Today's Articles

People, Locations, Episodes

Sun, 05.09.2021

Jody “Butterbeans” Edwards, Vaudevillian born

*Jodie “Butterbeans” Edwards was born on this date in 1895. He was a Black Vaudeville performer. Jodie Edwards was from Marietta, Cobb County, Georgia, he began his career in 1910 as a singer and dancer. He took the name “Butterbeans” in honor of fellow performer Butler “Stringbeans” May who died in 1917. He met Susie Hawthorne in […]

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Mon, 09.13.2021

Talley Beatty, Choreographer born

*Talley Beatty was born on this date in 1918. He was a Black dancer and choreographer. Talley Beatty was born in Cedar Grove, Louisiana, a section of Shreveport, but grew up in Chicago, Illinois. Beatty began studying dance at the age of fourteen with Katherine Dunham. He learned her style of dancing, which was heavily based […]

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Sat, 10.23.1441

Blackface in America, a story

*Blackface in America is affirmed on this date in 1441. Blackface is a form of theatrical or media makeup. It is used mainly by white performers to portray a caricature of a black person of African descent. There is no agreement about a single moment that constitutes the origin of blackface. The journalist and cultural […]

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Tue, 03.13.1500

Black History and Dance in America, a story

*This date is dedicated to African American Dance. Africans brought their dances to North and South America, and the Caribbean Islands as slave labor starting in the 1500s. The dance styles of hundreds of African ethnic groups merged with European dances, forming the extension of the African aesthetic in the Americas. Dance has always been an integral part of daily life in Africa. In the Americas, it helped enslaved Africans connect with their homeland keeping their cultural traditions alive.

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Mon, 10.23.1600

Black History, and American Art, a story

On this date, the Registry examines African American art—-painting, carving, graphic arts, and crafts created by people of African descent in the United States and influenced by African and African American culture.

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Mon, 11.01.1604

The First Performance of Othello Takes Place

*The Tragedy of Othello was first performed on this date in 1604. This is one of the first stage classics featuring a Black lead character. Termed the Moor of Venice, more commonly known simply as Othello, is a tragedy by William Shakespeare written around 1603. The first performance occurred at Whitehall Palace with Shakespeare’s friend Richard Burbage […]

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Tue, 09.29.1739

Stepping or Step Dancing, a story

*Stepping is celebrated on this date in 1739.  Also called Step Dancing it is a percussive dance in which the participant’s body is used to produce complex rhythms and sounds through a mixture of footsteps, spoken word, and hand-claps.    Black Africans brought their dances to North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean as […]

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Mon, 03.16.1750

Scipio Moorhead, Artist, and Engraver born

*The birth of Scipio Moorhead around 1750 is celebrated on this date. He was a Black portrait engraver.

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Fri, 12.11.1750

Adolf Gustaf Badin, Royal Servant born

*The birth of Adolf Gustaf Badin is celebrated on this date, c1750. He was an Afro Swedish (Black Swede) court, servant, and chronicler. He was born in Africa or the Danish island Saint Croix and enslaved at birth. He said the only thing he remembered about his past was burning his parents’ hut. It is […]

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Sat, 11.26.1763

Joshua Johnson, Portrait Artist born

*The birth of Joshua Johnson in c.1763 is celebrated on this date.  He was a Black artist (painter). Joshua Johnson was from the Baltimore area of African and white-European ancestry. The son of George Johnson, a white man, and a Black slave woman whose name was undocumented.  His father purchased his son from his mother’s owner for 25 pounds […]

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Wed, 08.26.1778

James Hewlett, Stage Actor, and Singer born

*The birth of James Hewlett is celebrated on this date in 1778. He was a Black actor, a tailor, and a waiter who also performed one-man shows.  From the British West Indies, he was a servant boy for actor George Frederick Cooke and learned to imitate his actions and attitude.  He was a principal actor […]

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Sat, 07.19.1783

Richard Potter, America’s First Black Magician born

The birth of Richard Potter in 1783 is celebrated on this date. He was a magician, one of the first Black illusionist in America.

Potter was born in New Hampshire, the son of an English baronet and an African servant woman. He was educated in Europe before beginning his 25-year career as a performer in post-Revolutionary America. He lived with his father in Hopkinton, NH, until he married his wife, Sally, and had three children.

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Tue, 04.26.1785

John Audubon, Artist, and Slave-Owner born

*John Audubon was born on this date in 1785. He was a Black French American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter. He painted, cataloged, and described the birds of North America.

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Thu, 01.29.1789

Saartjie Baartman, Objectified African Woman born

*The birth of Saartjie Baartman in 1789 is celebrated on this date. She was a South African entertainer and objectified Black woman.

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Mon, 10.25.1790

William A. Brown, Playwright born

*The birth of William A. Brown is celebrated on this date in 1790.  He was a Black playwright and theatrical producer.   William Alexander Brown, also known as William Henry Brown, was born in the West Indies. After he retired from working at sea, he had been a ship’s steward; he settled in a community […]

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New Poem Each Day

Poetry Corner

why don't you go on & integrate a german-american school in st. ON BECOMIN SUCCESSFUL. by Ntozake Shange.
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