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Black History Month. Important African American’s throughout history. George Washington Carver. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


Black History Month

Black History MonthImportant African Americans throughout history.

George Washington CarverAmerican agricultural chemist George Washington Carver helped to modernize the agricultural economy of the South. He developed new products derived from peanuts and soybeans and promoted the planting of these legumes as a way of liberating the South from its dependency on cotton..("George Washington Carver", 2012).


Frederick DouglasAn escaped slave, Frederick Douglass became one of the foremost black abolitionists and civil rights leaders in the United States. His powerful speeches, newspaper articles, and books awakened whites to the evils of slavery and inspired blacks in their struggle for freedom and equality.

("Frederick Douglass", 2012).


Charlie PrideCharley Pride is one of the few black country musicians to have enjoyed considerable success in the mostly white industry. During his 20s, he played baseball for the Negro leagues but moved over to music in 1966 when RCA signed him. He was the first black performer to appear at the Grand Ole Opry. Two of his big hits include "Is Anybody Goin' to An Antone" and "Kiss an Angel Good Mornin' ".

("Charley Pride Biography", 2012).4U.S. poet, playwright, and performer Maya Angelou produced several autobiographies that explore the themes of economic, racial, and sexual oppression. She became the first African American woman to have a feature film adapted from one of her own stories when her screenplay Georgia, Georgia was produced in 1972.

Maya Angelou

("Maya Angelou", 2012).5

You may shoot me with your words,You may cut me with your eyes,You may kill me with your hatefulness,But still, like air, I'll rise. Out of the huts of history's shameI riseUp from a past that's rooted in painI riseI'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.Leaving behind nights of terror and fearI riseInto a daybreak that's wondrously clearI riseBringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,I am the dream and the hope of the slave.I riseI riseI rise. You may write me down in historyWith your bitter, twisted lies,You may trod me in the very dirtBut still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?Why are you beset with gloom?'Cause I walk like I've got oil wellsPumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,With the certainty of tides,Just like hopes springing high,Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?Bowed head and lowered eyes?Shoulders falling down like teardrops.Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?Don't you take it awful hard'Cause I laugh like I've got gold minesDiggin' in my own back yard.

Still I Rise Maya Angelou

Guion S. Bluford, Jr.U.S. astronaut Guion S. Bluford, Jr., was born in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1942. He served as a United States Air Force officer and was selected as an astronaut candidate by the NASA space travel program in 1978. The first African American to fly in space, he served as mission specialist for the space shuttle Challenger in August 1983, with Richard Truly, Daniel Brandenstein, William Thornton,

("Guion S. Bluford, Jr.", 2012).


Billie HolidayLady Day, as she was usually called, was the finest jazz singer of her generation, and in the opinion of her followers and many critics she was the greatest jazz singer of the 20th century. The autobiography (1956) of Billie Holiday, written in collaboration with William Dufty, and the movie (1972) made from it, was called Lady Sings the Blues.

Jackie RobinsonA life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives, reads the tombstone of Jackie Robinson, the first African American athlete to play in baseball's major leagues in the 20th century. By breaking the color barrier in 1947, Robinson made great strides not only for black athletes but also for all concerned with racial justice. ("Jackie Robinson", 2012).


Chuck BerryBorn October 18, 1926, in St. Louis, Missouri, Chuck Berry had early exposure to music at school and church. As a teen, he was sent to prison for three years for armed robbery. He began producing hits in the 1950s, and had his first number one hit, "My Ding-a-Ling," in 1972. With his clever lyrics and distinctive sounds, he was one of the most influential figures in the history of rock music.

U.S. football coach and player. Fritz Pollard was the lightning-swift Brown University All-American halfback of 1916 who paved the way for African Americans in the sport by playing in the first professional football league and by becoming the first African American head coach of a National Football League team.

Fritz Pollard("Fritz Pollard", 2012).


Muhammed AliOne of the greatest U.S. heavyweight boxing champions, Muhammad Ali was known as much for his flamboyant self-promotion and controversial political stances as for his boxing ability. His motto was I am the greatest! He became the first boxer to win the heavyweight title three times. ("Muhammad Ali", 2012). 12

Aretha FranklinAretha Franklin was born March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee, the fourth of five children of a Baptist preacher and a gospel singer. A gifted singer and pianist, Franklin went on tour with her father's traveling revival show and later went to New York and signed with Columbia records. Over time she released singles that would become classics. She has won 18 Grammys and continues to perform.

Thurgood Marshall

U.S. lawyer Thurgood Marshall became the first African American justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. He was a champion of civil rights, both as a lawyer and later as a judge. ("Thurgood Marshall", 2012).


Jesse OwensThe Olympic Games of 1936 were held in Berlin, Germany, under the auspices of the new Nazi regime. It was Adolf Hitler's intent to use the games to demonstrate what he believed to be the superiority of the Aryan, or white, race. This aim was seriously undermined when an African American athlete named Jesse Owens won four gold medals in track and field events. ("Jesse Owens", 2012).


Ella FitzgeraldAfter a troubled childhood, Ella Fitzgerald turned to singing and debuted at the Apollo Theater in 1934. Discovered in an amateur contest, she became the top female jazz singer for over 50 years. Her multi-volume "songbooks" on Verve are among the treasures of American song. Her voice quality, with lucid intonation and a broad range, won her 13 Grammy awards and sold over 40 million albums.

Benjamin Banneker was a free-born descendant of slaves who became a famous 18th-century astronomer, mathematician and surveyor. He is considered by many to be the first African-American scientist.

Benjamin Banneker("Benjamin Banneker", 2012).17

BB KINGReared in the Mississippi Delta, guitarist B.B. King was a principal figure in the development of blues music. With his influence on rock as well as blues musicians, he helped broaden the appeal of the blues.

("B.B. King", 2012).


Dorothy DandgridgeBorn November 9, 1922, in Cleveland, Ohio, Dorothy Dandridge sang at Harlem's Cotton Club and Apollo Theatre and became the first African American woman to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress. Many years passed before the entertainment industry acknowledged Dandridge's legacy. In 1999, Halle Berry played Dandridge in "Introducing Dorothy Dandridge," for which she won an Emmy Award.

Louis ArmstrongThe New Orleans trumpeter who became a world ambassador for jazz, Louis Armstrong learned to blow on a bugle in reform school when he was 13. His genius for improvisation changed the course of jazz, but after the 1940s he had his greatest success as a pop singer.

("Louis Armstrong", 2012).20

The first African American whose face appeared on a United States postage stamp was Booker T. Washington, who was thus honored a quarter century after his death. (In 1946 he also became the first black with his image on a coin, a 50-cent piece.) His ten-cent stamp went on sale in 1940 at Tuskegee Institute, which Washington had founded when he was only 25 years old. Booker T. Washington("Booker T. Washington", 2012).

21Halle Berry (b. August 14, 1966 in Cleveland, Ohio) is an American actress and former beauty queen. She won an Academy Award for Best Actress and was also nominated for a BAFTA Award in 2001 for her performance in Monster's Ball, becoming the first woman of African American descent to have won the award. She is one of the most highly paid actresses in Hollywood and also a Revlon spokeswoman.

Halle Berry

Oprah WinfreyU.S. talk-show host, actress, and producer. As the most successful woman in entertainment in America, Oprah Winfrey's extraordinary accomplishments were amazing by any standards. That an African American female, born into poverty in the South, presided over an empire valued at more than 100 million dollars was even more amazing. ("Oprah Winfrey", 2012).23ReferencesB.B. King. (2012). Retrieved from Benjamin Banneker. (2012). Retrieved from Booker T. Washington. (2012). Retrieved from Pride biography. (2012). Retrieved from Frederick Douglass. (2012). Retrieved from Fritz Pollard. (2012). Retrieved from George Washington Carver. (2012). Retrieved from Guion S. Bluford, Jr.. (2012