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Juliette Bridgette Milner-Thornton

author, conservationist, philanthropist, pioneer of safari camps and walking safaris in Northern Rhodesia (present day Zambia), was born on 19 July 1912 in Chinde, a British coastal concession in Mozambique. In 1940 Carr married Barbara Lennon, daughter of the senior British warden at the local “native” prison in Zomba. Barbara was an employee of the Nyasaland Secretariat. Norman and Barbara had three children Judy, Pamela, and Adrian. Their daughter Pam Guhr and her husband, Vic Guhr, are conservationists and wildlife artists in Zambia. Pam is also a licensed safari guide; her brother Adrian at some point was a professional hunter in Sudan, he is currently co-owner and director of Norman Carr Safaris, a safari company founded by his father. Barbara Carr, like her husband was an author. Her first book, Cherries on my Plate (1965 describes her schooling in England return to and ...


Shirley C. Moody

educator, author, and philanthropist, was born Camille Olivia Hanks in Washington, D.C., to Guy Hanks, a chemist who earned an MA from Fisk University, and Catherine Hanks, a nursery school owner and Howard University graduate. Camille, the eldest of four siblings, attended a series of parochial schools, starting with St. Cyprian's Elementary School in Washington, D.C. She then attended St. Cecilia Academy, also in Washington, and completed her secondary education at Ursuline Academy in Bethesda, Maryland.

Although Camille Hanks had displayed an earlier interest in biology, Latin, and algebra, when she entered the University of Maryland at the age of eighteen she decided to major in psychology. During her sophomore year she was introduced to a twenty-six year old up-and-coming comedian named Bill Cosby. On their second date the young comedian proposed, and the couple was married ten months later, on 25 January 1964 About this same time ...


Eleanor Hinton Hoytt

Widely recognized and honored as one of the great civil rights and women’s rights leaders of contemporary history, Dorothy Irene Height spent decades inspiring and leading countless organizations in the struggle for equality and human rights for all people. To mark her ninety-second birthday on 24 March 2004, Dorothy Irene Height was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal by President George W. Bush. The ceremony in the Capital Rotunda in Washington was to honor her lifetime of achievements and service to the country as one of the preeminent social justice and civil rights activists of her time.

In her memoir, Open Wide the Freedom Gates, Height chronicles her life and work for justice, equality, and opportunity for women and black families. In it, she recounts her close relationship with Eleanor Roosevelt and Mary McLeod Bethune, as well as her encounters with W. E. B. Du Bois ...


Thea Gallo Becker

Addie D. Waites Hunton was born in Norfolk, Virginia, the daughter of Jesse Waites, an oyster and shipping business owner, and Adelina Lawton. Addie attended public school and belonged to the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME). Her mother died when she was a young child, and she was sent to live with an aunt in Boston. She attended Boston Girls' Latin (High) School and, in 1889, became the first African American woman to graduate from the Spencerian College of Commerce in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She taught for a year in Portsmouth, Virginia, before moving to Normal, Alabama, to teach and later become principal of the State Normal and Agricultural College.

In 1893 Addie Waites returned to Norfolk, where on July 19 she married William Alphaeus Hunton of Chatham, Ontario. He had moved to Norfolk in 1888 to become the first African American professional youth ...


Lois J. Einhorn

writer and activist, was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, the ninth of ten children of William Patterson Allen, a lawyer, and Mary Magdalene Rice Hayes Allen, a college professor. Across the street from the home where Carrie McCray was born is the campus of Virginia Seminary. McCray's mother served as interim president of this black Baptist seminary from 1906 to 1908. When she was almost seven years old McCray's family moved from Lynchburg to Montclair, New Jersey. Except for the first two years in New Jersey her family spent every summer back in Lynchburg. Throughout her childhood McCray's parents instilled in her a love of poetry, an appreciation for her ancestors, and an understanding of how education provided a path to freedom. In childhood McCray also learned how to remain optimistic even in dark times and how to treat all people with respect, kindness, and compassion.McCray ...


LaNesha NeGale DeBardelaben

educator and author, was born in Flat Creek, Kentucky, the younger of two children of William Morton, a grocer and small truck-business owner, and Susie Anna Stewart Morton, a schoolteacher. Shortly after her birth, Morton's family relocated near Lexington, Kentucky. Her early childhood was defined by several moves between Lexington and various small towns in Kentucky; the family finally settled in Winchester, Kentucky, a community of approximately eight thousand people.

Morton's maternal grandfather, the Reverend H. A. Stewart, was the minister in the local Colored Methodist Episcopal Church. The Reverend Stewart, born enslaved in 1846 played a monumental role in guiding Morton s development and he challenged her to think critically independently and to pursue all things with excellence As a result Morton excelled academically in the all black schools of Winchester including the high school which lacked the resources to matriculate students or award ...


Carolyn Wedin

white settlement-house worker, journalist, author, and NAACP cofounder, chair (1919–1932), and treasurer (1932–1947). Born in Brooklyn Heights, New York, Mary White Ovington was the third child of four of Theodore and Louise Ketcham Ovington. With his brother, her father founded and grew the Ovington Brothers gift shops, which provided a comfortable living when economic times were good but which suffered fires and bankruptcy when depressions hit, as in 1893 when Mary had to leave what was then called the Harvard Annex (later Radcliffe College) without obtaining a degree.

To her Unitarian upbringing Ovington credited her lifelong determination to base actions on fact and reason rather than emotion As the only unmarried of three daughters she fought against the expectation that she would stay home to take care of her aging parents but she also was unsuited to the teaching or nursing roles available to women of ...


Vincent A. Shivers

football Hall of Famer, author, and business executive. Gale Eugene Sayers was born in Wichita, Kansas. In 1951, after the death of Gale's grandfather, the family moved to Nebraska. In Nebraska, Sayers began his career as an athlete, joining the Midget Football League and becoming a standout. At Omaha's Central High School he was an exceptional track-and-field athlete, receiving three gold medals. As a senior he set a statewide record in the long jump. Sayers was named to the All-Midwestern and All-American high school football teams. He signed several letters of intent for football scholarships. Institutions such as Iowa State and Notre Dame were interested in Sayers, but he decided on the University of Kansas at Lawrence.

Sayers earned the nickname the Kansas Comet because of his remarkable skills as a running back While a freshman Sayers struggled with his classes fortunately that same year he ...


Thomas Holzinger

, South African educator and social activist, was born in Durban, Natal, South Africa, on 3 December 1931. His mother was Cecile Marie-Louise van Rensburg née Lagesse, the daughter of an Afrikaner mother and a French planter; his father was Peter Maxwell, an English-speaking South African whose family forbade him to marry Cecile. The boy Patrick spent much of his childhood in Pietermaritzburg in the care of his grandmother, Susanna Marie Largesse née Louwrens Her family had been forced into a British concentration camp following the Boer War a story that she often told A Catholic by marriage she raised Patrick in the Catholic Church as well Communication at home was conducted in a mixture of English French Afrikaans and Zulu Although poverty prevented him from attending college he threw himself into correspondence courses and earned a BA from the University of South Africa UNISA As he frequently ...


Sandy Dwayne Martin

African Methodist Episcopal Zion (AMEZ) bishop, civic leader, and author, was born in Chimney Rock, Rutherford County, North Carolina, the son of Hattie Edgerton and Edward Walls. His father died when Walls was only eight years old, leaving Hattie Walls, with the help of relatives and friends, to support and provide sufficient education for Walls and his three younger sisters. In 1899, at age fourteen, he entered the ministry. He was licensed to preach at the Hopkins Chapel AMEZ Church in Asheville, North Carolina, and began as an evangelist. He was ordained as a deacon in 1903 and received full ministerial, or elder, orders in 1905. After attending Allen Industrial School in Asheville, he transferred to the AMEZ-supported Livingstone College in Salisbury, North Carolina, where he received a BA in 1908 Five years later he received a bachelor of divinity degree from the denomination s ...


Betty Winston Bayé

journalist, was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He was the third of John Trevillian and DeSylvia (Chase) Wickham's five children. John and DeSylvia Wickham were a cab driver and store clerk, respectively.

In his autobiography Woodholme: A Black Man's Story of Growing Up Alone (1995) Wickham recounted how in the early hours of 17 December 1954, his father, apparently distraught that he could not afford to buy Christmas gifts for his family, shot and killed his wife and then turned the .32-caliber revolver on himself. Wickham's parents were found inside his father's powder-blue 1950 Plymouth station wagon. Besides John Wickham's suicide note to his mother, a twenty-dollar money order, and the couple's wedding rings, police also recovered twenty-one photographs of a black boy—his school pictures, Wickham wrote.

The Wickham children were parceled out among relatives. Eight-year-old DeWayne and his brother John Rodney were taken in ...