African-American History Month Profiles of Individuals and Events Contributing to American Identity and African-American History – US-VA History 2014.

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<ul><li> Slide 1 </li> <li> African-American History Month Profiles of Individuals and Events Contributing to American Identity and African-American History US-VA History 2014 </li> <li> Slide 2 </li> <li> African-American History Month, 1926 the Present 0 Inevitably, the question is posed, Why should we study Black History? most Americans have scarcely enough knowledge of general United States History to be informed citizens; why spend four weeks a year emphasizing the contributions of African-Americans? 0 The simple answer is historical bias. Up until the 1960s, the vast majority of historians were old, affluent, white men. Their narratives emphasized the contributions of old, affluent white men, and the lack of diversity of perspective diminished the quality of the historical narratives Americans were familiar with. </li> <li> Slide 3 </li> <li> African-American History is American History Black History is American History, and it always has been. We acknowledge the centrality of African-Americans during the Civil War, for example, and recognize the conflict as an event that resulted in the redefinition of American History. However, there are so many stories of African-American contributions to American history that we fail to recollect. African-American contributions are omnipresent but seldom have names and biographies attached For example, who did more to cross the Delaware River in the famous painting by Leutze to the right? George Washington, standing bravely in the front of the pontoon boat, or the African-American rower, just behind Washingtons right knee? Even locally, the Battle of Great Bridge, which took place in Chesapeake, is only rarely considered as a conflict involving African-American combatants, on both sides. But it was ! Washington Crossing the Delaware, painted by the German-American Emanuel Leutze, 1851 </li> <li> Slide 4 </li> <li> African-Americans in History At the end of the Boston Massacre, Crispus Attucks lay dead. In fact, African-Americans free and enslaved made up about one-fifth of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. And this despite the fact that it was the British who offered freedom to enslaved men who enlisted! </li> <li> Slide 5 </li> <li> Carter Woodson Founder of Black History Month Carter Woodson was born in Fluvanna County, Virginia, and grew up in Buckingham County. In 1910, he became the second African-American to earn a doctorate from Harvard University (W.E.B. DuBois had been the first.) In 1916, Woodson established the Journal of Negro History, founding the scholarly journal to bring the contributions of African-Americans in United States history into greater acclaim. In 1926, he established Negro History Week in February, to correspond to the birthdates of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglas, two of the greatest contemporary heroes of African-American History. The holiday would later be expanded from one week to one month, starting in 1976. </li> <li> Slide 6 </li> <li> Diversity in History: Inclusion VS. Exclusion </li> <li> Slide 7 </li> <li> African-American History Profiles, 2014 Each of the individuals or events that follows are of importance to American History, and each profile has a theme related to our studies for the year. Be familiar with everyone in the slides that follow in order to be successful on the upcoming Black History Month test and quizzes. </li> <li> Slide 8 </li> <li> Crispus Attucks Crispus Attucks is a prime example of the uncertainty surrounding the lives of African-Americans. Attucks was of mixed ancestry and is presumed to have been part African-American and part Wampanoag that is, Native American. Some historians believe he was a runaway slave because there was an ad for a runaway slave from Framingham around the time he was a teenager. He later became a dockworker and seaman with ships operating out of Boston, Mass. This much we know for certain, though: He was murdered by British soldiers during the Boston Massacre, and was the fist American to shed blood in the movement for American independence. Today, he is commemorated around the nation, but particularly in African- American communities. Here in Norfolk, VA, the Crispus Attucks Theatre on Church St. is named in his honor. </li> <li> Slide 9 </li> <li> Sally Hemings Sally Hemings was an enslaved woman who lived at Monticello and had a longstanding relationship with Thomas Jefferson which is cloaked in some mystery. It is believed that Sally Hemings was the half sister of Martha Jefferson, who passed away in her thirties. Hemings and Jefferson may have been the most esoteric mixed race family in American history at the time. Exactly the nature of Jeffersons relationship with Hemings was historians cannot be certain. Because he held so much power over Sally and her children, it is difficult to declare with any certainty that the two were lovers who established an emotional connection. </li> <li> Slide 10 </li> <li> Sally Hemings There are no illustrations of Sally Hemings, but there was plenty of political intrigue and rumor regarding her relationship with Thomas Jefferson during the course of her lifetime. The exact nature of their relationship cannot be known except through oral histories. She is presumed to have had six children with Thomas Jefferson, and to have had a longstanding love affair with the author of the Declaration of Independence which took her from Monticello to Paris and back again. Descendants of the Jefferson-Hemings relationship went on to find freedom for the most part; some passed as white, while others lived as free blacks after their manumission when Jefferson died. For many years, rumors of the affair were denied by Jeffersons estate, which had sought to salvage his reputation. More recently, DNA evidence has removed much of the doubt that Jefferson was the father of several children with Hemings. How ironic that the author of the stirring words, We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable right; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness would enslave his own children? How ironic that he would deny them during his own lifetime? </li> <li> Slide 11 </li> <li> York When the Corps of Discovery know to most as the Lewis and Clark Expedition left St. Louis, MO for the Far West, exploring the entire Louisiana Territory for Thomas Jefferson, one African-American accompanied the expedition. His name was York, and he was William Clarks personal slave. York is known to have been exceedingly popular with Native American tribes, many of whom had never seen an African-American before. He was the only member of the Corps of Discovery who went entirely unpaid during the three year expedition. Journal entries seem to suggest, however, that whenever the expedition voted on matters that influenced the entire group, he was allowed to participate in the balloting. York is known to have been freed by William Clark later is his life; although some accounts suggest that he refused to continue working for Clark and ran away. One even suggests that he joined a Native American tribe and lived among them as a man of some status until he died. </li> <li> Slide 12 </li> <li> David Walker David Walkers Appeal was published in 1829 and was one of the first tracts in American history to openly advocate for violence in order to end slavery. Walker was born free in North Carolina, and moved to Charleston, SC and later to Philadelphia during his youth. Later he moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where slavery was illegal. Enraged by slavery in general, he worked as a salesman for Freedoms Journal, an abolitionist paper published in New York which sold copies in Massachusetts. In 1829, he published the radical tract, Appeal. He died months after the publication of the journal. While many believe he was poisoned, tuberculosis is listed as his cause of death, and many historians remain convinced this is accurate. </li> <li> Slide 13 </li> <li> Nat Turner Nat Turners rebellion took place in Southampton, VA during the late summer of 1831. Although it took place just down the road from us here in Virginia Beach, its a quiet part of our local history. The violence perpetuated by Turner and his followers resulted in the death of approximately 55 whites. The question afterwards: Why did he do it? If the fact that he was forced to live as a slave and that he was forced to watch his loved ones and friends sold off into slaver in the West isnt enough of an answer, then we may misunderstand the perpetually violent nature of slavery to begin with. But the violence carried out was only half of the story of Nat Turners rebellion. </li> <li> Slide 14 </li> <li> Nat Turners Rebellion For months after the slayings took place, Nat Turner could not be found. He was in hiding most people believe in the Great Dismal Swamp region. While Turner was on the lam, Virginias lived in constant fear that the followers of Nat Turner would rise up upon them, and kill them when they were at their most vulnerable. When Turner and some of his followers were finally captured in October of 1831, the crisis waned. Over two hundred slaves who were believed to be a part of the conspiracy were put to death after the ordeal. Turner himself was hanged, and then skinned by townspeople eager to take parts of his body as souvenirs. The Virginia state legislature seriously considered banning slavery after the rebellion took place; however, they decided instead to ratchet up slave codes controlling the movements and liberty of enslaved people. </li> <li> Slide 15 </li> <li> Richard Allen Richard Allen was the founder of the first African Methodist Episcopal Church in 1794. After attempting to work within an integrated church in Philadelphia and finding the racist practices and convictions of churchgoers there unseemly, Allen founded his own church in the city. Allen had been born as a slave in Philadelphia, and later sold to a plantation owner in Delaware. While growing up there, he and his siblings became involved a relief society managed by the Methodist Church. Allen would be ordained as a Methodist minister and eventually his master allowed him to purchase his own freedom. His story is important in two ways. First, it indicates the important role of the Methodist and Baptist churches in proselytizing enslaved people and free blacks and their tendency to advocate for manumission in the years following the Revolutionary War. Secondly, by refusing to accept second class citizenship within the hierarchy of the Church, Allen helped to establish churches as the backbone of a separate and distinct African-American culture in the United States, which promoted the moral justice of ending slavery and promoting abolitionism. Churches were the center of many abolitionist societies and charitable groups; they would later become the center of the Civil Rights Movement: Martin Luther Kings SCLC is a prime example; or the 16 th St. Baptist Church in Birmingham, AL. </li> <li> Slide 16 </li> <li> Anthony Burns: Fugitive Slave Anthony Burns was a runaway slave from Virginia who had established a life for himself in Boston, MA in the early 1850s. Recall that during this period, sectional divisions over slavery had caused much animosity between the North and South. In 1850, when California entered the Union as a free state, one condition of the states entry was that the Fugitive Slave Law been strictly observed and enforced. In 1854, Anthony Burns was arrested in Boston and accused of being a runaway slave. Boston erupted into protest, and angry mobs attempted to prevent Burns imprisonment and deportation to his former master in Virginia, Charles Suttle. During a melee which took place as Burns was led from prison to the ship which would transport him back to slavery in Virginia, one federal officer was killed by an angry mob of abolitionists. Nevertheless, President Franklin Pierce insisted that the warrant for Burns deportation be executed; he was convinced that he must enforce the law to preserve the Union. Burns was eventually placed back into servitude. He was sold by Charles Suttle to a slave trader. Eventually an abolitionist society in Boston raised money to purchase his freedom. Burns moved to Canada and took up work as a Baptist minister there during the last years of his life. Sadly, he died from tuberculosis at the age of 28 in 1862. </li> <li> Slide 17 </li> <li> Frederick Douglass Frederick Douglass is perhaps the best known of all African-American abolitionists; only Harriet Tubman rivals him in this regard. As a runaway slave, he was forced to begin his career as an abolitionist speaker by declaring, I stand before you this evening as a robber and a thief I stole this head and this body. Indeed, he had. Douglas went on to demand equality and liberty for all people. He was devoted to abolitionism first, editing an abolitionist newspaper called The North Star. But he was not limited in scope to African-Americans. He was also one of the only African-Americans to attend the Seneca Falls Convention and to endorse the Declaration of Sentiments, demanding womans suffrage in 1848. His career expanded during the Civil War. </li> <li> Slide 18 </li> <li> Frederick Douglass During the Civil War, Frederick Douglass was constantly petitioning for the acceptance of African-American soldiers into the Union Army; when he finally convinced Abraham Lincoln to acquiesce, two of his sons served in the war. After the Civil War, Frederick Douglass advocated for the passage of the 13 th, 14 th, and 15 th Amendments to the Constitution, all granting African-Americans greater liberty and legal equality in the nation. He took a leadership role within the Freedmans Bureaus Bank, and later went on to become the United States first African-American ambassador of color by accepting the post of charge daffaires for the Dominican Republic. Later in his life, he worked alongside Ida B. Wells-Barnett to publicize acts of violence against blacks in the South, and campaigned for womans suffrage. He was hailed as a leader for African-American rights and within the womens movement. </li> <li> Slide 19 </li> <li> Dred Scott Dred Scott is known for one particularly important case the Dred Scot decision of 1857. Interestingly, he was born in Southampton, VA, the same place Nat Turners Rebellion took place, in the 1790s. Scott moved away from the region the year before the uprising, and was eventually sold to Dr. John Emerson, a military doctor with whom he and his family moved about the nation. Scott attempted to purchase the freedom of his family after the Dr. Emerson passed away, but his widow, Irene Sanford, refused to allow this. Hence the famous lawsuit. Dred Scott made the strong argument that because he and his family had moved into regions were slavery was forbidden not only by state law, but by national principles established as early as the Nort...</li></ul>


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