of Centralia was founded by George Washington, an African American who came west in 1850 to escape discrimination.  Washington first settled in Oregon Territory, but was barred from owning land there, so he moved north and eventually obtained a … Read MoreCentralia, Washington (1875– )

T. Thomas Fortune (1856-1928)

T. Thomas Fortune—African American journalist, editor, and writer—was born into slavery on October 3, 1856 to Sarah Jane and Emanuel Fortune. Raised in Marianna, Florida, as a child he witnessed the politically-motivated violence of the Ku Klux Klan. Despite minimal formal education, Fortune worked in … Read MoreT. Thomas Fortune (1856-1928)

95th Engineer Regiment

The African American-manned 95th Engineer Battalion (General Service) was formed in April 1941 at Fort Belvoir, Virginia as part of the U.S. Army buildup preceding World War II.  Unlike many construction units, the 95th received considerable training, participating in the Carolina Maneuvers and receiving practical … Read More95th Engineer Regiment