Calvary Baptist Church, Spokane, Washington (1890- )

Early in 1890, in Spokane, Washington, a small group of African American citizens gathered “to consider the propriety of organizing a church.”  The name Calvary Baptist Church was adopted, and thus was founded the city’s first historically black church.  Its founding transcended race and gender, … Read MoreCalvary Baptist Church, Spokane, Washington (1890- )

Booker Washington in Seattle, 1913

An unusual incidence of interracial solidarity between blacks and Asian Americans occurred during Booker T. Washington’s visit to Seattle. In March 1913, Washington embarked on a national speaking tour in order to raise money for Tuskegee Institute, the chronically underfunded “Normal and Industrial School” in … Read MoreBooker Washington in Seattle, 1913

Blanche Sellers Lavizzo (1925-1984)

Dr. Blanche Sellers Lavizzo was the first African American woman pediatrician in the state of Washington.  She arrived in Seattle in 1956, with her husband Dr. Philip Lavizzo, a general surgeon.   They had left medical practices in New Orleans, Louisiana to pursue a better future … Read MoreBlanche Sellers Lavizzo (1925-1984)

Black Arts/West (1969-1980)

Black Arts/West was Seattle’s first black theatre, eventually became a nationally known entity across the United States. Evolving out of the Civil Rights-Black Power movements of the 1960s, it was founded by Douglas Q. Barnett in 1969. Black Arts/West functioned as a three component program: … Read MoreBlack Arts/West (1969-1980)

Adolphus D. Griffin (1868-1916)

Adolphus D. Griffin used his self-attained literacy to emerge as a newspaper editor/publisher in the West at the turn of the twentieth century.  Born near Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1868, A.D. Griffin moved to Spokane, Washington where he edited one of his first newspapers, The Northwest … Read MoreAdolphus D. Griffin (1868-1916)