Black History Month: A Salute to Serena Williams

American tennis player Serena Jameka Williams was born on September 26, 1981 in Saginaw, Michigan. The youngest of Richard and Oracene Williams's five daughters, Serena Williams, along with her sister Venus, would eventually dominate the sport at various times throughout her career, capturing 15 Grand Slam singles and 13 Grand Slam doubles titles. Serena's father—a …

Black History Month: A Salute to Sarah E. Goode

Born into slavery in 1850, inventor and entrepreneur Sarah E. Goode went on to become the first African-American woman to be granted a patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, for her invention of a folding cabinet bed in 1885. After receiving her freedom at the end of the Civil War, Goode moved to …

Black History Month: A Salute to Charlotta Bass

Charlotta Spears Bass was a journalist and activist who, as editor of the California Eagle, championed African-American equality and freedom. Born on February 14, 1874, in Sumter, South Carolina, Charlotta Spears Bass worked as managing editor of the African-American newspaper The California Eagle. She and husband Joseph Bass called for an end to segregation and …

Black History Month: A Salute to Gwendolyn Brooks

Gwendolyn Elizabeth Brooks was born on June 7, 1917, in Topeka, Kansas. When Brooks was six weeks old, her family moved to Chicago as part of the Great Migration. Brooks was known as "Gwendie" to close friends and family during her childhood. Brooks attended three high schools: the prestigious, integrated Hyde Park High School; the …

Black History Month: A Salute to Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald, known as the "First Lady of Song" and "Lady Ella," was an American jazz and song vocalist who interpreted much of the Great American Songbook. Born on April 25, 1917, in Newport News, Virginia, singer Ella Fitzgerald was the product of a common-law marriage between William Fitzgerald and Temperance "Tempie" Williams Fitzgerald. Ella …