singer, songwriter, and politician, was one of four children born to J. T. and Alveria Butler, in Sunflower, Mississippi. The Butlers, a Mississippi sharecropping family, moved to Chicago in 1942, where they lived in the Cabrini-Green Housing Projects. J. T. Butler worked a variety of jobs to support his family until his death in 1953, and, following his passing, relatives and friends moved in to help the family make ends meet. Jerry, active in the Church of God in Christ (COGIC), soon became known around his community for his musical ability and rich baritone voice, and he quickly began performing as a gospel artist with friends and fellow COGIC members. One of Jerry's friends, a prodigious musician and songwriter named Curtis Mayfield would soon join Butler in a singing group called the Roosters The group subsequently changed its name to the Impressions Signing to Vee Jay Records ...
Charles L. Hughes
Benjamin R. Justesen
farmer, shoemaker, and longtime state legislator, was born in Warren County, North Carolina, the third son of free, mixed-race parents Hawkins Carter and Elizabeth Wiggins, who were married in 1845. Few details are known of his early life or education, only that his father, a prosperous farmer, could afford to hire a young white teacher, W. J. Fulford, to tutor his eight children in 1861, the last year before the Civil War.
During the Civil War, the teenage Carter served as an officer's attendant for a Warrenton acquaintance, Captain Stephen W. Jones of the Forty-sixth North Carolina Regiment's Company C, raised at Warrenton in early 1862 Jones s company saw action at Antietam and other battles and Jones was wounded at Spotsylvania Court House where Carter presumably helped care for him The eldest son of the Warren County sheriff and a former deputy sheriff himself ...
Bergis K. Jules
civil rights activist, sheriff, and probate judge, was born in Gordonville in Lowndes County, Alabama, to Jim Hulett and Daisy (Baker), both farmers. Before 1950 John Hulett was eager to travel outside the Black Belt to see more of America. After graduating from Central High School in Gordonsville around 1945 and already planning to be a policeman, he took classes in law enforcement at Stanford University, the University of Wisconsin, and the University of Alabama in preparation for his future career. Upon his return to Alabama in 1950 he settled in Birmingham and began working for the Federal Rural Housing Alliance as a housing consultant Hulett traveled throughout six southern states helping to provide homes for the poor in rural areas While in Birmingham he also became affiliated with the organized labor movement working to secure jobs for African Americans in the city During this time ...
Charles A. Gliozzo
civil rights activist and Chicago county commissioner, was born on a plantation in Greene County, North Carolina, the son of John Bromfield (occupation unknown), of German ancestry, and a free woman of color, whose last name was Jones (first name unknown). Because of the legal status of his parents, John Jones was considered a free person. His mother, fearing that his father might attempt to reduce Jones to slavery, apprenticed Jones to learn a trade. It was in Tennessee that he received training as a tailor.
In 1841, while working for a tailor in Memphis, Jones fell in love with Mary Jane Richardson, the daughter of a free blacksmith. The Richardsons moved to Alton, Illinois, and Jones remained in Memphis to complete his apprenticeship. At age twenty-seven, after saving about one hundred dollars, he went north to Alton and married Richardson in 1844 Little is known ...
elected county official and Macon, Georgia, civil rights leader, was born in Valdosta, Georgia, the fourth of six children of Harry and Carrie Randall. He was reared in Macon, where his father, formerly the Valdosta manager for the Afro-American Life Insurance Company, had returned to work for his own mother's grocery wholesale and retail business. William P. Randall graduated from Hudson High School and Beda Etta Business College in Macon before going to work as a carpenter. He worked for a large construction company but after World War II went into business with his brother, a bricklayer. Eventually he became one of the major black contractors in the Southeast, working on large-scale commercial and residential projects.
In an era when Jim Crow custom forced African Americans to step aside when a white approached on the sidewalk Randall s father taught him not to give way As ...