Blast From The Past:
OUR HAMITE AWARD WINNER FOR 1876:
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield
If it were possible able to ask Marian Anderson or Jessye Norman to describe
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield? We are sure their hearts would be filled with emotion in explaining the amazing accomplishments of this great American singer.
She was dubbed "The Black Swan," and considered the best-known black concert artist of her time. She was noted by James M. Trotter for her "remarkably sweet tones and wide vocal compass."
Greenfield was born a slave but purchased at an early age by a Quaker family. She studied music as a child although it was forbidden by the Quakers with whom she associated.
She began to sing at private parties and was able to tour with the help of her manager Colonel J. H. Wood. It was evident she was a great talent to have her career take off so quickly.
She even performed at the Metropolitan Hall in New York which was in front of 4,000 smiling white faces. They didn't allow blacks in the same theater, and feeling very badly about it, she performed a special concert to benefit the Home of Aged Colored Persons and the Colored Orphan Asylum.
She also toured in other countries, giving a command performance for the Queen at Buckingham Palace on May 10, 1854. Did we fail to mention she was the first black performer to perform before royalty?
Returning to America, she toured and conducted a Philadelphia music studio. Sadly, Greenfield died in Philadelphia on March 31, 1876.
What an exciting life this woman must have lived. Indeed laying the foundation for other talented artists to follow.
She proved it was possible to achieve, not only for herself but her adoring public who sought to imitate her. Thank you so much Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield for adding your contributions to the ever growing list of great African Americans achievements.
We award this great woman with the 1876 Hamite Award, because during her short time on earth she chose to soar like the eagles in achievement and inspiring others to follow her excellent example.
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield
|How were blacks feeling in 1876?
America boasts that all men are created equal, stamping that principle on their foreheads, proudly wearing it around for the nations to see and pretend like the Negro, Native Americans and all other races that don't look like them exist.
The fact is, that's a principle demanded by God and whites didn't create it exclusively, In other words, even if America hadn't been discovered, all men would still be created equal in God's eyes, and besides we honestly can't think of a time in history when America actually lived up to this lofty principle anyway. But there were some who tried like Senator Charles Sumner. Rest his soul.
But many added their version of this principle in the form of "white superiority," which everyone knows can't remain. All the foul and disgusting things these White Southerners have done in the name of God is shameful. I hope when this thing is finally over, other countries around the world learn by America's example and not claim terrorist acts, of rapes, brutal beating and murders in a holy war in the name of their God.
Rutherford B. Hays just barely won the election, but we hear that he sold us out to the racist Democrats. Wow, black people can't catch a break! After 200 years of slavery, black folks are excited about going to school, learning with colleges popping up all around, we have the right to vote like regular citizens, and we were finally hoping that we could fit in, but with the losses at the election we think it's going downhill from here. Close to 5 million black people who still have so far to go, much to learn and have taken another step backward with this election results.
The recession is still going strong; people need work. Federal troops are slowly being pulled out, so who is going to protect out Civil Rights? The Democrats? SHAME ON YOU AMERICA. Your votes have spoken! One thing I notice is that's blacks are tired of being picked on and are fighting back, especially in the race riots we had, which were designed by Democrats to suppress the black vote. One thing is for sure, we are not going just to disappear, you got to deal with our American needs sooner or later. This is our home.
On a lighter side Alexander Graham Bell received a patent for his invention which they call a telephone. African American Lewis Howard Latimer was the draftsman who wrote out the plans to submit to the patents office, and if anyone's ever seen patent submissions you would know that's it's not a piece of cake. Now if I could just think of someone to call.
For the year 1876:
- Edward Alexander Bouchet was the first African-American to earn a doctorate degree from an American university, (Yale College Ph.D., physics)
Octavius Valentine Catto
Nat Love a.k.a. Deadwood Dick
FULL AUDIOBOOK The Life and Adventures of Nat Love, Also Known As Deadwood Dick unabridged
| Sports in 1876 |
- Blacks were not accepted into the league baseball games, so they started their teams, becoming professional by the the 1870s. The first known baseball game between two black teams was held on November 15, 1859, in New York City. The Henson Base Ball Club of Jamaica, Queens, defeated the Unknowns of Weeksville, Brooklyn, 54 to 43.
By the end of the 1860s, the black baseball mecca was Philadelphia, which had an African-American population of 22,000. Two former cricket players, James H. Francis and Francis Wood, formed the Pythian Base Ball Club. They played in Camden, New Jersey, at the landing of the Federal Street Ferry, because it is hard to get permits for black baseball games in the city. Octavius Catto, the promoter of the Pythians, decided to apply for membership in the National Association of Base Ball Players, generally a matter of sending delegates to the annual convention; beyond that, a formality.
At the end of the 1867 season "the National Association of Baseball Players voted to exclude any club with a black player." In some ways Blackball thrived under segregation, with the few black teams of the day playing not only each other but white teams as well. "Black teams earned the bulk of their income playing white independent 'semipro' clubs."
- The mistreatment and segregation of Blacks didn't only happen in the South, but also the Northern cities like Philadelphia.
- Octavius Valentine Catto was a black educator, intellectual, and civil rights activist in Philadelphia. As a man, he also became known as a top cricket and black baseball pioneer in 19th-century Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
- July 4, 1876 - In South Dakota Nat Love a.k.a. Deadwood Dick won the rope, throw, tie, bridle, saddle, and bronco riding contests. It was at this rodeo that fans gave him the nickname "Deadwood Dick."
Education of Slaves
Meharry Medical College School of Medicine
| Education in 1876 |
- 1876 - In the Reconstruction era with carpetbaggers, mission societies along with The Freedmen’s Bureau opened 1,000 schools across the South for black children. Schooling was a high priority for the Freedmen, and the enrollments were high and enthusiastic.
- 1876 - School attendance on the rise for African-Americans.
- 1876 - Meharry Medical College was the first African American medical school in the United States. It was founded by the Freedman's Aid Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
1876 Electoral College
Rutherford B. Hayes
Samuel J. Tilden
Rutherford B Hayes
| Political Scene in 1876 |
- 1876 - Ulysses S. Grant was the 18th President of the United States (1869–77). As Commanding General, Grant worked closely with President Abraham Lincoln to lead the Union Army to victory over the Confederacy in the American Civil War. He implemented Congressional Reconstruction, often at odds with Lincoln's successor, Andrew Johnson. Analysis: Ulysses S. Grant was a President that understood and enforced the U.S. Constitution. He lobbied for the 15th Amendment, giving blacks the right to vote. He was also a strong believer in Reconstruction Aid and Civil Rights to the black person, opposite of his predecessor, Andrew Johnson.
The presidential election of 1876, pitting Samuel Tilden (Democrat) against Rutherford B. Hayes (Republican), is inconclusive when the votes in the Electoral College are disputed.
There was no question that Tilden won the popular vote, but there was a disagreement over 20 electoral votes, which would have given either man the victory. The two parties got together for an informal meeting and decided on a compromise, which became known as the 1877 Compromise.
Voter intimidation played a huge role in this election because southern states that should have been won by Hayes because of a majority Republican African American population went to Tilden.
There were many civil disturbances in 1876 all related to the upcoming presidential election. In many of the disturbances the Negro has begun to fight back. The Hamburg Massacre was just one example of the terrorist white Democrats planned strategy.
What was this compromise and how would it affect the Negro?
In conceding victory to the Republicans, Tilden and the Democratic party demanded some very important things that would impact African-Americans for the next 87 years.
The concessions were:
(1) The Republicans agreed to withdraw federal troops from the South, ending Reconstruction.
(2) The appointment of at least one Southern Democrat to Hayes's cabinet.
(3) The construction of another transcontinental railroad.
(4) Legislation to help industrialize the South and get them back on their feet after the terrible loss during the Civil War.
In exchange, Democrats would peacefully accept Hayes's presidency. Blacks were left on their own at this point, to fend for themselves against a 100% dominating white racist rule with impunity. Like savage beast licking their chops! Many white Republicans also fled the state after these developments. Black Republicans felt betrayed as they lost power.
|African Americans in Office 1870–1876|
|State ||State Legislator ||U.S. Senators ||U.S. Congressmen|
|Alabama ||69 ||0 ||4|
|Arkansas ||8 ||0 ||0|
|Florida ||30 ||0 ||1|
|Georgia ||41 ||0 ||1|
|Louisiana ||87 ||0 ||1*|
|Mississippi ||112 ||2 ||1|
|North Carolina ||30 ||0 ||1|
|South Carolina ||190 ||0 ||6|
|Tennessee ||1 ||0 ||6|
|Texas ||19 ||0 ||0|
|Virginia ||46 ||0 ||0|
|Total ||633 ||2 ||15|
A History of the N Word: Why Is It Offensive, Racist?
| Race in 1876 |
- July 8, 1876 - was the first of a series of civil disturbances, many of which Democrats planned in the majority-black/Republican Edgefield District, to disrupt Republican meetings and suppress black voting through actual and threatened violence. Many blacks were killed by terrorist and even though 94 white men were indicted for murder by a coroner's jury, no one was prosecuted.
Hello, I would like to introduce you to a not so very nice person by the name of
Yes, he was as stupid as he looked and caused much pain for the Negro race, because so called intelligent American people did exactly what he told them to do for many years until the sixties Civil Rights movement.
The phrase "Jim Crow Law" can be found as early as 1892. The origin of the phrase "Jim Crow" has often been attributed to "Jump Jim Crow", a song-and-dance caricature of blacks performed by white actor Thomas D. Rice in blackface, which first surfaced in 1832. As a result of Rice's fame, "Jim Crow" by 1838 had become a pejorative expression meaning "Negro". When southern legislatures passed laws of racial segregation directed against blacks at the end of the 19th century, these became known as Jim Crow laws.
Institutionalized economic, educational and social disadvantages for Blacks, who really never got a fair shake and are constantly compared to other races as to why there are so many negatives with our race of people. Maybe this has something to do with it.
- "Separate but equal" status for African Americans. Conditions for African Americans were consistently inferior and underfunded compared to those provided for white Americans.
- Patterns of segregation in housing enforced by covenants.
- Unfair bank lending practices.
- Job discrimination.
- Discriminatory union practices for decades.
- Segregation of public schools, public places and public transportation.
- Segregation of restrooms, restaurants and drinking fountains for whites and blacks.
- U.S. military was also segregated, as were federal workplaces.
Jim Crow owns the deed to every single ghetto in America, and the American people who were indifferent to his practices were the co-signers. Jim Crow was without a doubt powerful enough to demoralize a sizable segment of the African American community for generations to come. But even though Jim Crow was dealt a vicious blow in the sixties, he still lives in the form of silent "Crow" codes in people's hearts.
Incomplete list of Jim Crow laws by state enacted between 1876 and 1965
Miscegenation is a word that's not used much today, but during Jim Crow was very popular. It means the mixing of different racial groups through marriage.
Arizona - Segregation, miscegenation, voting. Passed six segregation laws: four against miscegenation and two school segregation statutes, and a voting rights statute that required electors to pass a literacy test. The state's miscegenation laws prohibited blacks as well as Indians and Asians from marrying whites and were not repealed until 1962. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
California - Miscegenation - The 1850 law prohibiting marriage between white persons and Negroes or mulattoes was amended, adding "Mongolian." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Colorado - Miscegenation Marriage between Negroes and mulattoes, and white persons "absolutely void." Penalty: Fine between $50 and $550, or imprisonment between three months and two years, or both. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Connecticut - Education, Upheld school segregation as originally authorized by statute of 1869. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Florida - "The schools for white children and the schools for Negro children shall be conducted separately." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Georgia - "It shall be unlawful for any amateur white baseball team to play baseball on any vacant lot or baseball diamond within two blocks of a playground devoted to the Negro race, and it shall be unlawful for any amateur colored baseball team to play baseball in any vacant lot or baseball diamond within two blocks of any playground devoted to the white race." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Illinois - Chicago adopted racially restrictive housing covenants beginning in 1927. In 1948, the United States Supreme Court ruled that enforcement of racial restrictive covenants was unconstitutional. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Indiana - Education, Separate schools to be provided for black children. If not a sufficient number of students to organize a separate school, trustees were to find other means of educating black children. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Kansas - Segregation laws in Kansas dealt primarily with education. The state constitution of 1859 specified separate African American schools. This practice continued until 1954. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Kentucky - Provided that all persons, firms, or corporations create separate bathroom facilities for members of the white and African American races employed by them or allowed to come into the business. Also, different rooms to eat in as well as separate eating and drinking utensils were required to be provided for members of the white and African American races. Not following this law gave to the offender a misdemeanor, a fine of $100 to $1,000, or 60 days to one year in prison. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Louisiana - "Any person who shall rent any part of any such building to a Negro person or a Negro family when such building is already in whole or in part in occupancy by a white person or white family, or vice versa when the building is in occupancy by a Negro person or Negro family, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Maine - In 1795, a law prohibiting intermarriage between whites and blacks was repealed. Hooray, Good For You Maine!!!
Maryland - "All railroad companies and corporations, and all persons running or operating cars or coaches by steam on any railroad line or track in the State of Maryland, for the transportation of passengers, are hereby required to provide separate cars or coaches for the travel and transportation of the white and colored passengers." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Mississippi - "printed, typewritten or written matter urging or presenting for public acceptance or general information, arguments or suggestions in favor of social equality or of intermarriage between whites and Negroes, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to fine not exceeding five hundred (500.00) dollars or imprisonment not exceeding six (6) months or both." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Missouri - "Separate free schools shall be established for the education of children of African descent; and it shall be unlawful for any colored child to attend any white school, or any white child to attend a colored" (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Montana - Miscegenation, ] Prohibited intermarriage between whites and Negroes, Chinese and Japanese. Penalty: Misdemeanor, carrying a fine of $500 or imprisonment of one month, or both. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Nebraska - Miscegenation, Declared marriage between whites and a Negro or mulatto as illegal. Penalty: Misdemeanor, with a fine up to $100, or imprisonment in the county jail up to six months, or both. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Nevada - Education, Negroes, Asians, and Indians prohibited from attending public schools. The Board of Trustees of any district could establish a separate school for educating Negroes, Asians, and Indians, if deemed advisable. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
New Mexico - "Separate rooms [shall] be provided for the teaching of pupils of African descent, and [when] said rooms are so provided, such pupils may not be admitted to the school rooms occupied and used by pupils of Caucasian or other descent."
(STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
North Carolina - "Books shall not be interchangeable between the white and colored schools, but shall continue to be used by the race first using them." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
North Dakota - Miscegenation, Cohabitation between blacks and whites prohibited. Penalty: 30 days to one year imprisonment, or $100 to $500 fine. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Ohio - Miscegenation, Unlawful for a person of "pure white blood, who intermarries, or has illicit carnal intercourse, with any Negro or person having a distinct and visible admixture of African blood." Penalty: Fined up to $100, or imprisoned up to three months, or both. Any person who knowingly officiates such a marriage charged with misdemeanor and fined up to $100 or imprisoned for three months, or both. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Oklahoma - Funerals, Blacks were not allowed to use the same hearse as whites. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Oregon - Miscegenation, Unlawful for any white person to intermarry with any "Negro, Chinese, or any person having one-quarter or more Negro, Chinese or Kanaka blood, or any person having more than one-half Indian blood." Penalty: Imprisonment in the penitentiary or the county jail for between three months and one year. Those who licensed or performed such a ceremony could be jailed for three months to one year, or fined between $100 and $1,000. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Oklahoma - Education, Black children prohibited from attending Pittsburgh schools. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Rhode Island - Miscegenation, Prohibited intermarriage. Penalty: $1,000 fine, or up to six months' imprisonment. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
South Carolina - "No persons, firms, or corporations, who or which furnish meals to passengers at station restaurants or station eating houses, in times limited by common carriers of said passengers, shall furnish said meals to white and colored passengers in the same room, or at the same table, or at the same counter." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
South Dakota - Enacted three miscegenation laws between 1809 and 1913, and a 1952 statute that required adoption petitions to state the race of both the petitioner and child. A 1913 miscegenation law broadened the list of races unacceptable as marriage partners for whites to include persons belonging to the "African, Korean, Malayan, or Mongolian race." This law reflected the nation's growing tension over the massive waves of immigrants entering the country during the early twentieth century. The miscegenation law was repealed in 1957. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Tennessee - Miscegenation, Penalty for intermarriage between whites an blacks was labeled a felony, punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary from one to five years. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Texas - Voting rights, Required electors to pay poll tax. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Utah - Miscegenation, Laws of Utah, 1888. Intermarriage prohibited between a Negro and a white person, and between a "Mongolian" and a white person. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Virginia - "The conductors or managers on all such railroads shall have power, and are at this moment required, to assign to each white or colored passenger his or her respective car, coach or compartment. If the passenger fails to disclose his race, the conductor and managers, acting in good faith, shall be the sole judges of his race." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Washington - Restrictive Housing Covenants, Beginning in the 1920s, Seattle realtors frequently discriminated against minorities. In November 1927 the Capitol Hill development used a covenant that read: "The parties agree each with the others that no part of the lands owned by them shall ever be used or occupied by or sold, conveyed, leased, rented or given to Negroes or any person of Negro blood." An April 1928 covenant for the Broadmoor subdivision read: "No part of said property hereby conveyed shall ever be used or occupied by any Hebrew or any person of the Ethiopian, Malay or any Asiatic race..." (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
West Virginia - Black citizens are prohibited from serving on juries. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Wyoming - Education, Separate schools could be provided for colored children when there were fifteen or more colored children within any school district. (STUPID and Demoralizing laws that stunted African-American growth economically, educationally and socially)
Complete listing of American Jim Crow laws:
African American Life in the 1800s
|Employment for African Americans in 1876 |
What types of work did blacks do?
Can you imagine spending your entire life working from sunrise to sunset, six days a week, with no pay? That was the typical life of a slave, but these people weren't slaves any longer so they could do just about anything they wanted, that is if they could find the work.
Some blacks went to the plantation to work as sharecroppers. Blacks were rented small lots by former slaveholder's to work the fields and would be paid a small sum.
Many went into the cities looking for employment. Blacks were given the lowest paying jobs such as unskilled and service labor. Men worked as rail workers, rolling and lumber mills workers, and hotels workers.
African American women were mostly confined to domestic work employed as cooks, maids, and child nurses. Much more worked in hotels, and a significant number became laundresses.
Movies in America
Anna Madah Hyers dressed as 'Urlina' in the opera Urlina the African Princess (1879)
| Musicals / Movies in 1876 |
- The Hyers Sisters Anna Madah and Emma Louise were singers and pioneers of black musical theater. With Joseph Bradford and Pauline Hopkins, the Hyers Sisters produced the "first full-fledged musical plays... in which African Americans themselves comment on the plight of the slaves and the relief of Emancipation without the disguises of minstrel comedy." Their first play was Out of Bondage (also known as Out of the Wilderness) which premiered in 1876.
The Hyers Sisters under the management of their proud father not only toured in America but internationally. As small children, the father had them classically trained by German professor Hugo Sank and later opera singer Josephine D'Ormy, and they performed for private parties before making their professional stage debut. They were very well received everywhere they performed and blazed a path for other black entertainers to follow. They traveled until the mid-1880s with their shows and continued to appear on stage into the 1890s. Wow, amazing!
Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton
American jockey Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton
| Famous Birthdays in 1876 |
- October 29, 1876 - Leigh Whipper was an American film, television and stage actor. He was the first African-American to join the Actors’ Equity Association, and one of the founders of the Negro Actors Guild of America.
- Born in 1876 - William H. Tyers was a prominent musician among the new generation of black musicians and performers.
- 1876 - Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton was an American jockey in Thoroughbred horse racing described by author Edward Hotaling, as "one of the great riders of the New York circuit all through the 1890s" and who holds the record as the youngest jockey to ever win the Kentucky Derby.
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield
Wilson Ruffin Abbott
William Whipper portrayed by Robert Brinson
| Famous Deaths in 1876 |
- March 9, 1876 - William Whipper was an African-American abolitionist. Whipper was a successful businessman who played a key role in the antislavery movement as a reformer.
- March 31, 1876 - Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield dubbed "The Black Swan", was an African-American singer considered the best-known black concert artist of her time. She was noted by James M. Trotter for her "remarkably sweet tones and wide vocal compass". She toured and conducted a Philadelphia music studio. Among her voice pupils was Thomas Bowers, who became known as "The Colored Mario" and "The American Mario" for the similarity of his voice to Italian opera tenor Giovanni Mario.
- 1876 - Wilson Ruffin Abbott was an American-born African Canadian and successful businessman and landowner in Toronto, Ontario. He was the father of Anderson Ruffin Abbott, Canada's first African physician.
Plantation scenarios were common in black minstrelsy, as shown here in this poster for Callender's Colored Minstrels.
During the Civil War, Thomas Wentworth Higginson served as colonel of the 1st South Carolina Volunteers, the first federally authorized black regiment, from 1862–1864. Following the war, Higginson devoted much of the rest of his life to fighting for the rights of freed slaves, women and other disfranchised peoples.
John Brown Song
Danny 'Slapjazz' Barber and Sekani Thomas: An Apprenticeship in Hambone (aka Patting Juba)
Duke University Professor Thomas F. DeFrantz: Buck, Wing and Jig
| Music in 1876 |
Musical Happenings in 1876:
- The 1870s was a decade where the only way to obtain music was on sheet music sold in stores. People would sit at the piano and sing.
- One or two African-American troupes dominated the scene for much of the late 1860s and 1870s. The first of these was Brooker and Clayton's Georgia Minstrels, who played the Northeast around 1865. Sam Hague's Slave Troupe of Georgia Minstrels formed shortly thereafter and toured England to great success beginning in 1866. In the 1870s, white entrepreneurs bought most of the successful black companies. Charles Callender obtained Sam Hague's troupe in 1872 and renamed it Callender's Georgia Minstrels. They became the most popular black troupe in America, and the words Callender and Georgia came to be synonymous with the institution of black minstrelsy.
Thomas Wentworth Higginson:
- Thomas Wentworth Higginson leads the First South Carolina Colored Volunteers, the first group of authorized African American soldiers. Higginson is a notable author who helps popularize many aspects of African American music. He contributed to the preservation of Negro spirituals by copying dialect verses and music he heard sung around the regiment's campfires.
John Brown's Song:
- is a United States marching song about the abolitionist John Brown. The song was popular in the Union during the American Civil War.
"Juba Juba", a popular song about the Juba:
Juba dis and Juba dat,
and Juba killed da yellow cat,
You sift the meal and ya gimme the husk,
you bake the bread and ya gimme the crust,
you eat the meat and ya gimme the skin,
and that's the way,
my mama's troubles begin
A song about the hambone from Step it Down (v.s.):
Hambone Hambone pat him on the shoulder
If you get a pretty girl, I'll show you how to hold her.
Hambone, Hambone, where have you been?
All 'round the world and back again.
Hambone, Hambone, what did you do?
I got a train and I fairly flew.
Hambone, Hambone where did you go?
I hopped up to Miss Lucy's door.
I asked Miss Lucy would she marry me.
(falsetto)"Well I don't care if Papa don't care!"
First come in was Mister Snake,
He crawled all over that wedding cake.
Next walked in was Mister Tick,
He ate so much it made him sick.
Next walked in was Mister Coon,
We asked him to sing us a wedding tune,
Popular Soul Dances:
- The Juba or Hambone dance was originally from West Africa. It became an African-American plantation dance that was performed by slaves during their gatherings when no rhythm instruments were allowed due to fear of secret codes hidden in the drumming.
- Virginia Essence
- Buck & Wing
- Tap Dancing
- Soft Shoe
How did "acting" Cool begin for African Americans?|
It seems like it's been around forever and
expected of every black kid growing up
For most blacks, cool started on the southern plantations. Opportunists slavemasters devised a way for slaves to work harder and reap the benefits of their labor. During the year at a chosen plantation slave masters would hold a "Corn Shucking Festival." Slaves from nearby plantations would also join this event with their owner's permission, so it was almost like a community gathering of all the local slaves, with greedy slavemasters making all the money.
The slave who shucked the most corn won an award, sometimes cash or a suit of clothes. Anyone who found a red ear of corn also received a reward - perhaps a kiss from a young woman or a jug of whiskey. It was at these events that the term Shuckin' and jivin' came into existence by the slaves while working and telling tall stories, talking smack, and joking around with each other.
These gatherings, even though involving hard work had to be an event looked forward to by the slaves, because it was one of the few times during the year blacks had a chance to interact with one another. Shuckin' and jivin' would become a tool the slaves would use to convince their masters of an untruth, and even among themselves. It was an early form of being cool.
After slavery blacks were free (sort of) to do as they pleased. Most blacks wanted to assimilate into American culture very much but were shut out by the white racist. African and European culture met head on in what was supposed to be fair in America guaranteed by our Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, but blacks didn't stand a chance.
Why, what happened?
Because most whites banded together by breaking the law and made blacks second class citizens and would go on to murder, lynch, rape, humiliate them all the way until the 1960s Civil Rights movement. After Lincoln, every single United States President was aware of this and did nothing. Whites achieved like crazy and prospered while blacks lagged far behind and got along the best way they knew how.
Blacks disliked whites very much for this terrible treatment and instead of violent disobedience, they protested by living their lives opposite of white culture. I mean let's face it, why would blacks want to imitate or become a part of a race of people that hated them?
This is when being cool became a symbol of white resistance and protest. Being cool would show you were down with the struggle. During slavery, we had already created our language which was AAVE and many blacks communicated this way. Any black that did not use it was looked down as trying to act white, joining the enemy sort of speak.
We developed our own way of walking with a proud gait, (George Jefferson strut) our own style of music, our own style of dance, our own style of food, our own style of worship, that didn't have anything in common with white folks and that suited blacks just fine. We were poor, but we were proud and cool and everyone who practiced these traits was cool and a part of the resistance.
In the process, we were creating a new culture that was admired over the world. Blacks have always had a remarkable ability to create something out of nothing. But sadly there was significant risk with this lifestyle in a great country such as America.
What were the downfalls?
Oscar Micheaux felt it was wrong for blacks to live this way in America. Oscar was an African American author, film director and independent producer of more than 44 movies and he is regarded as the first major African-American feature filmmaker, the most successful African-American filmmaker of the first half of the twentieth century and the most prominent producer of race films. He produced both silent movies and "talkies" after the industry changed to incorporate speaking actors.
Oscar felt that blacks should become aggressive and use their brainpower in achieving instead of just settling for what the white man doled out. This man lived in some of the most racist times in American history, but he didn't let that stop him from fulfilling his dreams and doing it the legal way.
Evidently, Oscar had a brother who was the very cool type and was content on just putting up a show, or a front as living a successful life. We all know the type. A person that was living beyond his means. Blacks of his day called this way of living “the good life.”
Oscar didn't like it and was very upset with his brother. He later wrote in his book and discussed the culture of doers who want to accomplish, and those who see themselves as victims of injustice and hopelessness, and do not want to step out and try to succeed, but instead like to dress up, act cool and pretend to be successful while living the city lifestyle in poverty.
Oscar understood that education doesn't belong only to white people, it's a gift for all humanity to better ourselves, and honestly the best-proven way. Chinese, Japanese, Middle-Eastern and all other non-white nations understand this and have prospered by education. It's one of humanities treasure to learn.
But many blacks associated education with white and stayed far away from it, to continue with their cool lifestyle. A foolish mistake, and just what racist whites want you to believe.
Early Europeans completely dominated the Africans because they were better educated. They had guns we had spears, you do the math. In Africa our ancestors didn't value education, but traditions and silly ones at that. But that didn't save them. Education would have, though.
So without a doubt, it is entirely wrong to associate teaching and learning to white people. Many of us would look down upon another black who tried to better himself through education by saying they were trying to act white, and it wasn't cool. Racist whites laughed at us for believing this way because they knew we would always be behind.
After the 1960s, when our full Civil Rights were finally restored, many blacks chose to live the more standard American way by attending school to learn. But many also wanted to remain trapped in time with the old AAVE living in what they still perceived as defiance to the white American way of doing things. But were they only hurting themselves?
Later in time, being cool had become so prevalent in the black community it confused many kids, because they didn't quite understand if they were going to hang out with the cool kids or the so-called boring kids who liked to read and learn. At an early age, they are at a critical crossroad. Taking the cool route may seem easier, and a lot of fun, but would be a devastating mistake.
After the Civil Rights era we now have the opportunity to attend school and achieve as much as we can, but being cool has snatched many of the black kids and locked them into a culture hating education and in the process ruining their young lives.
Many entertainment figures reap much money from this cool culture by portraying cool as, well cool. They tell impressionable ones what's cool to hear, talk about, wear, eat, etc. and at the same time padding their cool humongous bank accounts.
These even get on television and flaunt their riches in a youngster's face never explicitly teaching on how they might be as successful, without being dishonest, stealing or selling drugs. Education is not cool for them to preach.
One thing is for sure, being cool can be a lot of fun and there's no denying that. Everybody wants to be liked, and it seems like cool people are respected and admired the most, from the clothes they wear to the type of songs they listen to the way they talk, the effortless way they seem to accomplish every task is amazing.
They possess incredible confidence. But truthfully everything they've accomplished wouldn't have been possible without the sacrifices of our wonderful ancestors. So don't you agree we owe a particular moral responsibility to them?
Kids should remember cool is not the real deal, It's a game we can't get caught up in. Our ancestors endured so much so we could achieve. We should never forget that. That's what this site was created. Browse through its pages, and you're going to read stories of amazing blacks.
They made it possible for us, and we're sure they would advise us to achieve through education first and foremost and save the cool for the weekends, and I ain't Shuckin and Jivin!
By White House (Pete Souza) / Maison Blanche (Pete Souza) (The Official White House Photostream) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
By Senate Office of Richard Lugar [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Fashions for young African American women
Fashions for young African American women
Stylish clothes for African American men
Stylish Lewis Latimer
The Black Victorians (Victorian Era 1800s-1900s)
| Fashions in 1876 |
- For women by 1870, fullness in the skirt had moved to the rear, where elaborately draped overskirts were held in place by tapes and supported by a bustle. This fashion required an underskirt, which was heavily trimmed with pleats, flounces, rouching, and frills.
- Innovations in men's fashion of the 1870s included the acceptance of patterned or figured fabrics for shirts and the general replacement of neckties tied in bow knots with the four-in-hand and later the Ascot tie.
- Infants continued to be dressed in flowing gowns, a style that continued into the early twentieth century. Gender dress changes often did not occur until a child was five or six. As the girls got older, they wore longer skirts. A four-year-old would wear her skirt at knee length; ten to twelve at mid-calf; and by sixteen, the girls dress would be ankle length. Boys often dressed similar to adult males, as they too wore blazers and Norfolk jackets.
DID YOU KNOW?
Ever wonder how the soul-food revolution began? It became a popular term in the 1960's.
Slave ships with their cargo of slaves traveled from West Africa to North America with foods that were native to African soil. It was the ship's captain best interest to keep slaves alive and healthy by feeding them these foods for their long transatlantic voyage. Some of these foods native to Africa are black-eyed peas, rice, yams, peanuts and don't forget the infamous watermelon. Once here in America, slaves were allowed to grow these foods and along with the scraps the master would give them during 'ration times' (sometimes meat) is what laid the foundation for soul-food.
Lewis Howard Latimer
Lewis Latimer, Black Inventor of Some Life Changing Inventions
| Our Community in 1876 |
Newsworthy Events in the Black Community:
- March 7, 1876 - Alexander Graham Bell awarded a patent for the telephone.
- March 10, 1876 - Alexander Graham Bell makes the first successful telephone call, saying "Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.."
- July 4, 1876 - The United States celebrates its centennial. Black people look on in disbelief at their hypocrisy and boast
of liberty and justice for all.
- 1876 - Alexander Graham Bell employed Lewis Howard Latimer then a draftsman at Bell's patent law firm, to draft the necessary drawings required to receive a patent for Bell's telephone.
#100 - Public Domain image - "De jubilee am come"--Fourth of July, 1876
1 print : wood engraving. | Caricature showing black men dressed as soldiers parading while black women and children look on. Contributor: Redding, W. H. Original Format: Photos, Prints, Drawings Date: 1876
#101 - Public Domain image - See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#102 - Public Domain image - See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#103 - Public Domain image - By Brady-Handy Photograph Collection (Library of Congress) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#104 - Public Domain image - See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#105 - Public Domain image - By AndyHogan14 (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#106 - Public Domain image -
By N.J. Newark [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#107 - Public Domain image -
This image (or other media file) is in the public domain because its copyright has expired.
This applies to Australia, the European Union and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 70 years
#108 - Public Domain image -
By National Libraries and Archives of Canada (Archives) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
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