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Erin L. Thompson

Major movements of the black population within the United States began with the importations of the slave trade and continued with the movements of runaway slaves. After they were emancipated, many blacks moved to the North and West to find economic opportunities; some, disappointed, returned to the South. Blacks have also migrated to the United States from other countries, notably those in Africa and the Caribbean.


When founded by the Presbyterian minister John Miller Dickey and his Quaker wife, Sarah Emlen Cresson, in 1854, this rural, southeastern Pennsylvania educational venture was called the Ashmun Institute. After the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln in 1865, the school took the name Lincoln University. Lincoln is the oldest of the historically black colleges and universities in the United States. The founding president Dickey remained only until 1856. Among the longest-tenured of the presidents who followed him were Isaac Norton Rendall, 1865–1906; John Ballard Rendall, 1906–1924; Walter Livingston Wright, 1924–1926 and 1936–1945; Horace Mann Bond (who also graduated from Lincoln in 1923), 1945–1957; and Herman Russell Branson, 1970–1985. Ivory V. Nelson became president in 1999.

There were six young men in Lincoln's first graduating class in 1868; by 1900 there were thirty two ...


After Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation and especially following his death, African Americans showered lavish and reverent praise on his memory. He was to them, after all, not only the savior of the nation but the president that freed the slaves. When blacks acquired the right of suffrage, they offered allegiance to Lincoln's Republican Party, not just to return a tremendous favor but in firm belief that the party was the best option to guarantee freedom and equality. However, that equality eluded blacks through the painful years of Jim Crow segregation in the late 1800s and well into the 1900s, as both the Democratic and Republican parties turned their backs on African Americans. Nonetheless, blacks shared with their white counterparts fond sentiments for Lincoln.


Essie Manuel Rutledge

Sociologically speaking, marriage is the cornerstone of the traditional nuclear family. It is the basis for the formation of the family as an institution and as a group that contains both individuals and relationships: husband-wife, parent-child, and sibling-sibling. These relationships indicate bonds, connections, attachments, and obligations between individuals. The bonds and attachments are conjugal and consanguine, with the former based on husband-wife relationships and the latter on blood ties. But both relationships are intrinsically connected. Therefore, many of the responsibilities of the conjugal relationship are connected to the family.

Marriage in the United States is highly valued. More than 90 percent of Americans express a desire to marry at some point in their lives. This reflects the country’s Judeo-Christian ethic, which emphasizes marriage as a requirement for heterosexual sex and childbearing. But because of changing attitudes about sexuality and intimate relationships, neither sexuality nor childbearing is confined to marriage.

Black ...


Valerie Cunningham

New Hampshire's African American communities became clearly defined in the twentieth century. During the colonial era, as few as one to three enslaved African or black Americans were living in nearly all the towns and villages in the state, with larger clusters in and near the Atlantic trade and shipbuilding center of Portsmouth. As the former slaves gained their freedom after the Revolutionary War—not by legal statute but through individually negotiated emancipation—employers gave preference to white workers, displacing blacks from the labor force. The black population as a percentage of the total for the state had peaked in 1767 with 633 slaves representing 1.2 percent of the total population. Throughout the nineteenth century, while the white population multiplied, the number of black people, now free, declined; 494 blacks, at .15 percent of the total population in 1860 was the lowest number reported in the federal census during the period ...


The free black community in Washington, DC has roots dating to the founding of the capital city in the 1790s. In 1791 President George Washington selected the site for the nation's capital. The decision was based in part on the advantages offered by the Potomac River and the port of Georgetown, which both provided strategic and commercial benefit to the fledgling nation. The District of Columbia was carved from two slave-holding states, Maryland and Virginia. The city founders sought to create an area where the federal government would be centrally located and operational, even though it was also occupied by Native Americans, whites, and enslaved African people.

The free black community flourished from 1800 until the emancipation of the city's slaves in 1862 By the 1840s the free black population outnumbered the enslaved population with 1 700 enslaved and 4 800 free blacks Green 38 During this window of ...