Sergeant Henry Johnson, an African-American hero of the First World War from Albany, NY, will officially have Fort Polk in Louisiana renamed in his honor this June. The move comes after Congress authorized the Naming Commission to provide new names for U.S. military bases and other Department of Defense installations originally named after Confederate leaders and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) advocated for the change. [Read more…] about Army Base Being Renamed for Albany’s Henry Johnson
NYS Nominates 13 Places for State, National Registers of Historic Places
The New York State Board for Historic Preservation has recommended adding 13 properties to the State and National Registers of Historic Places and submitting one request to the Columbia Turnpike East Toll House to the National Park Service.
The nominations include a key site associated with Rochester‘s LGBTQ+ history, a historic synagogue in Manhattan‘s Upper West Side, a public park in Ithaca, a church connected to Yonkers’s civil rights history, a re-built Lustron House in Erie County, the Oneida County History Center, and more. [Read more…] about NYS Nominates 13 Places for State, National Registers of Historic Places
Sojourner Truth: How An Enslaved Dutch Speaker Became A Black Liberation Icon
On March 31st, 1817 the New York State Legislature decided that enslavement within its borders had to come to an end. Final emancipation would occur on July 4th, 1827. Coincidentally, the date of choice was almost exactly two centuries after the Dutch West India Company’s yacht Bruynvisch arrived at Manhattan on August 29th, 1627. [Read more…] about Sojourner Truth: How An Enslaved Dutch Speaker Became A Black Liberation Icon
Liberty and Slavery in the Birth of a Nation, 1765-1795
Leaders of the founding of the United States who called for American liberty are scrutinized for enslaving Black people themselves: George Washington consistently refused to recognize the freedom of those who escaped his Mount Vernon plantation. And we have long needed a history of the founding that fully includes Black Americans in the Revolutionary protests, the war, and the debates over slavery and freedom that followed. [Read more…] about Liberty and Slavery in the Birth of a Nation, 1765-1795
The African Burial Ground, Columbia University & Manhattan’s Grave-Robbers
On July 26, 1788, the Convention of the State of New York, meeting in Poughkeepsie, ratified the Constitution of the United States and, in doing so, was admitted to the new union as the eleventh of the original thirteen colonies joining together as the United States of America.
For New Yorkers, it had been an eventful year. [Read more…] about The African Burial Ground, Columbia University & Manhattan’s Grave-Robbers
James Forten and the Making of the United States
In this episode of Ben Franklin’s World, Matthew Skic, a Curator of Exhibitions at the Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia, joins Liz to explore the life and deeds of James Forten, with details from the museum’s new exhibit, Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia. [Read more…] about James Forten and the Making of the United States
Madam C. J. Walker: Black Hair Care Entrepreneur
The latest History Twins podcast is about Madam C. J. Walker (1867 – 1919), who made a fortune by developing and marketing a line of cosmetics and hair care products for Black women, especially through the business she founded, the Madam C. J. Walker Manufacturing Company.
The first child of her large family born free. Sarah Breedlove was a child near Delta, Louisiana where her parents die and she was orphaned by the age of seven. She moved to Vicksburg, Mississippi, at the age of 10, working as a domestic servant. [Read more…] about Madam C. J. Walker: Black Hair Care Entrepreneur
A United Nations Exhibit Sheds Light On Dutch Colonial Slavery
The exhibit “Slavery: Ten True Stories of Dutch Colonial Slavery from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam” will be displayed in the lobby of the United Nations in New York City from February 27 through March 30, 2023.
The exhibition explores ten true personal stories centered on wooden foot stocks known as a “tronco” (Portuguese for tree trunk) that were used to constrain enslaved people by clamping their ankles. The foot stocks represent the more than one million people who forced to work in Dutch colonies on sugar plantations and in mines and harbors in Brazil, Suriname, the Caribbean, South Africa, and Asia. [Read more…] about A United Nations Exhibit Sheds Light On Dutch Colonial Slavery
Thurgood Marshall & Rockland County School Desegregation
On the February 2023 Crossroads, host Clare Sheridan revisited the 2011 interview with Dr. Travis Jackson (1934–2021) about his personal memories and his extensive research related to the desegregation of the Hillburn schools and the role that Thurgood Marshall played in this important piece of Rockland County history.
Dr. Travis Jackson was born and raised in Hillburn. He was entering the fourth grade in 1943 when Hillburn families of color and the NAACP worked together to desegregate the Hillburn schools. [Read more…] about Thurgood Marshall & Rockland County School Desegregation
Wealth and Slavery in New Netherland
In this episode of Ben Franklin’s World, Nicole Maskiell, an associate professor of History at the University of South Carolina and the author of Bound By Bondage: Slavery and the Creation of the Northern Gentry (Cornell Univ. Press, 2022) joins Liz Covart to investigate the practice of slavery in Dutch New Netherland and how the colony’s elite families built their wealth and power on the labor, skills, and bodies of enslaved Africans and African Americans. [Read more…] about Wealth and Slavery in New Netherland