Solomon G. Brown (1829-1906) was the first African American to work at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. Hired in 1852 as a laborer, Brown held a number of different roles at the Institution during the 54-year he worked there. Though he lacked a formal education, the self-taught naturalists eventually became a sought-after lecturer and illustrator, as well as a philosopher and poet. Outside of work, Brown worked to improve the lives of African Americans his community. After the Civil War, he founded several schools and churches in the area and served in the D.C. House of Delegates.

Photo: Solomon G. Brown, 1891, Smithsonian Institution Archives (photographer unknown)

Solomon G. Brown (1829-1906) was the first African American to work at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. Hired in 1852 as a laborer, Brown held a number of different roles at the Institution during the 54-year he worked there. Though he lacked a formal education, the self-taught naturalists eventually became a sought-after lecturer and illustrator, as well as a philosopher and poet. Outside of work, Brown worked to improve the lives of African Americans his community. After the Civil War, he founded several schools and churches in the area and served in the D.C. House of Delegates.

Photo: Solomon G. Brown, 1891, Smithsonian Institution Archives (photographer unknown)



randomhabesha:

Forgotten Rebellion: Black Seminoles and the Largest Slave Revolt in U.S. History

The story of John Horse and the Black Seminoles has been largely untold, but they deserve to be remembered for a number of reasons: 

  • They created the largest haven in the U.S. South for runaway slaves.
  • They led the largest slave revolt in U.S. history.
  • They secured the only emancipation of rebellious slaves prior to the U.S. Civil War.
  • The formed the largest mass exodus of slaves across the United States and, ultimately, to Mexico.

(via zuky)



lascasartoris:

Easter Sunday (top-bottom)

  1. Harlem 1947 by Henri Cartier Bresson
  2. Harlem 1947 by Henri Cartier Bresson
  3. Harlem 1943 by Weegee
  4. South Side, Chicago 1941 by Russell Lee
  5. South Side, Chicago 1941 by Russell Lee
  6. Harlem 1947 by Henri Cartier Bresson
  7. South Side, Chicago,. 1941 by Edwin Rosskam
  8. Harlem 1940 by Weegee
  9. Harlem 1955 by William Klein
  10. Harlem (W. 117th St. and Seventh Ave) 1939

(via hansbuetow)



Boys on Easter morning. Southside, Chicago, Illinois. April 1941
Russell Lee, photographer
Library of Congress

Boys on Easter morning. Southside, Chicago, Illinois. April 1941

Russell Lee, photographer

Library of Congress



Worshipers gathered outside of a church in Chicago’s Black Belt. April 1941.
Edward Rosskam, photographer
Library of Congress

Worshipers gathered outside of a church in Chicago’s Black Belt. April 1941.

Edward Rosskam, photographer

Library of Congress



"Mrs. Ella Watson, a government charwoman, with three grandchildren and her adopted daughter [in mirror]"
August 1942
Gordon Parks, photographer
The Gordon Parks Archives, Library of Congress.
[Mrs. Watson was also the subject of Parks’ iconic photograph, American Gothic, which one of my favorite Tumblr blogs, BurnedShoes, featured in this post.]

"Mrs. Ella Watson, a government charwoman, with three grandchildren and her adopted daughter [in mirror]"

August 1942

Gordon Parks, photographer

The Gordon Parks Archives, Library of Congress.

[Mrs. Watson was also the subject of Parks’ iconic photograph, American Gothic, which one of my favorite Tumblr blogs, BurnedShoes, featured in this post.]



Two women, somewhere in Virginia, 1910s
National Photo Company collection, Library of Congress

Two women, somewhere in Virginia, 1910s

National Photo Company collection, Library of Congress



Today’s Google Doodle celebrates the life and work of African-American chemist Percy Julian, an award-winning scientist who held over 100 chemical patents. PBS NOVA aired an excellent documentary about Julian called Forgotten Genius. You can read more about him and view the film here.



"Isaac & Rosa, Slave Children from New Orleans."
Kimball, photographer (Broadway, NY), 1863
Gladstone Collection of African American Photographs, Library of Congress

"Isaac & Rosa, Slave Children from New Orleans."

Kimball, photographer (Broadway, NY), 1863

Gladstone Collection of African American Photographs, Library of Congress



On April 9, 1866, the United States House of Representatives overrode President Andrew Johnson’s veto to enact the Civil Rights Bill of 1866. The legislation— entitled An Act to protect all Persons in the United States in their Civil Rights and liberties, and furnish the Means of their Vindication— conferred citizenship on African-Americans and gave black men “the same right, in every State and Territory… as is enjoyed by white citizens.”
Image: “The first vote”, by Alfred R. Waud, November 16, 1867. Illustration from Harper’s Weekly, v. 11, no. 568. Source: Library of Congress

On April 9, 1866, the United States House of Representatives overrode President Andrew Johnson’s veto to enact the Civil Rights Bill of 1866. The legislation— entitled An Act to protect all Persons in the United States in their Civil Rights and liberties, and furnish the Means of their Vindication— conferred citizenship on African-Americans and gave black men “the same right, in every State and Territory… as is enjoyed by white citizens.”

Image: “The first vote”, by Alfred R. Waud, November 16, 1867. Illustration from Harper’s Weekly, v. 11, no. 568. Source: Library of Congress



pbsthisdayinhistory:

April 7, 1994: Rwanda Civil War [and genocide] Begins
Twenty years ago today, Hutu gunmen systematically start tracking down and killing moderate Hutu politicians and Tutsi leaders. The deputy to the U.S. ambassador in Rwanda tells Washington that the killings involve not just political murders, but genocide.
Thousands die on the first day, setting off 100 days of slaughter.
Follow FRONTLINE’s Rwandan Genocide timeline to learn about significant events, statements and decisions that reveal how the United States and the West chose not to act to save hundreds of thousands of lives in the Rwandan genocide of 1994.
Photo: A woman consoles Bizimana Emmanuel, 22, during the 20th anniversary commemoration of the 1994 genocide at Amahoro Stadium April 7, 2014 in Kigali, Rwanda. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

pbsthisdayinhistory:

April 7, 1994: Rwanda Civil War [and genocide] Begins

Twenty years ago today, Hutu gunmen systematically start tracking down and killing moderate Hutu politicians and Tutsi leaders. The deputy to the U.S. ambassador in Rwanda tells Washington that the killings involve not just political murders, but genocide.

Thousands die on the first day, setting off 100 days of slaughter.

Follow FRONTLINE’s Rwandan Genocide timeline to learn about significant events, statements and decisions that reveal how the United States and the West chose not to act to save hundreds of thousands of lives in the Rwandan genocide of 1994.

Photo: A woman consoles Bizimana Emmanuel, 22, during the 20th anniversary commemoration of the 1994 genocide at Amahoro Stadium April 7, 2014 in Kigali, Rwanda. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Tags: history Rwanda







The Lees on their wedding day in Tallahassee, Florida
December 1954
The Tallahassee Democrat Collection, State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/259866

The Lees on their wedding day in Tallahassee, Florida

December 1954

The Tallahassee Democrat Collection, State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory, http://floridamemory.com/items/show/259866



zuky:

leseanthomas:

George Crum (born George Speck (c. 1828 – July 22, 1914) was a mixed-race Native American trapper and guide in the Adirondacks, who became renowned for his culinary skills after becoming a cook and restaurant owner in Saratoga Springs, New York. By 1860 he owned Crum’s House, a popular lakeside restaurant in nearby Malta.

Every time a person crunches into a potato chip, he or she is enjoying the delicious taste of one of the world’s most famous snacks – a treat that might not exist without the contribution of inventor George Crum.The son of an African-American father and a Native American mother, Crum was working as the chef in the summer of 1853 when he incidentally invented the chip. It all began when a patron who ordered a plate of French-fried potatoes sent them back to Crum’s kitchen because he felt they were too thick and soft.To teach the picky patron a lesson, Crum sliced a new batch of potatoes as thin as he possibly could, and then fried them until they were hard and crunchy. Finally, to top them off, he added a generous heaping of salt. To Crum’s surprise, the dish ended up being a hit with the patron and a new snack was born.Years later, Crum opened his own restaurant that had a basket of potato chips on every table. Though Crum never attempted to patent his invention, the snack was eventually mass-produced and sold in bags – providing thousands of jobs nationwide.
Read about George Crum: http://www.amazon.com/George-Crum-Saratoga-Gaylia-Taylor/dp/1600606563

Mountain trapper and innovative cook, my kind of guy. Thank you, George Crum, for the beauty of the potato chip.

Wow, who knew?

zuky:

leseanthomas:

George Crum (born George Speck (c. 1828 – July 22, 1914) was a mixed-race Native American trapper and guide in the Adirondacks, who became renowned for his culinary skills after becoming a cook and restaurant owner in Saratoga Springs, New York. By 1860 he owned Crum’s House, a popular lakeside restaurant in nearby Malta.

Every time a person crunches into a potato chip, he or she is enjoying the delicious taste of one of the world’s most famous snacks – a treat that might not exist without the contribution of inventor George Crum.

The son of an African-American father and a Native American mother, Crum was working as the chef in the summer of 1853 when he incidentally invented the chip. It all began when a patron who ordered a plate of French-fried potatoes sent them back to Crum’s kitchen because he felt they were too thick and soft.

To teach the picky patron a lesson, Crum sliced a new batch of potatoes as thin as he possibly could, and then fried them until they were hard and crunchy. Finally, to top them off, he added a generous heaping of salt. To Crum’s surprise, the dish ended up being a hit with the patron and a new snack was born.

Years later, Crum opened his own restaurant that had a basket of potato chips on every table. Though Crum never attempted to patent his invention, the snack was eventually mass-produced and sold in bags – providing thousands of jobs nationwide.

Read about George Crum: http://www.amazon.com/George-Crum-Saratoga-Gaylia-Taylor/dp/1600606563

Mountain trapper and innovative cook, my kind of guy. Thank you, George Crum, for the beauty of the potato chip.

Wow, who knew?