On this day in Black history…
1. 1988 – Debi Thomas 1st Black to win winter Olympic medal
Figure skater Debi Thomas becomes the first African American to win a medal (bronze) at the winter Olympic Games.
2. 1964 – Anna Julia Cooper passes
Anna Julia Cooper, champion for the rights of black women, dies at the age of 105.
3. 1942 – Charlayne Hunter-Gault
Journalist Charlayne Hunter was born this day in Due West, South Carolina.
4. 1902 – Marian Anderson born
2/27/1902: On this day Marian Anderson, who will become a world-renowned opera singer and the first African American soloist to perform at the White House , is born in Philadelphia, PA.
5. 1872 – Charlotte Ray graduates from Howard Law School.
Charlotte Ray graduates from Howard Law School. She is the first African American lawyer in the U.S.
6. 1869 – Congress Adopts 15th Amendment
Congress adopted the 15th constitutional amendment, making it illegal for the US or any single government to deny or abridge the right to vote “on account of race, color or previous condition of servitude.”
7. 1869 – John W. Menard speaks in Congress
John W. Menard spoke in Congress in defense of his claim to a contested seat in Louisiana’s Second Congressional District. Congress decided against both claimants. Congressman James A. Garfield of the examining committee said “it was too early to admit a Negro to the U.S. Congress.” Menard was the first Black to make a speech in Congress.
8. 1844 – Independence Day for Dominican Republic.
9. 1833 – First American-born woman to give public lectures
On this day in 1833, Maria W. Steward delivered one of the four speeches which confirmed her place in history as the first American-born woman to give public lectures. Stewards lectures focused on encouraging African-Americans to attain education, political rights, and public recognition for their achievements. Her speech on this day delivered at the African Masonic Hall in Boston, Massachusetts, was titled “On African Rights and Liberty.” Sixty-seven years later in Boston on this same day, African-American teacher and poet Angelina Weld Grimke was born. Grimke was a descendant of the famous white abolitionist and feminist sisters Angelina and Sarah Grimke.
10. 1788 – *Probable date of Prince Hall’s birth
Prince Hall, Revolutionary War Veteran and founder of African Masonic Lodges, *may* have been born on this date. Though his accomplishments are well celebrated, little is known of Prince Hall’s early life.