African-American History

University of Kentucky Decides to Unveil Controversial Mural It Had Covered Up

University of Kentucky Decides to Unveil Controversial Mural It Had Covered Up

The mural, painted in the 1930s by artist Ann Rice O’Hanlon, had been criticized for its portrayal of African Americans and American Indians in scenes depicting the history of the city of Lexington, home to the university. One image shows slaves picking cotton.

U.S. House Votes to Provide $70 Million for Historic Preservation Projects at HBCUs

U.S. House Votes to Provide $70 Million for Historic Preservation Projects at HBCUs

The bill authorizes an appropriation of $10 million in each of the next seven years for programs to preserve historic buildings on the campuses of the nation’s historically Black colleges and universities.

University of Iowa Names Its New Residence Hall for Alumna Elizabeth Catlett

University of Iowa Names Its New Residence Hall for Alumna Elizabeth Catlett

The University of Iowa is naming its newest residence hall in honor of Elizabeth Catlett, the celebrated artist and the first African American woman to earn a master of fine arts degree at the university.

Temple University Scholar Leads Effort to Remember Pennsylvania's Slaves

Temple University Scholar Leads Effort to Remember Pennsylvania’s Slaves

Charles L. Blockson, the curator emeritus of the Afro-American Collection at Temple University in Philadelphia, led an effort to commemorate the lives of enslaved Africans who labored in Pennsylvania or who were transported through Philadelphia on their way to southern plantations.

Historians Recommend Reconstruction Era Sites for Inclusion in National Parks System

Historians Recommend Reconstruction Era Sites for Inclusion in National Parks System

Possible sites relating to the Reconstruction period that could be include in the park system, according to the authors of a new study, are Vicksburg and Natchez in Mississippi, New Orleans, and Memphis.

Universities Take Steps to Remove Symbols That Many African Americans Found Offensive

Universities Take Steps to Remove Symbols That Many African Americans Found Offensive

The University of Texas removed an inscription from a wall that paid tribute to those who fought for the Confederacy and Cornell University renamed its 3,500-acre Cornell Plantations to the Cornell Botanic Gardens.

Georgetown University Examines Its Ties to the Slave Trade

Georgetown University Examines Its Ties to the Slave Trade

Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., announced that a memorial to slaves who were sold by the university in 1838 would be built on campus. Also preferential treatment in university admissions will be given to the descendants of the university’s former slaves.

The Song "Dixie" Will Be Heard No More at Ole Miss Football Games

The Song “Dixie” Will Be Heard No More at Ole Miss Football Games

The song, sometimes referred to as the Confederate National Anthem, has been played at football games and other campus events for at least the past 70 years.

University of Virginia Scholar Works to Preserve the History of the House of Slaves

University of Virginia Scholar Works to Preserve the History of the House of Slaves

A group of American and African scholars are working together to restore the home of Madame Anna Colas Pepin on Goree Island just off the coast of Senegal. A professor at the University of Virginia is one of the international scholars involved in the project.

New Website Explores the Origins of African American Music

New Website Explores the Origins of African American Music

Scholars at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, have debuted an interactive website that chronicles what is believed to be among the earliest examples of the music of the African diaspora.

Yale Worker Breaks Stained Glass Window That Depicted Slaves

Yale Worker Breaks Stained Glass Window That Depicted Slaves

A dishwasher at the Calhoun residential college at Yale University, used a broom handle to punch out a stained glass window that depicted slaves carrying cotton. Yale later said that the windows depicting scenes from the life of slavery defender John C. Calhoun would be removed.

Princeton University's Toni Morrison Papers Archive Is Now Available to Researchers

Princeton University’s Toni Morrison Papers Archive Is Now Available to Researchers

Professor Morrison is the Robert F. Goheen Professor in the Humanities Emerita and the 1993 Nobel Prize winner for literature. She joined the faculty at Princeton in 1989 and taught creative writing classes until 2006.

Research Focuses on Early Black Coal Miners in Appalachia

Research Focuses on Early Black Coal Miners in Appalachia

A new exhibit examining the lives of Black coal miners who migrated from the South to work in Appalachian mines in the early part of the twentieth century is now on display at the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

New Yale Award Program for High School Students Honors Ebenezer Bassett

New Yale Award Program for High School Students Honors Ebenezer Bassett

Ebenezer Bassett was the first African American student to enroll at the Connecticut Normal School, which is now Central Connecticut State University. He taught at what is now Cheyney University and later became the first African American to serve as a diplomat for the United States.

City of Philadelphia to Honor Slain Educator and Civil Rights Activist, Octavius Catto

City of Philadelphia to Honor Slain Educator and Civil Rights Activist, Octavius Catto

Catto graduated as the valedictorian of the Institute for Colored Youth, which today is Cheyney University of Pennsylvania. He later taught English literature, mathematics and classical languages at the institution. He was murdered in 1871 while trying to defend African Americans’ right to vote.

The First Documented Black Student at Cambridge University

The First Documented Black Student at Cambridge University

In 1848 Alexander Crummell, the son of a slave in the United States, enrolled at Cambridge University to study moral philosophy.

University of Arkansas Contributes Items to the Umbra Digital Database

University of Arkansas Contributes Items to the Umbra Digital Database

The special collections unit of the University of Arkansas Libraries has announced that it will contribute 2,392 items from its collections to the online archive Umbra: Search African American History.

Harvard University Receives the Vast Archives of Televangelist Carlton Pearson

Harvard University Receives the Vast Archives of Televangelist Carlton Pearson

Carlton Pearson, a former Pentecostal televangelist, has donated his personnel archives to the Andover-Harvard Theological Library. The archives include thousands of hours of raw and produced footage from Pearson’s days as a televangelist.

New Historical Archive at Emory University Now Available for Scholarly Research

New Historical Archive at Emory University Now Available for Scholarly Research

The Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library at Emory University has announced that its SCLC/W.O.M.E.N. archive is now open for study by scholars.

Duke University Debuts an Online Guide of Julian Abele's Contributions to Its Campus

Duke University Debuts an Online Guide of Julian Abele’s Contributions to Its Campus

African American Julian Abele designed many of the Gothic buildings on the campus of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. Now the university has debuted a new online tour guide of Abele’s contributions to its campus.

Spoken-Word Poetry Address by Black Student at Harvard Becomes an Internet Sensation

Spoken-Word Poetry Address by Black Student at Harvard Becomes an Internet Sensation

Donovan Livingston’s speech, given at the convocation ceremonies of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, examined the obstacles faced by African Americans in pursuing an education in the United States.

New Research on the Intra-America Slave Trade to Be Incorporated Into Online Database

New Research on the Intra-America Slave Trade to Be Incorporated Into Online Database

Research by Gregory O’Malley, an associate professor of history at the University of California, Santa Cruz, has found that as many as 25 percent of all slaves transported to the New World were later shipped to other ports in the Americas.

Ntozake Shange Donates Her Archives to Barnard College in New York City

Ntozake Shange Donates Her Archives to Barnard College in New York City

Ntozake Shange, the noted African American playwright, poet, and novelist has donated her extensive archives to Barnard College in New York City. Shange is a 1970 alumna of the college.

University of Kansas to Honor 1965 Civil Rights Campus Protestors

University of Kansas to Honor 1965 Civil Rights Campus Protestors

On March 5, 1965, about 150 students – both Black and White – marched to the administration building and staged a sit-in outside the office of the chancellor. They had a list of seven demands relating to eradicating segregation in housing and student organizations on campus, particularly fraternities and sororities.

The Last American Born in the 19th Century, a Granddaughter of Slaves, Has Died

The Last American Born in the 19th Century, a Granddaughter of Slaves, Has Died

Susannah Muschatt-Jones was accepted into college but could not afford the tuition. Later in life she used her savings from her domestic work to establish a college scholarship fund for low-income African American women at her high school.

Documentary Prepared by Baylor University Students Examines a 1916 Lynching

Documentary Prepared by Baylor University Students Examines a 1916 Lynching

After Jesse Washington, a Black teenager, was sentenced to death for the raping and killing of his boss’s wife, he was dragged out of Waco, Texas, courtroom and lynched in front of more than 10,000 spectators.

Harvard University Honors Its First African American Graduate

Harvard University Honors Its First African American Graduate

Harvard University recently unveiled a portrait of Richard Theodore Greener that will hang in Annenberg Hall along with other luminaries of Harvard’s past. Prior to 2005, only two of the university’s approximately 750 portraits were of people of color.

University of New Hampshire Film Explores African American History in the State

University of New Hampshire Film Explores African American History in the State

The Center for the Humanities at the University of New Hampshire has produced a film that explores the university’s and the state of New Hampshire’s history regarding slavery and racial segregation.

Raised Fists by Black Women at West Point Deemed Not to Be a Political Protest

Raised Fists by Black Women at West Point Deemed Not to Be a Political Protest

A group of 16 Black women students set to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point came under criticism by posting a photograph of the group with raised fists.

Old Dominion University Honors Its First African American Rector

Old Dominion University Honors Its First African American Rector

The board of visitors of Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, has voted to name the university’s new residence hall after Hugo A. Owens, who led the university’s board of visitors from 1992 to 1993.

University of Colorado Honors Its First Black Faculty Member and First Black Librarian

University of Colorado Honors Its First Black Faculty Member and First Black Librarian

The Charles and Mildred Nilon Scholarship will be offered to students who “are committed to advancing educational opportunities in under-resourced schools, especially those that serve African American communities.”

An Old African American Cemetery Reveals a History of Racial Disparities in Life Expectancy

An Old African American Cemetery Reveals a History of Racial Disparities in Life Expectancy

Students in a sociology of aging class at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond have been conducting research while participating in a community service project to spruce up an old African American cemetery.

A Tribute to the First African American Woman Graduate of the Yale School of Music

A Tribute to the First African American Woman Graduate of the Yale School of Music

Helen Eugenia Hagan was an accomplished concert pianist, composer, and educator who graduated from the Yale School of Music in 1912. She is buried in an unmarked grave in New Haven’s Evergreen Cemetery. That is about to change.

University of Louisville Creates an Online Archive of a Civil Rights Era Incident

University of Louisville Creates an Online Archive of a Civil Rights Era Incident

In 1954, African Americans Andrew and Charlotte Wade bought a new suburban house in an all-White neighborhood. Segregationists used dynamite to blow up the couple’s home.

Clemson University Recognizes Its Ties to Slavery With Historical Markers

Clemson University Recognizes Its Ties to Slavery With Historical Markers

Clemson University in South Carolina was built on land that formerly was the Fort Hill Plantation of John B. Calhoun, who served as vice president of the United States under John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson.

Dixie State University in Utah Debuts a New Mascot

Dixie State University in Utah Debuts a New Mascot

Dixie State University in Utah used to have a Rebel as its mascot and then changed the names of its athletic teams to the Red Storm. Now the university’s teams will be known as the Trailblazers and its mascot will be Brooks the Bison.