Posted on February 3, 2014 by


February 1:
1865 – John S. Rock became the first African American attorney to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.
1870 – Jonathan Jasper Wright became the first African American judge elected to the South Carolina Supreme Court.
1902 – Langston Hughes was born in Joplin Missouri.
1926 – Carter G. Woodson, the “Father of Black History,” initiated the first celebration of “Negro History Week”. It was expanded to “Black History Month” In 1976.

February 3:
1870 – The 15th Amendment, giving Blacks the right to vote, was ratified.
1956 – Autherine Juanita Lucy became the first Black student at the University of Alabama.
1969 – Mondlane, leader of FRELIMO (Mozambique Liberation Front) was assassinated.

February 4:
1913 – Rosa Parks (initiator of the Montgomery Bus Boycott) was born in Tuskegee Alabama.
1969 – Angola’s MPLA (People’s Movement for Liberation – Labour Party / Movimento Popular de Libertação de Angola – Partido do Trabalho) launched its armed struggle.
1920 – Andrew “Rube” Foster organized the Negro National League for baseball.
1959 – Congolese Nationalist Party (MNC), led by Patrice Lumumba ousted Belgian colonialism.

February 5:
1884 – W. Johnson, inventor, patented the Egg Beater (Patent # 292,821).
1934 – Henry “Hank” Aaron, baseball legend, was born in Mobile, Alabama. He played for the Milwaukee Braves over a 20-year span, and hit a record 755 home runs in one season.

February 6:
1820 – The Mayflower of Liberia, the first organized emigration of Africans back to Africa, left New York for Sierra Leone with 86 Africans / African Descendants.
1945 – Bob Marley, the “King of Reggae Music,” was born in Saint Ann’s, Jamaica.

February 7:
1926 – Negro History Week, initiated by Carter G. Woodson, was observed for the first time.

February 8:
1968 – Three South Carolina State students were killed during segregation protests in Orangeburg, South Carolina.
1986 – Debi Thomas, became the first African American to win the Senior U.S. Singles Figure Skating Championship.

February 9:
1971 – Leroy “Satchel” Paige was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
1995 – Dr. Bernard A. Harris, Jr. became the first African American astronaut to take a spacewalk.

February 10:
1780 – Captain Paul Cuffee and others petitioned the Massachusetts Legislature for the right to vote.
1989 – Ronald (Ron) H. Brown was elected Chairman of the Democratic National. Brown was the first African American to head a major political party.
2008 – Barack Obama won his 2nd Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album (Audacity of Hope).

February 11:
1990 – Nelson Mandela was released after 27 years as a political prisoner in South Africa.
2008 – Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn in as Prime Minister of Zimbabwe following a power-sharing deal with President Robert Mugabe.

February 12:
1909 – The NAACP was founded by W.E.B. DuBois, Ida B. Wells and others.
1934 — Bill Russell born; basketball player; first outstanding defensive center in the history of the NBA, first African American coach of a modern major professional sports team as player-coach of the Celtics in 1966.

February 13:
1923 – The Renaissance, the first Black pro basketball team, was organized.
1882 — Henry Highland Garnet died (born 1815); leading abolitionist and clergyman.
1919 — Eddie Robinson born; collegiate football coach, set a record (later surpassed) for most career wins (408), spent his entire head-coach career at Grambling State University in Louisiana.

February 14:
1760 — Richard Allen born; minister, founder of AME Church.
1817 – Frederick Douglas, “The Great Emancipator” was born in Talbot County Maryland.
1867 – Morehouse College was founded in Augusta Georgia (it was later moved to Atlanta).
1957 – The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) was formed with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as its president.

February 15:
1851 – African anti-slavery activists stormed a Boston court and liberated enslaved Africans.
1961 –U.S. activists and African nationalists disrupted UN sessions to protest the slaying of
Patrice Lumumba.

February 16:
1970 – Joe Frazier became the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion after knocking out Jimmy Ellis.
1972 – Wilt Chamberlain became the first NBA player to score 30,000 points (in 941 games).

February 17:
1936 — Jim Brown born; athlete (football & multiple other sports), actor, activist.
1938 — Mary Frances Berry born; professor, writer, lawyer, activist, worked in three presidential administrations, was a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (1980-2004) — chairwoman from 1993 to 2004, was first African American woman to head a major university (University of Colorado at Boulder, 1976-1977).
1942 — Huey P. Newton born; political activist, cofounder (with Bobby Seale) of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense.

February 18:
1688 – The Quakers of Pennsylvania adopted the first formal anti-slavery resolution.
1965 – The Gambia became independent, with David K. Jawara as its Prime Minister.

February 19:
1919 – W.E.B. DuBois organized the second Pan African Congress in Paris. First conference was 1900.

February 20:
1927 — Sidney Poitier born; Bahamian American actor, motion-picture director and producer, recognized as the actor who broke the color barrier in the U.S. motion-picture industry making the careers of other black actors possible.
1929 — Robert Hicks born; civil rights activist, founder of the Bogalusa, LA chapter of the Deacons for Defense and Justice.

February 21:
1936 — Barbara C. Jordan born; lawyer, educator, politician, congresswoman.
1940 — John Lewis born; civil rights leader, politician, congressman.
1965 – Omowale Malcolm X / El-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz was assassinated in New York City.

February 22:
1832 – The Female Antislavery Society of Salem was formed with Mary A. Battys as its first president.
1962 – Wilt Chamberlain set a new NBA record with 34 attempted free throws.

February 23:
1868 – W.E.B. DuBois born; scholar, activist and author of the Souls of Black Folk.
1890 – Africans in Dahomey (present nation of Benin) defeated the French at Cottonou.

February 24:
1966 – Kwame Nkrumah was overthrown by imperialists while he was in Beijing on a mission to end the Vietnam war.
1999 – Lauryn Hill, hip-hop and R&B diva, won five Grammy Awards, the most ever by a woman.

February 25:
1870 – Hiram Rhodes Revels, of Mississippi, was sworn in as the first Black U.S. Senator.

February 26:
1870 – Wyatt Outlaw, leader of the Union League in Alamance County, North Carolina, was lynched.
1926 – Theodore Flowers (aka “Tiger” and “The Georgia Deacon”) became the first person of African descent to win the world middleweight championship.

February 27:
1872 – Charlotte Ray became the first African American female lawyer after graduating from Howard University’s Law School.
1883 – W. B. Purvis, inventor, patented the Hand Stamp (Patent # 273,149).
1890 — Mabel Keaton Staupers born; Caribbean-American nurse and organization executive, most noted for her role in eliminating segregation in the Armed Forces Nurse Corps during World War II.
1897 — Marian Anderson bron, entertainer.
1978 – Death of Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, South African political dissident and Founder of the Pan Africanist Congress to oppose the apartheid regime.

February 28:
1892 – Augusta Savage, sculptor and educator, was born in Green Cove Springs Florida.

February 29:
1929 – Actress Hattie McDaniel became the first Black woman to win an Oscar, for her role as “Mammy” in Gone with the Wind.