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Steven J. Niven

psychologist, was born in the Panama Canal Zone, the son of the Jamaican immigrants Miriam Hanson Clark and Arthur Bancroft Clark. In 1919, Miriam left her husband and brought Kenneth and his sister Beulah to New York City. He attended public schools in Harlem, which were fully integrated when he entered the first grade, but were almost wholly black by the time he finished sixth grade. Kenneth's mother, an active follower of Marcus Garvey, encouraged her son's interest in black history and his academic leanings, and confronted his guidance teacher for recommending that Kenneth attend a vocational high school. A determined woman, active in the garment workers’ union, Miriam Clark persuaded the authorities to send Kenneth to George Washington High, a school with a reputation for academic excellence. In 1931 he won a scholarship to attend Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Clark attended Howard at time of ...


Roger K. Thomas

psychologist, was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, the son of David Alexander and Ellen Lillian, African Americans who had previously adopted the surname Sumner in honor of Massachusetts's antislavery senator Charles Sumner. Francis received his elementary education in Norfolk, Virginia, and Plainfield, New Jersey. His father was not satisfied with the secondary education in segregated schools, so he taught Sumner himself. Sumner passed a written examination to gain admission to Lincoln University in Pennsylvania in 1911. In 1915 he graduated magna cum laude with honors in English, Greek, Latin, modern foreign languages, and philosophy. Sumner said that his sole ambition was to be a writer, but he also said that he knew he would have to fall back on teaching or something else as a means of livelihood.While at Lincoln University Sumner corresponded with members of the psychology faculty at Clark University in Worcester Massachusetts ...