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    New York, January 20, 2015 – Lead Belly has inspired generations of musicians, from The Weavers to the Grateful Dead, from Van Morrison, to The Beach Boys and even Nirvana. And yet few people today know his remarkable story, and even fewer know when they are listening to his music. His story is told in the new one-hour Smithsonian Channel special, LEGEND OF LEAD BELLY, premiering Monday, February 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

    Huddie Ledbetter, better known as Lead Belly, was born in 1889, into a post-war South plagued by extreme poverty, poor education, racism and a corrupt justice system. With the odds stacked against him, Lead Belly emerged as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.

    In LEGEND OF LEAD BELLY, author John Reynolds cites a quote from George Harrison who once said, “no Lead Belly, no Lonnie Donegan – no Lonnie Donegan, no Beatles.” And Kurt Cobain called Lead Belly his favorite performer after playing Lead Belly’s “Where Did You Sleep Last Night” to conclude Nirvana’s 1993 “MTV Unplugged” show. LEGEND OF LEAD BELLY features interviews with Van Morrison, singer/songwriter Judy Collins, Robby Krieger of The Doors, Roger McGuinn of The Byrds, and other musicians, who talk about how they were and are inspired by Lead Belly. Also heard from are members of his family and those working to keep his memory and legacy alive.

    The Black History Month premiere of LEGEND OF LEAD BELLY is timed to coincide with the Smithsonian Folkways release of ‘Lead Belly: The Smithsonian Folkways Collection,’ the first career-spanning box set dedicated to the American music icon, on February 24. More information can be found at

    Lead Belly’s journey was long and arduous. An accomplished musician at a young age, he landed on a prison chain gang in 1915 under murky charges. Though he escaped, he was back in prison by 1918, this time charged with murdering a relative in a fight over a woman. He had served just seven years of his 35-year sentence, when Texas Governor Pat Morris Neff pardoned Lead Belly in response to a song he wrote seeking freedom. Neff had regularly brought guests to the prison on Sundays to hear Lead Belly perform.

    Lead Belly returned to prison in 1930, this time to Louisiana’s infamous Angola Prison Farm, after he stabbed a white man during a fight. It was there in 1933 that pioneer musicologists John and Alan Lomax arrived with recording equipment on a quest to collect folk songs. In his initial session with them, Lead Belly played “Goodnight Irene” -- the first time the song was ever recorded. Years later The Weavers would record it and it would go to the top of the pop charts – selling some 2 million copies. With his remarkable memory for music, powerful voice and blistering playing on his famous 12-string Stella guitar, Lead Belly would go on to record hundreds of songs -- bridging the musical gap between the Civil War and the 20th century, and helping to preserve music which would otherwise have been lost.

    After his release from Angola in 1934, Lead Belly worked briefly for John Lomax, but soon chafed under his control. By the 1940s, he was living in New York City at the heart of a vibrant political folk music scene that included Pete Seeger, Woody Guthrie, Burl Ives, Josh White, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. He had come a long way from his impoverished youth, but in 1949 he tragically passed away from Lou Gehrig’s disease. Within a year of his death , his songs started appearing on the best seller charts, from “Goodnight Irene” and “Midnight Special” to “Rock Island Line,” “The House Of The Rising Sun,” “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?”, and “Black Betty.” He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

    LEGEND OF LEAD BELLY is produced by Eagle Rock Entertainment for Smithsonian Channel. Executive producer for Eagle Rock is Peter Worsley and director is Alan Ravenscroft. Linda Goldman, David Royle, and Charles Poe serve as executive producers for Smithsonian Channel.

    Smithsonian Channel™, owned by Showtime Networks Inc. and the Smithsonian Institution, is where curiosity lives, inspiration strikes and wonders never cease. This is the place for awe-inspiring stories, powerful documentaries and amazing entertainment across multiple platforms. Smithsonian Channel combines the storytelling prowess of SHOWTIME® with the unmatched resources and rich traditions of the Smithsonian, to create award-winning programming that shines new light on popular genres such as air and space, history, science, nature, and pop culture. Among the network’s offerings are series including Aerial America, L.A. Frock Stars, Secrets, Mighty Ships, Mighty Planes and Air Disasters, as well as critically-acclaimed specials that include Civil War 360, 9/11: The Heartland Tapes; MLK: The Assassination Tapes and The Day Kennedy Died. Find out more at


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    February is Black History Month and March is Women’s History Month

    Some of the Greatest Leaders in History are Black Women

    If they say you aren’t smart enough or you aren’t strong enough… If they say it can’t be done, just ignore them! They haven’t got a clue!

    Some people may be surprised and happy and others might be surprised and astonished to find that there have been plenty of creative black women and men in history who have not only ruled nations for hundreds of years but did things that changed the world.

    Two long-time California educators, Constance F. Gipson and Dr. Hazel Mahone, have always been fascinated by the creativity, innovation and accomplishments of their black ancestors.

    Over ten years in the making, their book Legacies: A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future contains an amazing array of stories about African Queens in history along with the life stories and accomplishments of dozens of successful black women. Each page reveals the stories, the challenges, and the strength and courage that comprises the remarkable heritage Included are the life stories, experiences and advice of international lawyers, money managers, astronauts, doctors, ministers, police officers, scientists and more.

    “Throughout the ages, black women have used their ingenuity, their beauty, and their negotiation skills to raise armies, create inventions, and lead countries in war and peace throughout the ages. They have taken part in every sector of society--from the farm to the city, from the home, and to the offices of the world’s leaders.

    “They hail from every income bracket and occupation,” say the authors, “and are a smart, spunky, and intelligent”.

    Legacies examines the accomplishments and rich heritage of African-Americans through the voices of sixteen African Queens and nearly forty successful contemporary black women. Lavishly illustrated with beautiful artwork in full color and interspersed with poems that resonate, the book offers guidance as well as practical and thought-provoking interactive exercises that will help young women with life skills they need to succeed and maximize their impact on society.

    Legacies juxtaposes story after story about black women who changed the world then and now. Here’s a sample:

    Ahmose Nofretari
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    “Let me tell you who I am. Long ago there was a powerful black kingdom called Kush. It was located in what today is known as Sudan. Kush was part of an area called Nubia, which was near Egypt. Sometimes Egyptians raided Kush for slaves. A group called the Hyksos invaded Egypt and ruled Egypt for more than 100 years until the Kushite soldiers helped drive them out. My father, King Sequenenre was king of Egypt. He was killed in battle against the Hyksos. My mother, Queen Ahhotep, saved the kingdom. My brother, Ahmose, became the pharaoh and chased the Hyksos out of Canaan. I married my brother, as was the custom of our country. After he died I ruled with my son Amenophis I. Our people worshipped Ra, the sun god. Ra was joined with Amon. I worshipped the god Amon and made sure that the temples honoring him were raised again. I controlled the daily life of the kingdom and was known for my serenity and beauty.”

    Dr . Omowunmi Sadik
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    Omowunmi Sadik was born in Lagos, Nigeria. She is a Professor of Chemistry at State University of New York at Binghamton (SUNY-Binghamton). She received her Ph.D in Chemistry from the University of Wollongong in Australia and did her postdoctoral research at the US Environmental Protection Agency (US-EPA) in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dr. Sadik has held appointments at Harvard University, Cornell University, and Naval Research Laboratories

    in Washington, DC. Sadik’s research currently centers on the interfacial molecular recognition processes, sensors and biomaterials, and immunochemistry with tandem instrumental techniques. Her work utilizes electrochemical and spectroscopic techniques to study human exposure assessment, endocrine disrupters, and toxicity of naturally occurring chemical compounds.

    Dr. Sadik developed a prototype sensor that can be used instead of drug/bomb-sniffing dogs. Using a combination of laboratory polymers and specially developed software, Sadik and co-workers have created an autonomous biosensor that uses microelectrode arrays to mimic the way mammals detect odor, thus allowing the sensor to mimic scents, detect explosives or illicit drugs and biological molecules.


    Queen Hatshepsut
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    “I am Queen Hatshepsut, daughter of Thutmose I. I am a descendant of Queen Nofretari. I lived between c1498-1483 BC in Egypt; I married my half-brother Thutmose II to keep the royal blood line pure. I became the guardian of Thutmose III, Thutmose II’s son by another wife, when his father died at a young age. Thutmose III was very young and I was named Queen Regent. I became the pharaoh of Egypt (1479-1458 BC). When I became pharaoh, I donned the clothes of a pharaoh and wore a beard. I ruled in peace and built monuments to the gods.

    Stephanie D. Wilson
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    Stephanie Wilson was born in 1966 in Boston, Massachusetts and graduated from Taconic High School, Pittsfield, Massachusetts. In 1984 and received a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering science from Harvard University in 1988. She worked for two years for the former Martin Marietta Astronautics Group in Denver, Colorado, as a Loads and Dynamics engineer for Titan IV. Then she earned her Master of Science degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Texas in 1992. After graduate school she began working for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, Selected by NASA in April 1996, Wilson reported to the Johnson Space Center in August 1996 and after two years of training and evaluation, she qualified for flight assignment as a mission specialist.

    Wilson completed her first space flight on STS-121 in 2006 and has logged almost 13 days in space. The mission was accomplished in 306 hours, 37 minutes and 54 seconds.


    Sogolon Konté
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    “I am the mother of the great king, Sundiata. My child was crippled and dragged himself around on all fours until he was ten years old. But he became a great king of the Mali Empire in 1230 AD. His empire included Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, and the former empire of Ghana. His empire stretched more than 1000 miles. The empire had a vast trade in gold, salt and iron. My son was a brilliant military leader who gave women powerful positions in his army. Mali was one of the most advanced civilizations in the world. It was orderly and sophisticated. A Muslim empire, it believed in justice.

    But justice did not extend to slaves. Up to 10,000 slaves were carried across the Sahara to the Mediterranean and the Middle East. The slaves then worked on plantations, in mines, and as household workers. On my death bed, I asked my son to abolish slavery. He honored this request and became a hero to the Mandingo people.

    After his death, in 1255, his grandson, Mansa Musa reigned over this rich empire for 50 years. When he went on a pilgrimage to Mecca, he carried over 8,000 servants, 500 slaves, 100 camels carrying 300 pounds of gold which he scattered all over the territory. This caused inflation which lasted for years. But our empire was taken over by the Songhai people and by the 1600’s, our empire had come to an end.

    Andrea Clay
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    I was born and raised in Palo Alto, California (located in the San Francisco Bay Area). I attended college at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where I obtained a degree in economics in 1988, and attended law school at the University of Southern California (USC), where I obtained a law degree and masters in business administration (MBA) in 1993. I have been a practicing lawyer since 1993, specializing in real estate finance representing banks and similar institutions in the financing of large real estate projects (e.g. hotels, shopping centers, office buildings, apartment and condominium buildings, and master planned communities). I have represented lenders in more than one billion dollars of real estate financings. In 2006, I was named one of the top twenty lawyers in the State of California under the age of 40 by the Daily Journal, the largest legal newspaper in the State of California. In 2007, I was named one of the 2007 Superlawyers for California.


    Destinations of African Slaves

     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    The beautiful illustrations in full color of striking paintings, sculpture and photographs, by black artists, as well as original art by book designer Debra Scarpa, add to the book’s impact. Other ancient art and sculpture demonstrate the sophistication of African cultures. Some of the artists included are:

    Charles Alston, Clementine Hunter, ….Leo Carty, Malvin Gray Johnson, Elizabeth Catlett, Augusta Savage,….Meta Warrick Fuller, Monica Stewart, Laura Wheeler Waring and many more.

    Legacies also includes moving poems by outstanding black poets that touch the readers and remind the young women that they are not alone. Some of the poets included are:

    Maya Angelou, Mari Evans, Nikki Giovanni, Langston Hughes, Alic Walker, Sonia Sanchez and more.

     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    Legacies: A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future
    Constance Gipson and Hazel Mahone, Ed.D.

    List $45 (Hardcover) $40 (softcover)
    Hardcover edition: ISBN: 978-0-9897114-0-1
    Paperback edition: ISBN: 978-0-9897114-1-8
    First Edition Full color 320-page, 8 ½" x 11" book
    Published by the Vision 200 Educational Foundation.
    For more information visit:

    About the authors
     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    Constance F. Gipson served as the Gender Equity Consultant for the California Department of Education for over twenty years. She administered nontraditional programs for women and men as well as programs for teen parents, single parents, single pregnant women and displaced homemakers. Ms. Gipson helped create Images for African American young women. She co-authored Visions for African American males and wrote the Visions Activity Guide. Ms. Gipson is the author of The Black Man's Guide to Parenting and A Different Kind of Hero, a three-volume collection of biographies of over 400 people, including many women and minorities, who had an impact on American history. She has produced award winning videos productions and is a national presenter and keynote speaker on school-to-work.

     A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future

    Dr. Hazel W. Mahone has been involved at every level of education, from kindergarten through the university. Dr. Mahone is a full-time professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at California State University Sacramento, a major training center for principals and teachers in multicultural communities. She is also President/CEO of Vision 2000's College Prep Math & Reading Academy that she founded 15 years ago. She brings underachieving students to the campus where they learn critical math and reading skills while being exposed to the university campus. Dr. Mahone was the first female superintendent in Sacramento County. She is an inspirational speaker, retreat facilitator and has mentored and taught numerous students who today serve as exemplary principals, assistant principals, superintendents and district office personnel in California schools.

    What People Are Saying With its blending of stories of ancient and contemporary powerful black women, beautiful art, poetry, practical exercises and more, Legacies is an exceptional tool to help young women today develop successful life skills.

    —Dr. Patricia Hill, Ph.D., Professor, University of San Francisco, editor of Call and Response: The Riverside Anthology of the African American Literary Tradition

    “What a motivational, educational and inspirational work! Legacies is a great resource to learn about our ancestry and about some of our amazing African American women and their accomplishments today! After reading this work, young women will be inspired to dream big – because anything really is possible!!!”

    -- Stephanie C. Hill, President Lockheed Martin, Information Systems & Global Solutions –

    I truly enjoyed Legacies: A Guide for Young Black Women in Planning Their Future. I especially like the juxtaposition of ancient African royal women and leaders with contemporary Black women. Young Black women and girls can see the connection between their present day selves and the ancestors. How refreshing too for young readers to learn that the African continent is so vast and such an integral part of world history. Africa is not just a country populated by lions, elephants, starving children, and warring tribes. …[]… The artwork and the poetry add another dimension to the book. The artwork brings a wonderful visual component that reflects the text. The classic poems of Mari Evans, “I am a Black Woman;” Carolyn Rodgers, “How I Got Ovah,” and Nikki Giovanni’s, “Ego Tripping,” among many others, will speak to the hearts and souls of many readers. There is a lot here to encourage young black women to grasp their future with both hands and soar above the adversities that life can bring.

    —Joyce Hansen, author, African Princess: The Amazing Lives of Africa's Royal Women and Home is with Our Family


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    Celebrate African American Heritage Month with America ReFramed on WORLD Channel

    New films help viewers gain a deeper understanding of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora

    NEW YORK, January, 21 2014 – In recognition of African American Heritage Month this February, an all-new season of America ReFramed continues with three, new powerful films on race-based issues. America ReFramed, WORLD Channel’s independent film series co-produced with American Documentary, Inc. (AmDoc, producers of the acclaimed POV documentary series on PBS), is devoted to presenting personal viewpoints and a range of voices on the nation’s social shifts. Following the television premiere, documentaries can be viewed at no charge online for an average period of one month:

    The month begins with Our Mockingbird on February 3, documenting the transformational experiences of teens from two extraordinarily different high schools in Birmingham, Alabama -- one all black and one all white -- who collaborate on a production of the play, “To Kill a Mockingbird.” * Learn more:

    On February 10, The Hill provides a fascinating look at the complex issues surrounding urban planning, gentrification and economic renewal. To meet the need for improved schools, the city of New Haven, Connecticut claims eminent domain over the Upper Hill neighborhood. Yet, residents of the area, mostly low-income African-American families, view the move as the city’s determination to gentrify a neighborhood in the proximity of the Yale-New Haven Hospital. Together with the help of community leaders and a civil rights lawyer, the unlikely group of neighbors decides to contest the city’s claim and take the case to federal court. * Learn more:

    Shell Shocked, premiers February 17, and focuses on New Orleans, one of the "murder capitals" of the U.S. Shell Shocked starts at the surface of New Orleans’ teen murder epidemic and delves into the hearts and minds of those whose lives are most deeply impacted -- the youths who live in fear of violence, the parents who grieve a loss they will never fully transcend, and the mentors and officials who are dedicated to touching, and perhaps saving, one life at a time. Following the television broadcast premiere, host Natasha Del Toro will facilitate a roundtable discussion with an expert on gun violence. * Learn more:

    "As we take time to reflect on African American heritage, it is important that we recognize present-day challenges our nation faces,” says Chris Hastings, executive producer, WORLD Channel. “These new films paired with other original content presents a variety of viewpoints and range of voices to tell those stories to broad and diverse audiences.”

    Continue the conversation by visiting the WORLD on Facebook and on Twitter. For more information and a complete listing of WORLD Channel programming, visit

    About American Documentary, Inc.
    American Documentary, Inc. (AmDoc) is a multimedia company dedicated to creating, identifying and presenting contemporary stories that express opinions and perspectives rarely featured in mainstream media outlets. AmDoc is a catalyst for public culture, developing collaborative strategic engagement activities around socially relevant content on television, online and in community settings. These activities are designed to trigger action, from dialogue and feedback to educational opportunities and community participation.

    About The WORLD Channel
    The WORLD Channel delivers the best of public television’s nonfiction, news and documentary programing to US audiences through local public television stations and streaming online at WORLD reached 35 million unique viewers 18+ last year (55% adults 18-49) and over-indexes in key diversity demographics.* Online, the WORLD Channel expands on broadcast topics and fuels dialogue across social media, providing opportunities for broad and diverse audience interaction. (Source: Nielsen Local Buyer Reach Scorecard 01/13-12/13)

    WORLD is programmed by WGBH/Boston, in partnership with American Public Television and WNET/New York, and in association with the American Public Television and National Educational Telecommunications Association. Funding for the WORLD Channel is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the Ford Foundation. Additional funding for “America ReFramed” is provided by the MacArthur Foundation.


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum announces series of events for Black History Month celebration

    Programming includes Sonic Sessions live concert series, an interview with inductee George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic, and more

    The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum

    CLEVELAND (January 23, 2015) – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum will celebrate national Black History Month with a month-long series of programming, including a live interview with inductee George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic, film screenings, and a live concert featuring funk musician Sinkane.

    These programs are part of a series of events celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and the return of the Induction Ceremony to Cleveland. Throughout 2015, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will host a number of events to engage music fans, thank the community of supporters and celebrate the spirit and passion of rock and roll.

    The complete schedule is below. Visit for the latest updates.

    Friday, February 6
    Sonic Sessions Concert Series with Sinkane
    Klipsch Audio Main Stage, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
    8 p.m. Doors / 9 p.m. Show
    with Muamin Collective
    Tickets: $5.50 (includes tax)
    On sale now at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame box office, or online at
    This event is general admission, standing room only.
    The Sonic Sessions are sponsored by Magic Hat Brewing Company

    About Sinkane:
    It’s soul music! And truly universal; uniting rhythm and styles from our world over to help you move, relate and be, Sinkane’s Mean Love rolls like an emotional, existential history of the artist. Co-produced with long-time Sinkane collaborator and childhood friend Greg Lofaro, Ahmed Gallab has created an altogether unique compound of sound, stylistically nostalgic and ultramodern at the same time. From Gallab’s childhood in Sudan there is a Pan-African influence of popular Sudanese music and haqibah, as well as distinct horn and synth arrangements more common to East Africa. This background merges with the lessons learned from Ahmed‘s stints with obsessive craftsmen such as Caribou, Yeasayer and Of Montreal, and especially the monumental task he underwent as musical director of‘ATOMIC BOMB! The Music of William Onyeabor.’ Gallab excavated and arranged a treasure trove of lost classics from the West African synth-pioneer to put together a now legendary series of performances. Alongside his band-mates in Sinkane (jaytram on drums, Ish Montgomery on bass, Jonny Lam on guitar), he also brought on guests Damon Albarn, David Byrne, The Lijadu Sisters, Money Mark and members of Hot Chip, LCD Soundsystem, The Rapture, and Blood Orange.

    Unless noted, all events listed below are free with a reservation at or in-person at the Rock Hall Box Office. Tickets for all FREE events will become available to Rock Hall Members on Monday, February 2 at 10 a.m. EST and will become available to the general public on Tuesday, February 3 at 10 a.m. EST.

    Monday, February 9 at 7pm
    Inductee Author Series with George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic
    Black Box Theatre of the Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts of Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C), adjacent to the Rock Hall’s

    Library and Archives
    2809 Woodland Avenue, Cleveland

    George Clinton revolutionized R&B, twisting soul music into funk by fusing together influences as diverse as Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Phil Spector and Sly Stone. His Parliament-Funkadelic machine ruled black music during the seventies, capturing more than forty R&B hit singles (including three at #1) and recording three platinum albums. As a forefather of funk and godfather of hip-hop, samples of P-Funk can be heard on albums by Outkast, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliot, De La Soul, Fishbone and many others. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

    Following this program, Clinton will sign copies of his newest memoir, BROTHAS BE, YO LIKE GEORGE, AINT’ THAT FUNKIN’ KINDA HARD ON YOU? (Atria Books; ISBN: 978-1-4767-5107-8; $27.00), written with New Yorker editor Ben Greenman. In this memoir, Clinton not only shares a host of astonishing and brutally honest tales about his life and times during the wild sex and drug-fueled ‘70s and ‘80s, but also provides one-of-a-kind insight into the inner-workings of the music industry.

    The Rock Hall’s Author Series brings journalists, critics and scholars to the Library and Archives for free readings and discussion sessions. Authors of both new books and classic texts will be invited on a regular basis.

    Wednesday, February 18 at 7pm
    An Evening with Hip-Hop Photographer Joe Conzo
    With special guest Grandmaster Caz of legendary rap group the Cold Crush Brothers
    Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s Foster Theater

    Hip-hop photographer Joe Conzo will discuss his photographs featured in the Rock Hall’s latest exhibit, Fresh, Wild, Fly and Bold, which documents the pioneering days of hip-hop as well as life in the Bronx in the 1970s and 1980s. Conzo will be joined by legendary hip-hop MC and DJ Grandmaster Caz of the Cold Crush Brothers. Joe Conzo was the official photographer of the Cold Crush Brothers and the group is featured prominently in the exhibit. The exhibit can be seen at the Museum’s Patty, Jay and Kizzie Baker Gallery. The collection of 26 photographs is courtesy of the Cornell Hip-Hop collection.

    This event will also be streamed live on

    About Joe Conzo
    Born and raised in the Bronx, Joe Conzo Jr. acquired a flair for photography at the age of nine while attending the Agnes Russell School on the campus of Columbia University; later, advancing those skills at the School of Visual Arts in New York. In 1978, The Cold Crush Brothers would hire Conzo as their official photographer. From there, he would go on to capture images of Latino musician Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, the protests surrounding the film Fort Apache, The Bronx (starring Paul Newman) in 1981 and scenes of life and urban decay in New York City in the 1970s and 1980s. Conzo’s images have been used in numerous publications, including VIBE, Complex and Esquire, and have also appeared on HBO, VH1 and the 1993 comedy film CB4 starring Chris Rock. His first book Born in the Bronx: A Visual Record of the Early Days of Hip-hop was released in 2007. Today, Conzo works for the New York City Fire Department, where he is the vice president of emergency services. For more on Joe Conzo, Jr., visit

    About Grandmaster Caz
    The first simultaneous DJ and MC in hip-hop history, Grandmaster Caz is perhaps best known for rhymes he didn't even perform – namely, the uncredited verses that Big Bank Hank borrowed for the groundbreaking Sugarhill Gang 1979 single "Rapper's Delight." The fact that neither Caz nor his group the Cold Crush Brothers ever recorded an official full-length album also doesn't help shed much light on his legacy.

    Grandmaster Caz was born Curtis Fisher and grew up in the Bronx, where DJ Kool Herc began playing block parties in the early 1970s. After honing his skills, Caz teamed up with JDL (aka Jerry Dee Lewis) to form the Notorious Two, and during this period became the first DJ to rap while handling records on the turntables. Both Caz and JDL joined the Cold Crush Brothers circa 1978-1979, with Caz becoming a full-time MC.

    Caz did find a measure of underground success with the Cold Crush Brothers. They recorded several singles for the Tuff City label during the early '80s (compiled in 1996 on Fresh Wild Fly & Bold), and became one of the most popular live rap groups in New York during the pre-Run-D.M.C. era. Most prominently, the Cold Crush Brothers appeared in the 1983 old school hip-hop film Wild Style, which has since become a cult classic; they recorded the theme song and engaged in an MC battle with their chief rivals, Grand Wizard Theodore and the Fantastic Five.

    Friday, February 20 at 7pm
    Film Screening of Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era and lecture/dance demonstration with director Thomas Guzman-Sanchez

    Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s Foster Theater

    This program will feature a film screening of Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era (2012), followed by a discussion and a dance demonstration hosted by director Thomas Guzman-Sanchez and producer Paul Guzman-Sanchez. Thomas Guzman-Sanchez will also discuss the companion book to the film.

    About the Film
    Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era chronicles a revolutionary period in dance and pop culture from 1965 to 1995. The film profiles a very special collective of Black, Latino and White individuals who are the innovators, originators and true masters of the Urban Dance forms known as Funk Boogaloo, Robot, Locking, Zigzag, Popping and Rocking/B-boying.

    The artists profiled in Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era were rarely seen by a large portion of society, and thus were not afforded much mass media attention. Nineteen years in the making, this feature documentary takes viewers on a guided tour of a forgotten era—an underground culture and lifestyle in which a multicultural collective of urban street dancers created one of the most influential art forms in contemporary history.

    Using rare archival footage and interviews that detail the lives and careers of these OG (“Original Generation”) dance groups, Guzman-Sanchez establishes an undisputable timeline that traces the evolution of these Urban Dance forms, showing both the positive and negative sides of this underground scene.

    About the Director
    Thomas Guzman-Sanchez is a California native (SoCal Latino) born in 1958 and raised in Reseda. Thomas is an OG (original generation) dance master and a co-founding member of the legendary dance group Chain Reaction. Since 1973, he has been both an originator and pioneer of the dance forms of Crossover Locking, Zig-Zag, Popping, and Funk Boogaloo, which have influenced millions worldwide in what the many refer to as Hip-hop dance. He has choreographed and performed in countless TV shows, videos, commercials, and feature films. In 1984, he formed the United Street Force, which has performed at the White House. In 2008 he was the recipient of the prestigious Christena L. Schlundt Lecture Award in Dance Studies at U.C. Riverside and honored as a key speaker and presenter at the Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association PCA/ACA conference in San Francisco California. Today, he continues to tour the world teaching and inspiring young dancers.

    About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum:
    The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s mission is to engage, teach and inspire through the power of rock and roll. The institution carries out its mission by giving voice to the stories of the people, artifacts and events that shaped rock and roll — through Museum exhibits, materials in the Museum’s Library and Archives, traveling exhibitions, and a wide array of innovative educational programs and activities. The 150,000 square-foot Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Cleveland’s rapidly developing North Coast Harbor, is home to major artifact collections, four state-of-the-art theaters, and year-round educational and concert programming.

    The Museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays (and Saturdays through Labor Day), the Museum is open until 9 p.m. Museum admission is $22 for adults, $18 for adult residents of Greater Cleveland, $17 for seniors (65+), $13 for youth (9-12), children under 8 are free. A 6% Admission Tax that goes to support Cleveland Metropolitan Schools is added to each ticket at purchase. Museum Members are always admitted free, for information or to join the membership program call 216.515.8425. For general inquiries, please call 216.781.ROCK (7625) or visit The Ohio Arts Council supports the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Museum is also generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

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    (BPRW) PBS Black History Month Programming Celebrates the Richness of African-American History and Culture

    Features New Episodes from INDEPENDENT LENS and AMERICAN MASTERS, Along With Surprising Family Secrets Uncovered on GENEALOGY ROADSHOW PBS Black Culture Connection (BCC) Releases New “Top 10” Listings of Recommended Films, Authors and Little-Known Black History Facts, and Offers More Than 30 Programs Available for Online Streaming

    Genealogy Roadshow in New Orleans featuring Cherise Harrison-Nelson
    and family with Kenyatta Berry at the Cabildo. Credit: Pat Garin, 2014

    (BLACK PR WIRE) -- ARLINGTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- In honor of Black History Month, PBS has released its programming lineup and online content offerings that will enrich viewers’ understanding of African-American history and culture. As part of its commitment to provide diverse programming and resources for all Americans year-round, PBS will offer special new episodes from popular titles, along with encore programming—all of which will stream online after broadcast on the PBS Black Culture Connection at

    In addition to on-air programs, the PBS Black Culture Connection (BCC), an extension of featuring black films, stories and discussion across PBS, will debut several new “Top 10” Lists with recommendations for must-see documentaries and must-read authors, as well as little-known black history facts.

    Please click here for more information.
    Click here to subscribe to Mobile Alerts for PBS.


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    The Sheena V. Foundation Remembers the Trail of Tears with Sponsorship Drive

    Native Americans have long been one of America’s most marginalized peoples, but these proud peoples have a vibrant culture that has helped shape modern American society. That is why it is so very important to recognize the plight of so many Native Americans. Many of them reside on reservations with little financial support, struggle with alcoholism and addiction, and suffer from a variety of illnesses that are prevalent only in Native American communities.

    The Sheena V. Foundation is a 501 (c3) charitable organization that raises awareness about the hardships that Native Americans and, especially, Native American children endure on reservations. In an effort to help more of these children take advantage of educational and financial opportunities, the Sheena V. Foundation has sponsored the First Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Event.

    This event is intended to spotlight the many tragedies that Native Americans have endured in their history, including the forced relocation of the Five Civilized Tribes — Cherokee, Choctaw, Seminole, Muscogee (Creek) and Chickasaw nations which occurred from 1830 to 1858. This brutal and merciless march killed thousands of innocent men, women and children who were forced to leave their ancient homelands and only homes they knew and travel on foot across thousands of miles.

    The Trail of Tears was marked by violent resistance, inhuman treatment and terrible plagues. This tragedy occurred in spite of promises made to these tribes by the U.S. government, and was largely attributable to renewed pressure from Americans who wished to settle these fertile lands. U.S. soldiers and Georgia militia hunted down and apprehended many of those who resisted including 14,000 Creeks. These armed forces destroyed crops, burned homes and savaged families. The Seminole tribe fought vehemently when they discovered the treachery of the U.S. government, but were eventually quelled and forced to make the march in chains. Soldiers placed 2,500 Creek in shackles as well.

    During the actual march, thousands died from the harsh conditions. Almost 500 of the Chickasaw tribe died from smallpox alone. Almost a quarter of the Cherokee nation succumbed to disease along the way. Upon finally reaching the bleak lands of Oklahoma, the survivors established their own governments and took up the herculean task of caring for their grieving members who had seen mothers, fathers, siblings and children die during the unrelenting march.

    The First Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Event is also intended to inspire corporate and private sponsors to contribute to helping Native American children. Many of these children grow up in crippling poverty, without hope for a future. Thousands of these kids suffer from illnesses and cancers unique to these communities; most of whom lack the money to receive proper medical treatment. The First Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Event will showcase programs that the Sheena V. Foundation is currently developing to help these forgotten Native American communities. These programs include educational services designed increase employability and entry into higher institutions of learning. The foundation’s counseling programs are designed to help prevent alcohol and drug dependency as well as address issues like depression.

    The Sheena V. Foundation is currently sponsoring a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo. Every dollar donated is tax deductible and will go towards improving the life of a Native American child. In return for your generous contribution, you may be eligible for promotional space online and offline, as well as the satisfaction of knowing that you have helped bring hope to some of America’s most underprivileged. In addition to making a financial contribution, you are also encouraged to share the First Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Event with others in your community and on social media. To learn more about the First Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Event or to make a donation, please visit:


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

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    Battles of Mobile Bay, Petersburg,
    Memorialized on Civil War Forever Stamps Today

    - Fourth of Five-Year Civil War Sesquicentennial Stamps Series Continues -

    MOBILE, AL — Two of the most important events of the Civil War — the Battle of Mobile Bay (AL) and the siege at Petersburg, VA — were memorialized on Forever stamps today at the sites where these conflicts took place.

    One stamp depicts Admiral David G. Farragut’s fleet at the Battle of Mobile Bay (AL) on Aug. 5, 1864. The other stamp depicts the 22nd U.S. Colored Troops engaged in the June 15-18, 1864, assault on Petersburg, VA, at the beginning of the Petersburg Campaign.

    “The Civil War was one of the most intense chapters in our history, claiming the lives of more than 620,000 people,” said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe in dedicating the Mobile Bay stamp. “Today, through events and programs held around the country, we’re helping citizens consider how their lives — and their own American experience — have been shaped by this period of history.”

    In Petersburg, Chief U.S. Postal Service Inspector Guy Cottrell dedicated the stamps just yards from the location of an underground explosion — that took place150 years ago today — which created a huge depression in the earth and led to the battle being named “Battle of the Crater.” Confederates — enraged by the sight of black soldiers — killed many soldiers trapped in the crater attempting to surrender.

    COTTRELL APPROVED QUOTE: “The soldiers shown on the Petersburg stamp were part of the 175 regiments — more than 178,000 African-American men — who made up the United States Colored Troops,” Cottrell explained. “They were free blacks from the north as well as escaped and freed slaves from the south. These brave men placed their lives on the line to prove they were fit to be citizens. Beyond fighting to preserve the nation — they were fighting for their freedom and freedom of their families.”

    Customers may purchase the Civil War Sesquicentennial 1864 collectible Forever Souvenir Stamp sheet at, at 800-STAMP-24 (800-782-6724) and at Post Offices nationwide.

    The Postal Service began the Civil War Sesquicentennial Forever stamp series in 2011 with the Fort Sumter and Battle of Bull Run Forever stamps. In 2012, stamps memorializing the Battles of Antietam and New Orleans were issued. The battles of Gettysburg and Vicksburg were recognized on Forever stamps last year.

    Art director Phil Jordan of Falls Church, VA, selected historic paintings for the stamp designs. The Petersburg Campaign stamp is a reproduction of a painting, dated 1892, by J. André Castaigne (painting courtesy of the West Point Museum, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, NY). The Battle of Mobile Bay stamp is a reproduction of a painting by Julian Oliver Davidson, published circa 1886 by Louis Prang & Co.

    For the background image on the souvenir sheet, Jordan used a photograph of Battery A, 2nd U.S. Colored Artillery (Light), Department of the Cumberland, 1864 (photograph courtesy of the Chicago History Museum).

    Battles of Mobile Bay, Petersburg, 
Memorialized on Civil War Forever Stamps Today

    The souvenir sheet includes comments on the war by Ulysses S. Grant, Jeremiah Tate, Harrie Webster and Howell Cobb. It also includes some of the lyrics from the Negro spiritual “O Mary, Don’t You Weep.”

    The Petersburg Campaign, June 15 - July 4, 1863
    In the spring of 1864, Grant launched an offensive targeting Richmond, VA, the capital of the Confederacy.

    During the first month of the massive operation, the Union sustained losses to Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia at the Battle of the Wilderness, west of Fredericksburg, and at Cold Harbor, just north of Richmond. Instead of retreating, Grant in early June moved his forces across the James River in an attempt to approach Richmond from the south through Petersburg.

    Pierre G.T. Beauregard, the general in command of Petersburg’s defense, had fewer than 6,000 soldiers and local militia on June 15 when William F. Smith’s Eighteenth Corps, some 14,000 strong, stormed the city’s fortifications. Two brigades of African-American soldiers spearheaded the assault and were poised to enter the city.

    Battle of the Crater and the role of U.S. Colored Troops
    A long siege of 10 months ensued, despite a Union attempt on July 30 to blast through Confederate defenses at the Battle of the Crater. After digging a 500-foot tunnel under a Confederate strongpoint, a regiment of Pennsylvania coal miners in Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside’s Ninth Corps (Army of the Potomac) set off a massive explosion. Union soldiers charged into the resulting crater but became sitting ducks for Confederates as they tried to climb its steep sides. Grant called the battle “a stupendous failure.”

    As in the initial June assault, black troops participated in the fighting at the Battle of the Crater. However, by the time the all-black Fourth Division of the Ninth Corps entered the battle, the crater was clogged with Federal troops and their offensive was stalling. As Confederates counterattacked, according to witnesses, they became enraged at the sight of black soldiers and killed many who were essentially trapped in the crater and attempting to surrender. The Fourth Division lost more than 1,000 men, nearly 40 percent of the Ninth Corps’ losses that day.

    After the Union defeat at the Battle of the Crater, both sides settled into trench warfare that lasted another eight months. The battle caused a decline in Northern morale and nearly prevented Lincoln from winning a second term as president. The Petersburg Campaign ultimately led to Richmond and to the South’s surrender at Appomattox.

    Battle of Mobile Bay Aug, 5, 1864
    Beyond Virginia, Grant set his sights on Mobile, coordinating an attack with Gen. William T. Sherman’s advance further south toward Atlanta. Adm. David G. Farragut, hero of the U.S. Navy’s conquest of New Orleans in 1862, headed the operations against Mobile. To reach the city, his fleet had to face fire from two forts guarding Mobile Bay — and navigate around mines (then called torpedoes) laid at the entrance.

    ‘Damn the Torpedos! Full speed ahead!’
    On Aug. 5, the lead ironclad USS Tecumseh hit a torpedo and sank, losing 94 men. Farragut climbed the rigging of his flagship USS Hartford. From this high perch, he is said to have given the famous order “Damn the Torpedoes! Full speed ahead.”

    Farragut and his flagship USS Hartford guided the rest of the fleet through the minefield, and when Fort Morgan surrendered Aug. 23, the Confederacy lost the use of the crucial port of Mobile for the rest of the war.

    The Petersburg Campaign and the Battle of Mobile Bay stamps are being issued as Forever stamps. They will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce rate. Many of this year’s other stamps may be viewed on Facebook at, via Twitter @USPSstamps or at

    First-Day-of-Issue Postmarks
    Customers have 60 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase stamps at a local Post Office, The Postal Store at, or by calling 800-STAMP-24. Customers should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes to themselves or others, and place them in larger envelopes addressed to:

    Civil War: 1864 (Mobile, AL)
    Supervisor Customer Service Support
    250 Saint Joseph Street
    Mobile, AL 36601-9998

    Civil War: 1864 (Petersburg, VA)
    Retail Manager – Richmond District
    1801 Brook Road
    Richmond, VA 23232-9640

    After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes through the mail. While the first 50 postmarks are free, there is a five-cent charge per postmark beyond that. All orders must be postmarked by Sept. 28, 2014.

    First-Day Covers
    The Postal Service also offers first-day covers for new stamps and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic catalog, online at or by calling 800-782-6724. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-782-6724 or writing to:

    United States Postal Service Catalog Request
    PO Box 219014
    Kansas City, MO 64121-9014


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    Acclaimed PBS Series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Returns Tuesday, September 23 at 8pm ET for its Second Season

    - The 10-part series explores the heritages and ancestries of 30 of today’s leading entertainers, athletes, chefs, and media personalities, including: Ben Affleck, Jessica Alba, Khandi Alexander, Tom Colicchio, Tina Fey, Sally Field, Derek Jeter, Stephen King, Nas, Anna Deavere Smith, Sting, and Courtney Vance -

    Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
    Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

    The basic drive to discover who we are and where we come from was at the core of the first season of the PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. In the second, 10-part season, Professor Gates, the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research, continues his journey into the past to illuminate the familial histories of 30 of today’s most recognizable names in sports, music, film, television, theatre, and literature. Filmed on location around the world, season two of Finding Your Roots, premieres nationally Tuesdays, September 23rd – November 25th at 8 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings).

    The premiere of the second season of Finding Your Roots comes on the heels of Professor Gates’ Peabody Award-winning PBS series The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross, which debuted in the fall of 2013 to critical acclaim. In each hour-long episode of the second season of Finding Your Roots, Gates continues his quest to, as he says, “get into the DNA of American culture.” By weaving a group of celebrity stories together, each episode takes viewers on a journey through layers of ancestral history, uncovering familial secrets and sharing life-altering discoveries that ultimately reveal an intimate bond that links each individual’s story together.

    “We hope that viewers will find Finding Your Roots to be a moving, uplifting, entertaining and enlightening experience,” says Gates. “Genealogy is more popular than ever, but it’s far more than a solitary pastime. It’s a fascinating endeavor that alters both the way we think about historical events (because of our ancestors’ roles in those events) and the way we think of ourselves.”

    “We’re incredibly excited to partner with Professor Gates again and present season two of Finding Your Roots,” said Stephen Segaller, vice president, programming, WNET. His brilliant combination of intensive historical research, high-profile guests, and DNA testing brings us an image of American history that no-one has equaled. He, like Finding Your Roots Itself, is unique.”

    The episode construction of Season Two explores a much wider array of themes than Season One. In each episode, Gates focuses on the specific ethnic roots, cultural traditions and deep interplay of family influence and genetics of three guests, including: celebrity chefs Tom Colicchio, Aaron Sanchez and Ming Tsai, who cook the food of their ancestors and discover family members who have shaped their lives—and America’s cuisine; Derek Jeter, Billie Jean King and Rebecca Lobo, three of America's greatest athletes whose determination and love of sports were deeply shaped by their families, but who were all cut off from their true origins—raising the question of whether champions are made or born; actress Tina Fey, humorist David Sedaris and journalist George Stephanopolous, all of whom look into their Greek American ancestry; and American playwright Tony Kushner, singer-songwriter Carole King and lawyer Alan Dershowitz, who not only share a Jewish heritage, but a history of perseverance in the face of withering opposition.

    In other episodes, actors Ben Affleck and Khandi Alexander come to realize their families have long been engaged in the battle for freedom and civil rights, but they had no idea that those principles were passed down through generations of ancestors. Gates also explores the history of the Vanderbilt family with Anderson Cooper, discovers a web of intimate relationships between Nas’ slave ancestors and their masters, and traces Sting’s roots back centuries in England where we find that being close to the seat of the Empire doesn't mean that life is any better.

    New advancements in DNA testing since the first season allow Gates and his team to use genetic genealogy to make unprecedented discoveries about the past in Season Two, including being able to identify tribal Native American ancestry, solve paternity mysteries, and pinpoint the geographic origins of hidden ancestry. These new achievements in DNA testing take center stage with an entire episode devoted to exploring the possibilities, all the while featuring the stories of actress Jessica Alba, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and even Gates, himself.

    Working closely with leading U.S. genealogists (including Johni Cerny, co-author of the acclaimed The Source: Guidebook for American Genealogy) and ancestry experts from around the world, Gates and his production team comb through family stories to discover unknown histories and relatives the guests never knew existed. When paper trails end for each story, the team turns to top geneticists and DNA diagnosticians to analyze each participant’s genetic code, tracing their bloodlines and taking guests back further in time than ever before.

    A far-reaching educational and community outreach initiative will accompany the broadcast, including: locally produced short excerpts to be shown on partner stations in conjunction with Finding Your Roots; a set of standards-based lesson plans for upper elementary and middle school classrooms that incorporate segments from the series; live webinars; and a multimedia guide for educators to encourage use of the series and its additional resources with students.

    A Finding Your Roots companion website ( will present video from the series, profiles of featured guests and an ongoing blog from executive producer, writer and presenter Henry Louis Gates, Jr. In addition to his blog, the website will include blog posts and behind-the-scenes material from the production team. With a heavy focus on online engagement, the website will allow fans to submit stories about their own family histories complete with customized maps, and browse those others have uploaded. The website also will offer a comprehensive list of resources that viewers can use to learn more about their own genealogy.

    A Finding Your Roots Facebook page ( will provide fans with early access to video content, foster conversation among those fascinated by genealogy and spotlight user-submitted photos, videos and stories related to genetic lineages and family histories. In addition, Prof. Gates will participate in conversations leading up to and during broadcasts via his personal Twitter account (

    Finding Your Roots : The Official Companion to the PBS Series (Season One) by Henry Louis Gates Jr., will be published in September, 2014 by the University of North Carolina Press.

    Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is a production of Kunhardt McGee Productions, Inkwell Films and WNET in association with Ark Media. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Peter Kunhardt, Dyllan McGee and Julie Anderson are executive producers. Stephen Segaller is executive producer in charge for WNET. John Maggio is senior producer.

    Major corporate support for the second season of Finding Your Roots is provided by Additional corporate funding is provided by Ford Motor Company and Johnson & Johnson. Major support is also provided by the Ford Foundation, Dr. Georgette Bennett and Dr. Leonard Polonsky, Candace King Weir and the Daryl and Steven Roth Foundation. Support is also provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and PBS.

    About WNET
    As New York’s flagship public media provider and the parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than five million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, Charlie Rose and a range of documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings available on air and online. Pioneers in educational programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state’s unique culture and diverse communities throughNYC-ARTS, Reel 13, NJTV News with Mike Schneider and MetroFocus, the multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region. WNET is also a leader in connecting with viewers on emerging platforms, including the THIRTEEN Explore iPad App where users can stream PBS content for free.

    About Kunhardt McGee Productions
    For 26 years Kunhardt McGee Productions led by Peter Kunhardt and Dyllan McGee has been making documentary films about the people and ideas that have shaped our history. Kunhardt McGee is currently in production on the 10-hour series, Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. – Season Two. Most recently, the company produced MAKERS: Women Who Make America, a broadcast and online initiative with PBS and AOL that aims to be the largest collection of women's stories ever assembled. Other PBS films include: The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross (2013), Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2012), Faces of America with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2010), Looking for Lincoln (2009), Oprah's Roots (2007) and African American Lives 1 and 2 (2006 & 2008). For HBO, Kunhardt McGee Productions produced Emmy-award nominated, Gloria: In Her Own Words (2011) and Emmy award-winning Teddy: In His Own Words (2010). Other notable works include This Emotional Life, Looking for Lincoln, In Memoriam, PT Barnum, The American President, Bobby Kennedy: In His Own Words, and JFK: In His Own Words. More information can be found at:

    About Inkwell Films
    Inkwell Films was founded by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. to produce sophisticated documentary films about the African and African-American experience for a broad audience. The most recent film, the six-part PBS documentary series, The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross (2013), earned the 2013 Peabody Award and NAACP Image Award. Inkwell Films has co-produced Finding Your Roots (2012), Black in Latin America (2011), Faces of America (2010), Looking for Lincoln (2009), African American Lives 2 (2008), Oprah’s Roots (2007), and African American Lives (2006). Inkwell Films is currently in production on Season Two of Finding Your Roots for PBS.

    About Ark Media
    Ark Media is an award-winning documentary film company founded in 1997 by the husband and wife producing team of Barak Goodman and Rachel Dretzin. Ark partnered with Kunhardt-McGee Productions on the Henry Louis Gates Jr. series, The African Americans; Many Rivers to Cross (2013), Finding Your Roots (2012), Faces of America, (2010) and also with Kunhardt-McGee, produced Looking for Lincoln (2009) and the Makers project for PBS. Ark's numerous films for the esteemed PBS series' Frontline and American Experience have won nearly every major broadcast award: the Emmy, DuPont-Columbia, Robert F. Kennedy, Writers Guild and Peabody Awards, as well as earning an Academy Award nomination and official selection to the Sundance Film Festival. The company is currently in production on the six-hour PBS series "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies" and a four-hour series for PBS, The Italian-Americans. Ark has also produced documentaries for the New York Times, American Movie Classics, ABC, and the History Channel. For more information, visit


    The articles on this site are provided as a public service and to be used for information purposes only. No information on this site is intended to serve as professional advice. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content. Use at your own risk.

    No Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. Resources and links included in said articles are only suggested as sources for further exploration, but we cannot vouch for or take responsibility for information contained in these resources. The opinions and views of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of


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    Comprehensive index of information concerning the Leagues, including histories, books, collectibles, player profiles and more.

  32. Black Facts ...
    Black Facts Online is the world's largest free online database of Black History information.

  33. Black is a community site dedicated to past influential and living black leaders and the history surrounding them.

  34. Black History And Classical Music...
    This is an excellent public service, very informative and quite sophisticated." Dominique-Rene de Lerma, Professor of Music, Lawrence University.

  35. Black History And The Civil Rights Movement ...
    Links to other black history websites.

  36. Black History Daily ...
    Black History Daily - 365 days a year.

  37. Black History Films ...
    "Black History Films" it shows videos of great historical figures. When you go to the website scroll down and press on the purple names. When you press on the green Wiki it shows the Wikipedia of that person. The site looks better on a desktop.

  38. Black History in America ...
    Complete African American history including black artists, athletes, war heroes, civil rights leaders, politicians, and scientists. Personal biographies and photos of African American leaders.

  39. Black History Month...
    Listings of black history dates and information. Black photographs and images. Accomplishments in the Black Firsts Hall of Fame!

  40. Black History Month...
    Black History Month, African-American, Civil Rights, Africa, slavery, black nationalism.

  41. Black History Month ...
    Black History Month - The History Channel.

  42. Black History Month - The History Channel...
    February marks the beginning of Black History Month - an annual celebration that has existed since 1926. But what are the origins of Black History Month? Learn the history of Black History Month at The History Channel.

  43. Black History Pages_B...
    The best of Black History on the internet.

  44. Black History Pages_C...
    Interesting stories from black history presented every day, with links to books and other Web sites.

  45. Black History Slideshow ...
    Each slide links to a Nation archival piece, featuring articles written for the magazine by Martin Luther King, Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, Godkin on the Memphis riots in 1866, Williams Pickens on Marcus Garvey in 1921, Carey McWilliams on the Watts riots in 1965, Ishmael Reed on "black pathology," Pat Williams on the OJ Simpson trial, Howard Zinn writing from Mississippi in 1963, and much more.

  46. Black History Treasure Hunt...
    Hosted by Education Worldweb, with four tests on African American history for students ranging from the 4th grade to the 9th grade.

  47. Black History WEB: Guide to African-American Heroes ...
    Black History WEB is a free resource for teachers and students searching the web for information (including biographies, timelines, speeches, quotes, documents, lesson plans, trivia, quizzes and more) on famous african-american heroes.

  48. Black Indians and Pioneers...
    William Loren Katz shares his reasearch on Black Indians through essays, articles, tributes and photographs.

  49. Black Past...
    The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed.

  50. Black Presence ...
    Black Presence brings black British History to the mainstream.

  51. Black Quest ...
    Black Quest is an African American and Black History resource website, an educational and heritage game that introduces and reinforces the experiences, achievements and contributions of the African American.

  52. Books-Black History-Music-Blues-Gospel-and More...
    A resource of African American Culture, past,present and future. Black History, Literature, the works of authors, A to Y. Blues, Spirituals, Gospel, Hip Hop, more!

  53. Born in Slavery...
    Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938.

  54. Christine's Black History Pages...
    Web directory of Black History on the internet.

  55. Christine's Genealogy Website...
    Numerous historical references including emigrants to Liberia, slave sales, manumission records and more.

  56. ClassBrain's Top 10 Black History Websites...
    ClassBrain's Top 10 Black History Websites listings.

  57. Colored Reflections...
    Colored Reflections is a "collective history" site covering the quest for civil rights and equality over the last fifty years

  58. Culture & Change: Black History in America...
    A collection of African American history teaching resources from Scholastic. Includes sites on Rosa Parks, Melba Beals Pattillo, and famous African American inventors. A link to a useful teacher's guide is also provided.

  59. DLTK's Crafts for Kids...
    Black History Month / African American Section.

  60. Encyclopædia Britannica's Guide to Black History...
    Encyclopædia Britannica's Guide to Black History resource.

  61. Enslaved Africans - Rain Garden...
    A public art project which commemorates the lives of enslaved Africans who lived at the Philipse Manor Hall in Yonkers, New York – six of whom were the first to be manumitted by law in the United States in 1787, seventy six years before the Emancipation Proclamation.

  62. Father Ryan Black History Sites...
    African American military history, African American journalism, and Harlem Renassaince sites.

  63. Footsteps African American History ...
    A magazine that celebrates the heritage of African Americans and explores their contributions to our culture.

  64. Harlem History...
    Harlem History presents a wealth of archival treasures and scholarship from Columbia about the history of one of the world's most famous and influential neighborhoods.

  65. Henry Ossian Flipper, 1856-1940...
    Autobiography of the first graduate of color from West Point, full text of 1878 book online, includes links to documenting the American South.

  66. History Makers...
    African American multimedia site, Includes biographical information, audio and video clips as well as links to other relevant sites.

  67. History of African American Newspapers...
    A project of The Reflector Newspaper.

  68. History of St. Mary's County Maryland...
    Records the significant contributions of African-Americans in the development of St. Mary?s County, Maryland.

  69. Homeland Collections...
    News and history of the Caribbean.

  70. Impact of Dred Scott...
    During the 1850's, a black slave from Missouri claimed his freedom on the basis of seven years of residence in a free state and a free territory.

  71. Internet African History Sourcebook...
    Human beings originated in Africa, as a result, there is more diversity of human types and societies than anywhere else.

  72. ...
    Today Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom, emphasizes education and achievement, a month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings.

  73. Kemet Nu Productions...
    Lectures, video, and audio tapes that link ancient Africa with African American history.

  74. Lest We Forget...
    This site offers you the history, culture, preservation efforts, and current events of African-Americans, other ethnic, non-ethnic groups and individuals.

  75. Malcom X ...
    Comprehensive website on the life and legacy of Malcolm X.

  76. Martin Luther King Papers Project ...
    Interesting and provocative.

  77. Mba Mbulu...
    Black Studies, Mba Mbulu, Religion, Black Nationalism, Integration, Black History, Leadership, International Law, Black Government, Profiles In Black, Black Declaration of Independence.

  78. Museum of African American History...
    The Museum of African American History, Boston, is a not-for-profit cultural institution dedicated to preserving, conserving and accurately interpreting the contributions of African Americans.

    The primary aim of this website is to encourage research activity on people of African descent and to provide information to the study of the African Diaspora.

  80. Negro Baseball Leagues ...
    Dedicated to the generation of ballplayers who were denied the opportunity to play in the major leagues because of factors other than their ability to play the game of baseball.

  81. NMAAHC...
    National Museum of African American History and Culture.

  82. Ol' Auction Block in Luray, VA....
    Through the years the story of the slave block has been kept alive by word of mouth among the inhabitants of the Shenandoah Valley.

  83. Ontario Black History Society...
    The Ontario Black History Society (OBHS) is a non-profit registered Canadian charity, dedicated to the study, preservation and promotion of Black History and heritage.

  84. Our Shared History...
    Our Shared History, African American Heritage.

  85. Pitchblack Baseball ...
    Pitch Black Baseball.Com celebrates Negro League baseball and honors the men and women who blazed the trail that Jackie Robinson followed in integrating the Major Leagues.

  86. Seacoast New Hampshire Black History...
    The history of African Americans in New Hampshire.

  87. Small Towns Black Lives...
    Photographic documentary, art and history project of African American communities in southern New Jersey.

  88. Sojourn to the Past...
    Students learn about the civil rights movement by taking expeditions to the South and meeting movement veterans.

  89. The African-American Mosaic Exhibition...
    This exhibit marks the publication of The African-American Mosaic: A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History and Culture.

  90. The African-American Pamphlets...
    The African-American Pamphlets from the Daniel A. P. Murray Collection, 1880 - 1920, contains 351 rare pamphlets offering insight into attitudes and ideas of African-Americans between Reconstruction and the First World War.

  91. The Civil Rights Era...
    African American Odyssey: The Civil Rights Era (Part 1).

  92. The Griot Museum of Black History & Culture...
    Only the second of its kind the country, The Griot Museum of Black History & Culture opened as The Black World History Wax Museum in February 1997. St. Louis, MO.

  93. The Historical Society ...
    The African Diaspora. The historical society of world history.

  94. The John Henrik Clarke Africana Library ...
    The John Henrik Clarke Africana Library, also known as the Africana Library provides a special collection focusing on the history and culture of people of African ancestry.

  95. The Massachusetts Historical Society...
    An independent research library and manuscript repository. Its holdings encompass millions of rare and unique documents and artifacts vital to the study of American history.

  96. The Internet African American History Challenge ...
    The internet African American history challenge.

  97. The Trials of The Scottsboro Boys...
    Information and analyses on the struggle for justice of nine teenage boys accused of the gang rape (in 1931) of two white girls in Alabama, and their several legal trials in the 1930s.

  98. Third Person, First Person...
    Slave Voices From The Special Collections Library. Broadside Collection, Special Collections Library, Duke University.

  99. Time Line of African American History...
    A time line of African American history (1852-1880) from the Library of Congress.

  100. Timeline of the American Civil Rights Movements ...
    Information about 1954 - Brown vs. Board of Education, 1955 - Montgomery Bus Boycott, 1957 - Desegregation at Little Rock, 1960 - Sit-in Campaign, 1961 - Freedom Rides and much much more! Photos.

  101. Today in African American History ...
    The People & Events That Have Shaped Black Culture and History. Today in African American History is a collection of information assembled over the years in my love for the African American culture.

  102. Tulsa Reparations Coalition...
    The report by the Oklahoma commission to study the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921, The coalition is working to get reparations.

  103. Underground Railroad...
    Underground Railroad--History of Slavery, Pictures, Information.

  104. Underground Railroad in New York...
    Underground Railroad in New York - New York History Net.

  105. USF Africana Heritage Project...
    Rediscovering Records of African American Genealogy and History.

  106. Where in the heck is Allensworth, CA...
    Historical account on Colonel Allen Allensworth and the town named after him.

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