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Gleaves, Richard H.  

Steven J. Niven

lieutenant‐governor of South Carolina and the leading nineteenth century African American freemason, was born in Philadelphia to parents whose names have not been recorded. His father was a free person of color from Haiti and his mother was a white Englishwoman. Gleaves was educated in Philadelphia and New Orleans, and as a young man worked as a steward on steamboats along the Mississippi River.

Gleaves first came to prominence as an organizer of Masonic lodges in Pennsylvania and Ohio. While black freemasonry had gained a foothold under Prince Hall in Massachusetts in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, by the 1840s, Pennsylvania was the center of black fraternalism, and Gleaves would become one of the Order's leading evangelists before the Civil War. In 1846 the year he was first initiated as a brother mason the Pennsylvania Grand Lodge of Prince Hall Masons appointed Gleaves a District Deputy Grand ...


Steele, Michael  

Daryl A. Carter

politician and Republican Party chair, was born Michael Stephen Steele at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland and adopted by William and Maebell Steele. By the time Steele was five, his father had passed away; his mother later married John Tucker. He grew up in northwest Washington, DC. At Archbishop Carroll Roman Catholic High School, Steele became interested in the theater and politics. He was a part of numerous organizations, such as the Glee Club and the student body council. In addition, he was a member of the National Honor Society. After graduating from high school in 1976, Steele continued his education at the prestigious Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. He later acknowledged that he experienced some difficulties in his early undergraduate year, Steele earned a B.A. in International Studies in 1981 He studied for the priesthood at Villanova but left believing that the ...