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William Julius “Judy” Johnson (1899-1989)

William Julius “Judy” Johnson was a professional baseball player in the Negro Baseball Leagues. He played third base and was a team manager from 1921 to 1937. Johnson was born on October 26, 1899 to William Henry Johnson and Annie Lee Jackson in Snow Hill, … Read MoreWilliam Julius “Judy” Johnson (1899-1989)

Alice S. Presto (ca. 1879- ?)

Alice Sampson Presto, suffragist and clubwoman, became the first African American woman to run for public office in Washington state. Presto was born around 1879 in Cambridge, Massachusetts to Franklin and Martha A. Sampson. Few records exist of her early life except that she had … Read MoreAlice S. Presto (ca. 1879- ?)

John McFerren (1924-2020)

John McFerren was a civil rights activist best known for his involvement in the Tent City campaign of Fayette and Haywood Counties in the early 1960s. McFerren was born on October 28, 1924 to Eugene and Estella McFerren in the town of Somerville, the county … Read MoreJohn McFerren (1924-2020)

COVID-19: The Myth and the Reality for Black America

In the article below, Dr. Clarence Spigner, an epidemiologist and professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington, assesses the early African American responses to COVID-19. COVID-19, the highly infectious respiratory pandemic disease, stands for coronavirus disease, 2019. Symptoms for possible … Read MoreCOVID-19: The Myth and the Reality for Black America

Tamika Montgomery-Reeves (1981- )

The Honorable Tamika R. Montgomery-Reeves is a lawyer and the first African American to serve as an Associate Justice on the Delaware Supreme Court. Justice Montgomery was born on April 29, 1981 in Jackson, Mississippi to Bettye Cribbs and Dewery Montgomery. She attended the University … Read MoreTamika Montgomery-Reeves (1981- )

Walter Fenner “Buck” Leonard (1907-1997)

Walter Fenner “Buck” Leonard was a professional baseball player who played the first baseman position in the Negro League Baseball and the Mexican League. Leonard was born on September 8, 1907 in Rocky Mount, North Carolina to John Leonard and Emma Leonard. He had three … Read MoreWalter Fenner “Buck” Leonard (1907-1997)

Walter Peyton Manning (1920-1945)

Walter Peyton Manning was a member of the famed Tuskegee Airmen and the only one known to be lynched as a prisoner of war. Born on May 3, 1920 in Baltimore, Maryland to Winifred Manning, he grew up in West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. By the age … Read MoreWalter Peyton Manning (1920-1945)

Lemuel Augustus Penn Sr. (1915-1964)

Lemuel Augustus Penn Sr. was the Assistant Superintendent of Washington, District of Columbia (D.C.) public schools, a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army, and a decorated veteran of World War II. Born on September 19, 1915 in Washington, D.C. to Henry Penn, a laborer … Read MoreLemuel Augustus Penn Sr. (1915-1964)

José Barbosa (1857-1921)

José Celso Barbosa Alcalá, physician, polemicist, professor, politician, and publisher, was born on July 27, 1857 in Bayamón, Puerto Rico to Carmen Alcalá and Hermógenes Barbosa, brick mason and San Antonio sugar mill overseer.  Barbosa’s life traversed significant periods: Spanish colonization; Grito de Lares; slavery, … Read MoreJosé Barbosa (1857-1921)