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Jeffrey Green

Born in Trinidad, John Alcindor was among the first black West Indians to practise medicine in Britain. Winning an Island Scholarship enabled him to study medicine at Edinburgh University, from where he graduated in 1899 with first‐class honours in three subjects. He was among delegates from the Edinburgh‐based Afro‐West Indian Literary Society to the 1900 Pan‐African Conference, where he met and developed friendships with Samuel Coleridge‐Taylor and W. E. B. Du Bois. Moving to London, Alcindor practised his profession in the city's hospitals, and for several years played cricket for the Mill Hill Park club. His marriage to Minnie Alcindor (née Martin) in 1911 produced three sons. In 1917 Alcindor established his own medical practice, and also worked as a Poor Law medical officer. He published three scholarly studies on his research.

Alcindor was a founder member of the African Progress Union over which he was elected president in ...

Article

Frederick Opie

on the Caribbean coast of Guatemala and Belize, was born in Barbados in 1881. He attended St. Stephen’s Grammar School and Combermere High School in Barbados. For two years he worked at a commercial house in England. He then took a job working for the United Fruit Company (UFCO) in Central America, where he joined Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), a black nationalist organization. He established the first UNIA branch in Guatemala in February 1920 and was elected president of the local association. He later became the UNIA commissioner for Guatemala and Belize.

For some shrewd aggressive and hard working black immigrants like Bourne migration to the Caribbean coast of Guatemala had paid off handsomely Guatemala had proved to be an easier place for a black immigrant to become a property or business owner than the Jim Crow American South or the British colonial West Indies On ...

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Amar Wahab

Pan‐Africanistleader in Britain in the early 1900s. Born in Sierra Leone, in 1869 he was sent to Cheshire to be educated and started working for the family firm, Broadhurst and Sons, in Manchester in 1905. By 1936 he is known to have been a cocoa merchant in the Gold Coast. He was heavily involved in the realm of Pan‐Africanist politics in Britain, becoming a founder member of the African Progress Union between 1911 and 1925. He became secretary of the Union in his sixties and continued as a member of the executive committee until its end. He worked with other leading supporters such as Duse Mohamed Ali, Edmund Fitzgerald Fredericks, and ‘the Black doctor of Paddington’ John Alcindor The Union organized around issues related to the welfare of Africans and Afro Peoples worldwide and vociferously advocated self determination This involved for example protests about ...

Article

Barbara Bair

writer, educator, and feminist, was born Adelaide Smith on 27 June 1868 in Freetown, Sierra Leone. Of mixed Hausa, Fanti, West Indian, and British heritage, she was born into the social world of the Creole professional elite, the daughter of court registrar William Smith and his second wife, Anne. Adelaide Smith moved with her family to England at the age of four (in 1872), and grew to adulthood in Britain. She was educated at the Jersey Ladies’ College, which her father had helped to found. The leaders of the school served as role models for the young Adelaide, who carried the message of female ability she learned at the college into her own adult life. The experience also influenced her lifelong dedication to education as a medium of social change for African women and girls.

Adelaide studied music in Germany for two years before her family s financial circumstances ...

Article

David Killingray

Medical doctor and Pan‐Africanist.

Born in Barbados, Clarke won an island scholarship and came to London in 1914 to study medicine. He graduated from Cambridge in 1918 and qualified as a surgeon two years later. He set up a medical practice in Southwark, south‐east London, where he worked until 1965.

Clarke was a founder member of the League of Coloured Peoples (LCP) in 1931 and active in encouraging and also providing generous financial support for various Pan‐African causes. Clarke was non‐partisan and enjoyed good relations with the left and right Pan‐African factions in the 1930s–1940s, and this enabled him to act as a mediator in planning for the Conference on the African Peoples, Democracy, and World Peace held in London in July 1939 Many Caribbean and African visitors to Britain stayed at Clarke s home in Barnet which was also used for some LCP social functions for ...

Article

Nigerian academic researcher and Pan-African activist, was born in Abeokuta, Nigeria, in 1893. He was the son of I. O. Fadipe, a pastor at the Baptist mission in Abeokuta. His mother, like many women in Yoruba communities, worked as a trader.

After attending the Church Missionary Society (CMS) primary school in Abeokuta, Fadipe graduated from the CMS grammar school in Lagos and found work as a clerk for the colonial government. With low pay offered to junior African office workers, Fadipe set about finding a more lucrative position. He succeeded in finding a new position as the personal secretary to the manager of Barclays Bank in Lagos. Fadipe knew full well how few opportunities for higher learning existed in Nigeria in the early twentieth century, so he convinced his mother to pay for him to enter a university in England. In 1925 Fadipe was admitted to the London School ...

Article

Writer and one of the lesser known Pan‐Africanist leaders born in Nigeria, the son of a Baptist mission preacher. Fadipe was brought up in the church missionary school. He became the personal secretary to the manager of Barclays Bank, Lagos. He travelled to Britain and earned a BA degree at the London School of Economics in 1929. He was subsequently awarded fellowships to study at Woodbrooke College in Birmingham and then for his MA at Columbia University, New York. His dissertation entitled ‘A Yoruba Town: A Sociological Study of Abeokuta’, was the first study of its kind by an African academic on Nigeria. Fadipe subsequently took up a teaching post at Achimota College in the Gold Coast but returned to London after his contract was not renewed.

Once again at the London School of Economics in 1934 Fadipe pursued a Ph D working on the first major sociological ...

Article

Barbara Bair

pan-African activist, was born 18 January 1897 in Port Antonio, Jamaica. She was raised in Panama, where her father operated a print shop, but returned to Jamaica to attend the Baptist Westwood High School for Girls. Class conscious and politically involved, she also identified strongly with her Asante heritage. She met Marcus Garvey while participating in a debating society in Kingston, and she helped him found the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) in 1914.

In 1916 Garvey traveled to the United States, where he intended to raise funds to start a UNIA vocational school in Jamaica modeled on Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Institute. Instead he began to build the grassroots Pan-African movement for which he would become famous, receiving mentorship from radical West Indian intellectuals, editors, and labor organizers in Harlem. Ashwood joined Garvey in New York in 1918 She served as UNIA secretary organized the ladies division ...

Article

Cecily Jones

Co‐founder with Marcus Garvey (whose wife she was) of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) and member of the London‐based Pan‐African movement. Ashwood was not only a political activist, but also a journalist, music producer, playwright, lecturer, and businesswoman. In 1914 she met Garvey at a debate in Kingston and helped to organize the inaugural meeting of the UNIA. The same year, aged just 17, she became UNIA's first secretary and a member of its management board, and co‐founded its Ladies' Auxiliary Wing. Ashwood married Garvey in New York in 1919, where the couple established the American headquarters of UNIA. Her role as Garvey's chief aide and general secretary helped to build UNIA into an international Pan‐African organization.

After the collapse of her marriage in 1922, Ashwood travelled worldwide, lecturing on black self‐determination, Pan‐Africanism and women s rights In England she found her intellectual home among the ...

Article

Steven J. Niven

Pan-Africanactivist, was born Amy Ashwood in Port Antonio, Jamaica, to relatively prosperous middle-class parents. Her father was a successful caterer in Panama, and shortly after her birth Amy traveled with her brother and mother to live there. She returned to Jamaica in 1907 to be educated at the renowned Westwood Training College for Women, from which she graduated in 1914 It was there that the twelve year old first learned that her forebears had been taken forcibly from Africa by British traders and enslaved in Jamaica Though frightened and angered to learn the horrors of the Middle Passage Ashwood also became determined to learn more about her African roots A visit to her elderly grandmother who had been sold into slavery as a girl on the African Gold Coast instilled in her a strong sense of pride in her Ashanti ancestors She determined then that she had ...

Article

John Davidson

James Africanus Horton was a pioneer African nationalist. Largely forgotten for eighty years after his death, interest in him revived during West Africa’s advance to independence. His major works, West African Countries and Peoples (1868) and Letters on the Political Condition of the Gold Coast (1870), were republished in 1969 and 1970, respectively. Horton exemplified the contribution of the Krio elite of Sierra Leone to the development of West Africa in the mid-nineteenth century. He rejected the argument that Africans were inherently biologically inferior. He argued for extended provision of education, for the building of railways, and for economic development generally. He hoped that the British colonies would expand, with a provision for African self-government and a major role for Western-educated Africans.

Horton was born in Gloucester, Sierra Leone, in 1835 His parents were Igbo recaptives from Eastern Nigeria who were rescued from a ...

Article

David Killingray

West African medical doctor, army officer, and political writer born in Freetown, Sierra Leone, the son of a liberated slave. He went to school and studied at Fourah Bay Institute with a view to entering the Christian ministry. However, along with two other men, he was selected in 1853 to study medicine in Britain with a view to returning to West Africa as an army medical officer. Horton studied first at King's College London and graduated from Edinburgh in 1859. He was very conscious that he was an African and adopted the name ‘Africanus’. Commissioned into the Army, he returned to West Africa, where he spent twenty years practising as a military doctor and occasionally serving as an administrator. He retired as a lieutenant‐colonel in 1880 Early in his career many of his white fellow doctors resented his role and they persuaded the War Office not to appoint ...

Article

Christine Lutz

Pan-Africanist and labor leader, was born William Alphaeus Hunton Jr. in Atlanta, Georgia, to Addie Waites Hunton, a leading clubwoman and feminist, and William Alphaeus Hunton Sr., founder of the Negro YMCA. Alphaeus was the couple's second surviving child. After the Atlanta riot of 1906 the Huntons moved to New York. Alphaeus grew up in Brooklyn, where he attended public schools with his sister Eunice Hunton (Carter), who became a prominent clubwoman and lawyer. Alphaeus and Eunice lived for two and a half years in Germany with their mother.

In 1921 Hunton entered Howard University in Washington, D.C., earning a BS in 1924. He pursued his graduate studies at Harvard University, earning an MA in English literature in 1926. Beginning in 1933 Hunton worked toward his PhD at New York University while teaching English literature at Howard as an assistant professor He received his ...

Article

John H. McClendon

AfricanAmerican scholar, educator, Pan-Africanist, political journalist, labor organizer, and Marxist. William Alphaeus Hunton Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia, to William Alphaeus and Addie Hunton. His grandfather Stanton Hunton had been born a slave in Virginia and had migrated to Chatham, Ontario, in Canada in 1843 after successfully purchasing his freedom. From Chatham, Stanton Hunton closely worked with John Brown in the preparation of Brown's historic raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859.

Alphaeus Hunton's father, William Alphaeus Hunton Sr. (1863–1916), had a lifelong career working with the YMCA, serving as its first African American secretary. William Hunton moved from Ontario to Norfolk, Virginia, in 1888 and he married Addie Waite in 1893 A native of Norfolk Addie Waite Hunton had graduated from the City College of New York and later received a degree in linguistics from the Sorbonne After her marriage to ...

Article

Amon Saba Sakaana

Adopted name of George T. N. Griffith, Pan‐Africanist born (c.1900–1983 in Buxton British Guiana now Guyana His background provides an insight into his later political development His paternal grandfather was reported to be been born in Tigre Ethiopia and taken by a Scottish miner to British Guiana In the village of Buxton many of the African descendants owned their own plot of land and the tradition of cooperative work existed which enabled families to plant and harvest together His maternal grandmother was one of the founders of a village possibly Buxton itself and wielded tremendous power in its social and cultural organization She shared a husband with two or three other women Makonnen commented that nobody cared much about this sort of thing and that their marriage had survived slavery intact His father was a gold and diamond miner It was perhaps from his father that ...

Article

Cyprian B. Adupa

Tom Mboya was a nationalist politician and union organizer whose role was critical to the achievement of Kenyan independence in 1963. At the continental level, Mboya was a strong advocate of African unity, but his approach differed from that espoused by Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, as Mboya favored regionalism as a first step toward the unity of the continent.

Born in August 1930 in Thika, where his father, Leonard Ndiege, worked as an overseer in a sisal plantation, Mboya started his formal education at the Catholic mission in Thika, where the lessons were mainly prayers and catechism. In 1942, Mboya was then transferred to St. Mary’s mission school at Yala in Central Nyanza, from where he sat for his Kenya African preliminary examinations in 1945 Mboya passed and joined the Holy Ghost College at Mangu in Central Province At the Holy Ghost College he became a student ...

Article

David Goldsworthy

Kenyan political leader, was born Thomas Joseph Odhiambo Mboya near Thika, north of Nairobi, on or about 15 August 1930. He was the eldest of the six children of Leonardus Ndiege, a sisal cutter from Rusinga Island, Lake Victoria, and Ndiege’s wife Marsella Awuor. By ethnic identity Mboya was a Suba Luo. He was baptized a Catholic and was given the additional name of Joseph at his confirmation. Between the ages of 7 and 17, he attended Irish-run schools in widely dispersed parts of the country. In his book Freedom and After (1963), he maintained that his nontribal outlook in later life owed much to a childhood during which he lived among and learned the languages of several of Kenya’s major ethnic communities, notably Luo, Kikuyu, and Kamba.

From 1948 to 1950 Mboya attended the Jeanes School a vocational training college at Kabete near Nairobi There ...

Article

Robert Fay

Tom Mboya was born in Kilima Mbogo, Kenya, near present-day Nairobi. The son of a poor Luo sisal cutter, he realized that he had a “keen sense of the political” while attending mission schools. He became politically active through the labor movement—the only legal avenue for social protest in colonial Kenya—while working as a sanitary inspector.

As elected secretary of the African Staff Association in 1951 and founder of the Kenya Local Government Workers Union in 1952 Mboya had an initial goal of better working conditions for Africans Soon however the British colonial government s repressive response to the Mau Mau Rebellion convinced him that economic improvements were not enough At a time when many nationalist leaders were detained in concentration camps Mboya became a leader in the independence struggle with strong support from Kenyan workers After spending two years at Oxford University studying industrial relations Mboya was elected ...

Article

Nazneen Ahmed

Trinidadianwriter and political campaigner active in British politics. McKenzie trained as a teacher in Trinidad and emigrated to Britain in 1927 in the hope of studying journalism. Unable to pursue journalism or teaching, he undertook a series of jobs, including the running of two restaurants, while persevering with writing articles, plays, and poetry. His only available publication is an article in The Keys, the journal of the League of Coloured Peoples. McKenzie was known as an effective public speaker and attended the 1945 Manchester Pan‐African Congress as the representative of the Antigua Trades and Labour Union. After the war he opened the Caribbean Bureau in London, which was a press agency, information bureau, and importer of Caribbean products. After the death of his first wife in Trinidad, he married Elsie Hartz the daughter of Russian Jewish emigrants to Britain He travelled to Trinidad several times in ...

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David Killingray

Pan‐Africanistcampaigner born in the colony of British Guiana and educated at Queen's College, Georgetown. He graduated from the medical school of Howard University, Washington DC, in 1910, and then went to work in the Panama Canal Zone. Shortly after the First World War, he came to Britain and secured a medical qualification from the University of Edinburgh in 1923. Milliard settled in Manchester in the early 1930s, practised as a doctor, and also began to promote the interests and welfare of the small black population of the city. In 1935 he helped to found the International African Friends of Abyssinia and spoke at open‐air meetings, where he denounced the Italian invasion of Ethiopia and colonial policies. In 1943Milliard founded the Negro Association which held monthly meetings Its membership which rarely exceeded 80 people during the next ten years was composed of students black service personnel ...