This Week In Black History 10-9-13



Week of Oct. 9-15

October 9

1806—Benjamin Banneker dies in Ellicott Mills, Md., at age 74. Banneker was a brilliant mathematician with a great memory and is credited with completing the layout and design of Washington, D.C.

BenjaminBanneker1823—Mary Ann Shad is born. She becomes publisher of Canada’s first anti-slavery newspaper—The Provincial Freeman. In fact, she is the first woman in the U.S. or Canada to edit and publish a newspaper.

1962—The east African nation of Uganda becomes independent from British rule.

1984—W. Wilson Goode makes history by becoming the first Black mayor of Philadelphia, Pa.

BarackObama2009—In a move which surprised just about everyone, President Barack Obama is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Obama had been in office for less than 9 months at this time last year but the Nobel Committee in Oslo, Norway, said it was impressed by his “promise” of disarmament and diplomacy.

October 10

1778—What is believed to be the first formal school for Blacks—the Africa Free School—opens in New York City.

1899—Black inventor Isaac Johnson patents the bicycle frame.

1901—Frederick Douglass Patterson is born. He grows up to become President of Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn. From there he would later launch an effort that leads to the 1944 founding of the United Negro College Fund.

1917—Famed Jazz pianist Theolonius Monk is born in Rocky Mount, N.C.

1935—George Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess,” a Black spiritual opera, premiers on Broadway in New York City.  It starred Todd Duncan from Howard University. The play becomes one of the most popular Black-themed shows ever to hit Broadway. The 1959 movie version stars Sidney Portier and Dorothy Dandridge.

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