Academics & Education

A glossary of important Black (African) American individuals from the past and present. A knowledgeable resource for all, brought to you with an artistic touch.

Richard Allen

Richard Allen

Richard Allen was a minister, educator, writer, and one of America's most active and influential black leaders. In 1794, he founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the first independent black denomination in the United States.

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Mary McLeod Bethune

Mary McLeod Bethune

Mary McLeod Bethune was an American educator, stateswoman, philanthropist, humanitarian, and civil rights activist best known for starting a private school for African-American students in Florida and co-founding UNCF on April 25, 1944 with William Trent and Frederick D. Patterson.

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Julian Bond

Julian Bond

Julian Bond was an American social activist and leader in the Civil Rights Movement, politician, professor and writer. While a student at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, during the early 1960s, he helped to establish the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).

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Gwendolyn Brooks

Gwendolyn Brooks

Gwendolyn Brooks was an American poet, author, and teacher. Her work often dealt with the personal celebrations and struggles of ordinary people in her community. She won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry on May 1, 1950, for Annie Allen, making her the first African American to receive the Pulitzer.

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George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver, was an American agricultural scientist and inventor. He actively promoted alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil depletion (while a professor at Tuskegee Institute).

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Shirley Chisholm

Shirley Chisholm

Shirley Chisholm was an American politician, educator, and author. In 1968, she became the first black woman elected to the United States Congress, and she represented New York's 12th congressional district for seven terms from 1969 to 1983.

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Janet Collins

Janet Collins

Janet Collins was a ballet dancer, choreographer, and teacher. She performed on Broadway, in films, and appeared frequently on television. She was among the pioneers of black ballet dancing, one of the few classically trained Black dancers of her generation.

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David Dinkins

David Dinkins

David Norman Dinkins is an American politician, lawyer, and author who served as the 106th Mayor of New York City, from 1990 to 1993. He was the first and, to date, the only African American to hold that office.

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W.E.B. Du Bois

W.E.B. Du Bois

William Edward Burghardt Du Bois was an American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, writer and editor. Du Bois was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909.

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Ralph Ellison

Ralph Ellison

Ralph Ellison was an American novelist, literary critic, and scholar best known for his novel Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award in 1953. He also wrote Shadow and Act (1964), a collection of political, social and critical essays, and Going to the Territory (1986).

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Augusta Savage

Augusta Savage

Augusta Savage was an African-American sculptor associated with the Harlem Renaissance. She was also a teacher whose studio was important to the careers of a generation of artists who would become nationally known. She worked for equal rights for African Americans in the arts.

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Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Ida Bell Wells-Barnett was an African-American investigative journalist, educator, and an early leader in the civil rights movement. She was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

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Dr. Carter G. Woodson

Dr. Carter G. Woodson

Carter Godwin Woodson was an American historian, author, journalist and the founder of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. In February 1926, he launched the celebration of “Negro History Week”, the precursor of Black History Month.

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