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1878 Abdallah Park "Colored" Fair (Harrison County, KY)
Start Year : 1878
"I wonder how many who read this will remember when our colored citizens gave a fair at Abdallah Park? Along about 1878, I put it, and I was there. My father allowed his stable boy to show some stock and sent me along to act as kind of fiduciary agent." For more about the fair and additional history, see "African-American Life in Cynthiana - 1870 - 1940," Harrison Heritage News, February 2004, vol. 5, no. 2 (published monthly by Harrison County Historical Society. PO Box 411, Cynthiana, KY 41031).
Subjects: Colored Fairs & Black Expos, Parks
Geographic Region: Cynthiana, Harrison County, Kentucky

1924 third annual fair and premium list of New Colored Shelby County Fair Association, Inc.
Start Year : 1924
Held Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday, September 3, 4 & 5, 1924. At the Shelby County A. & M. Association Fair Grounds near Shelbyville, Ky. Shelbyville, Ky.: Shelby News Press, 1924. Publication available at the Filson Historical Society Library (in the Rare Pamphlet Collection, RB Pamphlet 394.2 N532 1924), in Louisville, KY. An earlier Colored Fair was held in Shelbyville in 1900, the Southern Railroad offered route services to the fair for low rates. See "Low rates via Southern Railroad" in the Mt. Sterling Advocate, 08/28/1900, p.1.
Subjects: Colored Fairs & Black Expos
Geographic Region: Shelbyville, Shelby County, Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky
Start Year : 1940
In 1940, there were about 2,800 Kentucky-born persons in the shoe care business, and of that number, at least 277 were African Americans according to the U.S. Federal Census. Though sometimes referred to as "shoe shine boys," these were adult men and a few women, many of whom were supporting families. The number does not include self-employed boys and men shining shoes on the street. The 277 Kentucky African Americans in the shoe care business were employed in barber shops or shoe shops in Kentucky and elsewhere. They were few in number when compared to the more than 160,000 adults in the United States who shined, repaired, and made shoes in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The significance to Kentucky is that since the days of slavery, the shoe care business that was once dominated by African Americans continued as a base employment for African Americans four decades into the 20th Century. More than 7,800 adult African Americans made a living caring for shoes in the United States in 1940, this includes at least 277 Kentucky competitors during one of the toughest economic times in the history of the United States [source: 1940 U.S. Federal Census]. There was the continuing economic depression and World War II was still in progress.  It would be another year before the United States entered the war after Pearl Harbor was bombed on December 7, 1941. The NAACP was pushing for the U.S. Armed Forces to be integrated. In Kentucky, it was the beginning of a wave of out-migration that would result in 13% of the population leaving for manufacturing jobs in northern states [source: A New History of Kentucky by L. H. Harrison and J. C. Klotter]. This wave would happen a little later for African Americans because discrimination and segregation barred most from manufacturing jobs in 1940 when 412 of every 1,000 African American men were still employed in farm labor [source: "Employment and education" on pp.509 in Encyclopedia of African American History, 1896 to present, v.1, edited by P. Finkelman]. There were 71 shoe makers in Kentucky in 1940 according to the U.S. Federal Census: 46 born in KY; 16 born in another state; 2 with an unknown birth state; and others born in Germany (2), Italy (1), Russia (3), and Sweden (1).  Lexington had led the state with the most African American shoe makers in the 1800s, but Felix Chapman was the only one listed in the 1940 U.S. Census. For individuals, the business had changed from making shoes to caring for shoes. From 1930-1947, there were little more than 100 African American shoe repairers and shoe shiners in Lexington. The business of shoe care would continue to change with continued northern migration, the U.S. involvement in WWII, and fair employment guidelines at the national level. In 1940, Franklin D. Roosevelt (D) won his third term as President of the United States and Henry A. Wallace became Vice President. Keen Johnson (D) was Kentucky Governor and Rodes K. Myers was Lieutenant Governor. The annual average income of employed persons in the United States was $1,368, and the unemployment rate had been 18.26% during the 1930s [source: D. Petro, "Brother can you spare a dime? The 1940 Census: employment and income," Prologue Magazine, Spring 2012, v.44, no.1 (online at National Archives website)]. The average annual income for African American males was $537.45, which would start to increase after the 1941 Fair Employment Practice Committee was established to monitor the hiring practices of companies with government contracts [source: African Americans in the Twentieth Century by T. N. Maloney, an E.H.net website]. For more see History: 1940 Overview, a U.S. Census Bureau website; M. S. Bedell, "Employment and income of Negro workers 1940-52," Monthly Labor Review, v.76, no.6, June 1953, pp.596-601; The Path to Mechanized Shoe Production in the United States by R. Thomson; Feet and Footwear: a cultural encyclopedia by M. DeMello; and The Shoe Shine Buff: the professional shoe care book by J. McGowan.

 

Click on the links below for the first 74 names of 277 adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

Last Names A

Last Names B

Last Names C

Last Names D

Last Names E

Last Names F

Last Names G
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE A]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (A) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census]. 

 

NAMES                HOME LOCATION        EMPLOYMENT

Paul Allen           Taylor County, KY       shoe shiner at barber shop

Ernest Ayers       Newport, KY               shoe shiner prop. of shoe parlor

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE B]
Birth Year : 1940
The table below has the names (B) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                        HOME LOCATION          EMPLOYMENT

Robey Babb                  Indianapolis, IN             shoe shiner at barber shop

Carter Babb                  Indianapolis, IN             shoe shiner at barber shop

Harvey Bailey                Louisville, KY                 shoe finisher at shoe repair shop

Lamuel Ballew              Cincinnati, OH               shoe shiner in shining parlor

George Ballew              Richmond, KY                shoe repairer at Embry Shoe Shop

William Barnes              Trigg County, KY           shoe shiner at barber shop

Herb Bassett                Aurora, IL                      shoe shiner at shoe parlor

Baker Bates                 Cleveland, OH               shoe finisher at shoe shop

John Beamur                Taylorsville, KY              shoe repairman at home

James Beard                Louisville, KY                 shoe repairer, owns shop

Marie Beard                  Louisville, KY                 helper in shoe shop

John Bishop                  Dayton, OH                   shoe shine boy at shoe repair shop

Grandison Blakey         Louisville, KY                 shoe dyer at shoe repair shop

Irvine D. Blyote            Richmond, KY                shoe shiner

John Boggs                  Richmond, KY                shoe repairer, owns shop

Walter Boston              Augusta, KY                  shoe shiner at barber shop

Ed Bridwell                   Louisville, KY                 shoe shiner at a club

George W. Brown        Paducah, KY                  shoe shiner at barber shop

Lillian Brown                Louisville, KY                 shoe repairer at repair shop

Willie Brown                 Lexington, KY               shoe shiner at shoe shining parlor

William Brown              Covington, KY               shoe shiner at barber shop

William Burks               Frankfort, KY                 shoe shiner at barber shop

William Burley              Frankfort, KY                 shoe shine boy, private work

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky. 

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE C]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (C) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                     HOME LOCATION        EMPLOYMENT

Charles Cerd             Rome, GA                      shoe shine boy at barber shop

Felix Chapman          Lexington, KY                shoe maker at shoe repair shop

W. M. Christian         Elkton, KY                      shoe shiner at barber shop

Jim Clark                   Pineville, KY                   shoe shiner at barber shop

Raymond Clark         Pineville, KY                   shoe shiner at barber shop

Harding Clay             Frankfort, KY                 shoe shine boy at barber shop

James Cobb              Toledo, OH                    shoe shiner at barber shop

Mathew Cornett        Hazard, KY                    shoe shiner at barber shop

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE D]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (D) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                          HOME LOCATION         EMPLOYMENT

Reed Davidson               Kokomo, IN                   shoe shiner at shoe repair shop

Murry Davis                    Cleveland, OH               shoe shine boy at terminal

Joe Davis                        Lexington, KY               shoe repairman at public shoe hospital

Herman Dinwiddie          Paducah, KY                  shoe repairer at shoe shop

Harold Doe                     Berea, KY                      janitor & shoe shining at barber shop

John Douglas                 Indianapolis, IN            shoe shiner, own self

Howard L. Drane           Mayfield, KY                   shoe shiner at barber shop

Lane Dun, Jr.                 Allen County, KY            shoe black at barber shop

Flocy Durrette               Canton, OH                    shoe woman with WPA Project

Dan Duton                    Pikeville, KY                    shoe polisher at barber shop

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE E]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (E) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                     HOME LOCATION      EMPLOYMENT

Gaither Edmonds       Elkton, KY                 shoe shiner at barber shop

Eugene C. Edward      Palo Alto, CA             shoe shiner at Army post

Glession Elliot            Burkesville, KY          shoe shine boy at barber shop

Shelby Ellis               Portland, OR             shoe shiner at ???? station

Louis Elmore             Dayton, OH              shoe shiner at barber shop

Millard Evans             Knoxville, TN            shoe maker at shoe repair shop

Perry Everett             Cincinnati, OH           shoe shiner at cobling shop

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE F]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (F) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                          HOME LOCATION               EMPLOYMENT

Corneles Ferguson          Muhlenberg County, KY      shoe shiner at private barber shop

William Fisher                Louisville, KY                     shoe shiner at shoe repair co.

Nathan P. Fletcher          Rushville, IN                      shoe repairer, owns shop

Lowell Ford                    Metropolis, IL                     shoe shiner at barber shop

Fred Foster                    Green County, KY               shoe black at barber shop

O. J. Franklin                 San Francisco, CA               assistant at shoe shine parlor

Claude Robert Franklin    Louisville, KY                     shoe shine boy at barber shop

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky [TABLE G]
Start Year : 1940
The table below has the names (G) of adult African Americans born in Kentucky and employed in the shoe care business in 1940 [source: U.S. Federal Census].

 

NAMES                    HOME LOCATION          EMPLOYMENT

Byron Gaines            Dawson Springs, KY      shoe shiner at barber shop

Harry A. Gaines         Dawson Springs, KY      shoe shiner at barber shop

Major Gardener         Oklahoma City, OK      porter & shoe shine boy at shoe rebuilder

William Gardner        Chicago, IL                 shoe shining, owns parlor

Ray Gardner             Chicago, IL                 shoe shining, owns parlor

Henry D. Gentry        Winchester, KY            shoe shiner at Brooks Shop

Warren George         Middlesborough, KY     shoe shine boy at shoe shop

William Gilcrest         Pasadena, CA             shoe shiner at private practice

Robert Golden          Louisville, KY              shoe shiner at shine shop

Raymond Grady        Lansing, MI                shoe shiner at shoe shine stand

Fred Green               Lawrenceburg, IN        shoe shiner at shoe store

Robert Grant            Frankfort, KY              shoe shine boy, private work

William J. Griffith      Calhoun, KY               shoe shiner at barber shop

Arthur Grimmett        Cleveland, OH            shoe repairman at shoe repair factory

Woodrow Grissom      Adair County, KY         shoe shine boy at barber shop

 

[click here] for the accompanying NKAA entry 1940 - Shoe Makers, Repairers, and Shiners, Kentucky.

 

 
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

78th Tank Battalion
Start Year : 1941
The battalion was the first Black Armor Unit formed by the U.S. Army, January 13, 1941. The men reported to Ft. Knox, KY, to begin warfare training in March 1941. The battalion was re-designated the 758th Tank Battalion in May 1941. It was the first African American tank battalion to fight in World War II. The battalion was reactivated in 1946 and re-designated as the 64th Tank Battalion, later fighting in the Korean War. For more see Liberators: fighting on two fronts in World War II, by L. Potter, et al.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky

800 Camp Street Neighborhood (Indianapolis, IN)
The Camp Street neighborhood became predominately African American in the 20th Century.  The residents included Kentucky natives such as 23-year old widow Susan Neely and her 16-year old brother Arthur, who was a tailor. Anna Poole was a 53 year old  domestic worker who was also a widow.  For more see Ransom Place Archaeology, IUPUI Archaeology Field School; the historical research was conducted by Dr. Susan Sutton's [ssutton@iupui.edu] Spring 2000 Urban Anthropology Class. See IUPUI 2003 Archaeology Field School for information on African Americans from Kentucky who lived on Agnes Street, such as Edmund and Mary Moore.
Subjects: Communities, Migration North
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

82nd PGA Golf Championship (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 2000
Golfer Tiger Woods won the 82nd PGA Championship, beating Bob May in a three-hole playoff at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky, on August 20, 2000. The tournament purse was $5,000,000. Woods, who was 24 years old, received the Wanamaker Trophy and $900,000. Bob May received $540,000. The Valhalla Golf Club is a private golf club designed by Jack Nicklaus and owned by the PGA of America. Both the 1996 and 2000 PGA Championships were held at Valhalla, and the 2008 Ryder Cup will also be held there. For more on the 82nd PGA Championship see J. Demling, "Tiger makes history with Valhalla win," Courier-Journal, 08/21/2000. See photo image of Tiger Woods with the championship trophy and other images at PGA Championship History Exhibit website.

Subjects: Golf and Golfers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Abbington v Board of Education of Louisville (KY)
Start Year : 1940
When the Louisville Board of Education denied the petition for equal pay for African American teachers, a suit was filed by the NAACP on behalf of Vallateen Virginia Dudley Abbington. The case of Abbington v. Board of Education of Louisville was filed on December 5, 1940, in the Federal District Court. Abbington (1907-2003), a native of Indiana, was a school teacher in Louisville at the time. She was one of the African American teachers who received 15% less salary than white teachers. The case, brought by the NAACP, was argued by Thurgood Marshall. The School Board agreed that if Abbington would drop her lawsuit, the discrimination in salaries would cease. The lawsuit was withdrawn, and a retroactive clause in the suit gave African American teachers back pay. The equalization of teacher salaries was a campaign by the NAACP that began in 1936. Abbington v Board of Education of Louisville was the third case for the NAACP, the first such case in Kentucky. Abbington left Louisville and moved to St. Louis, Missouri, where she is remembered as a social worker, civic leader, and civil rights leader. Vallateen Dudley (1907-2003)was born in Indianapolis, IN, the daughter of George (b. in KY) and Annie L. Dudley. For more see Papers of the NAACP, Part 3, The Campaign for Educational Equality: Legal Department and Central Office Records, 1913-1950 / Series B, 1940-1950 / Reel 8; see "Kentucky Cases" in The Negro Handbook 1946-1947, edited by F. Murray; "Alumna, 96, remembered as strong-willed activist," Exemplar (Eastern Michigan University), Winter 2004, Special Annual Report Issue; and "Vallateen Abbington, social worker, civic leader," St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 10/19/2003, Metro section, p. D15.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Court Cases
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Abercrumbie, P. Eric
Born in Falmouth, KY, Abercrumbie developed the Black Man Think Tank and is the national president of the John D. O'Bryant Think Tank for Black Professionals in Higher Education on Predominantly White Campuses (JDOTT). A professor at the University of Cincinnati (UC), his focus academically and professionally is black males in America. Abercrumbie is also Director of Ethnic Programs and Services at UC. He was voted one of the Outstanding Community Leaders of the World by the U. S. Jaycees. For more see African American Biographies: profiles of 558 current men and women, by W. L. Hawkins.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Migration North
Geographic Region: Falmouth, Pendleton County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Abernathy, Ronald L.
Birth Year : 1950
Abernathy was born in Louisville, KY, to Ben W. and Juanita Abernathy. He is a graduate of Morehead State University (BA) and Louisiana State University (MA). Abernathy was a teacher at Shawnee High School in Louisville when he received the Teacher of the Year Award and was second in the state for Kentucky High School Coach of the Year, both in 1976. From 1972-1976, he was head basketball coach at the school. He left Kentucky to become an assistant basketball coach at LSU, 1976-1989, the first African American basketball coach hired full-time at the school. For more see Dale Brown's Memoirs from LSU Basketball, by D. Brown; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1980-2006.
Subjects: Basketball, Education and Educators, Migration South
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Adam (Boone slave)
Start Year : 1773
Adam was one of the slaves who came to Kentucky in 1773 with Daniel Boone, his brother, Squire, and their families. Adam was with the group of men who were sent out for provisions. The men were attacked by Indians, and Adam survived by hiding out on a creek bank. He returned to tell of the killings, including that of Boone's son, James. For more see A History of Blacks in Kentucky from Slavery to Segregation, 1760-1891, by M. B. Lucas.
Subjects: Early Settlers
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Adam (slave of Justice G. Robertson)
Start Year : 1862
In the fall of 1862, during the Civil War, Colonel William L. Utley of the 22nd Wisconsin Volunteers was in Kentucky when a small Negro boy named Adam sought refuge in his camp. Adam was a runaway slave about 15 or 16 years old; he was small for his size and has been described as a crippled dwarf. Around his neck was welded a collar with eight inch spikes. The collar was removed, and Adam was cared for and employed in the camp. He had been there but a short time when his owner, former Chief Justice George Robertson (1790-1874), arrived to claim Adam as his property. Robertson was well known throughout Kentucky: he practiced law in Lexington and had been a Kentucky Representative, an Associate Justice of the Kentucky Court of Appeals, and a law professor at Transylvania University in Lexington. He would become a justice of the Court of Appeals in 1864. In spite of his prominence in Kentucky, when Justice Robertson arrived to claim Adam, Colonel Utley cited the article of war that would allow Adam to leave with Robertson on his own; however, Adam could not be forced to leave with Robertson, who left the camp empty handed. Both Utley and Robertson appealed to President Lincoln to help resolve the matter, but the President did not take either side and refused to get involved with the dispute. Justice Robertson proclaimed that an injustice had taken place, and he gave public speeches and wrote letters to newspapers stating his case. Colonel Utley was sent word that he would never leave Kentucky with Robertson's slave. As the 22nd Wisconsin Volunteers were marching through Louisville, KY, Colonel Utley warned the citizens that he intended to take Adam and all other refugees in their company, and if the townspeople attempted to attack them as they had other regiments with refugees, then the 22nd Wisconsin would follow orders to shoot to kill and the town would be burned to the ground. The 22nd Wisconsin marched through Louisville with loaded weapons and bayonets. Adam and another escaped slave were at the head of the line. There were no attacks from the townspeople. Colonel Utley, from Racine, Wisconsin, took Adam to Wisconsin, where he settled in Waukesha as a free person. The collar he had worn into Utley's camp was put on display in the Racine post office. Justice Robertson filed a civil suit in Kentucky against Utley for Adam's value, $908.06. The Kentucky newspapers carried story after story about the bold theft of Justice Robertson's slave. Prior to the settlement of the matter, and in an unrelated march, Utley was taken prisoner in Spring Hill, TN, by Confederates, and the matter of the stolen slave was all but forgotten. After the war and after all slaves had been freed, Justice Robertson still wanted to be paid for the value of his slave, $908.06, plus costs of $26.40. Robertson's lawsuit was brought to the Circuit Court of Wisconsin in 1868, and Utley was ordered to pay Robertson the total sum. In turn, Utley filed a claim with the United States Congress for reimbursement, and in 1873, the Senate voted in favor of the reimbursement and passed it on to the House for approval. Colonel Utley was reimbursed in full. For more see "Claim for the value of a Kentucky slave," Daily Evening Bulletin, 02/20/1873, issue 116, Col. B; and "Colonel William [F.] Utley and Adam the African American Slave," by Kevin Dier-Zimmel [online at ancestry.com community website].
Subjects: Freedom, Migration West, Military & Veterans, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Racine and Waukesha, Wisconsin

Adams, Charles "Cane"
Adams was a musician who invented the 'walking cane flute,' a flute combined with a walking cane. He recorded with the Kentucky Jug Band/Phillip's Louisville Jug Band in Chicago in 1930. Adams' playing may also be heard on the recording Clifford Hayes & the Louisville Jug Bands, Volume 4. For more see Charles 'Cane' Adams in The Unsung Musicians of Early Jazz and Blues [.pdf], by R. Schneider.
Subjects: Inventors, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Adams, John Tyler "J.T."
Birth Year : 1911
J. T. Adams was born in Morganfield, KY. His father taught him to play guitar when he was 11 years old. Adams later moved to Indianapolis, Indiana, where he played at parties and local clubs. He recorded with Mr. Shirley Griffith on the Bluesville label in 1951. Some of his songs were "A" Jump, Bright Street Jump, Indiana Avenue Blues, and Naptown Boogie. For more see Blues Who's Who, by S. Harris.
Subjects: Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Morganfield, Union County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Adams, Mary and Maria [Dutrieuille]
Mary and Maria Adams were sisters from Kentucky. In 1875 Maria moved to Fort Abraham Lincoln in Dakota Territory to join Mary, who worked for the family of Lieutenant-Colonel George A. Custer. Mary was a cook and Maria was hired as a maid. They were later joined by their younger sister Karlene and their cousin Nancy Mucks, both from Kentucky. There is an ongoing debate as to whether Mary or Maria (or neither) was in camp with Custer the day before the Battle of Little Big Horn, and if she overheard Custer being given verbal orders by General Terry, instructing him to use his own judgment and do what he thought best should he strike the Indian trail. In 1878, in Bismarck of Dakota Territory, a notarized statement was taken from Mary as to what she had overheard at the camp, opening the door to speculation that Custer had not disobeyed orders. Other sources say that it was actually Maria who was in the camp. Though, letters written by Custer named Mary as his cook in the camp, while Lieutenant Charles L. Gurley reported that Mary was at the house and opened the door when he brought the news of the death of Lieutenant-Colonel Custer and his men. In 1873, Mary had come from Elizabethtown, KY, to the Dakota Territory with Custer and his regiment (part of the 7th Cavalry). Custer and the regiment had been ordered to Kentucky after the Battle of Washita in 1871. After about a year and a half, they moved on to Fort Abraham Lincoln in the Dakota Territory. Mary Adams accompanied Custer, as his cook, when he was on military expositions away from the fort. After Custer's death at the Battle of Little Big Horn in 1876, Mary and Maria Adams left Fort Abraham Lincoln. They moved to Montana where Mary died in 1879, she was born in 1849. According to author J. S. Manion, Mary and Maria were probably born in Lexington, KY. In 1880, Maria was working as a laundress when she met and married John Lambert "Duke" Dutrieuille, a barber in Benton who owned his own shop. Duke died in 1911, and Maria moved with their two children, Frank and Marie, to Great Falls, Montana. Maria Adams Dutrieuille died in 1939, she was born around 1852, according to the 1880 U.S. Federal Census. For more on the Dutrieuille family in Montana see Small Collection 1584 at the Montana Historical Society Research Center, and in the Photo Archives are pictures of Duke and Maria Dutrieuille (Collection PAc 80-23). See also the online article about the Dutrieuilles at the bottom of the Montana History Wiki; and "Club Woman: Marie Dutrieuille Ellis," pp.126-128, in chapter 7 by P. Riley in African American Women Confront the West, 1600-2000 edited by Q. Taylor and S. A. W. Moore. For more on the debate as to whether Mary Adams was in camp with Lieutenant-Colonel George A. Custer just prior to the Battle of Little Big Horn, see Custer Legends by L. A. Frost; Archaeology, History, and Custer's Last Battle: the Little Big Horn reexamined by R. A. Fox, Jr.; Custer and the Little Big Horn: a psychobiographical inquiry by C. K. Hofling; and General Terry's Last Statement to Custer: new evidence on the Mary Adams affidavit by J. S. Manion.
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Migration West, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Elizabethtown, Hardin County, Kentucky / Fort Abraham Lincoln, Dakota Territory / Fort Benton and Great Falls, Montana

The African American Ball (Lexington, KY)
Start Year : 1994
The 1st Annual African American Ball was presented as a charity event in January 1994 and has since been held every year. It is the largest African American ball in the state; more than 6,000 guests have attended the affair over the years. The ball is a black tie event with art, entertainment, fashion, and music all in one night. Proceeds benefit the African American Forum Endowment Fund of the Blue Grass Community Foundation. For more see the African American Forum, Inc. and the Lexington Herald-Leader's annual article about the ball.
Subjects: Balls, Promenades, Socials
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Blacksmiths in Kentucky
Start Year : 1880
A discussion of the number of African American blacksmiths in the U.S. can be found in the Negroes in the United States (1904), by W. E. B. DuBois, pp. 63-64 [available full-text at Google Book Search]. DuBois noted that there were 10,988 African American blacksmiths in 1890; the numbers had decreased to 10,100 by the year 1900. The total was moving toward that of 1880 when the U.S. Federal Census listed 8,130 African American blacksmiths, of which 642 had been born in Kentucky and 521 lived in Kentucky.
Subjects: Blacksmiths
Geographic Region: Kentucky

The African American Borah Family
Start Year : 1810
In 1810, the Borah Family moved from Pennsylvania to Butler County, KY, led by the great great grandfather of Idaho Senator William Edgar Borah (1865-1940) and his eight sons. The family slaves, who also carried the last name Borah, were the ancestors of African American musician Harry Edison. Edison's great grandmother, Mariah Borah (born between 1810 and 1812, died 1876), was born in Ohio County, KY. Her mother's last name was Rogers. Mariah may have been the slave of Jacob Borah. She was later owned by George M. Borah in Butler County. Mariah had several children with Jesse Barnes [or Brookins or Brokins], a freeman from Maryland who had settled in Butler County prior to the end of slavery. It is believed that Jesse was at one time enslaved and migrated to Kentucky with the Barnes Family and then later freed. All of Jesse and Mariah's children carried the last name Borah because their mother was enslaved and carried the last name Borah, and the same applied to the children. Two of their daughters were Ellen and Julia Borah, one of whom was the mother of McDonald Porter. Their son, Larkin Borah, was the father of Katherine Meryl Borah Edison, who was the mother of Harry Edison. All information about the African American Borah family was submitted by Denyce Peyton. For more about the Borah family from Pennsylvania, see "Wisconsin at Washington," The Oshkosh Northwestern, 04/04/1936, p. 18: and Borah, by M. C. McKenna.
Subjects: Genealogy, History, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Pennsylvania / Butler County and Ohio County, Kentucky

African American Business District (Danville, KY)
Located on Second Street, between Main and Walnut Streets in Danville, KY, the African American business district thrived for over 100 years. The area was razed by Urban Renewal in 1973. A Kentucky Historical Marker notes how valued the district was to the African American community of Danville and nearby areas. For more see the Kentucky Historical Marker Database #1958.
Subjects: Businesses
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

African American Cemeteries Online - Kentucky
Subjects: Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Communities in Warren County, KY
Sunnyside, Freeport, and Oakland were three African American communities in Warren County, KY, developed after the Civil War. In 2001, the city of Oakland was awarded a grant from the African American Heritage Commission to complete the study of the community Sunnyside. The resulting report, Writ Upon the Landscape: an architectural survey of the Sunnyside Community, reveals that the African American section of Sunnyside grew to the point that it merged with the white section of Sunnyside. There are presently 53 buildings and the Loving Union CME Church and its cemetery. The community also had a one room schoolhouse with grades 1-8 that was torn down in 1948. Sunnyside is located 5 miles southwest of Freeport, an African American community that had a two-room schoolhouse, Woodland School. One room held grades 1-3 and the other grades 4-8; the school was closed after integration, and the building was used as a restaurant and for social entertainment. The Mt. Zion Baptist Church, established in 1870, is still in use. The communities of Freeport and Oakland were separated by a railroad track, with Freeport on the north side. Mrs. Virgie M. Edwards was a teacher at the School in 1916; she was a member of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association. The names of other Oakland teachers are listed in the KNEA Journal from 1916-1935 [available online]. For more see Transpark: a collapse of dreams, by the City of Oakland, Kentucky; and the following articles from the News section of the Daily News - J. Dooley, "Oakland gets grant to fund study - work will cover history, heritage of Sunnyside," 07/26/2001; A. Carmichael, "Historic Oakland mill being dismantled - lumber will be used by famed Nashville-based builder," 08/30,2003; A. Harvey, "Black History: woman remembers Freeport's heyday," 02/22/2004; A. Carmichael, "A lifetime of teaching - Warren County woman has passion for education," 08/01/2005; and J. Niesse, "Freeport endangered by transpark project," Letter section, 04/25/2001.
Subjects: Communities, Education and Educators, Kentucky African American Churches, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Sunnyside, Freeport, Oakland, Warren County, Kentucky

African American Families and Heritage in Garrard County [oral histories]
Start Year : 2010
The following was taken from the description at the "Pass the Word" website. "Oral History interviews about the historical presence, accomplishments and contributions of African American families in Garrard County. Interviewees include current and former residents of the county. Communities discussed are Lancaster, Bryantsville, White Oak, Herrington Lake, Davistown, Boones Creek, Flatwoods, Pain Lick and Buckey/Scotts Fork."

 

Access Interview  See list of interviews at "Pass the Word" website.
Subjects: Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Garrard County, Kentucky

African American Family History Resources (Fayette County, KY)
Website of the Kentucky Comprehensive Genealogy Database Project.
Subjects: Genealogy, History
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Felony/Voter Disenfranchisement
The Kentucky Constitution, section 145, bars a person with a felony conviction from voting for the rest of the individual's life whether the full sentence has been completed or not. In reference to African Americans, Kentucky has the highest disenfranchisement rate in the nation. A request to have voting rights restored begins with the individual submitting an application to the Kentucky Governor requesting an executive pardon for reinstatement of voting rights. It is the Governor's decision as to whether the voting rights are restored or not. For more see J. Shugarts, "Felons' disenfranchisement mostly a matter of geography," Republican-American, 01/25/2009," Local News section, p. 1A; "African Americans and the Criminal Justice System" on pp. 20-21 in The State of African Americans in Kentucky, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights [available online .pdf]; and Felony Disenfranchisement in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, a report of the League of Women Voters of Kentucky [available online .pdf]. See also Determinants of College Students' Opinions Towards Felon Voting Rights: an exploratory study (dissertation) by B. C. Dawson Edwards. 
Subjects: Voting Rights, Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Heritage Center, Inc. (Franklin, KY)
Start Year : 1994
The African American Heritage Center, Inc. is located at 500 Jefferson Street, and the mail address is P. O. Box 353, Franklin, KY 42135. See the African American Heritage Center website for the history of the facility, photos, and additional contact information.

Subjects: Genealogy, History
Geographic Region: Franklin, Simpson County, Kentucky

"African American Heritage Guide: history, art & entertainment," Lexington, KY
Start Year : 2010
The African American Heritage Guide was published by the Isaac Scott Hathaway Museum, Inc. in Lexington, KY, and funded in part by the Lexington Convention and Visitors Bureau. Included are 14 historic districts that may be viewed on a walking or driving tour. The majority of the districts are profiled in the publication, along with a map on the center pages. The latter pages contain horse racing history, including brief biographies of trainers and jockeys, cemetery entries, rural community entries, and information on public art and public events. The booklet also provides a very informative overview of the individuals who owned the homes and businesses featured in the publication. The African American Heritage Guide is available at the Isaac Scott Hathaway Museum. See also M. Davis, "Booklet full of black history - Heritage Guide painstakingly researched," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/11/2010, City/Region section, p. A3. Copies of the African American Heritage Guide are available at the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Additional information provided by Yvonne Giles:


Subjects: Communities, Genealogy, History, Historians, Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Heritage of Simpson County Oral History Project 
Start Year : 1997
Subjects from the "Pass the Word" database record for the African American Heritage of Simpson County Oral History Project. "Discrimination, Farmers, Farming, Gospel music, Integration, Ku Klux Klan (1915-), Race relations, School integration, Schools, Segregation, Slavery, Slaves, Teachers"

 

Access Interview  See list of interviews at "Pass the Word" website.

Discrimination, Farmers, Farming, Gospel music, Integration, Ku Klux Klan (1915-), Race relations, School integration, Schools, Segregation, Slavery, Slaves, Teachers - See more at: http://passtheword.ky.gov/collection/african-american-heritage-simpson-county-oral-history-project#sthash.tZpZKnzB.dpuf

Subjects: Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Simpson County, Kentucky

The African American Herndons from Simpson County, KY
Start Year : 1852
The following information was submitted by Gayla Coates, Archives Librarian at the Simpson County Kentucky Archives. Melford, Solomon, Bob, and Amy were the slaves of James Herndon in Simpson County, KY. In 1852, they were all to be freed when James Herndon's will was probated. The will stipulated that the slaves were to be freed if they agreed to go live in Liberia, Africa; otherwise, they were to remain in bondage to a member of James Herndon's family. Robert Herndon (b. 1814) and Melford D. Herndon (b. 1819) sailed to Liberia in 1854 aboard the ship Sophia Walker. Solomon Herndon (b. 1811) left aboard the ship Elvira Owen in 1856. In Monrovia, Liberia, Melford Herndon attended the Day's Hope mission school where he learned to read and write. He became a missionary among the Bassa people. During the American Civil War, his salary for his missionary work was discontinued. Melford returned to the U.S. and was able to secure assistance for the mission in Liberia. He also brought two of his sons to Liberia. While in the U.S., he was ordained a minister at the First African Baptist Church in Philadelphia. Herndon also collected $2,000 to build a school and meeting house for the Bassa people. He returned to Liberia in 1865 and continued his work without a salary. In 1869, Melford Herndon left his brother in charge of the school in Liberia and again returned to the U.S. for additional fund-raising and to locate his other four children. In 1873, Melford Herndon was back in Herndonville, Liberia. He would again return to the U.S., bringing with him ten Africans who would become students at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania. When he returned to Liberia, he brought along his sister, Mrs. Julia Lewis, from Kentucky. They sailed on the ship Liberia, which was sponsored by the Pennsylvania Colonization Society. For more see G. Coates, "Melford D. Herndon: Freed Slave and Missionary to Liberia," Jailhouse Journal, vol. 18, issue 2 (04/2009), p. 22. [The Simpson County Historical Society is housed in the old jail, thus the name of its journal.]
Subjects: Education and Educators, Freedom, Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Religion & Church Work, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Simpson County, Kentucky / Monrovia and Herndonville, Liberia, Africa

African American History at UK Libraries' Special Collections
The University of Kentucky Special Collections includes items pertaining to the history of African Americans in Kentucky, the collections are available in the King Library Building. See the Special Collections web page for additional information on borrowing, hours, and staff contact information. See also the research guide, African American Primary Resources in Special Collections.

Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: University of Kentucky, Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Jockeys in Lexington, KY, 1893
Start Year : 1893
The following names of African American jockeys comes from the title Directory of African Americans in Lexington, KY, 1893 by D. Y. Wilkinson.

  • Albert Boyer at 16 Ellerslie Avenue
  • Thomas Britton at E. Short Street
  • Clarence Clark at 81 Thomas Street
  • Ansal Conn at 411 Market Street
  • Charles Graham at 112 Corral Street
  • John Porter at 83 Thomas Street

Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Librarians
Kentucky was the first state in the South to have trained African American librarians and was also the first to have a library training program for African American librarians (1912-1931) [located at the Louisville Western Colored Branch Library]. The highest number of African American librarians employed in Kentucky was recorded in 1980, estimated at 161. The lowest estimate was 4, in the year 2000. For more see the Bureau of the Census 2000 EEO Data Files; 1980 EEO Data Files at the Kentucky State Data Center; and Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Library Directors
Go to African American Library Directors in the USA
Geographic Region: United States

African American Miners and Migrants: the Eastern Kentucky Social Club
By T. E. Wagner and P. J. Obermiller - African American coal miners in Eastern Kentucky. For more see African American miners and migrants: the Eastern Kentucky Social Club is available at the University of Kentucky Libraries.
Subjects: Miners, Mines, & Steel Mills
Geographic Region: Kentucky (Eastern Kentucky)

African American Musicians and Singers, Berea College Digital Collection [online]
Start Year : 1939
The Berea College Digital Collection, Sound Archives includes online sound recordings of artists such as the "Six Bits of Rhythm Jug Band," "Barnyard Boys String Band of Jefferson County," "Bluegrass Quartet of Richmond," and others. There is a range of music genres: gospel, hymns, folk, bluegrass, and more. To browse the selections, search using the terms African American and music, or search by name, geographic location, and song title.  Contact the Berea College Library for assistance or additional information.

 

Access Interview Listen to Steam Boat Bill; Railroad Bill by Etta Baker on guitar, recorded at the Berea College Celebration of Traditional Music 10-28-83.
Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Berea, Madison County, Kentucky

African American Oral History Collection, University of Louisville Digital Archives [online]
Access InterviewThe African American collection is the first oral history collection the University of Louisville Digital Archives made available online. It covers the history of African Americans in Louisville, KY. The selections consist of audio recordings with full transcripts. See more about the collection for additional information.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

African American Performer at Louisville (Colored) Sängerfest
Start Year : 1881
Sängerfest (or singer's festival) is a German cultural festival, first held in the United States in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1849. [Also spelled as Säengerfest.] In 1866 a festival was held in Louisville, KY; the New York Times reported it was to be the largest festival ever in the U.S. In 1881 there was a festival held at the Grand Opera House in Louisville, and included Amelia Tilghman, an African American singer, teacher, journalist, poet, and composer. Tilghman had a leading role, she was the prima donna soprano of the Sängerfest. There was objection from some Colored citizens of Louisville because the German term "Säengerfest" had been used by newspapers to name their 1881 Grand Union musical festival. The committee members of the 1881 Louisville Colored Säengerfest were William H. Gibson, president; H. C. Weeden, secretary, and N. R. Hapen, musical director. Hundreds of singers were expected to perform. For more see The Encyclopedia Britannica: a dictionary of arts, sciences, literature, and general information, volume VI, by H. Chisholm (1910) [available online via Google Book Search]; "The Louisville Sangerfest," New York Times, 07/20/1866, p. 5; Amelia Tilghman in Piano Music by Black women composers, by H. Walker-Hill; The Music of Black Americans: a history, by E. Southern; "Louisville Saengerfest," People's Advocate, 01/29/1881, p.1; and "Louisville item. The Saengerfest," People's Advocate, 05/14/1881, p.2.
Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

African American Police Women (Lexington, KY)
The first three African American police women with the Lexington, KY, police force were Susan Garr, who started in 1949, replacing Augusta Strong, who had joined that same year but didn't stay on the force very long; and Susan Layton Tabb, who joined after both Garr and Strong in 1949 and served until 1977. Information from the Lexington History Museum - Public Safety exhibit.
See photo image of police woman Susan Garr.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Police Women (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1922
Mrs. Fanny R. Givens and Patsy Sloan, both African Americans, were two of the four women police officers hired by the Louisville Police Department in 1930. The other two hires were Pearl Boston and Agnes L. Castle, both of whom were white. The local newspaper reported the four women to be the first hired on the Louisville police force, which was incorrect. Alice Dunlap had been hired in 1921, and in 1922, Bertha P. Whedbee was the first African American woman hired. When the new administration came into office at City Hall in 1938, Givens, Sloan, Boston, and Castle were relieved of their duties. For more see the Louisville Division of Police by M. O. Childress, Sr.; and The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians by A. A. Dunnigan. See photo image of Fanny R. Givens at Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Great Lakes Region website.

Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

African American Schools - Colored Superintendents at Kentucky Public Schools, 1925
Start Year : 1925
Below are the names of the colored superintendents listed in the Kentucky Public School Directory for the school year July 1, 1925 to June 30, 1926. The publication is one of the earliest school directories for the state. For the county schools, the superintendents were white and each one served all (black and white) schools in a given county system. In 1925, there were a few colored superintendents hired by the city and independent graded school systems for the colored schools. See also the NKAA entries for African American Schools.

Colored Superintendents in Kentucky 1925
SUPERINTENDENTS CITY SCHOOLS
P. More Hopkinsville
R. D. Roman Earlington
T. C. B. Williams Franklin
G. T. Halliburton Hickman
- Lebanon
Silas E. Dean Murray
J. A. Hays Princeton
J. W. Roberts Shelbyville
   
SUPERINTENDENTS INDEPENDENT GRADED SCHOOLS
B. B. Smith Lynch Mines
J. Neil Burnside Whitesburg

 
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky: Hopkinsville, Christian County / Earlington, Hopkins County / Franklin, Simpson County / Hickman, Fulton County / Lebanon, Marion County / Murray, Calloway County / Princeton, Caldwell County / Shelbyville, Shelby County / Lynch Mines, Harlan Co

African American Schools - Kentucky, 1866
Start Year : 1866
In 1866, there was a new law for the benefit of the Negroes and Mulattoes of the Commonwealth; all taxes from these persons were set aside in a separate fund, one half to support Negro and Mulatto paupers, and one half for the education of the children. There were 13 schools counted in December of 1866, they were included in the publication of the Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, for the School Year Ending December 31, 1864 [see below]. The schools had been under-counted; a large majority of the colored schools had not been reported to the Commissioner of Common Schools, because the schools were not part of the Common School system, and the commissioners had procrastinated in establishing common schools for colored children. As stated in the annual report, there were 41,804 colored children between the ages of six and twenty in Kentucky, and 9,995 of those children lived in one of the 12 counties reported as having a colored school. The Colored Fund held $5,656.01 (as of March 1867), one half of which went to the colored schools and one half was used to care for paupers. It was expected that the following year, there would be a more accurate count of the colored schools.

  • Bracken County - 1 school
  • Clinton County - 1 school
  • Estill County - 1 school
  • Fayette County - 1 school
  • Greenup County - 1 school
  • Harrison County - 1 school
  • Hopkins County - 1 school
  • Jefferson County - 2 schools
  • Laurel County - 1 school
  • Logan County - 1 school
  • Madison County - 1 school
  • Mercer County - 1 school
For more information see "Chapter 636" on pp.231-232, and "Colored Schools" on pp.22-23 of the Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, for the School Year Ending December 31, 1864. See NKAA Database entries African American Schools.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Schools - Kentucky, 1886
Start Year : 1886
The Colored School System covered about 112 of the 120 counties. Many of the colored schools were actually school sessions being held for three to five months in colored churches. There was not sufficient revenue from the property taxes of African Americans to afford but a few new school buildings. School superintendents filed reports that included information about the condition of the facilities, enrollment and student attendance, and the qualifications of teachers. A driving force behind the development and continuation of a colored school was the community. It was not uncommon for schools to be opened, moved, or discontinued without the knowledge of the school superintendent. There were superintendents who did not submit a separate report about the colored schools, or there may be a statement about the colored schools in the annual report for the white schools. The following list comes from the "Colored Schools. A digest of the Epistolary Reports of County Superintendents," found within the Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky for the school year ending June 30, 1886 and for the school year ending June 30, 1887. The total number of schools/districts was not available for every county. See also the NKAA Dabatase entries African American Schools.

  • Adair County
  • Barren County
  • Bath County - 8 districts with 1 school each
  • Boone County
  • Bourbon County - 24 schools
  • Boyd County - 2 districts
  • Boyle County
  • Breathitt County - 2 districts
  • Breckinridge County
  • Bullitt County - 7 districts
  • Butler County - 7 schools
  • Calloway County - 8 districts
  • Carroll County - more than 3 districts
  • Casey County - 5 schools
  • Christian County
  • Clark County - 11 schools
  • Clay County - 4 districts
  • Crittenden County
  • Cumberland County - 8 districts
  • Daviess County - 4 schools
  • Edmonson County - 4 schools
  • Fayette County
  • Fleming County - 6 districts, school held in churches
  • Franklin County
  • Fulton County - 11 districts, 1 school in a church
  • Grant County - 4 districts
  • Graves County - 16 districts
  • Green County - 17 districts
  • Harlan County
  • Hardin County
  • Harrison County
  • Hart County - 10 districts
  • Hopkins County - 18 districts
  • Jessamine County
  • Larue County
  • Laurel County
  • Lawrence County - 2 schools
  • Lee County - 2 schools, 1 in a church
  • Lewis County - 1 school in a church in Vanceburg
  • Lincoln County - 16 districts
  • Logan County - 21 teachers, many schools taught in church buildings
  • Lyon County - 11 districts
  • Madison County - 27 districts
  • Magoffin County - 1 school
  • Mason County
  • Marshall County - 3 districts
  • McCracken County - no school houses, 3 or 4 schools doing good
  • McLean County - 5 districts, most schools held in church buildings
  • Meade County
  • Menifee County - 1 school
  • Mercer County
  • Metcalfe County - 7 districts
  • Monroe County - 5 schools
  • Montgomery County
  • Muhlenberg County - the schools are at a stand-still
  • Ohio County - 11 districts, 11 schools
  • Oldham County
  • Owen County
  • Pendleton County - 3 districts
  • Powell County - 3 schools
  • Pulaski County - 6 schools
  • Robertson County - 2 schools
  • Rockcastle County - 2 schools, one in Brodhead
  • Scott County - 1 school, school held in rented building
  • Shelby County - 13 districts
  • Simpson County - 10 districts
  • Spencer County
  • Taylor County
  • Trigg County - 3 districts
  • Union County - 9 districts, 6 with schools
  • Warren County
  • Washington County
  • Wayne County
  • Wolfe - 1 district
  • Woodford County

Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Schools: African American Education in South Central Kentucky, 1920–1960 - Oral History Collection by Joseph Carl Ruff (FA166)
Start Year : 1993
The following information is taken from the descriptive inventory. "This project, “African American Education in South Central Kentucky, 1920 – 1960”, was conducted by Joseph Carl Ruff, and includes 26 interviews with African Americans who were students, teachers and/or administrators in segregated schools in south central Kentucky. Their first-hand accounts provide a unique perspective on the evolution of the education of African Americans in the region. Each interview reflects the determination of a people to overcome the obstacles created by a flawed doctrine, ‘separate but equal’, to achieve success, and for many of the interviewees, to become community leaders as teachers and school administrators. This project was funded by a grant from the Kentucky Oral History Commission." The collection is available at Western Kentucky University, Manuscripts and Folklife Archives.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: South Central, Kentucky

African American Schools and Students in Kentucky (Photographs), Kentucky Digital Library
Start Year : 1901
Photographs of "Colored" and "Negro" schools and students are available online within the Kentucky Digital Library - Images section. Student body photographs include Bracktown 1901, Briar Hill 1901, and Burdine 1921. For more see the Kentucky Digital Library - Images. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Photographers, Photographs, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Bracktown and Briar Hill, Fayette County, Kentucky / Burdine (Jenkins), Letcher County, Kentucky

African American Schools and Students Photographs, KDLA Electronic Records Archives
End Year : 1900
Below are links to some of the pictures of students and colored schools in Kentucky, found online within the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives [KDLA] Electronic Records Archives. The pictures were taken in the 1880s-1890s. Contact KDLA for additional information about the photographs and the schools.


Colored District No. 3, 8


Colored District No. 2, 80


Colored District No. 1, 79 
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Schools and Teachers in Kentucky, 1929
Start Year : 1929
In 1929, Harvey C. Russell, Sr. found that the higher education institutions in Kentucky were at a low state of teacher preparation for the state's colored high schools. The findings are included in Russell's thesis The Training of the Teachers in the Colored High Schools of Kentucky, for a Master of Arts in Education at the University of Cincinnati. In his thesis, Russell focused on public high schools, but noted that there were 61 colored high schools of all types in Kentucky: 36 city controlled, 23 county controlled, and 2 state controlled. There were 204 teachers. The number of colored high schools had more than doubled over a 10 year period and student enrollment had increased by 170 percent. There were 31 four year approved high schools within 28 counties and all but three had less than 100 students. The Rosenwald Fund had provided for 10 libraries. Among the public high schools, 56% of the teachers were college graduates and "the state has drawn heavily upon educational institutions in other states." [quote from Chapter VI, p.68, item 7.] Below are the names of the higher education institutions with graduates who were teachers at the colored high schools in Kentucky during the 1928-29 school term, as listed in Table XI, pp.46-46a, in The Training of the Teachers in the Colored High Schools in Kentucky by Harvey C. Russell, Sr.

Training institutions in Kentucky attended by colored teachers (26%):

Training institutions in other states attended by colored teachers (74%):

Tennessee
  • Fisk University
  • Lane College
  • Knoxville College
  • Tennessee State College
Ohio
  • Wilberforce University
  • Ohio State University
  • Ohio University
  • Miami University
Washington, D.C.
  • Howard University
Indiana
  • Indiana University
  • Terre Haute Teacher College
Illinois
  • University of Chicago
  • Northwestern University
  • Illinois State Normal
  • University of Illinois
  • Chicago Business College
Georgia
  • Atlanta University
  • Clark University
  • Morris Brown University
Pennsylvania
  • Lincoln University
  • Cheney Normal
Virginia
  • Hampton Institute
Alabama
  • Tuskegee Institute
Oklahoma
  • Langston University
Michigan
  • Ypsilanti Normal
New York
  • Columbia University
  • Pratt Institute
Florida
  • Florida State College
Massachusetts
  • Smith College
Nebraska
  • University of Nebraska
North Carolina
  • John C. Smith University

Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Schools, High Schools - Eastern Kentucky, 1948
Start Year : 1948
In 1948, William T. Gilbert completed his thesis, The Administration and Organization of Secondary Schools for Negro Pupils in Eastern Kentucky, for a Master of Arts degree at Indiana University. A Kentucky school law mandated that all school districts provide 12 grades of segregated school for both races. For many of the eastern counties with few colored students (who lived in scattered locations throughout the county), the law presented a challenge. There were 16 approved Negro high schools in eastern Kentucky from 1918-1940, and two of the schools had been dropped: enrollment was too small at Manchester, and the Vicco school was consolidated with the Hazard school system. The high school classes ranged in size from six students in Pineville to 288 students in Lynch. There were 46 high school teachers, all college graduates. Below is a list of the high school names from p. 25 of Gilbert's thesis, and below that, from p. 90, a list of the institutions from which the high school teachers graduated.

Eastern Kentucky Negro High Schools:

  • Lincoln [not Liberty]
Middlesboro
  • Roland-Hayes
Pineville
  • B. T. Washington
Ashland
  • Palmer-Dunbar
Wheelwright
  • Benham
Benham
  • Rosenwald
Harlan
  • Lynch
Lynch
  • Rosenwald
Barbourville
  • London
London
  • Dunham
Jenkins
  • Fee
Maysville
  • Liberty
Hazard
  • Perry Cline
Pikeville
  • Somerset
Somerset



Eastern Kentucky Negro High Schools: Institutions from which the High School Teachers Graduated:

  • Kentucky State

25
  • Tennessee State

4
  • Knoxville College

3
  • Wilberforce University

3
  • Clark University

2
  • Tuskegee Institute

2
  • Fisk University

1
  • Hampton Institute

1
  • West Virginia State

1
  • Ohio State

1
  • Atlanta University

1
  • University of Cincinnati

1
  • Louisville Municipal

1

Subjects: Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Eastern Kentucky

African American Schools in Elliott County, KY
There is not a record of a colored school or Negro students in Elliott County, KY [sources: Kentucky Public School Directory; Kentucky School Directory; Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky; and Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky]. It is unclear if the children attended school with the white children, or attended the colored schools in a nearby county, or there were other arrangements. In the 1870 U.S. Federal Census, there were seven Collins children between the ages of 5 and 17, and two Howard children ages 10 and 7, all in Elliott County. In 1880, there was one African American child of school age; in 1900 there were five Leadenham children of school age; and in 1920 there were four children of school age.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Elliott County, Kentucky

African American Schools in Floyd County, KY
End Year : 1956
The first school for African Americans in Floyd County was taught in a church, though the year is not given in Chalmer H. Frazier's thesis. There would later be a colored grade school in Wheelwright. There were 3 colored elementary schools in Floyd County in 1925, with one teacher at each school [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p.67]. The following year, there were 4 colored schools and 4 teachers [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1926-1927, p.81]. The Palmer-Dunbar Colored High School, in Wheelwright, was organized in 1936; the school was named in part for Palmer Hall, the school superintendent. By 1939, the high school offered four years of study. W. T. Gilbert was principal, and there were three teachers, one of whom was Mrs. Mannie N. Wilson. There were 41 students in the high school [source: The History of Education of Floyd County, Kentucky (thesis), by Chalmer Haynes Frazier]. In 1940, there were 5 Negro teachers in Wheelwright according to the U.S. Federal Census: Gera Kaywood, Lillie Beele Daw, Gladys Edwards, Sarah Moran, and Mary A. Reed. In 1956, two schools in Floyd County were listed as "white & integrated," Betsy Lane and Wheelwright [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, pp.427-428]. 

  • Church School
  • Colored Schools (4)
  • Wheelwright School
  • Palmer-Dunbar School

 

   See 1946 photo image of children playing at the Wheelwright Colored School, Kentucky Digital Library.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Floyd County, Kentucky

African American Schools in Jackson County, KY
Start Year : 1882
The Pine Grove College in Jackson County, KY, was founded by Berea College in 1882. It was an integrated school. Colored and white children had been attending the same school even before Pine Grove College was established. There is not a record of a colored public school in Jackson County, KY [sources: Kentucky Public School Directory; Kentucky School Directory; Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky; and Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky]. Jackson County was established in 1860, and according to the U.S. Federal Census, in 1870 there were six African American children between the ages of 5 and 10, they lived in Horse Lick and Coyle. In 1900, there were nine African American children between the ages of 10 and 18, they lived in Horse Lick and Pond Creek. It is not known when Pine Grove College closed. In the 1940 U.S. Census, there are no African American children of school age.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Jackson County, Kentucky

African American Schools in Martin County, KY
There is no record of a colored school in Martin County, KY, though there were African American children of school age in the county [sources: Kentucky Public School Directory, Kentucky School Directory, Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, and Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky]. In 1880, there were about 18 children of school age, including the four children of William and Mahala Davidson. None of the children are listed in the U.S. Federal Census as being in school, and the older boys are listed as working on the farm. There continued to be a few African American children of school age in Martin County; it is not known if the children attended school in a neighboring county. In the 1940 U.S. Census, the Simpkins family had lived in Martin County in 1935 but had since moved to Grant, WV, where their children were enrolled in school. There is no listing of Martin County schools being integrated before 1965 in the Kentucky Public School Directory or the Kentucky School Directory.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, African American Schools in Kentucky (Counties A-Z)
Geographic Region: Martin County, Kentucky

[African American Schools] Negro Public Elementary Schools , 1931
Start Year : 1931
The following information comes from the 1931 master's thesis by Pleasant Moore titled The Status of the Negro Public Elementary Schools of Kentucky, #33 at Indiana State Teachers College, pp.40-46, & 65-68. The data is from the Kentucky Department of Education for the school year ending June 30, 1929. Pleasant Moore's thesis is thought to be first scientific study of the public elementary schools for Negroes in Kentucky. It was the author's hope that his work would be used to address many of the problems, such as school terms that were less than the state required time period, lack of sufficient schools, and more responsibility for the education of Negro children on the part of independent school systems and cities of the 5th and 6th class. 

 

Largest Total Elementary Enrollment  
Louisville (city) 6986
Christian County 1978
Lexington (city) 1760
Paducah (city) 1110
Harlan County [610 average attendance] 840
   
Largest Average Daily Attendance  
Louisville (city) 5400
Lexington (city) 1354
Christian County 1205
Paducah (city) 907
Hopkinsville (city) [694 total enrollment] 625
   
Highest % of Attendance Based on Enrollment  
Marion County  [247 attendance] 100%
Rowan County  [6 attendance] 100%
Lee County  [27 attendance] 93%
Sturgis (city)  [81 attendance] 93%
Ballard County  [77 attendance] 91%
Laurel County  [67 attendance] 90%
Paris (city)  [343 attendance] 90%
Pike County  [199 attendance] 90%
Elkton (city)  [198 attendance] 89%
   
Highest Average Annual Teachers' Salaries
 
Kenton County  [21 teachers] $1526.67
Jefferson County  [259 teachers] $1407.63
Campbell County  [4 teachers] $1275
Fayette County  [90 teachers] $1050
Clark County  [20 teachers] $994.33

 
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Shoe Makers and Shoe Repairers in Lexington, KY, Prior to 1900
End Year : 1900
The term shoemaker was sometimes written as two words [shoe maker] in the early city directories. The making of shoes was one of the skilled labors performed by slaves throughout the South. Once slavery ended, former slaves used the skill in their businesses that were often operated out of their homes. The industrial manufacturing and mass production of shoes would greatly reduced the number of individual shoemakers. The names of the shoe factories, especially in Louisville, KY, can be found in city directories, along with the listing of shoemakers, both African American and white. In Lexington, KY, there was an abundance of African American shoemakers, and a few shoe repairers. They are noted in the directories with (c), (col), (cld), or (col'd). Below are the names of some of the African American shoemakers and shoe repairers located in Lexington, KY, prior to the year 1900. Practically all were born in Kentucky.

 

  • Sally A. Jackson was a shoe binder who lived on E. Short Street between N. Mulberry and Walnut. She was a free person and is listed in the Directory of the City of Lexington and County of Fayette for 1838 & '39.
  • Micajah M. Mason was a shoemaker who lived on W. Water Street between N. Mill and Broadway. He is listed as a free man in the 1838-39 directory, and in the 1859-60 directory when he lived on E. S. Mulberry between Short and Barr Streets.
  • Edward Oliver was a boot and shoe maker. He lived at 4 E. Water Street and is listed as free in the 1838-39 directory.
  • Parker Pee (b.1808 in KY) was a shoe and boot maker and lived at 23 W. Short Street. He is listed as free in the 1838-39 directory, in the 1859-60 directory when he was living on S. Main between Broadway and Spring Streets, and he is listed in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census.
  • William Tanner, a shoe maker, lived on E. Short Street between Walnut and Bank Streets. He is listed as free in the 1838-39 directory
  • Thomas Johnson (b.1822 in KY) was a shoemaker on S. Broadway between Main and Water Streets. He is listed as a free man in the 1859-60 directory, and in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census.
  • Isaac Robinson was a shoemaker who lived on S. Short Street between Spring and Jefferson. He is listed as a free man in the 1859-60 directory, and he is listed as cook living at 11 S. Broadway in the 1877-78 directory.
  • Moses Thomas, boots and shoes, lived on S. Short Street between Broadway and Mill Streets. He is listed as a free man in the 1859-60 directory.
  • Andrew Bryant, Sr. (b.1814 in KY) was a boot and shoemaker at Hunt's Row. He was born in Kentucky, and lived on High Street between Upper and Mulberry Streets. Bryant was married to Myra Bryant, b.1839 in KY. He is listed as a free man in Williams' Lexington [Kentucky] Directory, City Guide, and Business Mirror, Volume 1 - 1859-60 and he is also listed in Maydwell's Lexington City Directory 1867.
  • E. Dishman and Lawson Dishman were boot and shoemakers at 13 1/2 Water Street, both are listed in Sheppard's Lexington City Directory 1873 and 1874. Ebenezer Dishman, Sr. (1818-1901) and Lawson Dishman (1828-1899) were two of the sons of William and Frances Dishman. Ebenezer was born in Fayette County, KY, and was the husband of Georgiana Dishman (b.1830). They are listed in the 1870 U.S. Federal Census as the parents of four children. Lawson Dishman was born in Fayette County, KY, and was the husband of May Dishman. Lawson Dishman was a shoemaker and a tanner. He is later listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82, as a shoemaker in Dill's Ally, 4th house west of Jefferson St. In the same directory is a listing for Ebenezer and his son James E. Dishman (b.1852). They are listed as shoemakers at their home 205 N. Upper Street. James E. Dishman was born in Fayette County, KY.
  • (1873 and 1874) Alex Burton was a shoe maker at 13 1/2 Water Street, he lived in Guntown. By 1880, Burton had moved his business and family to Danville, KY.
  • (1873 and 1874) Lewis Morton was a shoemaker at 175 E. Third Street.
  • Harvey Young, b.1814 in KY, had his shop at 159 Correll [Corral] Street. He was the husband of Susan Young, b.1839 in KY. Twelve year old Daniel Bell lived with the Youngs. They are all listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census. Harvey Young's business is listed in Prather's Lexington City Directory 1875 and 1876. In an earlier directory, Williams' Lexington City Directory 1864-65, Harvey Young was listed as a shoemaker, with no race distinction, and his home was on Water Street between Upper and Mulberry Streets.
  • David French (b.1822) was a shoemaker at 112 N. Upper Street, according to Prather's Lexington City Directory 1875 and 1876. He was born in Kentucky, and was the husband of Hannah French, b.1835 in KY.
  • John Thomas (b.1857) had his business in his home at 206 N. Limestone, which is listed in the R. C. Hellrigle and Co's Lexington City Directory 1877-78. He was born in Kentucky, the son of Emma Thompson and the brother of shoemaker Charles Thomas [listed below].
  • Silas Crowders sold shoes and boots at 267 N. Limestone, near his home at 269 Limestone. His business is listed in Williams' Lexington City Directory 1881-82. There is an earlier listing for Silas Crowdus (b.1824 in KY), in Prather's Lexington City Directory 1875 and 1876, he was a shoemaker located at 137 S. Broadway
  • Titus Buckner (1855-1936) was a minister and shoemaker, his business was at his home on Winslow Street between Upper and Limestone, according to William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82. [He was still repairing shoes in the 1930s and is listed in Polk's Lexington (Kentucky) City Directory 1931-32.] Reverend Titus Buckner was born in Fayette County, KY. He was the husband of Julia Buckner, b.1856 in KY, and the couple lived at 196 Eddie Street, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. Titus Buckner was a widower by 1920. He is buried in Greenwood Cemetery, according to his death certificate.
  • Price Buford (b.1820 in KY) worked out of his home in Gill's Alley, 9th house west of Jefferson Street, according to William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Shoemaker Evan Collins did business at the home he shared with Charles Henderson, located in an ally between Spring, Lower, Maxwell, and Pine Streets. Collins is listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Isaac Johnson was a shoe repairer on Georgetown Street, 3rd house north of King. He is listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Charles Skillman (1844-1888) made shoes at his home, 144 Lower Street. He was born in Kentucky, and was the husband of Emma Skillman b.1850 in KY. Charles Skillman is listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Charles Taylor and Charles A. Thomas (b.1862) were both shoemakers at 138 N. Limestone. Charles Thomas was born in Kentucky, the son of Emma Thompson, and the brother of shoemaker John Thomas. Thomas and Taylor are listed separately in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82, but with the same address.
  • The William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82 lists two John Toles, the first worked at his home, 80 N. Broadway. The second John Toles also worked from his home on Vine Street, 3rd door east of Broadway. The older John Toles was born in 1820 in Kentucky.
  • John Wilkerson (b.1832) made shoes on Broadway, 3rd house north of Maxwell. His home was on Limestone and Winslow. Wilkerson was born in Kentucky, and was the husband of Virginia Wilkerson, b.1834 in KY. John Wilkerson is listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Nathaniel Wilson (b.1809 in VA) lived on Limestone and worked from home, the fifth house south of 6th Street, according to William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
  • Shoemaker William Vinegar had a business on Cox Street, he worked out of his home. His business is listed in William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82.
Shoe makers in Lexington, listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census:
  • Albert Diggs (b.1854), Sanders Diggs (1855-1898), and Edmund Diggs (1857-1912), all born in Kentucky, and the sons of Brooks and Emily Carter Diggs. The family of nine lived in Brucetown.
  • Jack Stopher (b.1845) was the husband of Minnie Stopher (b.1850). The family of five were all born in Kentucky, and lived in Kinkeadtown.
  • Shoemaker John Tobs (b.1820) was also a servant with the Wasfield family. Tobs lived with the family on Broadway.
Shoe makers listed in the Directory of African Americans in Lexington, Kentucky, 1893 by D. Y. Wilkinson:
  • Isaiah Graves at 29 Ballard Street.
  • Charles Green worked for F. King. His address was 24 Wickliffe Street.
  • William S. Irvine at 57 Megowan Street.
  • John Latcher at 55 E. Water Street.
  • Wallace Maxberry at 5 Drake Street.
  • Henry Nichols (b.1860 in KY) at 79 S. Limestone, he was the husband of Susan Nichols. In 1900, the couple lived on Corral Street, according to the U.S. Federal Census.
  • Isaiah Stone at 11 Blackburn Street.
  • Charles Thurston at 57 Megowan Street.
Shoe makers in Lexington, mentioned in newspapers:
  • George Robinson (1863-1911), a shoe maker who was born in Kentucky, died in 1911 after being burned in a fire at his home at 180 Locust Avenue in Lexington, KY. Source: Lexington Leader, 08/28/1911, p.1. Robinson was a widow, according to the 1910 U.S. Federal Census.
[See also NKAA entries African American Shoe Shiners and Shoe Repairers in Lexington, KY, 1930-1947; African American Shoe Makers in Kentucky; and African American Shoe Makers from Kentucky.]
Subjects: Businesses, Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Shoe Makers from Kentucky
Start Year : 1880
The following is a list of African American shoe makers who were born in Kentucky and lived in other states. The information comes from the 1800 U.S. Federal Census, except where noted otherwise. [See also Kentucky shoe makers and Lexington, KY, shoe makers.]

Illinois

  • George T. Smith (b.1834) was a shoe maker who lived in Paris with his wife Jennie Smith (b.1861 in MS).

Indiana

  • F. M. Green (b.1844) was a boot and shoe maker who lived in Evansville. He was a widower with four children, and a boarder lived with them on 5th Street.
  • James Lee (b.1840) was a shoe maker who lived in Jeffersonville with his wife Amy (b.1846 in KY), their two children, and James' mother. The family lived on Broadway.
  • Anthony McDougal (b.1843) was a shoe maker who lived in Jeffersonville. He was the husband of Elizabeth McDougal (b.1852 in KY). The family of five and two boarders lived on Indiana Avenue.
  • Henry Patton (b.1858) was a shoe maker who was a prisoner in Michigan City.
Iowa
  • Philip Reeves (b.1844) was a shoemaker who had learned his craft as a slave in Kentucky. In 1900, he lived 211 N. Eighth Street in Keokuk with is wife Jennie (b.1845 in GA) and their son Wesley (b.1871 in IA). Philip Reeves is highlighted in a 1905 article in The Freeman, 10/14/1905, p.4. He is described as a popular shoemaker and shoe repairer at the business address of 317 Johnson Street.

Kansas

  • James Bradley (b.1845) was a shoe maker who lived in Atchison City on 3rd Street. He was the husband of Sina Bradley (b.1849 in KY).
  • Alexander Gregg (1824-1904) was known in Kansas as Deacon Gregg, he was a boot and shoe maker who was born in Kentucky. Gregg left Kentucky and first settled in Missouri, then moved on to Kansas where he was one of the founders of the Baptist Church in Lawrence in 1862. He was the husband of Mary F. Gregg (b.1839 in MO). The couple lived on Tennessee Street with their children, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. For more see "In Memory of Deacon Gregg," Plaindealer, 02/26/1904, p.4.
  • John Page (b.1850) was a shoe maker who lived in Leavenworth with his parents Richard and Anna Page who were both born in Virginia. The family lived on Miami Street.
Michigan

  • Peter Fisher (b.1859 in KY) was a shoe maker who was the son of William (b.1815 in KY) and Harriet Fisher (b.1818 in KY). The family of six lived in Greenfield.

Mississippi

  • Tom Broadwaters (b.1841), a shoe maker, was the husband of Laura Broadwaters (b.1852 in LA). The family of three lived in Vicksburg.
  • Thomas Monday (b.1855) was a shoe maker who lived in Wilkinson County with his wife Nancy (b.1858 in MS) and their five children.
  • Thomas Payne (b.1825) was a shoe maker who lived in Vicksburg with his wife Eliza Barnett (b.1839 in MS). They shared their home with an orphan and three boarders.

Missouri

  • George Brenson (b.1816) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Judy Brenson (b.1813 in KY), and the family of five lived in Pierce City.
  • Newton Harden (b.1847) was a shoe maker who lived in Jefferson City.
  • Samuel Lewis (b.1857) was a shoe maker who lived in Jefferson City.
  • Jefferson Pierce (b.1840) was a shoe maker who lived in Joplin with his wife Sarah (b.1841 in KY), their six children and a boarder.
  • Presley Steward (b.1821) was a shoe maker. He lived in Linneus with his wife Ellen (b.1836 in MO) and their seven children.

Ohio

  • Joseph Grubbs (b.1828) was a shoe maker who lived in Xenia with his wife Eliza (b.1832 in VA). The couple lived on Lexington Street.
  • Albert Parks (b.1888 in Carlisle, KY) was a shoe repairer in Cincinnati, OH, having opened his business in 1922. He was the son of John W. and Laura Parks, and was a veteran of the U.S. Army. Source: Cincinnati's Colored Citizens by W. P. Dabney

Tennessee

  • Charles Bailey (b.1822), a shoe maker, was the husband of Emily Bailey (b.1825 in TN). The family of six lived in Montgomery County.
  • Thomas Ball (b.1828) was a shoe maker who lived in Milan with two nieces.
  • A. J. Cox (b.1831) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Mary Cox (b.1836 in TN). The family of eight lived in Murfreesborough.
  • Ben Henderson (b.1844) was a shoe maker who lived in Chattanooga with his wife Hanah (b.1852 in NC), their three children, Hanah's mother, and a boarder.
  • David Masterson (b.1850) was a shoe maker who lived in Roane County. He was the husband of Charlotte Masterson (b.1856 in TN). The family of five lived on Lowly Street.
  • Daniel Settles (b.1829) was a shoe maker who lived in Nashville. He was a widower and lived on Cherry Street.

Washington, D.C.

  • Edward Bean (b.1851) was a shoe repairer who lived on 21st Street, N.W.

Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Shoe Makers in Kentucky [not Lexington]
Start Year : 1880
The following is a list of shoe makers from the 1880 U.S. Federal Census, except where noted. These are shoe makers who were born in Kentucky or lived in Kentucky. The list does not include those who lived in Lexington, KY, or those who lived outside Kentucky. [There is a separate entry for Lexington shoe makers before 1900, African American Shoe Shiners and Shoe Repairers in Lexington, KY, 1930-1947, and for Kentucky shoe makers who lived in other states.]

Allen County

  • Berry Walker (b.1838 in KY) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Kittie Walker (b.1840 in KY), and the family of eleven lived in Scottsville.

Ballard County

  • Arche Booker (b.1841 in VA) was a shoe maker who lived in Blandville.

Bath County

  • Sims McElhany (b.1805 in KY) was a shoe maker, and he and his wife Fanny were also servants for the Crooks Family. They all lived in Tanyard.

Bourbon County

  • John Jones (b.1830 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Millersburg. He was the husband of Clara Jones (b.1830 in KY), and supported a family of eight.

Boyle County

  • John Baughman (b.1849 in KY) is listed in the census as a shoe maker who is crippled. He was the husband of Lizzie Baughman (b.1857 in KY), and supported a family of five. The family lived in Danville. 
  • Samuel W. Brumfield (b.1827 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Danville with his family of six. He was the husband of Sarah A. Brumfield (b.1834 in KY).
  • Alex Burton (b.1832 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Danville. He was the husband of Mattie E. Burton (b.1852 in KY), and supported a family of four. The family lived on Lebanon Pike.
  • William Caldwell (b.1830 in KY) was a shoe maker who was a widower supporting a family of five.
  • R. Cowan (b.1820 in KY) is listed in the census as a shoe cobbler who lived in Danville. He was the husband of Harriet Cowan (b.1823 in KY). The family of six lived on Lexington Avenue.
  • Henry Mack (b.1833 in KY), a shoe maker, was the husband of Mary Mack (b.1831 in KY), and supported a family of five.
  • Timothy Masterson (b.1832 in KY) was a shoe maker who supported a family of seven. He was the husband of Lucinda Masterson (b.1844 in KY).

Christian County

  • Jessie Hart (b.1855 in TN) is listed in the census as a shoe cobbler who lived in Garretsburg.

Clark County

  • Robert Banks (b.1830 in KY) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Anna M. Banks (b.1825 in KY). The family of five lived in Winchester.
  • James Robinson (b.1858 in KY), a shoe maker, was the son of Peter and Minerva Robinson. The family of seven lived in Winchester.
  • Jordon Stogdon (b.1837 in KY) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Lottie Stogdon (b.1847 in KY), and the family of eight lived in Blue Ball.

Floyd County

  • James Weaver (b.1873 in KY) was the owner of a shoe shop in Wheelwright, KY. He repaired shoes. He was the husband of Lucinda Weaver (b.1899 in VA). The couple lived on Otter Creek Road. [source: 1930 U.S. Federal Census]

Franklin County

  • Baker Clark (b.1828 in KY) was a shoe maker in Frankfort. He was the husband of Betty Clark (b.1832 in KY), and the family of three lived on Wilkerson Street.
  • Henry Rodman (b.1851 in KY), a shoe maker, was the husband of Mary E. Rodman (b.1858 in KY). The family of six lived on Clinton Street and shared their home with four boarders.
  • Benjamine Spencer (b.1854 in KY) was a shoe maker in Frankfort. He was the son of Frank and Caroline Spencer, and the family of seven lived on Clinton Street.
  • John Stanley (b.1840 in CT) was a shoe maker incarcerated in the Frankfort Penitentiary.
  • Henry Thompson (b.1848 in KY) was a shoe maker incarcerated in the Frankfort Penitentiary.

Garrard County

  • Dennis Brown (b.1800 in MD) was a shoe maker who lived in Lancaster. He was the husband of Neoma Brown (b.1802 in KY), and they had a son.
  • Henry Mason (b.1825 in KY), a shoe maker, was the husband of Harriet Mason (b.1844 in KY), and the family of seven lived in Lancaster.
  • Jettie E. Knox ( -1898), a shoe maker, Knox was killed by Lancaster Postmaster J. I. Hamilton over a loan dispute. Knox had come from North Carolina about a year before his death [source: "About 10:30 o'clock Wednesday,..." in the column "Lancaster, Garrard County" on p.1 of Semi-Weekly Interior Journal, 09/11/1896]. Jettie Knox was the husband of Ella B. Cook, a school teacher in Stanford, KY [source: 1900 U.S. Federal Census]. The couple married in Danville, KY, July 28, 1896 [source: Kentucky Marriages Index].

Grant County

  • Hary Powers (b.1744 in VA) was listed in the census as a 106 year old widower who was shoe maker.

Green County

  • George Edwards (b.1843 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Greensburg. He was the husband of Esther Edwards (b.1852 in KY), and supported a family of seven.

[Harrison County]

  • Leander Agers (b.1799 in MD) was an earlier shoe maker and property owner listed in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census. He was head of a family of eight, husband of Susan Agers (b.1803 in KY), with four sons who were also shoe makers: Wiley, Leander Jr., Peter, and Daniel Agers.

Henderson County

  • Leander Ward (b.1856 in KY) was a shoe maker in Henderson. He was the husband of Frances Ward (b.1856 in KY) and the family of four lived on Elm Street.
  • Green Willingham (b.1821 in KY) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Edy Willingham (b.1810 in KY) and the couple lived in Hebbardsville.

Hickman County

  • William Jackson (b.1849 in TN) was a shoe and boot maker who lived in Columbus.

Hopkins County

  • Miles Nourse (b.1832 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Madisonville with his wife Rachel (b.1840 in KY), their son, and a boarder.

Jefferson County

  • James Alcorn (b.1838 in KY) was a boot and shoe maker who lived in Louisville. He was a boarder with the Williamson Family on West Walnut Street, South Side.
  • Jerry Ballinger (b.1830 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Louisville. He was the husband of Mary Ballinger (b.1832 in KY), and the family of four lived on Brook Street.
  • George Bright (b.1844 in KY) was shoe maker who lived in Louisville on Floyd Street.
  • W. H. Hunter (1882-1938, born in SC) was a shoe maker and a shoe repairer, and a teacher. His shop was located at 1401 W. Chestnut and he advertised his business in the Louisville Leader. Hunter is listed in the city directory from 1917-1938. [sources: Caron's Directory of the City of Louisville for 1920, p.2238; Caron's Directory of the City of Louisville for 1936, p.2662; and ad in The Louisville Leader, 11/10/1917, p.2]
  • R. J. Johnson (b.1854 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Louisville. He was the husband of Nannie Johnson (b.1860 in KY), and the family of four lived on Market Street.
  • Sam Mattingly (b.1827 in KY), a shoe maker, was a widower who lived in Louisville on Magazine Street.
  • Francis Smith (b.1835 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Louisville with his wife Susan Smith (b.1847 in KY). The couple shared their home with two boarders on Ninth Street, West Side.
  • Washington Vanduke (b.1805 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Louisville. He was a widower and lived on Oldham Street.

Jessamine County

  • Galvin Pugh (b.1840 in KY), a shoe maker, was the husband of Syntha Pugh (b.1856 in KY). The family of five lived in Nicholasville.
  • John Wheeler (b.1820 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Nicholasville. He was the husband of Luisa Wheeler (b.1840 in KY).

Marion County

  • Simon Irvine (b.1834 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Lebanon. He was the husband of Emma Irvine (b.1843 in KY), and the family of five lived on Chandler Street.
  • David Lee (b.1831 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Loretto. He was the husband Harriet A. Lee (b.1831 in KY).
  • Josiah Yokum (b.1820 in KY) was a boot and shoe maker who lived in Lebanon. He was widower who lived with his two young sons on Republican Street.

Monroe County

  • Jerry Kirkpatrick (b.1822 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Tompkinsville. He was the husband of Jane Kirkpatrick (b.1850 in KY), and supported a family of five.

Montgomery County

  • Anderson Taul (b.1853 in KY) was a shoe maker in Mt. Sterling. He was a boarder with the Everett Family.
  • Ben Tipton (b.1845 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Mt. Sterling.
  • James Willis (b.1840 in VA) was a shoe maker who lived in Mt. Sterling. He was a boarder with the Everett Family.

Nelson County

  • Hans Brown (b.1825 in KY) was a shoe maker who supported a family of eight. He was the husband of Adaline Brown (b.1827 in KY).

Nicholas County

  • Horace Baker (b.1839 in KY) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Sarah Baker (b.1840 in KY), and the family of four lived in Henryville.
  • Henry Lawson (b.1820 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Carlisle. He was the husband of Manda Lawson (b.1820 in VA).

Pulaski County

  • Henry Owens (b.1824 in KY), a shoe maker, was the husband of Silva Owens (b.1839 in KY), the family of five lived in Somerset.

Scott County

  • Reason Baker (b.1826 in VA) was a shoe maker. He was the husband of Lidia Baker (b.1829 in MD) and supported a family of eight.

Simpson County

  • Alfred Foster (b.1840 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Franklin. He was a boarder with the Creekmore Family.

Todd County

  • Thomas Johnson (b.1825 in VA) was a shoe maker who lived in Allensville. He was the husband of Sallie Johnson (b.1833 in KY), and supported a family of four.

Warren County

  • Thornton Cole (b.1823 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Hadley with his sister and brother-in-law and their four children.

Wayne County

  • Patrick Kindrick (b.1833 in KY) was a shoe maker who lived in Mill Springs. He was the husband of Marthey Kindrick (b.1840 in KY), and supported a family of five.
  • William Sandusky (b.1842 in KY) was a shoe and boot maker who lived in Monticello. He was divorced and supported a family of four, they lived on West Street.

See photo image of Benjamin F. Spencer shoe shop in Frankfort, KY, photo part of the Spencer Family Papers in Explore UK.
Subjects: Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Slave Owners in Kentucky
Start Year : 1830
In 1924 the Research Department of the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History completed a study of the free Negro slave owners found in the 1830 U. S. Federal Census. The study found that there were 3,777 Negro slave owners in the United States. Negro slave owners were listed in 29 Kentucky counties (see below). Ownership may have meant the purchase of a spouse, an individual's children, or other relatives who were not emancipated. Ownership was also an investment: purchased children and adults may or may not have been given the opportunity to work off their purchase price in exchange for their freedom. A History of World Societies documents a total of 6,000 Negro slave owners in the U.S. for the year 1840 [p. 846]. The 1850 and 1860 Slave Schedules do not identify slave owners by race; the individual names of slave owners must be searched in the U.S. Federal Census to identify the individual's race. For more see the Research Department's article, "Free Negro owners of slaves in the United States in 1830," The Journal of Negro History, vol. 9, no. 1 (Jan., 1924), pp. 41-85; A History of World Societies, by J. P. McKay, et al. [2006]; and A History of Blacks in Kentucky, by M. B. Lucas.

Kentucky Counties with Negro Slave Owners in 1830
[book source: Free Negro Owners of Slaves in the United States in 1830 compiled and edited by C. G. Woodson, pp.4-6]
 

  1. Adair County (1) - Swaney Burbridge
  2. Barren County (1) - Leander Force
  3. Bourbon County (9) - Peter Allen, Sally Wallace, Isaac Jones, James Monday, Peter Grant, Gabriel, Allen Heathman, Edmon Hurley, Stephen Brooks
  4. Bracken County (1) - Lethia Thomas
  5. Bullitt County, [Mt. Washington] (2) - Isaac Ellison, Bash Oldridge
  6. Christian County, [Hopkinsville] (1) - Michael Cocke
  7. Clark County (2) - John Dudley, George Birth
  8. Fayette County (13), [Lexington] (15) - Nancy Scott, Peter Whiting, Robert Gray, Charlotte Lewis, Richard Bird, William Tucker, Jesse Smith, Nathan Keifer, Benjamin Tibbs, Jane Brittain, Hannah Travis, Wittshire Brackenridge, Harvey Phillips, Frank Lee, Nicholas Black -- Peter Davis, Adam B. Martin, Isaac Howard, William Burk, Benjamin Caulden, Peter Francess, Ben Williams, Anaka Shores, Jer'y Allen, Alexander Allen, Samuel Dunlap, Rhody Clark, Robert Smith
  9. Fleming County (1) - Jacob Truett
  10. Franklin County, [Frankfort] (6) - Harry Mordecai, David Jones, John Ward, Burrel Chiles, John S. Goin, Samuel Brown
  11. Graves County (1) - Alias Keeling
  12. Green County (1) - Thomas Malone
  13. Harrison County (1) - Benjamin Berton
  14. Henderson County (1) - Liverpool Pointer
  15. Jefferson County (1), [Louisville] (5) - J. T. Gray -- Betty Cozzens, David Straws, Frank Merriwether, Daniel Brigadier, Sally
  16. Jessamine County (3) - Judith Higenbothan, Anthony of colour, William a man of color
  17. Knox County (1) - Isaiah Goins
  18. Logan County, [Russellville] (5) - Nicholas Valentine, Robert Buckner, Edward Jones, Isham Husketh, William Barber
  19. Madison County (1) - George White
  20. Mason County (9), [Washington] (3) - Thomas F. Bowles, John Glasford, Edward Cooper, H. Markham, Roseann Wann, Charles More, Ann Baylor, Edmond Toliver, Acam Diggs -- Peggy Miles, John Lightfoot, Isaac Johnson
  21. Mercer County (9) - Anderson Harris, Ben Harris, Spencer Easton, Fielding Melvin, Jemima Fry, Hercules Jenkins, George Warman, Adam Beaty, Sanko Robinson
  22. Montgomery County (1) - Richard Lee
  23. Nelson County, [Bardstown] (4) - Thomas Smiley, Joe Cocke, Thomas Rudd, George Aud
  24. Nicholas County (1) - George Mallery
  25. Rockcastle County (1) - David Cable
  26. Shelby County (1), [Shelbyville] (3) - John Edwards -- Peter Short, Hannah Harris, Jim Henson
  27. Warren County (2) - Jane Palmore, Bazzle Russell
  28. Washington County, [Springfield] (2) - Robert C. Palmer, Ignatius Sandy
  29. Woodford County (13) - Joe Miller, Lawrence Corbin, Betty Tutt, Billy Campbell, Henry Mason, Tom Stratford, Ambrose Hardy, Richard Harvey, Samuel Cloak, Nathan Twiner, Joel Hawkins, Moses Weaver, Jordan Ritchie

Subjects: Free African American Slave Owners, Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county A-C], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county D-J], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county K-M], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county N-Z]
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American Slavery in Mexico - Tom West
According to author J. K. Turner, Tom West was born free in Kentucky and later became a slave in what was described as an experiment in Mexico. Turner met West in 1908-1909. West had earned $2 per day in a brickyard in Kentucky, and he left the U.S. for Mexico by way of Florida along with 80 other African Americans, with the promise of earning $3.75 or 7.5 pesos per day. They were to work at coffee and rubber plantations in La Junta. Once in Mexico the group was locked away at night, and armed guards watched over them as they worked during the day. Unbeknownst to West and the other African Americans, they had been sold as slaves to an American plantation owner and were forced to work off their purchase price before they would be paid for their labor. Those who escaped and then captured were beaten, and according to Turner, the Diaz government turned a blind eye to the whole affair. African American slavery in Mexico was considered a failure, and Tom West was freed after two years on the plantation but remained in Mexico. For more see Barbarous Mexico, by J. K. Turner.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Mexico

African American Studies and Research Collection at the University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky African American Studies and Research Program has a materials collection of over 1,000 items pertaining to the study of African Americans. The collection is housed on-campus in Breckinridge Hall and is available 8:00am-4:30pm. The list of titles are availalbe online: videos and books, and includes such titles as Aunt Jane of Kentucky and Africans in Kentucky. Contact the African American Studies and Research Program for additional information.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

African American Union Sailors from Kentucky
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African Americans Returning to the U.S from Honduras [Jimmy Johnson]
End Year : 1940
Jimmy Johnson was born in either 1911 or 1913 in Louisville, KY, and lived at 99 W. Springfield Street in Roxbury, MA. Not many African Americans from Kentucky had migrated to Massachusetts before or after the Civil War. The U.S. Census shows just one free African American from Kentucky living in Massachusetts in 1850, 28 in 1870, and in 1920, 184. Among those 184 there were three Johnson families, but Jimmy Johnson was not listed as a member of any of those families. According to the La Perla (ship) passenger list for July 1932, Johnson was described as a "USC (United States Citizen)=Stowaway=From Boston." The La Perla was owned by the United Fruit Company, a U.S. Corporation based in Boston, MA; the company traded in tropical fruit grown in the West Indies and Central American countries and sold in the U.S. and Europe. United Fruit Company was the largest employer in Central America and managed the postal service in Guatemala. Its steamers transported the fruit, mail, passengers, and cargo between the United States and Central America. In 1928, Roy T. Davis, the U.S. Minister to Costa Rica, wrote the Secretary of State, Frank B. Kellogg, to say the State Department had been informed that Marcus Garvey (UNIA) had received a large donation and monthly subscriptions from Negro employees of the United Fruit Company in Costa Rica. Garvey was denied a return visit to Costa Rica and prohibited from visiting Honduras. The exact number of American Negroes living in Honduras prior to the 1930s is not known. May Ford, a former slave from New Orleans, LA, had sailed to Honduras in 1868 with his former owner, George Henry Friarson, aboard the steamship Trade Winds. Friarson had plantation interests in Honduras and returned to the U.S. after a brief stay. May Ford decided to remain in Honduras and had various jobs, including work on fruit plantations. He was about 76 years old when he returned to the U.S. in 1904 aboard the Anselm (owned by the United Fruit Company); May's passage was paid for by Friarson's son. In 1910, six year old Beresford L. Grant, a U.S. citizen, returned from Honduras with his mother, Wilhelmina Grant (born in England). The Grants and two other Negroes born in England arrived at the Tampa, FL, Port on June 6, 1910, aboard the Carrie W. Babson. The Grants and one of the other passengers had been living in Belize, British Honduras. There were other American Negroes who returned to the U.S. from Honduras as stowaways. In 1932, Kentucky native Jimmy Johnson returned to the Boston, MA, Port aboard the La Perla; he had boarded the ship at the Puerto Castilla Port in Honduras. The port had been built by the United Fruit Company and was used to transport goods from the Castilla Division of the United Fruit Company. The Castilla Division operated until the late 1930s. It is not known why Jimmy Johnson went to Honduras, what his occupation was while there, or why he stowed away on the La Perla to return to the United States. Two other stowaways from Honduras were 20-year-old Amos Bailey from Hattiesburg, MS, and a man who went by the name Vans Miller (18 or 19 years old) and claimed to be a U.S. citizen from Philadelphia, PA. According to the Galveston, TX, Passenger List, Bailey and Miller had been laborers in Honduras, and both left from the Puerto Castilla Port aboard the Comoyagua (owned by the United Fruit Company) and returned to the U.S. at the Galveston Port on June 24, 1936. Bailey was admitted to the country as an American Negro citizen, but Miller, who spoke both English and Spanish, was denied. For more about the United Fruit Company see Bananas: how the United Fruit Company shaped the world, by P. Chapman. For more about the United Fruit Company in Honduras see M. Moberg, "Crown colony as Banana Republic: the United Fruit Company in British Honduras, 1900-1920," Journal of Latin American Studies, vol. 28, issue 2 (May 1996), pp. 357-381. For more about the fleets owned by the United Fruit Company, see The Ships List website for the United Fruit Company. For more about Marcus Garvey and Honduras, see The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, vol. 12, edited by R. A. Hill. For more about May Ford, see "Back to slavery home," The Washington Post, 08/22/1904, p. 12.
Subjects: Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA)
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Roxbury, Massachusetts / New Orleans, Louisiana / Chicago, Illinois / Hattiesburg, Mississippi / Belize and Puerto Castilla, Honduras, Central America

African Baptist Church (Henderson, KY)
Start Year : 1840
The African Baptist Church of Jesus Christ, located in Henderson, KY, held its meetings in fields, barns, or any location where they could gather. In 1840, the African Baptist Church received membership into the white Baptist Church, according to "African Baptist Church," pp. 476-480 in the History of Henderson County, Kentucky, by E. L. Starling. The group stayed within the white Baptist Church until 1845, when the African Baptist Church was organized, after which the group held services in the basement of the white Baptist Church. Willis Walker, a slave, was chosen as the pastor of the African Baptist Church, and the church purchased his freedom for $560. Rev. Walker died during a creek baptism and was replaced by Rev. Henry Green from Danville, KY. In 1866, the African Baptist Church split: 33 members left to form the Race Creek Baptist Church. In 1866, the African Baptist Church separated from the white Baptist Church and moved into its first building, the old Methodist Church building at the corner of Elm and Washington Streets. The church was renamed First Missionary Baptist Church, and several more churches would grow out of the congregation: St. Paul's Baptist Church in Corydon; St. John Baptist Church; New Hope Baptist Church; Walnut Hill Baptist Church; and Fourth Street Baptist Church.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky

African Baptist Church (Paris, KY)
Start Year : 1857
The African Baptist Church in Paris, KY, grew out of the Baptist Church of Christ (for whites) that was constituted in Paris, KY, in 1818. The Baptist Church of Christ had begun in Tennessee in 1808 and spread to other southern states. During a revival in winter of 1827-28, 46 slaves were received into the Baptist Church of Christ in Paris, KY. In 1832, the Reformation Movement caused the church to split and in 1833 the church was reorganized with 48 white members. As the church grew, there would again be African American members, most of whom were slaves. In 1855, these African American members were separated from the Baptist Church of Christ by Elder J. B. Link, with their own church known as the African Baptist Church, that would be led by Reverend Elisha W. Green from 1855-1893. Rev. John Fisher was pastor for one year. Rev. Henry Battle Webster from Woodford County was pastor of the church beginning in 1896. The congregation built a church on 8th Street in 1858 and today the church is known as First Baptist at 128 W. 8th Street. The church was initially under the rule of the Baptist Church of Christ with the threat that if they attempted to act independently of the parent church, then the African Baptist Church would be closed. In the summer of 1884, a branch of the African Baptist Church split and became the Zion Baptist Church in Paris, KY. The split was due to the dissatisfaction of members who wanted church services to be held more than twice a month; Rev. Green was pastor of two churches and led services at each church twice a month. He refused to give up one church in order to have services every Sunday at the other church. He did, however, help organize the Zion Baptist Church with the help of Rev. M. M. Bell, the church was first located in Marble Hall on Main Street. The first pastor was Rev. W. R. Davis. Today the Zion Baptist Church is located at 312 W. 8th Street in Paris, KY. For more information see "New Baptist Church," The Bourbon News, 12/16/1910, p.3; A History of Baptists in Kentucky by F. M. Masters; and see "Rev. Henry Battle Webster, D.D." on pp.225-226, and "Zion Baptist Church, Paris, KY" on p.282 in Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky.

See photo image of Zion Baptist Church in Paris, KY, on p.119 of Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky, at NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

African Church (Danville, KY)
Start Year : 1846
The first Saturday of August 1846, the First Baptist Church for whites, separated its 126 African American members into their own independent church known as the African Church. The first pastor was Rev. Jordan Meaux, a property owner who was consider a good leader in the church. Rev. Henry Green was the second minister, followed by Rev. Isaac Slaughter who served for 26 years. For more information and a picture of the church, see Negro Baptist History, 1750-1930 by L. G. Jordan
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

The Afro-American Mission Herald (Louisville, KY) (newspaper)
Selected issues of The Afro-American Mission Herald, 1900-1901, are available online at the Kentucky Digital Library. The newspaper was originally published in Louisville, KY, by the Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention of the United States of America. The publication kept missionaries and others informed about the work being done abroad. The newspaper remained in Louisville for eleven years and was then moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The newspaper changed its name to Mission Herald, and it is still in print today. For more information and access to the issues available online, see the Kentucky Digital Library, The Afro-American Mission Herald website.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Agricultural and Mechanical Association of the Colored People of Bourbon County
Start Year : 1874
On January 16, 1874, the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky passed an act for the benefit of the Agricultural and Mechanical Association of the Colored People of Bourbon County. The act, referring to the organization's colored fair, prohibited booths and the selling of refreshments or liquor within a half mile of the fairgrounds while the fair was in progress. The fair was held in Millersburg, KY. For more see Chapter 58 of the Laws of Kentucky in Acts Passed at...Session of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth, printed in 1874 at the Kentucky Yeoman Office in Frankfort, KY [available full view via Google Book Search] .
Subjects: Colored Fairs & Black Expos
Geographic Region: Millersburg, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Air Force Historical Research Agency
The agency is a historical depository for the United States Air Force historical documents. The documents collection was originally located in Washington D.C. after World War II and is presently at Maxwell Air Force Base near Montgomery, AL. The depository has the world's largest collection of documents on U.S. Military aviation. Documents in the collection contain information on Kentucky African Americans, including the formation of the 477th Bombardment Group [Roy Chappell was a member], described in The Freeman Field Mutiny: a study in Leadership [.pdf]; and African American servicemen in Kentucky in Black Americans in Defense of Our Nation and Blacks in the Marine Corps. Visit the Air Force Historical Research Agency for much more information.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, National Resources
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Maxwell Airforce Base, Alabama

Akins, Clyde B., Sr.
Birth Year : 1950
Clyde B. Akins, Sr. is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Bracktown, KY, and an educator. He is also author of From burden to blessing. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a B.A. in Social Work, and his Master's of Divinity and Doctorate of Ministry are from Lexington Theological Seminary. He served in the Army as a multilingual interpreter and taught foreign languages, having studied eight languages. Akins was appointed to the Kentucky Board of Education in 2006. He was appointed by Governor Steve Breshear to the University of Kentucky Board of Trustee in 2011. For more see First Baptist Church Bracktown; "Governor Fletcher Appoints Members to the State Board of Education," 02/24/2006 (a Kentucky government press release); F. E. Lockwood, "Expanding a ministry - First Baptist Church Bracktown moves into its $6.5 million facility with lots more room and outreach opportunities," Lexington Herald-Leader, 07/08/2006, Main News section, p. A1; the Akins interview, "Future Black Males Working Academy," Connections with Renee Shaw, #215, 06/02/2007, at KET (Kentucky Educational Television); and L. Blackford, "Lexington minister joins UK board - Breshear fills number of college posts," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/02/2011, p.A4.
Subjects: Authors, Civic Leaders, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Bracktown, Fayette County, Kentucky

Alexander, Henry
Birth Year : 1802
Henry Alexander was a slave from Mayslick, KY, who purchased his freedom when he was 21 years old. He was a merchant and is listed in the 1840 U.S. Federal Census as a free man. Henry and his wife, Lucy Alexander, had a daughter, Maria Ann Alexander, who graduated from Oberlin College with a Literary Degree in 1854 and taught for a while in Covington, KY. Maria married Mifflin W. Gibbs, and the couple moved to Vancouver Island, Canada. Mifflin Gibbs would become the first African American judge in the United States. Harriet A. Gibbs was one of the couple's five children. For more see F. Fowler, "Some undistinguished Negroes," The Journal of Negro History, vol. 5, issue 4 (Oct. 1920), p. 485.
Subjects: Fathers, Freedom, Migration North, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Mayslick, Mason County, Kentucky / Vancouver Island, Canada

Alexander, Kelvin E.
Birth Year : 1969
Kelvin Alexander was born in Clinton, KY, the son of Mildred Alexander. He now lives in Bowling Green, KY, where he is serving a second term as vice president of the American Postal Workers Union Local 453, the first African American to serve in that position. Alexander is a graduate of Hickman County High School and Western Kentucky University, where he earned a B.A. in mass communication and minored in public administration. He is a member of the Oakland Mount Zion Baptist Church in Oakland, KY, and will soon be a deacon. He is also a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. Kelvin and his wife Diana are the parents of William Alexander. Information submitted by Mildred C. and Kelvin E. Alexander.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Postal Service, Religion & Church Work, Fraternal Organizations, Union Organizations
Geographic Region: Clinton, Hickman County, Kentucky / Oakland and Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Alexander, Lucy
Birth Year : 1803
Lucy, who was born in Kentucky, was the wife of Henry Alexander. Though Henry had purchased his freedom at the age of 21, it is not known if Lucy had aways been free or was freed sometime after her birth; she is listed in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census as a free person. Lucy and Henry worked strenuously to earn money to send their children to school. Their daughter, Maria A. Alexander, graduated from Oberlin College with a Literary Degree in 1854. Maria married Mifflin W. Gibbs, and the couple moved to Vancouver Island, Canada. Mifflin Gibbs would become the first African American judge in the United States. Harriet A. Gibbs was one of the couple's five children. For more see They stopped in Oberlin: Black residents and visitors of the Nineteenth Century, by W. E. Bigglestone.
Subjects: Migration North, Mothers
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Oberlin, Ohio / Vancouver Island, Canada

Ali, Muhammad [Cassius Clay]
Birth Year : 1942
Born in Louisville, KY, as Cassius Clay, he was the son of Marcellus and Odessa Grady Clay. In 1964 he joined the Nation of Islam and changed his name to Muhammad Ali; he is also referred to as "The Greatest." Ali won the light heavyweight gold medal as a member of the U.S. Boxing Team at the 1960 Olympics in Rome, Italy. He was taken to California by his lawyer, Alberta O. Jones, to train under Archie Moore. Jones, a Kentucky native, also established a trust fund for Ali, who was an exceptional boxer with great promise. His career included 56 wins in 61 bouts with 37 KOs, and he was three-time heavyweight champion of the world. Ali was honored as Sportsman of the Century in 1999. For more see King of the World, by D. Remnick; and see photos and video at The Official Muhammad Ali website.

Photo of Muhammad Ali at website.
 
Photo of Muhammad Ali in Explore UK.
Subjects: Boxers, Boxing
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Rome, Italy

Allen, Anthony, Sr.
Birth Year : 1857
Anthony Allen was a horse trainer from Lexington, KY, who lived in Baltimore, MD. He was born in 1857, the son of Daniel and Caroline Allen [sources: 1880 U.S. Federal Census and 1870 Freedman's Bank Record #239]. In 1900, Anthony Allen was the husband of Mary F. Allen; the family of four lived in Baltimore, MD, on Cathedral Street [source: U.S. Federal Census]; they had lived at 936 Brevard Street earlier [source: R. L. Polk & Co.'s Baltimore City Directory for 1900, p. 82]. In 1910 there were five children in the family, and in 1920 the family of six lived at 122 Patapsco Avenue [source: U.S. Federal Census; and Baltimore City Directory, 1920, p. 349]. In 1920, Anthony Allen spent part of the year as a horse trainer in Delaware County, PA, and part of the year in Baltimore, MD [source: U.S. Federal Census]. By 1930, Anthony Allen was listed with no job title; his wife Mary was the proprietor of a lunch room [source: U.S. Federal Census]. Anthony Allen is named in the last paragraph of the article, "They will live as long as racing does," Capital Plaindealer, 12/20/1936, p. 6. There are a number of articles in the Sun and listings in the Daily Racing Form with Anthony Allen listed as a horse trainer.
Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Migration North
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Baltimore, Maryland

Allen, Bessie Miller and Henry
The Allens were the first African American social workers in Louisville, KY, they managed the Kentucky Home Society for Colored Children. In the 1920 U.S. Federal Census, Henry (b.1877 in KY) is listed as the janitor of the home, and Bessie is listed as the matron and probation officer. The Allens were the parents of author and librarian Ann Allen Shockley. Bessie Allen was a graduate of State University [Simmons University in Louisville]. She started a nonsectarian Sunday School in 1902. She was also head of the Colored Department of Probation Work and opened the Booker T. Washington Community Center, which offered domestic classes for boys and girls. She also organized a marching band for African American children. Bessie Allen (1881-1944) was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Anna and John D. Miller. For more see "Ann A. Shockley" in A Biographical Profile of Distinguished Black Pioneer Female Librarians (selected), by L. G. Rhodes; and Life Behind a Veil, by G. Wright.
Subjects: Fathers, Mothers, Social Workers, Sunday School, Community Centers and Cultural Centers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Allen, Charles E.
Birth Year : 1931
Allen was born in Cynthiana, KY, to Isham and Mildred Wilson Allen. He is a graduate of Central State University (B.S.) and served in the military before earning his M.S. at the University of Southern California. Allen was a teacher and math specialist in the Los Angeles school system and served as a consultant to the state departments of education in Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico, California, Nebraska, Oregon, and North Carolina. He was director of the National Council of Teachers of Math, 1972-1975, and has authored several math books, including Supermath, Adventures in Computing, and Adventures in Computing Book II. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1975-1997.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Cynthiana, Harrison County, Kentucky / Los Angeles, California

Allen, Elmer Lucille
Birth Year : 1931
Mrs. Elmer Lucille Allen was born in Louisville, KY. She is a 1953 chemistry graduate of Nazareth College [now Spalding University], and in 1966 she became the first African American chemist at the Brown-Forman Company in Louisville. Allen was one of three women employed at the company, where she held the title of senior analytical chemist. She retired from the company in 1997 and returned to college to earn a MA in creative arts in ceramics from the University of Louisville in 2002. Allen's art work has been displayed at various galleries in Louisville, Indiana, Kansas, and many other locations. She was the first recipient of the Community Arts Lifetime Local Achievement Award in 2004, and that same year was also recognized as a Woman of Distinction. In 2007 she was one of the "Women of Spunk" honorees. Allen is also actively involved as a community volunteer with organizations such as the Louisville Western Branch Library Support Group, Inc. For more see J. Egerton, "Actors Theatre will honor Women of Spunk," The Courier-Journal, 12/02/2007, Arts & Travel section, p. 1I; and "Black Achievements in the Arts Recognized by Governor's Awards" a kyarts.org press release on 01/31/2005.
See "U of L: Elmer Lucille Allen" at YouTube.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Chemists, Civic Leaders, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Allen, Frank, Jr.
Allen was elected to the City Council of Burkesville, KY, in 1969, becoming the city's first African American elected official, and was re-elected in 1971. For more see "36 city officials include mayor, police court judge," Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials [1972], by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 10.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Burkesville, Cumberland County, Kentucky

Allensville (KY) Emancipation Celebration
For more than 123 years, on or around August 8, the Allensville community has been celebrating the Emancipation of African Americans. About 200 people attended the celebration in 1992. For more see "Kentuckians celebrate Emancipation Proclamation," The Evansville Courier, 08/10/1992, Metro section, p. A4.
Subjects: Freedom, Emancipation Day / Juneteenth Celebrations
Geographic Region: Allensville, Todd County, Kentucky

Alleyne, Delores Gordon
Birth Year : 1932
Delores Gordon Alleyne was the first African American woman admitted to the University of Louisville Medical School; she graduated in 1957. Dr. Alleyne was born in Pulaski, TN, and her family later moved to Louisville. She attended Louisville Municipal College for Negroes; when the school was closed, she completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Louisville. Dr. Alleyne has taught at several medical schools; she retired in 1999 as a pediatrician with the Los Angeles County Health Department. For more see "Celebration of Change," Medicine Magazine (Fall/Winter 2004), by the University of Louisville School of Medicine.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration West
Geographic Region: Pulaski, Tennessee / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Los Angeles, California

Always there: the African-American presence in American quilts
This book written by C. Benberry (Kentucky Quilt Project), includes Kentucky quilters such as Fanny Catlett, who was born in 1859 in Birmingham, Kentucky, and Minnie Benberry of Grand Rivers, Kentucky; and a quilt made by slaves in Richmond, Kentucky. The title Always there: the African-American presence in American quilts was first used for the traveling quilt exhibit that was shown around the country between 1992-94. For more see K. Johnson, "Quilt Records Donated to U of L Archives and Records Center," The Kentucky Archivist: Newsletter of the Kentucky Council on Archives, Spring 2000, p. 4.
Subjects: Quilters, Collectibles
Geographic Region: Birmingham, Marshall County, Kentucky (no longer exists) / Grand Rivers, Livingston County, Kentucky / Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky

American Baptist Home Missionary Society Schools in Kentucky
Start Year : 1895
In 1895, the American Baptist Home Missionary Society had 619 African American students in its Kentucky schools: State University [Simmons University], Louisville; Cadiz Normal and Theological College [headed by Rev. W. H. McRidley], Cadiz; Simmons Memorial College [headed by Robert Mitchell], Bowling Green; Henderson Normal School, Henderson; Glasgow Normal School, Glasgow; and Baptist Church School, Danville. For more see the Sixty-third Annual Report, of the American Baptist Home Mission Society, May 30th and 31st, 1895, pp.115-117 [full view available via Google Book Search]. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Religion & Church Work, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Cadiz, Trigg County, Kentucky / Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Glasgow, Barren County, Kentucky / Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

American Fugitive Slaves in the British Metropolis (London, England)
Start Year : 1851
The "American Fugitive Slaves in the British Metropolis" was an ad hoc association formed August 1, 1851, by American fugitives who were in exile in London, England. The organization was established to assist fugitive slaves in finding jobs, education, and settling in England. The organization was founded in response to the passing of the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 in the United States, which had prompted a greater influx of fugitives in England. There was also the influence of British abolitionists and the American abolitionist who were touring England, Scotland, and Wales; the men were lecturing against slavery in the United States. One of the touring abolitionists was William Wells Brown. Author R. J. M. Blackett mentions in his book, Building an Antislavery Wall, p.5, that not all American fugitives in England were destitute or survived by begging in the streets [as the Avery sisters had attempted]. Blackett noted that fugitive William Watson had enrolled in school. The "American Fugitive Slaves in the British Metropolis" was a short-lived organization. For more information see R. J. M. Blackett, "Fugitive slaves in Britain: the odyssey of William and Ellen Craft," Journal of American Studies, April 1978, v.12, no.1, pp.41-62; and Slave Life in Virginia and Kentucky by F. Frederick.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Freedom, Fraternal Organizations, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Kentucky / London, England, Europe

American Woodmen, Kentucky
Start Year : 1918
The American Woodmen started as a white organization in Colorado in 1901, but became a black organization in 1910, founded by Cassius M. White and Granville W. Norman, both from Austin, TX [source: "History of American Woodmen - the Supreme Camp of the American Woodmen (AWSC)" in Fraternal Organizations by Alvin J. Schmidt]. Members were from 16 states (including Kentucky).  AWSC was a fraternal and benefits organization that provided aid to deceased members, widows, heirs, and orphans via the American Woodmen Life Insurance Company. The organization also provided social and community services. In 1994, the AWSC merged with the Woodmen of the World, and Assured Life Association. In Kentucky, in 1924, the American Woodmen Uniform Ranks met at Camp Nicholas Biddle in Louisville, KY. The Kentucky camp existed as early as 1918 when they participated in the national campaign to recruit 1,000 new members [source: "American Woodmen growing, female band practicing," Cleveland Gazette, 08/10/1918, p.1]. In 1922, C. C. Trimble from Louisville, KY, was the National Supervisor of the American Woodmen [source: Ad "Here the Hon. C. C. Trimble," Advocate (Kansas City, Kansas), 04/21/1922, p.1]. There continued to be a membership in Kentucky in 1937 [source: "American Woodmen to hold ninth quadrennial meeting in August," Plaindealer (Kansas City), 06/04/1937, p.2]. Around 1978, the American Woodmen Life Insurance Company could no longer write insurance certificates in Kentucky and most other states.  

  See photo image of American Woodmen Uniform Ranks met at Camp Nicholas Biddle in Louisville, KY, photo in Kentucky Digital Library.

 
Subjects: Fraternal Organizations

American/Brazilian Slaver "Kentucky" (ship)
Start Year : 1844
In 1844, the slave ship Kentucky, which had been sold by Americans to Brazilians, sailed to Inhambane and Quelimane, Mozambique, under the American flag. The crew was made up of both Americans and Brazilians. Inhambane and Quelimane, located on the southeast coast of Africa, were off limits to the slave ship by treaty. Nonetheless, once the cargo of 530 adult Africans was shackled aboard the Kentucky, the ship was turned over to the Brazilians, and all or some of the American crew returned to Brazil on another ship. The next day, the Africans attempted an unsuccessful revolt. Those thought to be guilty were tried by the ship captain, and 46 African men and one woman were hanged, then shot in the chest and thrown overboard. In addition, 20 men and six women were severely flogged. When the ship reached Brazil, the entire incident was recounted and recorded at the U.S. Consul in Rio de Janeiro and forwarded to the U.S. Congress [House Ex. Doc. 61 & Senate Ex. Doc. 28, both in 30th Congress]. In 1845, Consul Henry A. Wise (Virginia) appealed to President James K. Polk to take a stand against pirate slave ships sailing under the American flag as license for the types of barbarity exhibited on the Kentucky and the slave trade in general. No stand was taken. The Kentucky was eventually found by a British armed vessel, it was tucked away on the Angozha [Angoche] River in Mozambique. With no way to escape by sea, the crew of the Kentucky set the ship on fire and escaped by land. For more see The American Slave Trade: an account of its origin, growth and suppression, by J. R. Spears (published in 1900); and An Exposition of the African Slave Trade: from the year 1840, to 1850 inclusive, by U.S. Department of State, Representative Meeting (1851) [both titles available in full-text via Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Lynchings, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky, Slave Trade (U.S.)
Geographic Region: Inhambane and Quelimane, Mozambique, Africa / Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, South America / United States

An African American History and Geography of Lexington
By Dr. Jeffery A. Jones, Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Human Behavior, College of Public Health, at the University of Kentucky.
Subjects: Genealogy, History
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Anderson, Carey L, Jr.
Birth Year : 1950
Anderson was born in Louisville, KY, and earned a B.A. in architecture at the University of Kentucky in 1973. In 1977, he became the first African American architect licensed in Kentucky and by 1980 was the first in the state to establish an architectural firm, Anderson Associate Architects. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1980-2006.
Subjects: Architects
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Anderson, Carl L.
Anderson became the first African American member of the Bardstown, KY, City Council in 1975, winning a second term in 1977, a third term in 1979, and a fourth term in 1981. For more see "Three Kentucky cities have black mayors," in 1982 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, 6th Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 21.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky

Anderson, Charles H.
Birth Year : 1924
Anderson was born in Crab Orchard, KY. In 1969 he became the first African American to win a magistrate election in Jefferson County, KY, and, in 1975, he became the first circuit judge in Jefferson County, 3rd Chancery Division. Anderson was also the first African American candidate for election to the Kentucky Supreme Court, in 1982. For more see "Magistrates, constables are only black county officials," in the Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials [1972], p. 9; and "Eleven blacks hold county level posts," in the Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Fifth Report [1978], pp. 11-12, both by the Commission on Human Rights; and Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Judges
Geographic Region: Crab Orchard, Lincoln County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Anderson, Derek
Birth Year : 1974
Born in Louisville, KY, Anderson, a 6'6" guard who played high school ball at Doss High School in that city, averaging 24.7 points his senior year. He played college ball first at Ohio State, from 1992 to 1994, scoring 15.5 points per game. He then transferred to the University of Kentucky (UK) in 1994, sitting out one year before seeing playing time during the 1995-1996 season with the team that won the 1996 NCAA Championship. He was drafted in 1997 by the Cleveland Cavaliers, chosen as the 13th pick in the first round. Over the years he played for a number of NBA teams and retired at the end of the 2007-08 season. Derek Anderson played in more than 500 games; he had a career high 35 points in a 2000 game and scored 1,269 points in the 2000-01 season. For more see Derek Anderson at basketball-reference.com and articles in local newspapers and sports publications such as Sports Illustrated.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Anderson, Ezzrett, Jr.
Birth Year : 1920
Ezzrett Anderson, Jr. was born in Nashville, AR, according to the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. He became one of the first African Americans from a predominantly African American school to play professional football when he joined the Los Angeles Dons in 1947. Anderson had attended Kentucky State University in Frankfort, KY, where he played football. He also played professional football with the Los Angeles Mustangs. He played for the Hollywood Bears in the Pacific Coast League when they won the title. He also played in the Canadian Football League for seven seasons (1948-1954) and was inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in 2010. In addition to playing football, Ezzrett Anderson, Jr. was also an actor and appeared in 20 Hollywood films. For more see Smith, T., "Outside the pale; the exclusion of Blacks from the National Football League, 1934-1946," Journal of Sport History, 15, no. 3 (Winter 1988); and Pro Football Hall of Fame, General NFL History: African-Americans in Pro Football.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Football, Migration North, Migration West
Geographic Region: Nashville, Arkansas / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Canada

Anderson, Florence G.
Birth Year : 1891
In 1915, Florence Anderson was the first African American to be appointed State Supervisor of Colored Rural Schools in Kentucky. She was born in Louisville, KY, and was a graduate of Louisville Central High School and Hampton Institute [now Hampton University]. Anderson had been a domestic science instructor at Denton Institute in Maylon in 1911. She was next a domestic science instructor at Tuskegee Institute, and she left that post in 1913 to teach domestic science at the Colored Institute held in Hopkinsville, KY, during Summer School. In 1914, Anderson was a teacher at State University [Simmons College, KY], and later a school supervisor in Winchester, KY. She had been a school teacher in Maryland, before returning to Kentucky in 1915 to become State Supervisor of Colored Rural Schools. By 1916, Anderson had been replaced as Supervisor of the Colored Rural Schools. Florence Anderson was the daughter of Dr. Charles W. Anderson, Sr. (1865-1931) and Mildred Saunders Anderson. She was an older sister of Kentucky's first African American legislator, Charles W. Anderson, Jr. For more see "Miss Florence Anderson," Freeman, 06/26/1915, p.3; see last paragraph on p.263 of Negro Education, Department of the Interior, Bureau of Education, Bulletin, 1916, volume II, No.39; see "Miss Florence Anderson," Freeman, 09/23/1911, p.8; see "Miss Florence Anderson," Freeman, 07/12/1913, p.2; see "Miss Anderson" in the third paragraph of the column "Kentucky's Capital," Freeman, 01/03/1914, p.1; see "Miss Florence Anderson," Freeman, 08/15/1914, p.3; and see "Institute," Hopkinsville Kentuckian, 07/06/1912, p.1.
Subjects: Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Anderson, Mattie E.
Birth Year : 1853
Mattie E. Anderson, who was born in Ohio, used her own money to open Frankfort Female High School in 1871 to provide African American teachers for Franklin, Fayette, and Woodford Counties in Kentucky. Anderson was the principal and a teacher at the school. She is listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census as a school teacher who was boarding at the home of Peter and Julia Smith. Peter Smith was a barber and his home was located on Broadway in Frankfort. Mattie Anderson is listed as a mulatto, in some sources, her race is given as white. Another teacher boarding at the home was Lucretia Newman from Michigan, who was also listed as a mulatto woman. The third person boarding at the house was 14 year old Winnie Scott who would become a teacher in the Frankfort Colored School. For more see "Miss Mattie E. Anderson" in Noted Negro Women: their triumphs and activities, by M. A. Majors; Library Services to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones, p. 18; and "Frankfort: Miss Mattie E. Anderson, Teacher," The American Missionary, vol. 32, issue 9 (September 1878), p. 276 [available online at Cornell University Library, Making of America website]. See also the NKAA entry for African American Schools in Frankfort and Franklin County, KY.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Ohio / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Fayette and Woodford Counties, Kentucky

Anderson, Sammy Louis "Shake"
Born and raised in Louisville, KY, Anderson is a bassist, guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He has worked with Donna Summer, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Earth Wind & Fire, The Indigo Girls, Crystal Lewis, New Breed, and many others. As a songwriter, he was signed to Warner Brothers/Chappel for six years. His musical work with movies includes Dr. DooLittle, Boys on the Side, and Austin Powers. He has performed on Good Morning America, The Tonight Show, and Superbowl XXXVII. Anderson thought that his career had come to an end in 2004 when he was told that he was dying; gastroesophageal reflux disease had caused his esophagus to detach from his stomach, and one of his lungs deflated. After more than nine months in the hospital, Anderson overcame the odds and recovered. His album, Stories from Sammy Louis, is his tribute to another chance in life. The album was recorded at the St. Claire Studio in Lexington, KY. This entry was submitted by Michael L. Meeks. For more see the Shake Anderson website; and J. L. Puckett, "Friends of 'Shake' Anderson to unite for benefit," Courier-Journal, 09/03/2004, Weekend Extra section, p. 12W.
Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Anderson, Sandford Woodford and Polly Ann
Sanford Anderson, Sr. (b.1836) was born in Kentucky, the son of a slave woman and her white master named Woodford. His mother was sold after he was born, and Anderson was given his freedom and his father's last name. When he was a young man, Sanford left his father's plantation and went to work on the Anderson farm; he then took the name Anderson as his last name. He married a slave named Polly Ann (b.1842) and established a blacksmith business. The family moved to [Springheld] Springfield, Ohio, in 1877 and Anderson supported his family with his new blacksmith business. In the 1880 U.S. Federal Census, the couple is listed with nine children, and all living in the Mad River District in Ohio. Dorothy Evans Bacon was the great-granddaughter of Sanford and Polly Anderson. Highlights of the Anderson family history can be found in the article "The Bacons: a fighting spirit on the color line," Newsweek, Special: Fiftieth Anniversary Issue, vol.101, issue 10, February, 1983, pp. 33-34, 36. The article includes a photo of Dorothy Evans [Bacon] and her parents.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Blacksmiths, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Kentucky / [Springheld] Springfield, Ohio

Anderson, W. H.
Birth Year : 1843
In 1852 the separate coach bill became law in Kentucky. In 1893, Rev. W. H. Anderson, from Indiana, and his wife, Sarah J. Steward Anderson, tested the law by sitting in the white section of the train and refusing to move. They were put off the train and subsequently filed a $15,000 lawsuit against L & N Railroad. U.S. District court ruled the law unconstitutional and void for interstate commerce, and the Andersons won their lawsuit. W. H. Anderson was a Civil War veteran, having served in the 13th Regiment U.S.Colored Infantry. He was the minister of McFarland Chapel in Evansville, IN, in 1889, when he became the first minister in the state to receive an honorary Doctor of Divinity from State University in Louisville, KY [Simmons University]. For more see Kentucky's Black Heritage, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights; A. A. Marshall, "Kentucky's separate coach law and African American response, 1892-1900," Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, vol. 98, issue 3 (2000), pp. 241-259; and "Rev. W. H. Anderson, D.D." on pp.36-42 in Our Baptist Ministers and Schools by A. W. Pegues.

See photo image of Rev. W. H. Anderson on p.299 in Sermons, Addresses and Reminiscences and Important Correspondence, With a Picture Gallery of Eminent Ministers and Scholars by E. C. Morris, online at Documenting the American South.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Vigo County, Indiana / Kentucky

Anderson, William Louis
Birth Year : 1868
William L. Anderson was born in Dover, KY. He was editor of several newspapers: the Cincinnati American Reformer (1892-1894), Rostrum (1897-1902), and the Cincinnati Pilot (1911-1912). He was also a publisher of books. Anderson was also an alternate delegate-at-large to the Republican National Convention in Chicago in 1912. He was the husband of Sarah Elizabeth Anderson [source: U.S. Passport Application #448711]. In Novemer of 1918, William L. Anderson applied for a passport in order to travel to France for YWCA work [source: U.S. Passport Application #43510], on the application, Anderson gave his birthdate as August 31, 1868. On a second application made July 2, 1924, Anderson gave his father's name as Louis Anderson, born in Dover, KY [source: U.S. Passport Application #448711]. William L. Anderson was to visit five European countries for business and travel, and return to the United States within three months. In 1930, Anderson and his wife lived on Stone Street, in Cincinnati, OH, and they lived on Richmond Street in 1940, according to the U.S. Federal Census records. For more see Who's Who of the Colored Race, 1915.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, YMCA (Young Men's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Dover, Mason County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Archives of Ontario (Canada)
The archives is a program of the Ontario Ministry of Government Services. The archives are made up of a number of collections, including government records, genealogical records, an art collection, and sound and moving images. The exhibit, Black Canadian Experience in Ontario 1834-1914: Flight, Freedom, Foundation, included the stories of former Kentuckians, such as Solomon Moseby and the Emancipation of Susan Holton. Holton and her children were taken to Ohio by Mary Kirk and given their freedom in 1848. The family moved on to Canada. For more information contact the Archives of Ontario.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, National Resources
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Ontario, Canada

Ariel/Hall (Camp Nelson, KY)
After the Civil War, the refugee camp at Camp Nelson became the community known as Ariel. The school, Ariel Academy, was founded in 1868, with initial funding support coming from the Freedmen's Bureau and teachers supplied by the American Missionary Association. The school was led by Howard Fee, son of John G. Fee and Gabriel Burdette, a former slave from Garrard County, KY. The community of Ariel was later named Hall. For more see Historic Jessamine County, The Hall Community, an official Jessamine County website; and A Utopian Experiment in Kentucky: integration and social equality at Berea, 1866-1904, by R. B. Sears.
Subjects: Communities, Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Camp Nelson, Jessamine and Garrard Counties, Kentucky / Ariel, Jessamine County, Kentucky / Hall, Jessamine County, Kentucky

ARL Career Enhancement Program Participants
Start Year : 2009
The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and academic libraries partnered for the first time in 2009 to offer the Career Enhancement Program. The University of Kentucky was one of the nine host library locations. The Career Enhancement Program was funded by the Institute of Museums and Library Services (IMLS). The program provides current Library Science students from an underrepresented group the opportunity to gain practical experience in an academic research library setting. Three fellows completed an eight week program at the University of Kentucky Libraries in 2009: Anissa Ali, from Detroit Michigan, a Wayne State University library student; Katie Henningsen, from New York, a Long Island University library student; and Bethany McGowen from South Carolina, a University of South Carolina library student. For more information about the fellows see Association of Research Libraries Career Enhancement Program, a University of Kentucky Libraries website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Arnett, Charles H.
Birth Year : 1858
Born in Henderson, KY, Arnett was an ordained minister, owned a contracting business, and built seven churches (two in Sebree, KY) and a number of homes in Kentucky. For more see Who's Who of the Colored Race, 1915.
Subjects: Businesses, Construction, Contractors, Builders, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Sebree, Webster County, Kentucky

Arnold, Adam S., Jr.
Birth Year : 1922
Arnold is a Lexington, KY, native who became the first African American faculty member at the University of Notre Dame. In 1957, Arnold was hired as a professor of finance, receiving tenure in 1961. He remained at the school for 30 years. In 2002 he received the William P. Sexton Award for outstanding service to the University of Notre Dame. Dr. Arnold received his Ph.D. in finance in 1951 and his MBA in 1948, both from the University of Wisconsin. He is a U.S. Army veteran, having served during WII. For more see "Arnold honored with Sexton Award," Notre Dame Business Magazine Online, Issue 11, 2004.

Subjects: Bankers, Banks, Finance, Financial Advisors, Education and Educators, Migration North, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Notre Dame, Indiana

Arnold, Horacee
Birth Year : 1937
Arnold, born in Wayland, KY, is a professional drummer who began playing while enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard during the 1950s. He added an extra 'e' to his first name when he began performing on stage. Arnold has performed with a number of bands over the years, and many are listed in his biography. His own bands were the Here and Now Company, formed in 1967, and Colloquium III, formed in the 1970s. He was one of the most well-known fusion drummers of his time, and he was involved with electronic programming. Arnold studied composition and guitar composition and taught music at William Paterson College [now William Paterson University] in New Jersey. His recordings include two albums, Tales of the Exonerated Flea, re-released in 2004, and Tribe. He also performed in the educational video, The Drumset. Arnold also performed dance; he toured in Asia with the Alvin Ailey Dance Company [now Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater]. For more see the Horacee Arnold website; and "Horacee Arnold" in the Oxford Music Online Database. On YouTube view photos and listen to Horacee Arnold "Puppett of the Seasons" & "Chinnereth II."

 
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Education and Educators, Military & Veterans, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Wayland, Floyd County, Kentucky

Arthur, Jane
Birth Year : 1828
Born in Knox County, KY, Jane Arthur was owned by Ambrose Arthur, one of the largest slave holders in the county. She was the mother of James and Henry Bond; their father was Rev. Preston Bond of Anderson County, KY. [Preston was the husband of Belinda Arthur, daughter of Ambrose Arthur.] Jane Arthur was the great-grandmother of Julian Bond, civil rights leader and former Georgia Representative and Senator. She died of a stroke when she was in her 90s. For more see The Bonds, by R. M. Williams. *According to Carrie Stewart of Williamsburg, KY, Jane Arthur and her family also lived in Williamsburg.
Subjects: Mothers, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Knox County, Kentucky / Lawrenceburg, Anderson County, Kentucky / Williamsburg, Washington County, Kentucky

Arthur, William R. B. [People's Auxiliary Hospital (St.Louis, MO)]
Birth Year : 1868
Arthur, a surgeon and physician, was born in Kentucky; he received his M.D. from Howard University Medical College in 1890. He returned to Kentucky to practice medicine in Louisville, to teach at the Louisville National Medical College, and to serve as a surgeon at the Auxiliary Hospital. Arthur left Louisville and moved to St. Louis, MO, where he founded the People's Auxiliary Hospital and Training School in 1898. The three-story hospital building, which had 12 rooms for up to 15 patients, was located at 1001 N. Jefferson Avenue. For more see the William R. B. Arthur entry in A Historical, Biographical and Statistical Souvenir, by Howard University Medical Department [available full-text at Google Book Search]; "Hospital for Colored Patients," Medical Review, vol. 39 (Jan. 7 - July 1, 1899) [available full-text at Google Book Search]; and Glimpses of the Ages, vol. 1, by T. E. S. Scholes [available full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Education and Educators, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration West, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / St. Louis, Missouri

Asher v Huffman
Start Year : 1943
Seven-year-old Bruce Asher was the son of Boyd and Hattie Asher. His parents wanted him to attend the school for whites in Leslie County, KY. He looked to be what was considered a white child, but Roy Huffman, the school principal, refused to let Bruce attend the school because, according to Huffman, Bruce was colored. The Asher's sued Huffman, hoping that a mandatory injunction would allow Bruce to attend the school. It was determined by the Kentucky Court of Appeals that Bruce Asher was indeed a colored child because his maternal great-grandmother had been a Negro slave. The Kentucky Constitution, KRS 158.020 sec.187, was used to require that separate schools be maintained for white children and Negro children [children wholly or in part of Negro blood or having any appreciable admixture thereof, regardless of whether they show the racial characteristics of the Negro]. Judge Roy Helm of the lower court had ruled in favor of Huffman, and the Ashers appealed. The Appeals Court affirmed and adopted the lower court's decision, the injunction was refused, and Bruce Asher was not allowed to attend the school for white children. For more see Asher et al v Huffman, Court of Appeals of Kentucky, 295 Ky. 312, 174 S.W. 2d 424, 1943 Ky; and KRS 158.020 - Separate schools for white and colored children. Repealed, 1966 (.pdf). [available online]
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Court Cases, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Leslie County, Kentucky

Ashland Colored Branch Library (Boyd County, KY)
Start Year : 1935
The location of the Ashland Colored Branch Library was not given in the 1935 Library Annual Report that was submitted to the Kentucky Library Commission by the Ashland Public Library. Services were not provided to Negroes at the main library. The colored library was located within the Booker T. Washington School according to the 1947 Library Annual Report that was submitted to the Library Extension Division by the Ashland Public Library. The library had been located in the school as early as 1941. Emma Brown Horton served as the librarian from 1941-1947. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky by R. F. Jones
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Colored Public Libraries in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Ashland, Boyd County, Kentucky

At Leisure's Edge
Start Year : 2001
A one hour documentary of Kentucky's historic black parks, by B. L. Shearer, Jr. For more see At Leisure's Edge.

Watch the documentary online at BoydShearer.com.
Subjects: Parks
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Atkins, Calvin Rupert and Dora G. Graham Atkins
Calvin R. Atkins (1870-1923) was born in Hadensville, KY. He was the husband of Dora G. Graham Atkins (1875-1923), who was born in Pembroke, KY. In 1895, Calvin Atkins became a certified teacher for the Todd County Colored School District [see his copy of certification, IHS]. Dora Atkins was also a certified teacher in Todd County [copy of certification, IHS]. In 1900 the family had moved to Anderson, IN, according to the U.S. Census. Dr. Atkins practiced medicine there for a few years, and in 1904, the family moved to Indianapolis. Dr. Atkins received his license to practice in Indianapolis on August 2, 1905; he was an 1895 graduate of Howard University Medical School [now Howard University College of Medicine], according to the 16th Annual Report of the Indiana State Board of Medical Registration and Examination [full view at Google Book Search]. Dr. Atkins was a physician for the Flanner House, which was founded in 1898 to provide health, social, and educational assistance to African American families migrating from the South to Indianapolis [archival information, IHS]. His dedication to the Flanner House is mentioned in a speech given by Aldridge Lewis around 1918 [digital copy of speech, IHS]. He was one of the promoters and vice president of Lincoln Hospital, a hospital for African Americans founded in 1909 in Indianapolis on North Senate Avenue. The hospital had both doctors and dentists, and there were 12 rooms that could hold up to 17 patients. The hospital also had a nurses training program. Dr. Atkins was involved in establishing a similar hospital in Marion, IN. Dr. Atkins was a prominent member of the city of Indianapolis for 19 years before he was murdered in June of 1923. For more see "Calvin R. and Dora G. Atkins" entry in Who's Who in Colored America 1927; Indiana Blacks in the Twentieth Century, by Thornbrough and Ruegamer; the Papers of Calvin R. Atkins and the Dora Atkins Blackburn Papers, some items available online in the digital collections at the Indiana Historical Society; "Suspected slayer who shot himself soon after murder dies," The Indianapolis Star, 06/18/1923, p. 16.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Hadensville, Todd County, Kentucky / Pembroke, Christian County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Atkinson Literary and Industrial College [H. V. Taylor]
Birth Year : 1892
H. V. Taylor was one of the presidents of the Atkinson Literary and Industrial College in Madisonville, KY. The school was founded in1892 and was dedicated in 1894 by Bishop Alexander Walters, who led the effort to build the school, along with the African Methodist Episcopal Zion (AMEZ) Church. According to author H. Ardis Simons, there were 145 students and five female graduates in 1897 [source: The History of Education in Hopkins County, Kentucky by H. A. Simons]. The school was originally located on two acres at Seminary and Lake Streets in Madisonville, and in 1903, the school trustees sold the property and moved the school outside the city. The school was located on 36 acres and had eleven grades, three of which were at the high school level. There were 2 two-story buildings that served as dormitories and classrooms. There were five college graduates in 1906. According to author Simons, the school staff members were Bishop Clinton who was the school president; Mr. Shaw, principal; S. F. Collins; Mrs. M. E. Littlepage; Mrs. W. E. Shaw; and Miss C. M. Shirley. James Muir was president of the school in 1917. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1927; Atkinson College, Madisonville, dedicated, Nov. 16, 1894; "Atkinson Literary and Industrial College" on pp.269-270 in Negro Education, v.2, by the Department of the Interior [available at Google Books]; and Bulletin: announcements for ... by the Atkinson Literary and Industrial College. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Madisonville, Hopkins County, Kentucky

Aubespin, Mervin R.
Birth Year : 1937
Born in Louisiana, Mervin Aubespin in 1967 became the first African American to hold the post of news artist at The Courier-Journal newspaper in Louisville, KY. He joined the newsroom staff during the 1968 Civil Rights unrest in Louisville. Regarded as an expert on racism and the media, Aubespin is a past president of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and was given the Ida B. Wells Award for his efforts to bring minorities into the field of journalism. Aubespin was also the founder of the Louisville Association of Black Communicators. He was awarded the Distinguished Service to Journalism Award in 1991, given by the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communications (ASJMC). He was a 1995 Inductee into the University of Kentucky School of Journalism Hall of Fame. Aubespin retired from The Courier Journal newspaper in 2002. For more see Mervin Aubespin at KET's Living the Story; and P. Platt "Keeping the faith: on Merv Aubespin's retirement," The Courier Journal, 08/11/2002, Forum section, p. 03D.

  View Mervin Aubespin's interviews in Civil Rights in Kentucky Oral History Project.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Opelousas, Louisiana

Aunt Charlotte and King Solomon
Aunt Charlotte was a slave brought to Lexington, KY, in the late 1700s. She was freed and inherited property after her owners died. She supported herself by selling fruit and baked goods at the open market. She and William "King" Solomon had known each other in Virginia, and Aunt Charlotte's story is tied to his in the literature. Solomon was a white vagrant who supported his drinking with wages earned as a digger of cisterns, graves, and cellars. In the spring of 1833, as punishment for his vagrancy, local officials put Solomon up for sale as a slave for one year; at the end of that year he was to return to court. Aunt Charlotte purchased Solomon for $13; she outbid two medical students who were investing in a future cadaver. Aunt Charlotte set Solomon free, and he promptly managed to get liquor, later making his way back to Aunt Charlotte's home, where he passed out on a Thursday. He woke on a Saturday to find that many had died or were dying of cholera while others were evacuating the city. Aunt Charlotte was preparing to leave, but when Solomon refused to go, she would not leave him. People were dying quicker than they were being buried--the gravediggers had deserted the city. Solomon took up his shovel and began burying the dead. His dedication probably prevented further spread of the disease. Both Solomon and Aunt Charlotte survived the epidemic. When Solomon returned to court, the judge shook his hand and others thanked him for his heroic deeds. Solomon died in the poorhouse in 1854; he is buried in the Lexington Cemetery. In 1908 a large tombstone was placed at his grave. It is not known what became of Aunt Charlotte. For more see "King Solomon of Kentucky" in Flute and Violin and other Kentucky Tales, by J. L. Allen; and "King Solomon, Heroic Gravedigger" in Offbeat Kentuckians, by K. McQueen.
Subjects: Alcohol, Freedom, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Inheritance
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Virginia

Aunt Lou's Underground Railroad Tomato
The following information comes from the Southern Exposure Seed Exchange website and from the unpublished book manuscript on gardening by retired UK Librarian Kate Black. "[Heirloom carried through the Underground Railroad by an unnamed black man as he crossed to freedom in Ripley, OH, from KY. Seeds were passed on to Aunt Lou, who passed them on to her great nephew, and eventually on to heirloom tomato enthusiast Gary Millwood.]" Kate Black interviewed Gary Millwood prior to his death in May of 2013.  It was during their conversation that Milwood introduced her to Aunt Lou's Underground Railroad Tomato, a dark pink fruit that he found in Ohio.  For more see Aunt Lou's Underground Railroad Tomato, a Tatiana's Tomatobase website.

  See video "Saving Tomato Seeds - Aunt Lou's Underground Railroad" on YouTube.
Subjects: Agriculturalists, Produce
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Ohio

Austin, Bobby W.
Birth Year : 1944
He was born in Jonesville, an African American community in Bowling Green, KY. Austin earned a B.A. in Economics and Sociology from Western Kentucky University in 1966; a Master's in Sociology from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee in 1968; and a Ph. D. from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, in 1972. Austin relocated to Washington, D.C. He is the founder and editor of the Urban League Review and a partner with Austin Ford Associates. Austin founded the Village Foundation, which focuses on reconnecting African American males with society. He is co-author of Repairing the Breach and Wake Up and Start to Live, both of which focus on African American males. For more see the Bobby Austin entry at The HistoryMakers website.
Subjects: Authors, Civic Leaders, Sociologists & Social Scientists, Urban Leagues
Geographic Region: Jonesville, Warren County, Kentucky (no longer exists) / Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Washington, D. C.

Austin, Helen C.
Birth Year : 1925
Helen Cloud Austin, from Harlan, KY, was the second African American student to attend the University of Louisville School of Social Work, from which she graduated in 1953. With the help of Congressman Henry B. Gonzalez, she became the first African American professional hired at the San Antonio State Hospital, a mental health facility in Texas. In 1983, Austin was the San Antonio Social Worker of the Year and the Texas State Social Worker of the Year. She was inducted into the San Antonio Hall of Fame in 1985. Austin retired from the hospital in 1987. Two years later, she was included in the booklet titled Salute to Black Women Who Make Things Happen by the National Council of Negro Women. After her retirement, Austin continued to be active with several organizations, including serving as president of the Board of Directors for the San Antonio Halfway House, Inc., she started the Senior Citizen Ministry at St. Paul United Methodist Church, and she continued her work with Crosspoint, a nonprofit that provides reentry residential services for ex-offenders, an organization that Austin co-founded in 1963. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta. The Helen Cloud Austin Papers are at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Information about Crosspoint and other updates were provided by Joan Cheever.

See photo image and additional information about Helen C. Austin at the NASW Foundation website.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Medical Field, Health Care, Corrections and Police, Religion & Church Work, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents, Care of the Elderly
Geographic Region: Harlan, Harlan County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / San Antonio, Texas

Austin, Jacqueline
Austin has been principal of the John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Louisville, KY, since 1990. Under Austin's direction, the school became the first public school in the state to adopt the Montessori teaching method. This and other reforms helped improve academic performance, attendance, and parental involvement at the school. Austin also expanded school services to include GED adult education classes. In 1996, Austin was chosen as a Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award recipient. For more see Jacqueline Austin at the Milken Family Foundation website, and "KERA: A tale of one school," Phi Delta Kappan, vol. 79, issue 4 (Dec. 1997), pp. 272-276.

Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Autobiography of a Female Slave, by Mattie Griffith
Start Year : 1856
The Autobiography of a Female Slave was written by Owensboro, KY, native Mattie Griffith. The book was initially thought to be a Kentucky slave narrative, and even today it is still occasionally mistaken as such. Martha "Mattie" Griffith was a white abolitionist who wrote the book in hopes of raising money to emancipate her slaves and resettle them in a free state. A few weeks after the book was published, Griffith admitted writing the story based on real life incidents that she had witnessed. The Louisville Courier denounced the book as abolitionist propaganda. The book did not sell well, but Griffith received money from the American Anti-Slavery Society in 1858 that she used to free and resettle her slaves. Griffith and her sister, Catherine, had inherited their slaves from their deceased parents, Catherine and Thomas Griffith, who died in 1830. The girls were raised by family members in Louisville, KY, and around 1854 they were both living in Philadelphia, PA, where Mattie wrote her book. Beginning in 1859, she wrote a serialized anti-slavery novel with a mulatto heroine from Kentucky: "Madge Vertner," published in the National Anti-Slavery Standard newspaper, July 1859-May 1860. In 1866, Mattie Griffith married Albert Gallatin Browne from Massachusetts. She died in Boston in 1906. This entry was suggested by James Birchfield, Curator of Rare Books at the University of Kentucky Libraries. For more information see the Mattie Griffith Browne entry in the American National Biography Online database; Slippery Characters, by L. Browder; and J. M. Lucas, "Exposed Roots: from pseudo-slave narratives to The Wind Done Gone, the authenticity of representations of black history has always been in question," 02/27/2002, at Indyweek.com (Independent Weekly).
Subjects: Authors, Freedom, Migration North, Inheritance
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania / Boston, Massachusetts

Averitt, William Rodney "Bird"
Birth Year : 1952
William R. Averitt, known as "Bird," was the nation's leading college basketball scorer during the 1972-73 season; he averaged 33.9 points per game as a player at Pepperdine University. In 1971, he had broken the freshman scoring record three times, and his highest one game score was 59 points when Pepperdine beat Chapman College [source: "Former Hoptown All-Stater: 'Bird' Averitt scores 59 breaking his own record at Pepperdine." Kentucky New Era, 01/16/1973, p.13 (online at Google News)]. Other Kentuckians on the Pepperdine freshman team were Tom Johnson and George Wilson from Union County High School. Averitt, a 6' 1", left-handed shooting guard from Hopkinsville, KY, had been an All-State player at Hopkinsville High School. He was a star basketball player at both the high school and college level.  After his junior year at Pepperdine, Averitt was drafted by the San Antonio Spurs, then an ABA team. He played three years in the ABA and was a member of the 1975 championship team the Kentucky Colonels. When the ABA and the NBA merged, Averitt was drafted by the Buffalo Braves and played for a little over a year before joining the Brooklyn Nets for the rest of the 1977-78 season. In total, William R. Averitt played 5 years of professional basketball.  For more see J. Crowe, "For Ex-Pepperdine basketball star William "Bird" Averitt sky was the limit," Los Angeles Times, 01/25/2010; Bird Averitt at Basketball-Reference.com; and William "Bird" Averitt at the American Basketball Association Players website.

 

  See photo image of William "Bird" Averitt at the American Basketball Association Players website.

 
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Avery, Rose and Minnie [Becca Richards]
During the last two months of 1857, there were several articles in the newspapers in London, England, about two fugitive slaves from Kentucky said to be named Rose and Minnie Avery. The young women were between 18 and 20 years old. In November, the women were seen begging on Black-man Street, both were said to be dressed in the white attire that U.S. slaves wore. The women were taken to the police station by Constable Hinchliffe, 85M, who said he had witnessed one of the women carrying a box used to collect money, and the other woman carried a placard that read "Fugitive Slaves." At the Southwark Police Court, the women said that they were fugitive slaves from a plantation in Kentucky and had escaped to Philadelphia, PA, after their father died and their mother was sold. They said that a benevolent person and free colored persons had taken care of them and later paid their passage on the ship "Jane" that took them to Greenock, England. They supposedly had arrived the previous spring and had not been able to find employment in domestic services in Greenock, so they had walked to London and were living on Bishopsgate-street with a Mrs. Flynn and her husband Mr. Flynn who was a laborer. The women said that they still had not found employment and had resorted to begging on the street. When ask if they had any skills, they said that they could knit. The women had one shilling and the magistrate gave them 4s from the poor box. The news of the slave fugitives from Kentucky was soon printed in the newspapers. The women were described in the North Wales Chronicle newspaper as very attractive, well educated, quadroons who were half-castes ["Story of two Kentucky fugitive female slaves," 11/21/1857, issue 1607]. The police station received numerous letters with small sums of money and offers to take-in the young women. The women had already received a portion of the money, and they were to buy wool for the making of gloves and caps, which they were to sell rather than begging on the streets. Each week, they received money from the donations received at the Southwark Police Station. In December, on their return to court, the women said that they had rented a room from a Mrs. Smith in Crown-court, Wentworth-street, for 2s per week. This was verified by the constable. The women presented the gloves and caps that they said they had made, and they showed how much money they had in their possession. They said that they had been given 5s and 10s from strangers who had heard about their plight, but most of their money had been used for food and a few clothes. The magistrate ordered that they be given a few more shillings from the contributions sent to the court on their behalf. The women also presented a letter that was supposedly from a man in Brighton who wanted to take them in as a nurse and to work in his shop, but the letter was not signed. The magistrate ask that the women report back to court in a week, and sooner if the man who wrote the letter came back to see them. In the mean time, the women's story would continue to be investigated by the Mendicity Society and the Southwark Police Court. As the women were leaving court, a New York merchant gave the constable £2 with which to purchase clothing and boots for the women. The women received the items. When they returned to court, there were three reports, one from the Mendicity Society, one from police investigator Officer Hewett, and one from the M division of the police department. According to the reports and the witnesses who were also in the courtroom, the women were impostors. The older of the two women lived with a black man on Crown-court, Wentworth-street. She may have been from America, but only recently arrived in England. The younger woman lived with an Irish woman who may have been her mother. Her father was an older black man who lived at St. Luke's Workhouse, Chelsea, and the younger woman had visited him and given him money. She had also written a letter to him and signed her name as Becca Richards. Also, the ship "Jane" that had supposedly brought the two women to England, had not been in Greenock for 18 months. The younger woman and the older black man denied knowing each other, though witnesses in the courtroom identified her as the person who had visited him several times and said that she had written the letter. The magistrate concluded that the younger woman was a fake, and therefore, both women were fakes. The women were directed to leave the court and were warned that if they were picked up again for begging, then they would be severely punished. Benevolent persons who had sent money to the courts and the police station, for the women's care, would be contacted and asked if they wished their money to go to the women through application, or have the money added to the poor box. For more see "Southwark. - Kentucky Fugitive Slaves," The Morning Post, 11/18/1857, p.7; "Southwark," Daily News (London, England), 11/18/1875, issue 3591; "Fugitive slave girls from Kentucky," The Morning Chronicle, 11/26/1857, issue 28371; "Fugitive slave girls in London from Kentucky," Hampshie Advertiser & Salisbury Guardian, 11/28/1857, p.3; "The Fugitive slaves from Kentucky," The Morning Chronicle, 12/1/1857, issue 28375; "Kentucky fugitive slaves; extraordinary deception," North Wales Chronicle, 12/12/1857, issue 1609; and "The Kentucky fugitive slaves turn out to be impostors," Hampshire Advertiser & Salisbury Guardian, 12/12/1857, p.3.
Subjects: Freedom, Hoaxes, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania / Greenock and London England, Europe

Ayers, Rhoda R.
In 1976, Ayers became the first African American member of the Newport, KY, Independent Board of Education. During that year, she was also one of two African American women on a local school board in Kentucky. Ayers was employed by the U.S. Postal Service. For more see "17 blacks are local school board members," in 1978 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Fifth Report, by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 26.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Postal Service, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky

Bailey, Doris
In 1973, Doris Bailey was the first African American and first woman to be hired by the city of Columbia, KY. Bailey was a meter maid with the police department. For more see Human Rights News, July 1973, p. [2]. See online article "Doris Bailey likes her job" at ColumbiaMagazine.com.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Columbia, Adair County, Kentucky

Bailey, James W., Jr.
In 1985, James W. Bailey, Jr. became the first African American elected to the West District Magistrate of the Simpson County, KY, Fiscal Court. For more see "Kentucky's only black sheriff in Christian County," in 1988 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Seventh Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 17.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Simpson County, Kentucky

Baker, Bettye F.
The following information comes from Dr. Bettye F. Baker, a native of Louisville, KY, who lived on South Western Parkway; the family home was built by Samuel Plato. Dr. Baker was a member of the first African American Girl Scout Troop in Louisville, Troop 108. The troop leader, Ms. Sarah Bundy, lived in the 27th Street block of Chestnut Street. Dr. Baker was the first African American to represent Kentucky at the Girl Scout National Encampment in Cody, Wyoming, and the first African American president of the Kentucky State Girl Scout Conference. She won 3rd prize in the Lion's Club essay contest, "Why I love America," in 1951, but was denied entry into the Brown Hotel to receive her prize at the Lion's Club luncheon. The luncheon was moved to the Seelbach Hotel so that Dr. Baker could receive her prize [see Time article online]. Dr. Baker was among the first African Americans to attend the University of Louisville (U of L), where she earned her undergraduate degree. She was the first African American voted into the U of L Home Coming Queen's Court in 1958. She earned her doctorate in educational administration at Columbia University, her dissertation title is The Changes in the Elementary Principals' Role as a Result of Implementing the Plan to Revise Special Education in the State of New Jersey. Dr. Baker is the author of What is Black? and has published a number of articles, poems, and two juvenile novels that are currently in-print. Her most recent book, Hattie's Decision, will be published in 2010. Dr. Baker has been a columnist with Vineyard Gazette since 2005, she writes the Oak Bluffs column, opinion, and book reviews, all under the byline Bettye Foster Baker. Dr. Baker lives in Pennsylvania. See "Kentucky: sweet land of liberty," Time, 04/16/1951. For more information contact Dr. Bettye F. Baker.

See photo image of Dr. Bettye F. Baker by Gettysburg College, a flikr site.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Scouts (Boys and Girls), Homecoming Queens, Pageants, Contests, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Children's Books and Music
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Cody, Wyoming / Pennsylvania

Baker, Charles
Baker was born in Millersburg, KY. He was the first African American member of the Millersburg City Council, elected in 1975 and re-elected in 1977. For more see "Mayor, 45 councilmen are black city officials," in 1978 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Fifth Report, by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 21.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Millersburg, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Baker, Charles William
Birth Year : 1941
Charles W. Baker was the second African American to serve as a Jefferson County, KY police officer, [the first was William Parker Mitchell]. In 1977, Charles William Baker filed a discrimination lawsuit in the Federal District Court against Chief Edgar Helm, the Jefferson County Police Executive Board, and the Jefferson County Police Merit Board. The lawsuit was in response to the failure to hire and promote African American police officers within the Jefferson County Police Department. The case was handled by attorney Juanita Logan Christian with support from the Urban League [Juanita L. Christian had a private law practice in Louisville and now practices law in Michigan]. The suit was settled with a ten year consent decree that would increase the number of African American police officers hired and promoted, and open the rank for assistant chief. Though Charles W. Baker scored the highest on the exam for the promotion, he was still denied rank, and retired from the Jefferson County Police Department in 1982. Charles W. Baker was born in Louisville, KY, the son of Helen Keeylen Baker and Thomas Baker. He is a graduate of Male High School in Louisville; earned his associate degree and bachelor's degree in business administration while enlisted in the U.S. Marines; and earned his M.S. in political science at Eastern Kentucky University. He was a police officer in Washington D. C., and transferred to the City of Louisville Police Department in 1968. Baker transferred to the Jefferson County Police Department in 1972, he was hired by Chief Russell McDaniel. The lawsuit filed by Baker, and the consent decree signed by County Judge Mitchell McConnell, opened the door for more African American officers to be hired in Kentucky, and other southern states followed Kentucky's lead. In the Jefferson County Police Department, the first African American woman officer was Jackie Dulan, and Carol Hickman was the third woman officer to be hired. Information for this entry was provided by Charles W. Baker during a phone interview on February 14, 2012. For more information see, Charles W. Baker, et al., v. County of Jefferson et al., Case No. C-80-8039(L)(A) and the consent decree at the U.S. District Clerk of Court in Louisville, KY.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Military & Veterans, Corrections and Police, Urban Leagues, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Baker, David
Birth Year : 1881
Born in Louisville, KY, Baker invented scales that were used in elevators to prevent overloading. He was also co-inventor of the streetcar transom opener in 1913, the high water indicator for bridges in 1915, and a number of other inventions. For more see Who's Who of the Colored Race, 1915; and The Pride of African American History: inventors, scientists, physicians, engineers..., by D. Wilson and J. Wilson.
Subjects: Inventors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Baker, Houston A., Jr.
Birth Year : 1943
Houston Baker, born in Louisville, KY, is a distinguished essayist, poet, and activist-scholar. Baker is a graduate of Howard University and the University of California-Los Angeles. He has received numerous awards, including the 2003 J. B. Hubell Award for lifetime achievement in the study and teaching of American Literature. Author of more than 20 books and many, many more articles, he has been editor of Black Literature in America and editor of the journal American Literature. For more see Houston Baker in the video Roots and First Fruit; The African American Almanac, and Directory of American Scholars.

  See Houston A. Baker, Jr. webpage at Vanderbilt Univeristy.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Poets
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Baker, McHouston "Mickey"
Birth Year : 1925
Mickey Baker, born in Louisville, KY, spent his younger years in orphanages and learned to play music in school bands. In 1940, he ran away to New York. Baker is a guitarist who has played on hundreds of recording sessions, including those of Ray Charles and Ivory Joe Hunter. Some of his songs are Animal Farm, Baker's Dozen, Hey Little Girl, and Love is Strange. His album Wildest Guitar was released in 2003. For more see Blues Who's Who, by S. Harris; and Mickey Baker at the allmusic website. View 1962 video of Mickey Baker, "What'd I Say" at Ina.fr.

Subjects: Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / New York

Ball, Richard
Birth Year : 1874
Richard Ball was an amateur cyclist from Louisville, KY. He was one of the competing African American cyclist in Kentucky, and said to be one of the fastest. In 1899, he went to Indianapolis to compete in a race. Ball was employed as a waiter at the Galt House Hotel [source: Caron's Directory of the City of Louisville for 1898, p.116]. Richard Ball was born in Tennessee, the son of Mary Ellis, and he was the husband of Maggie Ball [source: 1900 U.S. Federal Census]. His past time as a cyclist, then called a wheelman, was not a main source of income for Richard Ball. In Louisville, colored wheelmen belonged to the Union Cycle Club, said to be the largest African American cycling club in the South [source: Ethnicity, Sport, Identity edited by J. A. Mangan and A. Ritchie, p.20]. Colored wheelmen were barred from membership and from participating in events sponsored by the Louisville Wheelmen, and from membership to the League of American Wheelmen (L. A. W.). The color line was an issue that came up at the biannual 1894 L. A. W. Convention held in Louisville, KY; Louisville attorney, Colonel William W. Watts, put forth the motion that would limit L. A. W. membership to whites only. The vote was split 108 for, 101 against, but a two thirds majority was need, so the motion was brought forward the following year and it passed. In June of 1894, the L. A. W. chairman explained that the vote had only denied Colored wheelmen membership, not the right to participate in L. A. W. sponsored races, nor did it impact a cyclist's amateur status. For more see Richard Ball in the column "Spokes from a wheel" on p.2 of the Indianapolis Recorder, 06/17/1899; Highway History: The Road to Civil Rights, The League of American Wheelmen, a Federal Highway Administration website; and "Colored wheelmen may race," The Roanoke Times, 06/15/1894, p.2 [article available online at Chronicling America].
Subjects: Migration North, Bicycles, Cyclist, Cycling, Wheelmen
Geographic Region: Tennessee / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Ballard, John and Amanda
John (1830-1905) and Amanda Ballard (b. 1840-died before 1900) were the first African Americans to settle in the hills above Malibu; the site, Negrohead Mountain [a refined version of the name], was named in recognition of the Ballards early pioneering presence in the area. There was an effort underway to rename the peak Ballard Mountain. John Ballard, a former slave from Kentucky, was a blacksmith, a teamster, and a firewood salesman. He was a free man when the family arrived in Los Angeles in 1859. John was able to earn enough money to purchase 320 acres near Seminole Hot Springs, and the family later moved near Santa Monica. John helped found the First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Los Angeles; the services were first held in 1872 in the home of co-founder Biddy Mason. Mason, like Ballard, had been a former slave; she won her freedom, along with 13 others, in an 1856 California court case. Mason settled in the city of Los Angeles. It is not known how John Ballard gained his freedom. When the Ballards moved to their mountain home, the family was sometimes harassed; their house was burnt down in an attempt to run them out of the area, but the Ballards refused to leave. John, and Amanda, who was born in Texas, first appear in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census. The couple had seven children according to the 1870 Census, all of whom were born in California. By 1900, John Ballard was a widow and his daughter Alice, who was a nurse, and two grandsons, were living with him. For more see Happy Days in Southern California, by F. H. Rindge [John Ballard is not referred to by name but rather as an "old colored neighbor"]; Heads and Tails -- and Odds and Ends, by J. H. Russell; B. Pool, "Negrohead Mountain might get new name," Los Angeles Times, 02/24/2009, Domestic News section; and R. McGrath, "Santa Monica peak renamed Ballard Mountain," Ventura County Star, 10/07/2009, Local section. For more on Biddy Mason see The Power of Place, by D. Hayden.

See video about John Ballard and the naming of Ballard Mountain, "Local activists responsible for 'Negrohead' Mountian name change," a thegriot.com/NBC News website.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration West, Religion & Church Work, Blacksmiths, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Los Angeles, California

Ballew, Joseph S.
Birth Year : 1857
Joseph S. Ballew was one of the first African American police officers in Omaha, Nebraska. He was a South Omaha patrolman, having joined the Omaha Police Department on June 21, 1915 [source: Omaha Memories, by E. R. Morearty]. Joseph Ballew was born in Pulaski County, KY. The family name is spelled a number of ways in the U.S. Census, and Joseph's last name is spelled "Blew" in the U.S. Army Register of Enlistments and in the book, On the Trail of the Buffalo Soldier II, by I. Schubert and F. N. Schubert. The Ballew family was living in Mt. Gilead, KY, in 1870, according to the U.S. Census, and three years later, Joseph Ballew enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served with the 9th Cavalry until his discharge at Camp Bettens, WY, in 1892. He settled in Omaha, NE, and worked as a laborer prior to becoming a patrolman. Ballew was the husband of Dora Ballew, whom he married in 1896. Joseph Ballew's race is listed inconsistently in the census: Black, White, and/or Mulatto. He is listed in the Omaha City Directory as Colored. On September 28, 1919, the Omaha Race Riot occurred. Will Brown, who was Black, was accused of attacking Agnes Loebeck, who was white. Brown was taken from jail by a mob and brutally killed: his body was burned. There were other deaths unrelated to Brown and Loebeck. When calm was restored to the city, the Omaha Police Department was criticized for what was perceived as a lack of effort to prevent the deaths and rioting. Two of the police officers on duty during the rioting were Black [source: see "Omaha" in Race Riots and Resistance, by J. Voogd]. More about the riot can be found online at NebraskaStudies.org.
Subjects: Lynchings, Migration West, Military & Veterans, Corrections and Police, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky
Geographic Region: Mt. Gilead, Pulaski County, Kentucky / Omaha, Nebraska

Baptist Women's Educational Convention
Start Year : 1883
African American Baptist women in Kentucky gathered in 1883 to develop an organization dedicated to raising funds to support Simmons University in Louisville, KY. Simmons was the first higher education institution in Kentucky specifically for African Americans. The meeting was named the Baptist Women's Educational Convention, and Amanda V. Nelson, a member of the First Baptist Church in Lexington, KY, was elected president. The convention was the first state-wide organization of African American Baptist women in the United States. Most of the members were teachers who came from practically every African American Baptist Church in the state. Following the lead in Kentucky, an Alabama women's Baptist educational organization was formed next, and the trend continued in other states during the last two decades of the century. For more see Righteous Discontent, by E. B. Higginbotham.

See photo image of Baptist Women's Educational Convention Board on p.139 in the Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky, at the NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Barbers (Louisville, KY)
Mention of the following African American barbers in Louisville, KY, can be found in The History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, by W. H. Gibson, Sr. : Washington Spradling, David Straws, Henry Cozzens, John Morris, Alexander Morris, Jr., Alexander Morris, Sr., Shelton Morris, Theodore Sterritt, Nathan B. Rogers, J. C. N. Fowles, and Austin Hubbard.
Subjects: Barbers, Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Barbourville (KY) Republican County Committee, Colored Members
Start Year : 1908
Before adjourning the August 1908 County Committee meeting, held in the Barbourville courthouse, William B. Dizney offered a resolution to admit two African Americans to the committee with full power to vote and act upon all subjects. Judge T. T. Wyatt opposed the resolution, but since he was not a member of the committee, the resolution was accepted. The two men, William Beard (1849-1945) and Clay Patton (1854-1944) became the first African American members of the Barbourville Republican County Committee. William Beard is listed in the 1910 U.S. Federal Census as a 60 year old mulatto who lived in Poplar Creek, KY. He was a farmer, the husband of Martha Beard, and the son of Tom and Lila Coffman Beard, according to his death certificate. Clay Patton was also a farmer, he lived in Flat Lick, KY, according to his death certificate. He was the son of Arthur Patton and Elizabeth Arthur Patton. For more see "County Committee," Mountain Advocate, 08/07/1908, p.1.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Barbourville, Poplar Creek, Flat Lick, all in Knox County, Kentucky

The Barclays
Arthur Barclay (1854-1938) served as Secretary of State and was the 14th President of Liberia, Africa from 1904-1912. He changed the term of office from two years to four years and was re-elected three times. His nephew, Edwin J. Barclay (1883-1955) completed the term of President C. D. B. King. Edwin was the 17th president of Liberia and had the term of office changed from four years to eight years; he was re-elected twice. Edwin and his successor were the first African heads of states to be invited to the U.S. [by President F. D. Roosevelt]. Edwin Barclay's visit to the White House marked the first time journalists from African American weekly newspapers were assigned to the White House to cover a diplomatic visit. The Barclay family had been politically active in Liberia since the end of the 1800s; Ernest J. Barclay (d. 1894), had served as the Associate Justice of the Supreme Court and Secretary of State, both in Liberia. Ernest and Arthur were the sons and Edwin was the grandson of former Kentucky slaves who left the U.S. during the Civil War. The family stopped in Barbados where Edwin Barclay's father Ernest, and his uncle Arthur, were born. They were two of the many children of Anthony and Sarah Barclay. In 1865, the family moved to Africa. They were among the 300 West Indians migrating to Liberia, most of whom were from the British West Indies. For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; Dictionary of African Historical Biography, 2nd ed., by M. R. Lipschutz and R. K. Rasmussen; The Political and Legislative History of Liberia by C. H. Huberich; "2 Presidents in one family," Baltimore Afro-American, 06/05/1943, p.3; Liberia by H. H. Johnston and O. Stapf [v.2 available online at Google Book Search]; and "Negro guest in White House," The Sunday Morning Star, 04/04/1943, p.24.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Presidents, National Presidential Candidates and Party Nominees
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Barbados, Caribbean / Liberia, Africa

Bardo, Stephen "Steve"
Birth Year : 1968
Stephen Bardo, born in Henderson, KY, was a noted shooting guard at Carbondale High School (IL) and at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Bardo, at 6'5", scored just over 900 points and had 495 assists during his college career, 1986-1990. His team went to the final four in 1989. He was the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in 1989. He was the 14th pick by the Atlanta Hawks during the second round of the 1990 NBA Draft. Bardo played for the San Antonio Spurs, the Dallas Mavericks, for the Continental Basketball Association, and the Detroit Pistons. He retired from the NBA in 2000, and is a motivational speaker, a sports broadcaster, and also was a sports analyst with CBS Sports and ESPN. For more see Steve Bardo in Basketball-Reference.com; the podcast with Stephen Bardo on The Will Leitch Experience, Episode 2.64, 11/07/2013, at Sports on Earth (SoE); and The Flyin' Illini by Stephen Bardo and Dick Vitale.

 

  See photo image of Steve Bardo and former team members in L. H. Bardo, "Taking Flight," in the Illinois Alumni Magazine, September-October 2004.
Subjects: Authors, Basketball
Geographic Region: Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Carbondale, Illinois

Bardstown Slaves: Amputation and Louisiana Sugar Plantations
Start Year : 1806
Dr. Walter Brashear, from Kentucky by way of Maryland, was owner of four sugar plantations in St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Brashear was a Kentucky slave owner who had grown up in Bullitt County, KY, practiced medicine in Nelson County, KY, and served one term in the Kentucky Legislature in 1808. He performed the world's first successful amputation at the hip joint in 1806. The procedure was done on a 17 year old mulatto slave of the St. Joseph monks in Bardstown, KY; the boy had a badly fractured leg. In spite of the medical notoriety Brashear received, he found that practicing medicine did not generate the profit he wanted. By 1822, Brashear had left medicine and moved his wife, Margaret Barr, their family, and most of their slaves to Louisiana, where Brashear developed sugar plantations. Eli, a brickmaker and distiller, was one of the 25 or so slaves who had arrived in advance of the Brashear family. Three of the slaves were sold shortly after they arrived in Louisiana; Brashear was short of money. The youngest and most skilled of his slaves in Nelson County had been taken to Louisiana, and added to the group were slaves he bought or bartered from family members and his Nelson County neighbors. The first group of slaves were transported by steamboat, and the remainder arrived by flatboat. Brashear would eventually become a wealthy man, but not before the death of his wife, most of his children, and some of the slaves, who died of fevers and cholera. For more see Sweet Chariot, by A. P. Malone; Brashear and Florence Family Papers at the Library of UNC at Chapel Hill; and a discussion of the hip joint surgery on page 646 of The Medical News, vol. LXIII (July-December 1893) [available full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration South
Geographic Region: Bullitt County, Kentucky / Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky / St. Mary Parish, Louisiana

Barlow, Charles H.
Birth Year : 1940
In 1974, Charles H. Barlow was chosen as Citizen of the Year in Morgantown, KY. He was the first African American to serve in an elected office in Butler County, KY; in 1973 he was elected a Morgantown City Council Member and re-elected in 1975 [source: "Area voting: Keith edges Lamastus in Butler judge race," Daily News, 11/02/1975, p.80]. According to information from the Morgantown Mayor's Office, Barlow served as a city council member until 1990. He also served with the Butler County Jaycees and was on the advisory council of the Green River Boys Camp. Charles H. Barlow was born in Hart County, KY, according to the Kentucky Birth Index, and moved to Butler County in the 1960s. This entry was submitted by Roger Givens.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Hart County, Kentucky / Morgantown, Butler County, Kentucky

Barlow, William D.
Barlow, from Summer Shade, KY, was a caretaker and Baptist minister. In 1970 he became the first African American elected to office in Metcalfe County, serving as a constable. For more see Kentucky Black Elected Officials Directory [1970], p. 3, col. B, published by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Religion & Church Work, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Summer Shade, Metcalfe County, Kentucky

Barnes, William
Birth Year : 1856
William Barnes was a career serviceman who was born in Carter County, KY. He was referred to as a "noble soldier" in a 1903 newspaper biography. Barnes enlisted in the U.S. Army 24th Infantry in Indianapolis, IN, on March 5, 1878, according to the Register of Enlistments. He had been working as a blast fireman prior to his enlistment. Barnes earned the rank of corporal and fought in the Victoria Campaign. He received an honorable discharge in 1883, then re-enlisted. During his second term of enlistment, Barnes served in the 10th Regiment of the Cavalry and fought in the Geronimo Campaign. Barnes was promoted to sergeant in 1892 and served in Cuba from 1899 to 1900. He was 1st Sergeant of Troop F of the 10th Cavalry. In 1901, he served in the Philippines on the Island of Samar. First Sergeant William Barnes received the marksman certificate in 1886 and in 1887, and each year from 1890-1893. For more information see "First Sergeant William Barnes. The life story of a typical fighter," Colored American Magazine, 02/01/1903, pp. 56-58.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Carter County, Kentucky

Barnett, Peter W.
Birth Year : 1871
Peter W. Barnett was an author, educator, journalist, publisher, veteran, and musician. He was born in Carrsville, Livingston County, KY, the son of Sarah (b. 1840) and Peter Barnett (1830-1898). [Peter Sr. is listed as white in the 1870 U.S. Federal Census.] Peter W. Barnett taught school in Kentucky. He was educated in Kentucky and Indiana, moving in 1891 to Indiana to attend high school. He went on to become a student for two years at Indiana State Normal in Terre Haute [now Indiana State University]. He was employed at Union Publishing Company, the company that published the first labor paper in Indianapolis; the company later moved its headquarters to Chicago. During the winter of 1896, Barnett opened a night school in Indianapolis. Barnett was also a reporter and representative for the African American newspaper, Freeman. Barnett and J. T. V. Hill [James Thomas Vastine Hill] published the Indianapolis Colored Business Chart Directory in 1898, the goal of which was "to promote industry and race patronage and to encourage business enterprise." J. T. V. Hill was an African American lawyer in Indianapolis, opening his office in 1882 [source: Encyclopedia of Black America, by W. A. Low and V. A. Clift]. He was the first African American to be admitted to the Indianapolis Bar. Peter Barnett would become his understudy while in the service. Barnett was 28 years old when he enlisted in the U.S. Army in Indianapolis, IN, on March 13, 1899. He was assigned to the 24th Infantry, Company L. In December of 1899, while stationed at Ft. Wrangle, Alaska, Peter Barnett, who had been studying law under J. T. V. Hill, gave it up because there were no resource facilities available to him in Alaska. He began to study music and organized a group of musicians (soldiers) that he named the Symphony Orchestra of Company L, 24th Infantry. Most of the men could not read music. Barnett was discharged from the Indiana Colored Infantry on March 12, 1900, at Fort Wrangle, Alaska [source: U.S. Army Register of Enlistments]. For more see "Peter Barnett..." in the last paragraph of the article "Camp Capron Notes," Freeman, 10/01/1898, p. 8; "Night School," Freeman, 10/24/1896, p. 8; On the Trail of the Buffalo Soldier, by F. N. Schubert; quotation from "Local Notes," Freeman, 12/11/1897, p. 4-Supplement; and "From Alaska," Freeman, 12/30/1899, p. 9.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Carrsville, Livingston County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Bates, Susie Sweat
Birth Year : 1947
Susie Bates was born in Richmond, KY. She is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University with a B.S. in Speech Pathology and Audiology. Bates taught at the Kentucky School for the Deaf in Danville, KY, from 1980-1990. She was the first African American at the school to teach daily speech classes in the classroom setting. She also developed a curriculum of basic, everyday living skills for low-functioning deaf students, including teaching the students about the causes of deafness and blindness and providing them with a means of communication. Bates was also the cheerleading coach during football season. For more information contact Susie Bates at bates@insightbb.com.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Deaf and Hearing Impaired, Blind, Visually Impaired
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Batson v Kentucky
James Kirkland Batson, of Jefferson County, KY, was charged with second-degree burglary and receipt of stolen goods. In jury selection for his trial, all African American candidates were excused. Batson insisted that the entire jury be removed because all of the African Americans had been removed, a violation of his Sixth and Fourteenth Amendment rights. The judge denied the motion, and Batson was convicted on both counts in 1984. The Kentucky Supreme Court denied Batson's appeal. The U.S. Supreme Court reversed the decision in 1986. For more see Peter W. Sperlich, "Batson v. Kentucky," in The Oxford Guide to United States Supreme Court Decisions, Kermit L. Hall, Oxford University Press, 1999; Oxford Reference Online; U.S. Supreme Court Batson v. Kentucky 476 U.S. 79 (1986); and Epstein and Swickard, "Court forbids rejection of jurors on basis of race," Detroit Free Press, 05/01/1986.
Subjects: Freedom, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

BBC's Kentucky Minstrels
The BBC's Kentucky Minstrels was a popular radio show, a blackface minstrel series produced by Harry S. Pepper and broadcast by the British Broadcast Corporation (BBC) from 1933-1950. The show was an exaggerated depiction of African Americans in the "good ole days" of plantation life in the U. S. South (Kentucky), accentuated with the use of stereotyped racist and sexist humor. The main characters were played for many years by three African Americans who had left the United States for the entertainment business in England: Isaac "Ike" F. Hatch (c. 1891-1961), Harry Scott (1879-1947), and Eddie Whaley (1886-1961). Hatch was a trained vocalist and songwriter who had been a member of the W. C. Handy Orchestra. He moved to England in 1925. Scott and Whaley had worked together as a comic act touring the United States; they went to England in 1909. In 1934, Scott and Whaley became the first black performers to star in a British film, Kentucky Minstrels, which was directed by John Baxter and written by Harry S. Pepper and C. Denier Warren (who was also an American). A less distorted version of blackface minstrels continued to be broadcast on BBC television during the 1950s and 1960s. A favorite was the Black and White Minstrel Show, which ran from 1958-1978; the show did well in the ratings, drawing an audience of nearly 17 million. For a more detailed analysis and history, see M. Pickering, "The BBC's Kentucky Minstrels, 1933-1950: blackface entertainment on British radio," Historical Journal of Film, Radio, & Television, vol. 16, issue  2 (1996), pp. 161-194; and "Race, Gender and Broadcast Comedy: the case of the BBC's Kentucky Minstrels," European Journal of Communication, vol. 9 (1994), pp. 311-333.

See photo image of Harry Clifford Scott 1915 at the flickr site by puzzlemaster.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers
Geographic Region: England, Europe

Beam, Ulysses S. and John W. Beam
Dr. U. S. Beam (1868-1942) was the first African American physician to practice in Lima, OH. Born in Kentucky, he was an older brother of Dr. Augustus G. Beam. Both were graduates of the Louisville National Medical College and maintained a medical practice together in Lima, OH, for a brief period in 1906. Dr. U. S. Beam had previously practiced in Muncie, IN, moving to Lima in 1892. He was a wealthy doctor in Lima, where he spent the remainder of his life except for a brief period when he was forced to returned to Kentucky in 1909. Dr. Beam left Lima after his brother, John W. Beam (born in KY -d.1909), a lawyer and real estate agent, was arrested for the murder of widow Estella Maude Diltz, who was white. There were rumors of a lynching party being formed, and Dr. Beam, whose wife was white, feared there would be retaliation towards him. Also, the U.S. Marshall had a subpoena for Dr. Beam pertaining to another matter. Dr. Beam closed his medical practice and fled to Kentucky with his father, Hines Beam, who had come to Lima to secure an attorney for his son, John. In November 1909, John W. Beam was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in the Ohio Penitentiary; it was reported that he committed suicide while in prison, December 1909. Dr. Ulysses Beam returned to his practice in Lima, where he is listed in the U.S. Federal Census for 1910, 1920, and 1930. He died at his home in 1942 and was buried in the Woodlawn Cemetery in Lima, OH. For more see "Dr. Beam Gone," Lima Times Democrat (05/26/1909), p. 8; and "Dr. Beam dies in home after long illness," The Lima News (10/12/1942), p. 4. For more on John W. Beam's case, see "Suicide faked by slayer to avoid possible lynching," Chicago Tribune (05/25/1909), p. 2; "Declare Beam sane in every single particular," The Lima Daily News (10/25/1909), p. 1; "Beam sentenced by Judge Bailey," The Lima Daily news (11/05/1909), p. 5; and "Thomas Dillion helped Beam pave way to eternity," The Lima Daily News (12/14/1909), p. 1.
Subjects: Lawyers, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Corrections and Police, Realtors, Real Estate Brokers, Real Estate Investments, Court Cases, Suicide
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Muncie, Indiana / Lima, Ohio

Beard, Alfred, Jr. "Butch"
Birth Year : 1947
Born in Hardinsburg, KY, Alfred "Butch" Beard, Jr. played basketball at Breckinridge County High School and the University of Louisville, where he roomed with Wes Unseld. He was drafted in 1969 by the Atlanta Hawks, then drafted by the U.S. Army. After his military service, Beard returned to the NBA and played for several different teams. While with the San Francisco Golden State Warriors he scored the last seven points of the team's 1975 NBA Championship win. Beard retired as a NBA player in 1979, last playing for the New York Knicks. Since retiring, Beard has been an assistant coach in the NBA and a head coach of college basketball teams. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans; In Black and White. A guide to magazine articles, newspaper articles, and books concerning Black individuals and groups, 3rd ed., edited by M. M. Spradling; and Butch Beard at Basketball-Reference.com.

See Al "Butch" Beard at cavhistory.com.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Hardinsburg, Breckinridge County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Beason, Tyrone
Birth Year : 1972
Tyrone Beason was born in Bowling Green, Kentucky in 1972. He is a graduate of Bowling Green High School, where he started his journalism career as an editorial page editor and cartoonist for the school newspaper, Purple Gem. He was also a teen columnist for the Daily News (Bowling Green). In 1993, Tyrone Beason was a student at the University of Kentucky when he became the first African American editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, The Kentucky Kernel. Beason is presently a reporter with the Seattle Times. He is also doing research for his book on African American life in 1960s Paris. In 2010, Tyrone Beason won the Darrell Sifford Memorial Prize in Journalism. For more see "A sense we were future players," The Kentucky Kernel, 02/18/98; and contact Tyrone Beason.

See photo image of Tyrone Beason and more about his 2010 Darrell Sifford Memorial Prize in Journalism.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Seattle, Washington

Beatty, Anthany, Sr.
Birth Year : 1951
In 2001, at the age of 50, Anthany Beatty became the first African American Chief of Police in Lexington, KY. Beatty, a Lexington native, had been with the department for 27 years, having joined the force in 1973. He earned his master's degree in public administration from Kentucky State University and his bachelor's degree in police administration from Eastern Kentucky University. In 2007, Beatty retired from the Lexington Police Department and became Assistant Vice President for Public Safety at the University of Kentucky. For more see T. Tagami, "Beatty to be new chief - council expected to confirm first black in job," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/15/2001, Main News section, p. A1; and "Farewell to the chief - Beatty a good addition to UK Administration," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/14/2007, Commentary section, p. A8.

Access Interview Read about the Anthany Beatty, Sr. oral history interview available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item record in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Beauty Shops (Louisville, KY)
In 1968 the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights conducted a study on the nature and extent of Negro ownership of business in Louisville. The commission found that beauty shops were a leading business: Of the 490 Negro-owned businesses, 42.2% were beauty shops, 19.3% barber shops. Within Louisville as a whole, Negro-owned beauty shops were 42.74% of the total number of beauty shops in the city and 32.14% in the entire county. For more see Black Business in Louisville, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights. For earlier information on African American beauty shops and other occupations, see A study of business and employment among Negroes in Louisville, by Associates of Louisville Municipal College, University of Louisville, Louisville Urban League, and Central Colored High School (1944).
Subjects: Businesses, Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Urban Leagues
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Beck, Thomas
Birth Year : 1819
Thomas Beck was born in Kentucky, and one of his parents was white, the other African American. [Kentucky is given as his birth location in the 1850 U.S. Census.] Beck served in the Texas House of Representatives, beginning in 1874. One of the bills he sponsored was to prevent the employment of children without the permission of the parents. He was the husband of Martha Jordan Beck from Tennessee [source: 1880 U.S. Federal Census], and the couple had several children. For more see Through Many Dangers, Toils and Snares: The Black Leadership of Texas, 1868-1900, by M. Pitre; Forever Free: The Biographies web page, by the Texas State Library & Archives Commission.


Subjects: Migration West, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Legislators (Outside Kentucky)
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Texas

Bell, J. W.
Rev. J. W. Bell lived in Louisville, KY, where he was one of the early pastors of the Center Street Colored Methodist Episcopal (CME) Church. In 1873, he was elected secretary of the CME General Conference. That same year, he was named Book Agent of the CME Publishing House and editor of the Christian Index, the CME monthly news publication. The CME publishing operation had been moved from Memphis to Louisville. After a month, Bell was limited to editing the newspaper only, and W. P. Churchill, of Louisville, was named the new book agent. Bell produced the first issue of the Christian Index in Kentucky; the newspaper was six years old, having been first published in 1867. A few months later, a disagreement occurred between Bell and Bishop Miles, and Bell was relieved of his duties at the newspaper and at the Center Street CME Church. He was replaced by Alexander Austin. In 1884, Rev. J. W. Bell was a pastor in Hopkinsville, KY [source: Proceedings, Sermon, Essays, and Addresses of the Centennial Methodist Conference edited by H. J. Carroll et. al., p.17]. He had also been the pastor of the Israel Church in Washington, D.C. [source: Autobiography and Work of Bishop M. F. Jamison, D.D. ("Uncle Joe") by M. F. Jamison, p.170]. For more see The History of the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church in America, by C. H. Phillips.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Bell, R. F.
R. F. Bell was the first African American police officer in Lexington, KY, joining the force in 1918. For more see Lexington Police Department photo, 04/12/1937, courtesy of Amanda Elliott, at the Lexington History Museum - in the Black and White Photographic Collection.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Bellarmine College Basketball Team (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1950
Bellarmine College [now Bellarmine University] had the first African American basketball players at a predominately white school in Kentucky. The players were 5'7" guard Theodore R. Wade, Jr. (1950-1951) and Franklin Freeman (1952-1953). Wade may have been mistaken for white: his mother was Irish and his father was African American and Native American. He left school before graduating and joined the Air Force. He later became a computer programmer in New York. For more see M. Story, "A barrier falls without a sound," Lexington Herald-Leader, 04/11/2004, Sports section, p. C2.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Ben (former slave)
Cleveland, OH, was founded in 1796. Ben, an escaped slave who had lived on the Young Farm in Kentucky, is recognized as the first African American in Cleveland. He came to the city in 1806 after the family he was with drowned in a lake and Ben almost froze to death. It was thought that Ben left Cleveland and moved to Canada. His story, including his near capture, are told on p. 12 of Cleveland's Harbor, by J. C. Ehle, W. D. Ellis, and N. A. Schneider. An earlier account can be found on pp.339-343 in the Early History of Cleveland Ohio by C. Whittlesey [available full view at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Cleveland, Ohio / Canada

Bennett, Bradford
Birth Year : 1922
Bradford Bennett was born in Fulton, KY. A first baseman in the Negro Leagues, he was known for his speed. He began his career in 1940 as a 17-year-old with the New Orleans-St. Louis Stars, finishing his career in 1946 with the Boston Blues. For more see The Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues, by J. A. Riley.
Subjects: Baseball
Geographic Region: Fulton, Fulton County, Kentucky

Bennett-Jones, Valerie
In 2007, Bennett-Jones became the first African American officer of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary 2734 in Maysville, KY. She accepted the position of patriotic instructor and historian. Bennett-Jones is one of the few African American members of the organization; the VFW Ladies Auxiliary 2734 has not always allowed African American membership. Issac Jones, a veteran of World War II and Vietnam, encouraged his wife to join the VFW. For more see M. Maynard, "Bennett-Jones becomes new instructor, historian at VFW," Ledger Independent, 07/02/2007.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky

Bentley, Denise
Bentley is from Louisville, KY. In 2002, she was the first African American woman to be elected President of the Louisville Board of Aldermen. Bentley was a mortician in California for 10 years prior to returning to Louisville. She served as Alderman of the 9th Ward, West End, in Louisville for eight years, 1997-2005. Bentley resigned from the council to serve as the liaison between the Louisville Metro and Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government councils, a position within Governor Fletcher's administration. For more see J. Bruggers, "Bentley scores landslide over 2 Democratic foes," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 05/29/02, News section, p. 05A; SR50; and "Governor Ernie Fletcher Appoints Louisville Metro Council Woman," a Ky.gov Electronic Archives Press Release, 02/23/05.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Benton, J. W.
J. W. Benton was a Kentucky native who invented a derrick used for hoisting. Benton walked to Washington, D.C., to get the patent, carrying his invention in his arms. The patent #658,939 was received October 2, 1900 [source: Annual Report of the Commissioner of Patents for the Year 1900, GPO, p.598]. For more see Kentucky's Black Heritage by Kentucky Commission on Human Rights; Blacks in Science and Medicine by V. O. Sammons; and H. E. Baker, "The Negro in the Field of Invention," The Journal of Negro History, vol. 2, no. 1 (January 1917), p. 35.
Subjects: Inventors
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Berea College Library
In 1866, the Berea School [now Berea College] Library was the first desegregated library in Kentucky and the South. The school also had the first traveling library in the state that was open to Negro families, beginning in 1895. In 1916, the school had the first book wagon service in the South that was also open to Negro families. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Berea, Madison County, Kentucky

Berry, Elder
Elder Berry opened the first theological school for African Americans in the Olivet Baptist Church in Louisville, KY. The school lasted only five months, but it led the way for other theological schools for African Americans. For more see A History of Blacks in Kentucky from Slavery to Segregation, 1760-1891, by M. B. Lucas.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Berry, Joyce Hamilton
Birth Year : 1938
Dr. Joyce Hamilton Berry, a psychologist, was the first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. at the University of Kentucky. She was born in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Lucille and Sam Hamilton. Her father owned his own business, Sterling Barber Shop, at 181 Deweese Street. Her father was also one of the investors of the African American Hustlers baseball team in Lexington, KY. Dr. Joyce Berry attended (old) Dunbar elementary and high schools. She started school when she was five years old and finished high school in three years, graduating at the age of 15. She started college when she was 16 years old at Hampton Institute [now Hampton University], where she majored in English and minored in physical education. For her master's degree, Dr. Berry attended the University of Kentucky, starting in 1962 and completing her master's degree in 1964. She earned her Ph.D. in psychology in 1970. She now has a private practice in Washington, D.C. For more information about Dr. Joyce Hamilton Berry, request the oral history recording [info] at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History. Dr. Berry is listed in the title Fifty years of the University of Kentucky African-American Legacy, 1949-1999, by the University of Kentucky. There are a number of articles in Ebony that include advice and commentary from Dr. Berry.

Access Interview Joyce Hamilton Berry, read the transcript and listen to the oral history recording at the Kentucky Historical Society, Civil Rights Movement in Kentucky Oral History Project.


Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Washington, D. C.

Berry, Robert T. "R. T." and George W. Berry
R. T. Berry (1874-1967) was editor and publisher of the Kentucky Reporter, a weekly, pro-Repulican, newspaper in Louisville, KY, from 1899 to the 1930s. He co-founded the newspaper with his brother George W. Berry (1873-1939). Looking at the U.S. Census, the two had been tailors in 1900 and operated a newspaper in 1910, both in Owensboro,KY. They were the sons of George and Molly Berry, and the family lived in Glasgow, KY in 1900. George W. Berry was born in Allensville, KY, according to his death certificate. Both R. T. and George Berry's WWI Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, gives the following information: the newspaper was located at 445 7th Street in Louisville and managed by R. T.; George was employed as a U.S. Storekeeper and Gauger, and his wife was Florence H. Berry; George, his wife, and R.T. all lived at 1711 W. Chestnut Street; their mother, Mollie Berry, was still living in Glasgow, KY. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1933-37Your History Online VII; and the Kentucky Reporter at the UK National Digital Newspaper Program website.
Subjects: Businesses, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky / Glasgow, Barren County, Kentucky / Allensville, Todd County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Berry, T. L.
Birth Year : 1892
Dr. T. L. Berry was born in Hopkinsville, KY, the son of Louis and Josephine Berry. He was a physician in Murray, KY, according to his World War I Registration Card, and was born October 17, 1892. Berry was also the Surgeon in Chief at Winnie Scott Hospital in Frankfort. From 1915-1959, the hospital primarily served African Americans. Dr. Berry left Kentucky in 1924 to join the staff of Mercy Hospital in Cincinnati, and he was a member of the Cincinnati Medical Association. Berry was a 1910 graduate of Male and Female College, where he earned his A.B., and a 1915 graduate of Meharry Medical College. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1927; and Cincinnati's Colored Citizens, by W. P. Dabney.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Murray, Calloway County, Kentucky / Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Bibb, Charles Leon
Birth Year : 1921
Leon Bibb was born in Louisville, KY. A World War II veteran, Bibb became a classically-trained singer who performed folk music in Greenwich Village in the 1950s and 1960s. He relocated to Vancouver, Canada, where he continued to perform. Bibb appeared in three films with Sidney Portier and was an opening act for Bill Cosby in the 1960s. He was blacklisted for playing in Russia. Bibb had a successful Broadway career, including his performance in the production Lost in the Stars. He also toured with Finian's Rainbow. In 2006 he headlined a concert in Port Coquitlam, Canada. Leon Bibb is the father of Eric Bibb, a blues singer and songwriter. He lives in Vancouver, Canada. For more see Directory of Blacks in the Performing Arts, 2nd ed., by E. Mapp; In Black and White. A guide to magazine articles, newspaper articles, and books concerning Black individuals and groups, 3rd ed., edited by M. M. Spradling; and J. Warren, "Bibb performs with Coastal Sound," The Tri-City News (Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada), 11/15/2006, Arts section, p. 31.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Fathers, Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Greenwich Village, New York City, New York / Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Bickerstaff, Bernard T., Sr. "Bernie"
Birth Year : 1944
Bernie Bickerstaff was born in Benham, KY. At the age of 25, he was head coach at the University of San Diego, the youngest college coach in the U.S. at that time. He went on to become the youngest assistant coach in NBA history when he joined the Washington Bullets [now the Washington Wizards] at the age of 29. From 1985-1990, Bickerstaff was head coach of the Seattle SuperSonics [in 2008 became the Oklahoma City Thunder]; he was the first African American from Kentucky to be named a head coach in the NBA [the second was Wes Unseld and the third was Dwane Casey]. Bickerstaff was president and general manager of the Denver Nuggets from 1990-1997. In 2004, he was named general manager of the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats, becoming the team's first coach; he returned as the head coach for the 2006-2007 season. Bickerstaff ranks 33rd on the NBA's winningest coaches list. Bernie Bickerstaff Boulevard in Benham is named in his honor. For more see Who's Who in America, 45th-48th ed.; Who's Who in the West, 22nd -24th ed.; and Bernie Bickerstaff, an NBA Coaches website.

See photo image and coaching stats for Bernie Bickerstaff at Basketball-Reference.com.
Subjects: Basketball, Businesses
Geographic Region: Benham, Harlan County, Kentucky / Charlotte, North Carolina

Bicycle Clubs (Wheelmen), Louisville, KY
Start Year : 1894
In 1894, the Union Cycle Club in Louisville, KY, had 25 members and was said to be the largest African American cycling club in the South. These were the sentiments of William W. Watts, who was speaking to the League of American Wheelmen at the 1894 convention held in Louisville, KY. Watts, a Louisville lawyer, read a letter that supposedly was written by the Union Cycle Club president, Frederick J. Scott, in support of Watts' stand to deny African Americans membership to the League of American Wheelmen [source: Ethnicity, Sport, Identity, edited by J. A. Mangan and A. Ritchie, p. 20]. See also the NKAA entry for Richard Ball. In 1899, the Booker T. Washington Cycle Club at Allen Chapel A. M. E. Church made their first annual appearance on January 25 [source: "Personal Mention," Recorder, 01/07/1899, p. 4]. The club held its meetings at 409 N. West Street in Louisville [source: "Personal Mention," Freeman, 06/17/1899, p. 8]. The first national colored bicycle tournament was held at Brotherhood Park in St. Louis, MO, June 1890 [source: "Ten thousand people witnessed...," in the article "A bob-tailed cur," Cleveland Gazette, 07/26/1890, p. 1].

  • Union Cycle Club (1894?)
  • Booker T. Washington Cycle Club, Allen Chapel A. M. E. (1899)

Subjects: Bicycles, Cyclist, Cycling, Wheelmen
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Bingham, Rebecca T.
Birth Year : 1928
Rebecca Taylor Bingham was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. She earned her bachelor's degree from Indiana University in1950, a master's degree from the University of Tulsa in 1961, and a second master's in 1969 from the Indiana University School of Library and Information Science. During her library career, Bingham became the first African American president of the Kentucky Library Association. She is also a former president of the American Association of School Librarians. Bingham served on the Kentucky Governor's State Advisory Council on Libraries and the advisory committee for the 1979 White House Conference on Library and Information Services. In 1998, Bingham was named to the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science by President Clinton. She was the wife of the late Walter D. Bingham. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans; A Biographical Directory of Librarians in the United States and Canada, 5th ed., edited by L. Ash; and T. Tew, "An advocate for equality," SLIS Alumni Magazine, Fall 2002, Indiana University.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Appointments by U.S. Presidents/Services for U.S. Presidents
Geographic Region: Indianapolis, Indiana / Kentucky

Birch, Ernest O. and Edward E. [Birch Bros.]
The Birch brothers, Ernest (1884-1951) and Edward (1887-1974), were born in Winchester, KY. They were the youngest two sons of Jane and Samuel Birch, who was a barber. Their oldest brother was Arthur Birch, he was a hotel porter, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. The family of five lived at 125 E. Third Street in Winchester. Ernest and Edward Birch would go on to create a partnership in 1908 known as Birch Brothers, an architecture business in Cincinnati, OH. They were not licensed in Ohio, but are recognized as two of the earliest African American architects in the city. Ernest Birch was a graduate of Kentucky Normal and Industrial Institute for Colored Persons [now Kentucky State University], where he first studied to become a teacher, and later switched to carpentry. Edward Birch studied architecture engineering at Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute [now Hampton University]. According to the 1910 census, the two brothers were managing their business and were lodgers at the home of William and Eliza Ford on West Canal Street [Eliza Ford was b.1867 in KY]. By 1920, Ernest was the husband of Corenna Birch, b.1891 in KY, and she is also listed as Ernest's wife on his WWII Draft Registration Card in 1942, a period when Ernest was employed by the Rubel Baking Company. He is listed as an architect at 3146 Gaff Avenue in the 1946 William's Cincinnati (Ohio) City Directory. Also in 1920, Edward Birch was the husband of Susie B. Whittaker, b.1890 in KY, and Edward was employed as a Pullman Porter. The couple and Susie's sister lived on Mountfort Street in Cincinnati. Edward Birch was previously married to Eva Downey, b.1890 in KY, and they had a son named Augustine E. Birch, b.1908 in KY. The couple divorced in 1916, and Eva and her son Augustine are listed as living in Winchester, KY in the 1910 census and 1930 census. Edward Birch is listed as a draftsman at 1123 Yale Avenue in the 1936-1937 William's Cincinnati Directory. He is credited for designing the Brown Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church. For more see the Ernest Octavius Birch entry and the Edward Eginton Birch entry, both in African American Architects, 1865-1945 edited by D. S. Wilson.
Subjects: Architects, Barbers, Businesses, Migration North, Pullman Porters
Geographic Region: Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Bishop, Daisy H. and Charles Maceo
Daisy Carolyn Hitch Bishop (1897-1990) and Charles Maceo Bishop (1898-1990) resided in Paris, KY, for most of their lives. Daisy was born in Falmouth, KY, the daughter of Carrie B. and Edward J. Hitch. Charles, a musician, was born in Paris, the son of Georgie A. Small Bishop (1874-1953) and Charles W. Bishop (b. 1867). Charles Maceo was a World War I veteran. He and Daisy were married November 30, 1919, and initially lived with Daisy's family in Newtown, an African American community in Paris. Charles Maceo learned to play music while a student at Western School for Colored children in Paris. He played drums, saxophone, and piano. His mother, Georgie A. Small Bishop, encouraged him to play music; her father, George Small (1822-1879?), had also been a musician. He was killed when Georgie was a child and her mother, Martha Wallace Small (b. 1832), raised the family alone. At the age of 15, Charles Maceo began teaching music, saving $1,500 by the time he graduated from high school. His services were in demand throughout Central Kentucky, and he also performed in nearby states. Charles Maceo performed with local orchestras and with night club and gambling house bands in Bourbon County and surrounding counties. He played (volunteered) during services at the Martin and Hurley Funeral Home from the day the business opened up till the death of the owner. He also played for churches, at the insistence of his mother. Charles Maceo Bishop was organist for the St. Paul Methodist Church for more than 50 years, beginning in 1918. 

Read about the Access InterviewDaisy Carolyn Bishop oral history interview, and the Access Interview Charles Maceo Bishop oral history interview, both available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
 
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Religion & Church Work, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Gambling, Lottery
Geographic Region: Falmouth, Pendleton County, Kentucky / Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Bishop, Darryl R.
Birth Year : 1950
Darryl R. Bishop was born in Louisville, KY. In 1969, he was the first African American to play basketball for the University of Kentucky (UK), playing a few games as a walk-on, then withdrawing from the team. He had a more successful career as a defensive back on the football team. At that time at UK, football players could not play until their sophomore year. In spite of only playing three years, Bishop's career at UK was phenomenal. He holds the UK career record for most pass interceptions (14) and return yardage (376). He made more tackles (348) than any defensive back in UK history. He is also remembered for the 43-yard interception return touchdown in the 1971 win over Vanderbilt and the 97-yard touchdown return against Mississippi State. Darryl Bishop was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in January of 1974. Information provided by the University of Kentucky Athletics Media Relations Office. See also Fifty Years of the University of Kentucky African-American Legacy, 1949-1999. In March of 1974, Darryl R. Bishop signed to play with the newly formed World Football League [source: "Sports in brief," Lakeland Ledger, 03/05/1974, p.3B]. Bishop played with the New York Stars until he was cut from the team in July of 1974 [source: "Sports in brief," Spartanburg Herald-Journal, 07/06/1974, p.B3].

 

  See photo image of Darryl R. Bishop at bigbluehistory.net.
Subjects: Basketball, Football
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Bishop, James L.
Birth Year : 1870
In 1902 the Socialists Party nominated one of it's first African American candidates for the U.S. Congress, James L. Bishop from Kentucky. Members of the Socialists Party had demanded that the party take a stronger stand for the rights of Negroes. Bishop had moved to Indiana, prior to the year 1900. With his nomination in 1902, he was to represent the 5th District of Clinton, IN. Bishop was a coal miner, a clergyman, and a trade unionist, he was president of the local Central Labor Union of Clinton, IN. He was the husband of Galveston Bishop (b.1879 in TN), they had married in 1897, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. He was later married to Rosa Bishop (b.1886 in WV), according to the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. James L. Bishop received 745 votes, but was not successful in his bid for the U.S. Congress. [The first African American member of the Indiana Legislature was James Sidney Hinton, 1881 House of Representatives.] For more see "Nominated for Congress," Baltimore Afro-American, 10/18/1902, p.1; and Marxism in United States History Before the Russian Revolution (1876-1917) by O. C. Johnson.
Subjects: Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Union Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Clinton, Indiana

Black History Gallery [Emma Reno Connor]
The Black History Gallery is located in Elizabethtown, KY. The gallery items comprised the personal collection of Emma Reno Connor, a schoolteacher first in Kentucky and later in New York. She collected pictures, articles, biographies, and other materials pertaining to African Americans. The items were used in her classes because there was little information in school textbooks about African Americans. Since Connor's death in 1988, her family has managed the museum in her childhood home in Elizabethtown. Emma R. Connor was the author of a book of poems titled Half a Hundred. For more information, contact: Black History Gallery, 602 Hawkins Drive, Elizabethtown, KY 42701, 270-769-5204 or 270-765-7653. For more on Emma Reno Connor see the online video "A Teachers Legacy," Kentucky Life Program 905; and "Black history collection took lifetime to amass," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/12/1991, Lifestyle section, p. B6.
See the video "A Teachers Legacy" online at Kentucky Life Program 905.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Genealogy, History, Historians, Migration North
Geographic Region: Elizabethtown, Hardin County, Kentucky / New York

Black Horsemen
The history of Black horsemen, many of whom were from Bourbon County, KY, is being collected and displayed. The Butler Family from North Middletown, KY, has developed the website Back in Black: A History of Black Horsemen in the Twentieth Century for the gathering and sharing of information, including photos of many of the men. There is also the 2007 exhibit at the American Saddlebred Museum in Lexington, KY, Out of the Shadows: Bringing to Light Black Horsemen in Saddlebred History. A DVD by the same title is available for purchase at the American Saddlebred Museum. For more information see L. Muhammad, "Show heralds achievements of Black trainers," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 02/05/2007, Features section, p. 1E; Exhibition Honoring Black Horsemen Set to Open, 02/03/2007, a Kentucky.gov website; and African American Horsemen of Bourbon County included in American Saddlebred Museum Exhibit [.pdf], 02/10/2005, a Kentucky Horse Park news release.
Subjects: Businesses, Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby
Geographic Region: North Middletown, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Black, Karla L.
Birth Year : 1961
Karla L. Black was born in Richmond, KY. She was the first African American elected to the Richmond Independent Board of Education in 1986. For more see Karla Black in "Cosby is Jefferson County board's first black chairman," in the 1988 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Seventh Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 37.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky

Black Kentucky Artists
This exhibition of work by Black artists living in Kentucky was organized for and toured by the Kentucky Arts Commission, June 1979-January 1981. The curator was Roberta L. Williams. For more see black & white photos of the works and artists' biographies in Black Kentucky Artists (1979), available at the University of Kentucky, Lucille Caudill Little Fine Arts Library & Learning Center.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Black Owned Businesses in Kentucky
This 2006 online publication [.pdf] was compiled by the Office of Research and Information Technology General Research Branch at the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development.   
Subjects: Businesses, Resources Dedicated to Kentucky African Americans [Statewide]
Geographic Region: Kentucky

"Black Republican" (term)
Start Year : 1858
The term "Black Republican" is often attributed to incumbent Stephen Douglas, a Democrat who was scheduled to have seven debates with Republican, and Kentucky native, Abraham Lincoln; both were campaigning for an Illinois Senate seat in 1858. The primary theme of the debates was slavery, and Douglas accused Lincoln and members of the the "Black Republican Party" of being abolitionist and against slavery in the Western territories. Lincoln lost the bid for the Illinois Senate seat, but he won the nomination to run for U.S. President during the 1860 Republican National Convention in Chicago. During the presidential campaign, Abraham Lincoln was often referred to as the "Black Republican." The term was also used during the Reconstruction Era for Republicans who supported legislation that favored African Americans. For more see the "Black Republican" entry in vol. 2 of the Afro-American Encyclopedia; and Lincoln and Douglas, by A. C. Guelzo.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: United States

Black Shakers (Pleasant Hill, KY)
In 1995 a celebration of the African American contributions to the Shakers, entitled "Dark Angels - The Story of African-American Shakers," was held at the Shakertown Meeting House at Pleasant Hill in Mercer County, KY. There had been 19 African Americans at the village, including Alley Hyson, the first to arrive, in 1807, and two slaves whose freedom was purchased by the Shakers. For more see L. Stafford, "Event Puts Spotlight on Black Shakers," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/08/1995, COMMUNITY section, p. 7; and contact Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, KY.
Subjects: Freedom, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Pleasant Hill, Mercer County, Kentucky

Blackburn, Thornton and Ruth (or Lucie)
The Blackburns were escaped slaves from Louisville, KY. They had been settled in Detroit, Michigan, for two years when, in 1833, Kentucky slave hunters captured and arrested the couple. The Blackburns were jailed but allowed visitors, which provided the opportunity for Ruth to exchange her clothes - and her incarceration - with Mrs. George French; Ruth escaped to Canada. The day before Thornton was to be returned to Kentucky, the African American community rose up in protest. While the commotion was going on, Sleepy Polly and Daddy Walker helped Thornton to escape to Canada. The commotion turned into a two day riot and the sheriff was killed. It was the first race riot in Detroit, and afterward the first Riot Commission was formed in the U.S. Once in Canada, Thornton designed, built, and operated Toronto's first horse-drawn carriage hackney cab and cab company. He was born in Maysville, KY in 1812. Ruth died in Canada in 1895. For more see The Detroit Riot of 1863; racial violence and internal division in Northern society during the Civil War, by A. S. Quinn; I'v Got a Home in Glory Land by K. S. Frost; and Thornton and Lucie Blackburn House.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky
Geographic Region: Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Detroit, Michigan / Toronto, Canada

Blacks in Kentucky Oral History Project
Start Year : 1979
The following information comes from the description in the SPOKE Database. "Interviewees discuss race relations and racial violence in the Kentucky cities of Shelbyville, Russellville, Cadiz, and Henderson; New Haven, Connecticut; and North Carolina. The New Zion Community is also discussed. Former Kentucky governor Earle C. Clements is among those interviewed."

 

Access Interview Read more about the recordings available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Blacks In Lexington Oral History Project
Start Year : 1978
"The Blacks in Lexington Oral History Project has over 200 interviews. These interviews concern the educational, political, economic, and social opportunities for blacks in Lexington during the twentieth century."

Access Interview Read more about the recordings available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Genealogy, History, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Blacks Who Enlisted in Kentucky for U.S. Navy Submarine Duty During WWII
The following is a incomplete list of the African American men who enlisted in Kentucky to serve on a Navy submarine during WWII. The names come from the book titled Black Submariners by G. A. Knoblock. This entry was suggested by UK Librarian Shawn Livingston.

  1. Joe William Green enlisted in Lexington, KY.
  2. Arthur J. Wharton, Jr. enlisted in Louisville, KY. He is a WWII veteran interred overseas. Wharton was a Steward's Mate First Class on the ship Barbel. His death date is given as 02/19/1946, and there is a monument at Fort William McKinley in Manila, Philippines.
  3. Russell Donan (1922-1992), enlisted in Louisville, KY. He was born in Edmonton, KY.
  4. Andrew Jack Pace enlisted in Louisville, KY.
  5. George E. Pogue enlisted in Louisville, KY.
  6. Louis Hill Jones enlisted in Louisville, KY.
  7. Lunie Joseph Neal enlisted in Louisville, KY.
  8. James Lee Baker enlisted in Louisville, KY and served as the first African American steward on the ship Nautilus.
  9. James Thomas McGuire enlisted in Louisville, KY.
  10. Woodrow Wilson Jones, 1918-2001, enlisted in Louisville, KY, and is buried in Maplewood Cemetery in Norwich, CT. He was born in Tennessee and was the husband of Flore Jones.
  11. Parkes Lee Davidson, 1909-1991, enlisted in Louisville, KY. He died in Louisville and is buried in the New Albany National Cemetery in Indiana.

Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Blakeley, Mary W.
Mary Wylie Blakeley owned a restaurant and was one of the early African American women business owners in Paducah, KY. The Wiley Family Papers, 1893-1982, are held in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Manuscripts Department. The collection contains mainly photographs with quite a few of Mary Wiley Blakeley; there is also a photo of her restaurant, dated 1900. For more see the Wylie Family Papers.
Subjects: Businesses
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Bobtown, Farristown, and Middletown (Berea, KY)
African Americans were able to buy land in the Bobtown, Farristown, and Middletown communities after the Civil War. This change was in part due to the influence of Rev. John G. Fee. Farristown was founded in 1835, named for the Farris families who lived in the area. Middletown is so named because it is about midway between Farristown and Berea. Bobtown is the oldest of the three communities, originally founded around 1769 when it was called Joe Lick. The name was changed around 1872 in honor of African American resident Uncle Bob Fitch. Each of the communities had an African American church: First Baptist Church in Middletown was organized in 1894, Farristown Baptist Church in 1883, and New Liberty Baptist Church in Bobtown in 1866. For more information and photos see Early History of Black Berea, by Berea College, or contact the Berea College Library.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Bobtown (was Joe Lick), Madison County, Kentucky / Farristown, Madison County, Kentucky / Middletown, Madison County, Kentucky / Berea, Madison County, Kentucky

Bond, Howard H.
Birth Year : 1938
Howard H. Bond, a consulting firm executive, was born in Stanford, KY, to Frederick D. and Edna G. Coleman Bond. He is a 1965 graduate of Eastern Michigan University (BA) and a 1974 graduate of Pace University (MBA). He has worked with a number of companies, including Ford Motor Company, where he was a labor supervisor; Xerox Corp., as a personnel manager; and Playboy Enterprises, Inc., as a vice president. He was also a council member candidate for the city of Cincinnati in 2003. Today he is managing director of the Phoenix Executech Group, having founded the company in 1977. And he is chairman and CEO of Bond Promotions and Apparel Co. in the Over-the-Rhine area of Cincinnati. Bond is also a community activist and educator. He has taught leadership and social responsibility classes at Northern Kentucky University and is a former elected member of the Cincinnati Board of Education. He has also served as president of the African American Political Caucus of Cincinnati and is a founding member of the Cincinnati Chapter of the 100 Black Men of America, Inc. Bond is also a 33rd degree Mason, a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and a number of other organizations. He has received a number of awards. Bond is a U.S. Army veteran. For more see "Five receive Lions awards from Urban League," The Cincinnati Enquirer, 02/12/2006, Metro section, p. 5B; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1990-2006.

See photo image and additional information about Howard H. Bond at the 2003 smartvoter.org website.
Subjects: Businesses, Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Fraternal Organizations, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Stanford, Lincoln County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Bond, Leslie Fee, Sr.
Birth Year : 1928
Leslie Fee Bond, Sr., born in Louisville, KY, moved with his family to Galesburg, IL, when he was 10-years-old. Like his father, Leslie F. Bond, Sr. is a family practitioner and also a surgeon. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Champagne-Urbana and Meharry Medical College. After finishing medical school, Bond opened his practice in St. Louis, MO, where he is also an outspoken community leader. He served on the Physicians-Pharmacists Advisory Committee to Medicaid for 20 years. He was selected by Missouri Governor Mel Carnahan to serve on the St. Louis Police Board. In 2007, Bond received the Salute to Excellence in Health Care Award from the St. Louis American Foundation. His son, Leslie F. Bond, Jr., was the first African American chairman of the St. Louis Election Board in 1993. For more see Lift Every Voice and Sing: St. Louis African Americans in the Twentieth Century, by D. Wesley, W. Price, and A. Morris; Who's Who Among African Americans, 1996/97; and M. Schlinkmann, "First Black will head election board," St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 02/23/1993, News section, p. 4A.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Fathers, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Migration West, Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Galesburg, Illinois / Saint Louis, Missouri

Bond, Phillip Damone "Phil"
Birth Year : 1954
Phil Bond, born in Paducah, KY, was a 6'2", left handed, point guard and a very good student. He graduated third in the 1972 Class at Manual High School in Louisville, KY; his family had moved to Louisville when Bond was 6 years old. From 1972-1977, he was a point guard on the University of Louisville (U of L) basketball team [Bond was out the 1973-74 season with mononucleosis]. He was the first freshman to play at U of L after the NCAA gave the go-ahead to freshmen; previously, freshmen ball players were regulated to the freshmen team their first year. In 1975, the U of L team was in the NCAA Final Four. Bond, the team's starting guard, was voted Most Valuable Player in the 1975 Midwest Regional. He is credited with naming his team the "Doctors of Dunk." In 1975, Bond also played for the U.S. Pan American team that won a gold medal in Mexico City, Mexico. The following year, he was selected an All-American, Academic All-American, and he held the U of L record of 14 assists in one game. Bond is second in the school history of career assists with 528. He was drafted by the Houston Rockets in the 3rd round of the 1977 NBA Draft. After playing in seven NBA games, Phil Bond was released due to the NBA's labor dispute during the 1977-78 season. Bond left professional basketball, returned to U of L and finished his accounting degree, and in 1983, became the chief financial officer with the Metro United Way in Louisville, KY. In 2007, Manual High School retired Phil Bond's high school jersey. For more see H. C. Ray, "What's up with...? Phil Bond," Louisville Courier-Journal, 03/01/2001, p.E.1; and Phil Bond in Basketball-Reference.com.
Subjects: Basketball, Accountants, Bookkeepers, Certified Public Accountants, Stenographers
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Booker, Jim
Birth Year : 1872
Jim Booker was born in Jessamine County, KY. He was a hoedown fiddler with Taylor's Kentucky Boys, an integrated group that recorded Gray Eagle in 1927. Booker also played and recorded with his family band, the Booker Orchestra, which included his brothers Joe and John both of whom played the fiddle and the guitar; the group played rag-time and blues. Booker also recorded Salty Dog and Camp Nelson Blues in 1927. Jim Booker was born in February of 1872, the son of James and Sarah Booker, according to the 1880 and 1900 U.S. Federal Census. For more see Violin, Sing The Blues For Me: African-American Fiddlers 1926-1949 (Old Hat CD-1002) by Old Hat Records; and Kentucky Mountain Music Classic Recordings of the 1920s and 1930s, Old Time Herald, vol. 9, issue 2, Reviews.
Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Jessamine County, Kentucky

Bourbon County, Kentucky African American Oral History Project
Start Year : 2010
The following comes from the collection description in the SPOKE Database. "In this project, African Americans in Paris, Kentucky and surrounding areas in Bourbon County
share their memories, life experiences, and the local history of African Americans. Their stories include the retelling of oral histories that have been handed down from previous generations. They touch on a variety of subjects including church and religion, race relations, civil rights, employment, school segregation, integration, northern migration, and the legacy they hope to leave behind. Interviewees include those who were born in Bourbon County, as well as those who moved to Bourbon later in life."

 

Access Interview Read more about the recordings available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Bourbon County, Kentucky

Bourbon County (KY) Protective Union of Color
Start Year : 1880
The Bourbon County Protective Union of Color was formed in 1880 in reaction to the William Giles case. The article in the Weekly Louisianian referred to the group as representing the "manliness of the Colored citizens of Kentucky." Giles was charged with shooting with malicious intent to kill. Rev. George W. Hatton, pastor of the St. Paul M. E. Church, was the leader of the small group of African American men who sought legal representation for Giles, and noted that there were no African Americans on the grand jury for the case, and as a result the case was moved to the U.S. Circuit Court. To ensure that other African Americans received their rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States, the Bourbon County Protective Union of Color was formed and it was to be a permanent organization. The initial members were Rev. Hatton as president; James Thomas, vice president; J. C. Graves, secretary; and the committee on banking, H. C. Smith, J. M. Porter, James Thomas, and W. C. Craig. Protective unions had been formed by African Americans in Kentucky prior to 1880, but these were in conjunction with workers' rights. For more see "Paris, Kentucky," Weekly Louisianian, 05/08/1880, p.1 [reprinted from the Ohio Falls Express].
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Fraternal Organizations, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Bourbon County Training School (Little Rock, KY)
Start Year : 1911
The Bourbon County Training School was located in Little Rock, KY. The school began as an idustrial course at the colored school prior to becoming the industrial training school in 1914. The school was supported by the Slater Fund [source: The History of Education of Bourbon County by J. R. Welch]. Ms. Maggie L. Freeman was the principal as early as 1911. The industrial school was to provide advanced training for students in the county. In 1915, there were 70 students and three teachers. The students were provided a nine grade course with elementary work in the first eight grades and secondary subjects and practice teaching in the ninth grade. Industrial training included cooking, sewing, gardening and poultry farming. According to J. R. Welch, the Bourbon County Training School was established in 1918, it was a consolidation of the colored school district in Little Rock. C. T. Cook was the school principal in 1919. The school was located on two acres on Mt. Sterling Pike, there was a frame school house with six rooms and an auditorium. The building had electric lights. The building and property were valued at about $3,000. By 1933, there were near 80 students, some were transported by school bus. In addition to the courses, there was P. T. A., a dramatic club, and a music club, and there were basketball, baseball, and track teams. The school was still open in 1933 when Professor William J. Callery was principal, and the school had become an accredited four year high school. For more see "Bourbon County Training School" on pp. 264-265 in Negro Education by the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Education, Bulletin 1916, NO. 39, Volume II [available full-text in Google Books]; and The Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, April 25-26, 1919, p.4, and v.3, issue 2 (January-February 1933), p.22 [available online at Kentucky Digital Library - Journals]. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Little Rock, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Bowen, James Lyman
Birth Year : 1842
Bowen, born in Liberty, KY, was a chef for Buffalo Bill and had fought against Sitting Bull. His reputation for helping settle the West was well known: Bowen was received by royalty during his tour of Europe. He settled in Danville, IL, where he celebrated his 90th birthday in 1932. His name has also been written as James Lyman Brown. For more see Africa's Gift to America, by J. A. Rogers; and Henry Brown, "He rode with Buffalo Bill," The Chicago Defender, 10/30/1948, p.A2.
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Migration North, Migration West
Geographic Region: Liberty, Casey County, Kentucky / Danville, Illinois

Bowen, William Henry
Birth Year : 1868
William H. Bowen was born in Montgomery County, KY. He was a minister and wrote editorials for The Evangelist, a religious paper published in Paris, KY. Bowen was President of the State Sunday School Convention. In 1900, Bowen, his wife Lizzie Fanstiana Simms (b.March of 1872 in KY), a graduate of Oberlin College, and their two year old son Carl W., were living in Millersburg, KY, according to the U.S. Federal Census. William H. Bowen was the son of Travy and Kizzie Bowen. He studied at the Bible School in New Castle, KY, and the Christian Bible School in Louisville, KY. Bowen was a school teacher and served as president of the Christian Brotherhood, and vice president of the State Missionary Convention. For more see William Henry Bowen, Chapter IX, in Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson, pp.26-27.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Religion & Church Work, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Montgomery County, Kentucky / Paris and Millersburg, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Bradby, Marie
Bradby was born in Virginia and graduated from Hampton University. A former journalist, she is a children's author who also writes fiction and free-lance material. Her first book, More Than Anything Else, was an ALA Notable Book in 1995. Another of her books, Momma, Where Are You From, illustrated by Chris K. Soentpiet, received the Golden Kite Honor Award. Bradby lives in Louisville, KY, with her family. For more see Marie Bradby's biography, a visitingauthors.com website; the Marie Bradby home page; or contact her at mariebradby@insightbb.com.
Subjects: Authors, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Children's Books and Music
Geographic Region: Virginia / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Braden, Anne McCarty and Carl
Anne (1924-2006) and Carl (1914-1975) Braden were white activists with civil rights and labor groups in Louisville, KY. One of their many efforts occurred in 1954 when they assisted in the purchase of a house in Louisville on behalf of the Wade family; the Wades were African Americans, and the house was in a white neighborhood. The house was bombed, and the authorities, rather than arresting the responsible parties, charged the Bradens and five others with sedition - attempting to overthrow the state of Kentucky. Anne Braden was born in Louisville and reared in Alabama. She was a reporter who left Alabama for a job with the Louisville Times newspaper. For more see Subversive Southerner and Once Comes the Moment to Decide (thesis), both by C. Fosl; and The Wall Between, by A. Braden. View Ann Branden's interview in "Living the Story: The Rest of the Story," a Civil Rights in Kentucky Oral History Project. 

Access Interview Listen online to selected audio recordings from the Anne Braden Oral History Project at the Kentucky Digital Library.

Access Interview Read about all the interviews in the Anne Braden Oral History Project available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
 
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Bradford, Billy
In 1998, Billy Bradford became the first African American mayor in Elsmere, KY, as well as the first in northern Kentucky. He has continued to be re-elected, beginning his ninth year as mayor in 2007. For more see B. Driehaus, "Three mayors ousted in local elections," The Kentucky Post, 11/06/2002, News section, p. K12; and K. Eigelbach, "Florence re-elects incumbents - that includes council, mayor," The Kentucky Post, 11/08/2006, News section, p. A9.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Mayors
Geographic Region: Elsmere, Kenton County, Kentucky

Bradleigh, Gretchen N.
Birth Year : 1949
Gretchen Bradleigh was born in Louisville, KY. She was the Children's Department Artist at the Louisville Free Public Library from 1970-1977 and was later the planning draftsman for the Community Development Cabinet in Louisville. Her work includes the acrylic, "Sisters." For more see Black Kentucky Artists: an exhibition of work by black artists living in Kentucky (1979).
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Bradley, Mollie McFarland [Midway Colored School]
Birth Year : 1933
Mollie M. Bradley is a historian and writer who was born in Jefferson City, TN, the daughter of Leroy and Emma Cunningham McFarland. She is past matron of Cecelia Dunlap Grand Chapter, O.E.S., P.H.A. She is the author of A Bright Star: a biography of Cecelia Dunlap, and she wrote several articles for the Order of Eastern Star publication The Phyllis Magazine. The magazine is the voice of the Phyllis Chapter of the Phylaxis Society, PHA Inc., which was organized in 1983, and Mollie Bradley served as the first executive secretary. The Phyllis Chapter of the Phylaxis Society, PHA Inc. researches and studies the history of the Prince Hall Eastern Stars. Mollie Bradley is also a contributing writer for The Woodford Sun during Black History Month; her husband had been the Black History Month contributing writer, and after he died in 2004, Mollie Bradley took over the writing of the articles. Though born in Tennessee, Mollie Bradley was raised in Bourbon County, KY, by her aunt and uncle, Jennie P. Harris and Reverend James C. Harris, pastor of Zion Baptist Church [previously part of the African Baptist Church] in Paris, KY. Mollie Bradley is a graduate of Western High School in Paris, KY, and Central State University, where she majored in journalism. She was the wife of the late Walter T. Bradley, Jr. from Midway, KY; they owned the first laundrette in that city. Customers could leave laundry to be cleaned and folded, and the laundry would be ready to be picked up later in the day. Customers could also do their own laundry. Three washers and three dryers were available with a cost of 25 cents per wash load and 10 cents per dry cycle. The laundrette was located in the building that the couple owned and lived in, which had been the Midway Colored School, located in Hadensville from 1911-1954. The school had grades 1-8. Prior to being used as a school, the building was home to the Colored Baptist Church [later named Pilgrim Baptist Church], which had 900 members. The church building was constructed in 1872 by the Lehman Brothers, a German Company. The congregation outgrew the building and it was sold to Woodford County in 1911 to be used as the Colored School. In 1936, it was sold to the Midway Board of Education and became the Midway Elementary School for Colored children. In 1954, the school was closed and the children were bused to Simmons School in Versailles, KY. The Bradleys purchased the school building in 1959. They leased space within the building to a number of businesses, including a beauty shop and a shoe shop. There had also been a lodge hall, lodge offices, and apartments. Mollie Bradley also taught piano lessons; her mission was to provide lessons to those who wanted to learn but could not afford piano lessons. Her husband, Walter T. Bradley, Jr., and their sons also played the piano. On June 25, 2011, the Midway Colored School was honored with a Kentucky Historical Society Marker. Mollie M. Bradley is a member of the Midway Women's Club. For more information read the press release, KHS to Dedicate Historical Marker to Honor Midway Colored School, 06/13/ 2011, a Kentucky.gov web page.

Access Interview Read about the Mollie M. Bradley oral history interview available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item record in the SPOKE Database.

Subjects: Authors, Businesses, Communities, Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Historians, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Kentucky African American Churches, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Jefferson City, Tennessee / Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Hadensville in MIdway, Woodford County, Kentucky

Bradley-Morton, Dhana
Dhana Bradley-Morton, from Louisville, KY, earned her Speech/Oral Interpretive Arts degree from Western Kentucky University. She was WLOU-AM News Director prior to teaming up with Priscilla Hancock Cooper for a number of creative collaborations. Their first production was a poetic concert in 1981, I Have Been Hungry All of My Years, followed by Four Women and God's Trombones. They also performed in Amazing Grace in 1993. Bradley-Morton and Cooper are featured in the KET Production, Words Like Freedom/Sturdy Black Bridges, a poetic concert featuring African-American writing and music. Together they founded the Theater Workshop of Louisville. In 1994 Bradley-Morton was named executive director of the Cincinnati Arts Consortium; she left the position in January 2002. [She now goes by the name Dhana Donaldson.] For more see B. Brady, "Architecturally Sound," CityBeat, vol. 6, issue 33 (2000); and "Prize Possessions," Cincinnati.com The Enquirer, 22 April 2001.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Poets
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Bramwell, Fitzgerald B. "Jerry"
Birth Year : 1945
Fitzgerald Bramwell was born in New York. In 1995 he was a chemistry faculty member and the Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies at the University of Kentucky. In 1996, Bramwell was the highest ranking African American at the University of Kentucky. Bramwell earned his B.A. from Columbia University and his master's and doctorate from the University of Michigan. His research explores how beams of laser light change the structure and reaction of certain carbon-based compounds. Bramwell has written a number of articles and is author of Investigations in general chemistry: quantitative techniques and basic principles and co-author of Basic laboratory principles in general chemistry: with quantitative techniques. For more see Distinguished African American Scientists of the 20th Century (1996), by J. H. Kessler, et al. Of the total chemists and materials scientists in Kentucky, 4% are African Americans, according to Census 2000 data.
Subjects: Authors, Chemists, Education and Educators, Migration South
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / New York

Branegan, George [Poynts vs. Branegan]
According to author Charles Lindquist, it was reported in the Michigan Freeman on October 13, 1839, that slaveholders from Kentucky had tried and failed three times to seize a slave named George Branegan who was living in Adrian, Michigan, and later they failed in Jonesville. When the slaveholders took Branegan into custody in Jonesville, they were confronted by a vigilance committee that prevented them from taking him back to Kentucky. The case went to court: Poynts vs. Branegan. When the authenticated laws of Kentucky, showing that one man could own another, could not be produced in one hour as requested by the judge, Branegan was set free. For more see The Antislavery-Underground Railroad Movement: in Lenawee County, Michigan, 1830-1860 by C. Lindquist.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky, Court Cases, Underground Railroad: Conductors, Escapes, Organizations, Research
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Jonesville and Adrian, Michigan

The Bransfords
Start Year : 1838
Nick and Matt [or Mat] Bransford and Stephen Bishop were slaves who served as guides at Mammoth Cave; Matt was a guide for 49 years, beginning in 1838. He was the son of Thomas Bransford and a slave woman. Henry Bransford, Matt's son, was a guide for 19 years. Matt W. and Lewis Bransford, Henry's sons, were also guides, Matt for 32 years. Lewis resigned in 1940, and in 1948 Mammoth Cave was turned over to the federal government. Eight of the Bransford men had been guides in Mammoth Cave. In 2002, Jerry Bransford became a guide at the cave, he is the great-great-grandson of Mat Bransford. For more see Kentucky's Black Heritage, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights; Louisville Defender, 04/12/1942; The News-Enterprise (Hardin County, KY), 02/09/04; J. C. Schmitzer, "The sable guides of Mammoth Cave," Filson Club History Quarterly, vol. 67, issue 2 (1993), pp. 240-258; K. Ohlson, "Illuminating his heritage," American Profile, 11/8-14,2009, pp.6-7; and Making Their Mark: the signature of slavery at Mammoth Cave by J. Lyons. 

See photo image of Matt Bransford at NYPL Digital Gallery.

See photo image of William Bransford at NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Parks
Geographic Region: Mammoth Cave National Park, Edmonson County, Kentucky

Braxton, Frederick [Bracktown] [Main Street Baptist Church]
Death Year : 1876
Rev. Frederick Braxton, born in Kentucky, was a slave, a blacksmith, and became pastor of the First African Church in 1854. In 1864, the church was located on Short Street, according to William's Lexington City Directory 1864-65. Rev. Braxton succeeded Elder London Ferrill, who had organized the congregation in 1822; Elder Ferrill died in 1854. During Rev. Braxton's tenure, the church continued to grow and had over 2,000 members by the beginning of the Civil War in 1861. The following year the First African Church split, with 500 members following Rev. Braxton as he founded the Independent African Church. The new church was located at the corner of Main and Locust Streets, according to William's Lexington City Directory 1864-65, and for a brief period, Rev. Braxton was pastor of both his new church and the First African Church. New church members were baptized in the Poor House Pond that was located in the southern part of Lexington [the pond was also used for the baptisms of the Pleasant Green Baptist Church]. In 1867, Rev. Braxton organized a school with nearly 300 students at the Independent African Church; it was managed by Negro teachers. Later the Independent African Church was located at the corner of Main and Merino Streets, according to the Lexington City Directory 1873 and 1874. The name of the church would be changed to Second Colored Baptist Church (1876), to Main Street Independent Baptist Church, and then later renamed the Main Street Baptist Church. Rev. Braxton was also a land owner: he owned part of the Stonetown property on Leestown Pike in Fayette County, KY, where the community that became known as Bracktown (named for Rev. Braxton) was established. He began purchasing land in 1867 and continued up through 1874. Rev. Frederick Braxton died January 31, 1876. He was the husband of Keziah "Kessie" Ware Braxton, and they were the parents of Cary Braxton (d. 1913) and Charly J. Braxton (d. 1923) [source: Kentucky Death Certificates]; Molly Braxton (d. 1876) and Merritt (d. 1901) [source: Yvonne Giles]; Henderson A. W. Braxton [source: Freedmen's Bank Record]; Betsy Braxton; Sara J. Braxton; and Ella Braxton [source: 1870 U.S. Census]. After Rev. Braxton's death, his widow, Keziah, and daughter Betsie (or Betsy) Braxton, lived on Bolivar Street, the 2nd house east of Broadway [source: William's Lexington City Directory 1881-82]. Keziah (or Kesiah) Braxton died in 1898 [source: Yvonne Giles - Death Certificate #3041]. For more see A History of Kentucky Baptist, Vol. 2, by J. A. Spencer; A Brief History of the First Baptist Church (Black), by H. E. Nutter (1940), a Baptist History Homepage website; "Under the law...," Lexington Observer and Reporter, 10/02/1867, p. 3; "Five thousand people," The Kentucky Leader, 04/18/1892, p. 7; Kentucky Place Names, by R. M. Rennick; and "A Hamlet and a Railroad Town" within the African Americans in the Bluegrass website. For a photo image of Rev. Frederick Braxton, see the First Baptist Church Souvenir Bulletin in the Sallie Price Collection at the University of Kentucky Special Collections Library. See photo image of baptism at the Lexington Work House Pond [also called the Poor House Pond] in Kentucky Digital Library - Images.

 

Deed BooK - Braxton Property on Leestown Road, Lexington, Kentucky.  Information provided by Yvonne Giles.

  • Deed Book 43 p.561 01/16/1867 7 acres
  • Deed book 43 p.425 04/10/1867 4 acres
  • Deed Book 45 p.160 02/22/1868 3 acres
  • Deed Book 47 p.62   04/01/1869 7 acres
  • Deed Book 53 p.295 05/20/1874 19 acres
  • Deed Book 53 p.393                   2 acres

 

Braxton family members buried in African Cemetery No.2.  Information provided by Yvonne Giles.

  • Frederick Braxton d. 01/31/1876
  • Mollie Braxton d. 03/11/1876
  • Kesiah (Keziah) Braxton d. 09/14/1898
  • Cary W. Braxton d. 03/31/1913
  • Mary Ellen Prior Braxton [wife of Cary W.] d. 11/09/1924
  • Charles (Charly) Jefferson Braxton d. 06/05/1923
  • Charles C. Braxton [son of Charles J.] d. 03/02/1917
  • Katherine Braxton [daughter of Charles J.] d. 1880 *may be buried in African No.2
  • Nora Braxton [daughter of Charles J.] d. 1888 *may be buried in African No.2
  • Margaret Braxton [daughter of Charles J.] d. 1887 *may be buried in African No.2
  • Fred Braxton [son of Charles J.] d. 1887 *may be buried in African No.2
  • Maria Edmonds Braxton [wife of Charles J.] d. 07/26/1931
  • Merritt Braxton d. 01/01/1901

 


Poor House Pond

See photo image of Rev. Frederick Braxton in the right hand column on p.191 in Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky, at NYPL Digital Gallery.

 
Subjects: Communities, Education and Educators, Religion & Church Work, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Lexington and Bracktown, Fayette County, Kentucky

Brazley, Michael D.
Birth Year : 1951
Brazley was born in Louisville, KY, to William and Gwendolyn Brazley. He is a graduate of the Howard University School of Architecture, and the University of Louisville School of Urban and Public Affairs (Ph.D.). Brazley is an assistant professor in the School of Architecture at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He is author of the article "Moving toward gender and racial inclusion in the design profession," which is part of an ongoing longitudinal study that Brazley presented at the 2006 Diversity Conference in New Orleans. For almost 20 years Brazley has also been the President and CEO of Brazley & Brazley, Inc., located in Louisville, KY. He is a licensed architect in Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio. Brazley has received a number of awards, including the Minority Service Firm of the Year. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1994-2006; M. Brazley, "Moving toward gender and racial inclusion in the design profession," The International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities and Nations, vol. 6, issue 3, pp. 9-18; and An Evaluation of Residential Satisfaction of HOPE VI: a study of the Park DuValle Revitalization Project (thesis) by M. Brazley.
Subjects: Architects, Authors, Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Carbondale, Illinois

Breckinridge, Thomas, and Holmes - Undertakers (Xenia, OH)
Start Year : 1902
In 1902, three former teachers from Kentucky opened an undertaking business in Xenia, OH. One of the owners, Prof. A. W. Breckinridge (b. 1863 in Kentucky), had served as principal of the Colored schools in Midway, KY, for 17 years and was a former president of the Kentucky Colored Teachers Association [later named the Kentucky Negro Educational Association (KNEA)]. His wife, Annie, was a teacher at the school. Breckinridge had also owned a grocery store in Midway. A second owner, J. D. Thomas, had been a teacher in Kentucky colored schools for 20 years. He was the former assistant secretary of the Colored Fair Association of Bourbon County. The third owner, F. E. Holmes, had also taught school in Kentucky, but had left for employment with the U.S. Revenue Service. He was a graduate of the School of Embalming in Cincinnati. For more see "Interesting Doings in Colored Society," [Xenia] Daily Gazette, 07/03/1902, p. 2.
Subjects: Businesses, Education and Educators, Colored Fairs & Black Expos, Migration North, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Midway, Woodford County, Kentucky / Xenia, Ohio

Brennen, David A.
In 2009, David A. Brennen was named the dean of the University of Kentucky (UK) College of Law, making him the state's first African American law school dean since the desegregation of Kentucky higher education. Brennen will be the 16th dean of the UK College of Law. He has more than 15 years experience in classroom teaching, is the co-founder and co-editor of Nonprofit Law Prof Blog, and is editor of the electronic abstracting journal, Nonprofit and Philanthropy Law Abstracts, published by the Social Science Research Network in the Legal Research Network series. He has a number of research publications and is co-author of the 2008 statutory supplement to The Tax Law of Charities and Other Exempt Organizations. David Brennen graduated with a finance degree from Florida Atlantic University and earned his Juris Doctor and Master of Laws in Taxation from the University of Florida. He has served as the assistant general counsel in Florida's Department of Revenue and as deputy director of the Association of American Law Schools. Additional information for this entry was provided by Michelle Cosby, librarian at the UK College of Law Library. For more see "College of Law names David A. Brennen as Dean," University of Kentucky News, 04/09/2009. For the earlier history see the NKAA entries Central Law School (Louisville, KY) and Albert S. White.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Lawyers, Migration North
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Brent, George
Birth Year : 1821
George Brent was born near Greensburg, KY; he and his parents were slaves owned by Louis C. Patterson. Brent's father gained his freedom and moved to Lexington, KY, where he secured a note for the purchase of his son. George Brent then moved to Lexington, was employed as a blacksmith and became a freeman when he paid off the note of $1,200 at the end of three years. A year prior to his freedom, George Brent married Mildred Smith, a free born woman from Campbellsville, KY. In 1837, the Brent family moved to Illinois, eventually settling in Springfield at 1417 East Adams Street. Springfield had become the capital of Illinois in 1837 thanks to the efforts of Abraham Lincoln and several others. The Brent family was among the first African Americans to settle in Sangamon County. George Brent became an ordained minister in 1864 and the following year was pastor of the Zion Baptist Church in Springfield. The church was formerly known as the Colored Baptist Church, that was started in 1838 [more information at the Zion Missionary Baptist Church website]. The first church building was constructed under the directorship of Rev. George Brent. He and three others made the bricks from which the church was built; Rev. Brent and the three men were owners of the brick yard. Rev. Brent was pastor of the Zion Baptist Church until 1887. George and Mildred Brent had four children in 1870, according to the U.S. Federal Census, February of that year, two of the children were killed when they were struck by lightning [see George Brent at Find A Grave]. For more see History of Sangamon County, Illinois; together with sketches of its cities by Inter-State Publishing Company (Chicago) [full-text available at Google Book Search]; and contact the Springfield, Illinois, African American History Foundation.

*The last name is spelled as Brents and Brentz in the census records.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Blacksmiths, 1st African American Families in Town, Free African American Slave Owners, Killed by Lightning
Geographic Region: Greensburg, Green County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Campbellsville, Taylor County, Kentucky / Springfield, Illinois

Bridgeman, Ulysses "Junior"
Birth Year : 1953
Ulysses Bridgeman was born in East Chicago, Indiana. Bridgeman was a 1975 graduate of the University of Louisville, where the 6' 5" forward played for Coach Denny Crum's Cardinals; in 1972 the Cardinals were ranked 4th in the country and played in the Final Four. In 1975 Bridgeman was drafted 8th in the first round by the Los Angeles Lakers and then traded to the Milwaukee Bucks. Bridgeman finished his career with the Milwaukee Bucks in 1988 and his jersey was retired. He holds the team record for most games played. Today, Bridgeman is owner of more than 150 Wendy's Restaurants, including several in Louisville, KY; it is one of the largest Wendy's franchises in the U.S. In 2003 Bridgeman was named chairman of the University of Louisville Board of Trustees. For more see Basketball biographies: 434 U.S. players, coaches and contributors to the game, 1891-1990, by M. Taragano and M. Pitsch; "Bridgeman likely to lead trustees," Courier Journal, 08/29/03; and P. King, "Former NBA star scores on Wendy's team," Nation's Restaurant News, vol. 38, issue 34, p. 70.

See photo image and additional information about Ulysses Bridgeman at Forbes.com.
Subjects: Basketball, Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / East Chicago, Indiana

Bridges, Travis
Birth Year : 1862
Pvt. Travis Bridges, from Mt. Sterling, KY, was one of the twenty soldiers in Company H, 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps in 1897. Starting on the 14th of June, the men rode bicycles 1,900 miles from Ft. Missoula, MT, to St. Louis, MO, arriving the 24th of July. Bridges' name was submitted by Mike Higgins, who has an entry for Travis Bridges in his blog, 25th Bicycle Corps. Pvt. Travis Bridges was discharged from the Army without honor on November 1, 1897, according to the U.S. Army Register of Enlistments. He was rated as a good soldier from his first enlistment in 1885 up to the date of his final discharge.
Subjects: Bicycles, Cyclist, Cycling, Wheelmen
Geographic Region: Mt. Sterling, Montgomery County, Kentucky

Bright, Willis K., Jr.
Birth Year : 1944
Willis Bright, Jr. was born in Lexington, KY. He was the second African American to receive the Algernon Sullivan Medallion, receiving it when he was a senior at the University of Kentucky (UK) in 1966. Bright went on to earn a M.S.W. at the University of Michigan in 1968 and became an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota. Bright led a number of programs in Iowa and Minnesota. In 2003, when he was the Director of Youth Programs at the Lily Endowment in Indianapolis, IN, Bright was inducted into the University of Kentucky College of Social Work Hall of Fame. For more see Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton; the UK College of Social Work Alumni Newsletter [.pdf], vol. 4, no. 1 (2003); and Algernon Sullivan Medallion.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Social Workers
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Britton, Arthur Eugene and Lillian Smith
Arthur Britton (b.1875 in Kentucky), was African American, Crow, and Cherokee. He grew up near Maysville and had attended college in Louisville (probably Simmons) before moving to Chicago, where he worked as a clerk in a manufacturing company. He was there during the "Red Summer" of 1919. He and his wife, Lillian Smith (b.1882 in Kentucky), were the parents of four children, the youngest being Irene Britton Smith (1907-1999), a noted composer and school teacher in Chicago. Arthur and Lillian Britton separated in 1917. For more see H. Walker-Hill, "Black women composers in Chicago: then and now," Black Music Research Journal, vol. 12, issue 1, (Spring, 1992), pp. 13-14; Funeral program for Irene Britton Smith, Chicago: Griffin Funeral Home, 02/18/1999, vertical file at the Center for Black Music Research, Columbia College Chicago; Black Women in America, 2nd ed., by D. C. Hine; and From Spirituals to Symphonies: African-American women composers and their music, by H. Walker-Hill.
Subjects: Fathers, Migration North, Mothers, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Brock, James "Jim"
James Brock was the second head basketball coach at William Grant High School (WGHS) in Covington, KY, coaching there from 1955 to 1965. Like other African American school teams in Kentucky, WGHS was a member of the Kentucky High School Athletic League (KHSAL). The counter league, Kentucky High School Athletic Association (KHSAA), was for whites only until school integration began in the mid-1950s. The 1956-1957 WGHS team was the first African American basketball team to win a district tournament in the KHSAA tournament. As more African American students were allowed to attend the formerly all white schools, there was an impact on the pool of high school athletes that had been restricted to the all black schools. In 1965, the year that William Grant High School closed, the basketball team won only five games. The season was a far cry from the winning seasons that had garnered the school a win-loss record of 185-69 during Brock's years as head coach. With the closing of William Grant, Brock moved on to Cincinnati, where he continued to successfully coach high school sports. James Brock was inducted into the Northern Kentucky Black Hall of Fame and the KHSAA Hall of Fame in 2000. For more see Shadows of the past, by L. Stout; J. Reis, "Many tried, few defeated William Grant in '50s, '60s," The Cincinnati Post, 02/23/1998, Editorial section, p. 4K; and Dawahares/KHSAA Hall of Fame class of 2000 inductees announced, 06/21/1999, at the KHSAA website.
Subjects: Athletes, Athletics, Basketball, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Brodis, James, Sr. "Jim" [Joseph M. Dorcy v. Maria Brodis et al.]
Birth Year : 1833
Jim Brodis, Sr. was a runaway slave from Kentucky. He escaped from his master while they were mining in California. Brodis fled to Pajaro Valley, California, where he eventually purchased a farm. A street there is named in his honor and memory in Watsonville. Brodis [or Brodies] is listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census as a farmer, also listed are his wife Maria (b.1843 in Nova Scotia) and their five children. In 1908, the Supreme Court of California denied a rehearing in the case of Joseph M. Dorcy v. Maria Brodis and others. James Brodis had passed away, leaving all assets to Maria and the children. A land dispute led Dorcy to file a lawsuit against Maria et al. over the ownership of a tract of land in Santa Cruz. The court had ruled in favor of Maria et al., and Dorcy sought a retrial. For more see Dorcy v. Bordis on p.278 of v.96, first series of the Pacific Reporter, July 6-September 7, 1908 [full view at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Migration West, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Santa Cruz, California

Brooks, Cynthia
Cynthia Brooks is Assistant Chief (Lt. Col.) of the Louisville, Kentucky Fire Department.  She is in charge of minority affairs and recruitment.  
Subjects: Firefighters
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Brooks, Melody
Birth Year : 1956
Little has been written about African American women ventriloquists, and there has been nothing written about those in or from Kentucky. In minstrel shows, it was not unusual to find a woman playing the role of a puppet for a male ventriloquist. Richard Potter (1783-1835) is often considered the first (or one of the first) African American male ventriloquists, as is John Walcott Cooper (1873-1966), who is also recognized as the first to become famous. Melody Brooks is a modern day ventriloquist. She was born in Berea, KY, the daughter of Audrey and Curtis Brooks. The family moved to Lexington, KY, where Melody graduated from Bryan Station High School. She has been a self-taught ventriloquist since the age of 12 and continues to perform at nursing homes, schools, hospitals, and at showers, parties, and other special events. She performed once on the television show, Good Morning America. Brooks is also an artist (producing drawings, paintings, charcoals, pencils, and mixed medium) and a singer. For more information on Melody Brooks, contact her at (859) 254-2257. For more about African American ventriloquists, see Ethnic Ventriloquism: literary minstrelsy in Nineteenth-Century American literature by M. Banerjee; the John W. Cooper Collection (archival) at the New York Public Library. See also the Vent Haven Museum website, the museum is located in Ft. Mitchell, KY, and is the only one dedicated to ventriloquism.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Ventriloquist, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Berea, Madison County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Brooks, Robert A. "Bob"
Birth Year : 1938
Robert A. Brooks was born in Winchester, KY. A six foot tall football player, he attended Oliver High and Clark County High School in Winchester. Louis Stout referred to Brooks as a "pure athlete" who displayed speed, quickness, agility and toughness. Brooks was a running back at Ohio State University, where he was designated an Ohio All American in 1960. He was selected in the 21st round of the 1961 draft by the New York Titans (later the New York Jets), an American Football League team. Brooks played one season, participating in 14 games and averaging 3.7 yards a carry. For more see Shadows of the past, by L. Stout; and Bob Brooks at the databaseFootball.com website.
Subjects: Football, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky

Brooks Sisters
The Brooks Sisters were a singing group with members Naomi, Ophelia, Carrie, and Susie Brooks, all from Zion Hill, Kentucky. These sisters were the daughters of Hannah Brown of Fermantown in Versailles, Kentucky (also spelled Firmatown) and Minister John Brooks. The Brooks Sisters were a gospel group that was invited to sing at Kentucky churches, and they also made a record. Susie Brooks, the group's piano player, also played for the Zion Hill Church; she taught herself to play the piano. She was the mother of the Raglin Brothers, also a gospel singing group. Information submitted by Ponice Raglin Cruse and her father, the Reverend Floyd B. Raglin. Contact Ms. Cruse for additional information about the Brooks Sisters.
Subjects: Fathers, Kentucky African American Churches, Mothers, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Zion Hill, Scott County, Kentucky / Firmatown (Fermantown), Woodford County, Kentucky

Brown (Byrd), Calvin
Calvin Brown is listed in the National Archives as Calvin Byrd; he changed his name after the Civil War. Brown had been a slave who ran away from his owner in Louisville, KY, on August 14, 1864, and three days later he enlisted in the 108th Infantry, Company A. He fought in the Battle of Vicksburg in 1865, where he was injured, then later fell ill due to an unrelated disease. In 1996, Brown and other African American Civil War soldiers were honored with the dedication of a national memorial site. Calvin (Byrd) Brown was the great-grandfather of Mr. Shirley Foley, Jr. For more see L. Wheeler, "The unseen soldiers get their due memorial to honor blacks who fought in Civil War," Washington Post, 09/03/1996, Metro section, p. B1. *Last name also spelled Bird in some sources.
Subjects: Freedom, Military & Veterans, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Vicksburg, Mississippi

Brown, J. B., Jr.
Brown is from Fort Knox, KY, but considers Owensboro, KY, his home. While attending high school in Fort Knox, Brown set a record as state high jump champion. The 6'8" center was an All-America basketball player at Kentucky Wesleyan College (KWC) and a member of the team that won the 1987 NCAA Division II Championship. Brown, starting all but one game, was the second leading rebounder that season with 225 rebounds. Brown went on to play ball with the Harlem Globetrotters from 1988-1995. He underwent a kidney transplant in 1996 and taught elementary school geography in Daviess County, Kentucky in 1997. For more see M. Graf, "J B Brown becomes a Harlem Globetrotter," Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer, 09/28/1988, p. 1B; and N. Phillips, "Brother's kidney gives KWC star hope," Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer, 07/13/1996, p. A1.
Subjects: Basketball, Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky / Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Brown, James and Bridgett
In 2006, the husband and wife team of James, born 1970 in Chicago, and Bridgett, born 1973 in Louisville, KY, opened Brown's Bakery in Lexington, KY. James Brown has been a retail manager at Morrison Healthcare Food Services, and he was employed at Kroger and the Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea. Brown's Bakery is not the first African American owned bakery in the city, but it is a continuation of a long history of African American bakeries and bakers dating back to the 1800s. Author John D. Wright mentions in his book that there was a black-owned bakery in Lexington between 1870-1880. In 1901, Charles H. Allen, a baker and confectioner who owned his own business, was included in the Negro Business League's 2nd Convention report given by Dr. L. D. Robinson on Lexington businesses. Brown's Bakery, located on Leestown Road, was the most recent African American owned bakery in Lexington. In 2011, the bakery moved to Versailles Road in Lexington, KY. James Brown received his culinary degree from the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago (CHIC). For more see S. Thompson, "I yam what I yam," Lexington Herald-Leader, 11/05/2006, A La Carte section, p. J1; Sweet Treats, on Connections with Renee Shaw, video #441 [available online]; and visit brownsbakery.com. For more about earlier bakers see Lexington, heart of the Bluegrass, by J. D. Wright. See also Kentucky bakers entry in the NKAA.
Subjects: Businesses, Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Negro Business League
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Brown, Jesse E. "Doc"
Birth Year : 1856
Jesse E. Brown, a doctor in Louisville, KY, was the city's first African American businessman and insurance agent. For more see Kentucky's Black Heritage, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights.
Subjects: Businesses, Insurance Companies, Insurance Sales, Medical Field, Health Care
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Brown, John Michael
Birth Year : 1950
J. Michael Brown is the first African American to be appointed Secretary of the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet; he was appointed by Governor Steve Beshear in 2007. Brown was born in New York, the son of John Sylvester Brown and Cora Lewis Brown. He is a graduate of City College of New York, where he earned his undergraduate degree in political science. He was a paratrooper and infantry officer in the 82nd Airborne Division, where he piloted helicopters, and was later stationed at Fort Campbell, KY, with the 101st Airborne. Brown remained in Kentucky, graduating in 1979 from the University of Louisville School of Law. He has served as a Louisville District Court Judge and as Law Director for the City of Louisville. For more on Brown's career, see L. Lamb, "J. Michael Brown tapped as new Justice Cabinet Secretary," Inside Corrections, vol. 1, issue 4 (January 2008), pp. 1 & 6-7 [available online]; and J. Michael Brown, a Kentucky.gov website.

Subjects: Aviators, Lawyers, Military & Veterans, Migration South, Judges, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: New York / Fort Campbell, Christian County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Brown, Josh
Birth Year : 1980
In 1993, Josh Brown, a 13-year old from Sturgis, KY, became the first African American student to win the Kentucky Education Association President's Spelling Bee in Frankfort, KY. He correctly spelled "jodhpurs" to win the competition. For more see "Kentucky spelling bee gets 1st black champ," Jet, 07/26/1993, vol. 84, issue 13, p. 22; and C. Carlton, "8th Grader from Sturgis wins state bee 'jodhpurs' good fit on ride to victory," Lexington Herald-Leader, 05/23/1993, City/State section, p. B1.
Subjects: Spelling Bees
Geographic Region: Sturgis, Union County, Kentucky

Brown, Mary Ellen
Birth Year : 1868
In 1897, Brown was named a notary public in Georgetown, KY; it is believed she was the first African American woman to be so designated in Scott County. She was to be the notary for African Americans, most of whom were applying for pensions or increases in their present pensions. Brown was born in Georgetown, KY, the daughter of Weston and Harriet Brown. She graduated from the Georgetown Colored city school in 1886 and became a teacher at the school. The family lived on Mulberrry Street. For more, see "Negro woman notary," The Weekly News and Courier, 06/02/1897, p. 14.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Notary Public
Geographic Region: Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky

Brown, Viola Davis
Birth Year : 1936
Viola D. Brown was born in Lexington, KY. In 1955, she was the first African American admitted to a nursing school in Lexington. Brown attended the Nazareth School of Nursing, which was affiliated with St. Joseph Hospital, where Brown would be promoted to hospital supervisor in 1960. Her promotion was another first for African Americans in Lexington. In 1972, Brown and Lizzie Conner were the first two African American RNs to receive advanced practice as Nurse Practitioners in Lexington. In 1980, Gov. John Y. Brown, Jr. appointed Viola Brown to the position of Executive Director of the State Office of Public Health Nursing; she held the post for 19 years. Viola Brown was inducted into the University of Kentucky College of Public Health Hall of Fame in 2004. For more see L. Blackford, "Her essay won a prize, but she couldn't go to ceremony," Lexington Herald Leader, 09/09/04, Main News section, p. A1; and V. D. Brown and J. Marfall, "Swinging bridges of opportunity and challenges: memoirs of an African American nurse practitioner pioneer on providing primary care for the underserved," Journal of Cultural Diversity, vol. 12, issue 3 (Fall 2005), pp. 107-15.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, Nurses, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Brown-Lewis, Charliese
Birth Year : 1974
Born in Versailles, Kentucky, Charliese Brown was the third African American to be selected as the Kentucky Derby Festival Queen, crowned in 1996. Derby Festival Queens have been selected every year since 1957; it is believed that the first two African American queens were selected in the 1980s. Becoming a derby queen begins with a nomination. Brown was a junior at Kentucky State University (KSU) when she was nominated by Betty Gibson, Vice President of Student Affairs at KSU. An application and photos were submitted, and Brown was selected as a princess. The Royal Court acted as ambassadors and represented the community at a variety of functions. In addition to being named the Derby Festival Queen in 1996, Charliese Brown was recognized as a member of the 1996 KSU Homecoming Court. She is the daughter of Charles E. Brown Jr. and Geraldine Collins Brown, and a sister to Chantel Brown Depp. For more information see the Kentucky Derby Festival web site and contact Charliese Brown.
Subjects: Homecoming Queens, Pageants, Contests
Geographic Region: Versailles, Woodford County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Brownsville Affair [Texas] - 25th U.S. Regiment
Start Year : 1906
In 1906, the 25th U.S. Regiment [Colored] was stationed at Fort Brown, TX; it included 20 servicemen from Kentucky among its ranks. Soon after the men arrived at the fort, tension ensued between whites in Brownsville and the soldiers. On August 13, a bartender was killed and a police officer was wounded; the men of the 25th Regiment were blamed for both. President Theodore Roosevelt had 167 men dishonorably discharged from the service. In 1970, author John D. Weaver investigated the incident and found that the men of the 25th Regiment were all innocent; he published his investigation in The Brownsville Raid. As a result of Weaver's book, the U.S. Army conducted an investigation into the Brownsville incident and also found that the men were innocent. The Nixon Administration reversed President Roosevelt's 1906 order, and in 1972, the men of the 25th U.S. Regiment were given honorable discharges, but without backpay. In December 1972, an article was placed in the Lexington Leader seeking the descendants of the 20 men from Kentucky. Below are the names and birth location of 19 of the men.

  • Pvt Henry W. Arrin, Pembroke
  • Corp. Ray Burdett, Yosemite
  • Pvt. Strowder Darnell, Middletown
  • Musician Hoytt Robinson, Mt. Sterling
  • Pvt Samuel Wheeler, Clark County
  • Pvt Richard Crooks, Bourbon County
  • Pvt Edward Robinson, Mulborough
  • Pvt Benjamin F. Johnson, Fayette County
  • Pvt Charles Jones, Nicholasville
  • Musician Joseph Jones, Midway
  • Pvt Thomas Taylor, Clark County
  • Sgt Luther T. Thornton, Aberdeen OH
  • Corp Preston Washington, Lexington
  • Pvt Charles E. Rudy, Dixon
  • Pvt William VanHook, Odville
  • Pvt August Williams, Hartford
  • Pvt Stansberry Roberts, Woodford County
  • Pvt William Smith, Lexington
  • Pvt John Green, Mulborough
For more see Brownsville Affair on the Wikipedia website; Brownsville Raid of 1906, at The Handbook of Texas Online; and "Descendants of cleared Black soldiers sought," Lexington Leader, 12/05/1972, p. 2B.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky
Geographic Region: Brownsville, Texas / Kentucky

Brucetown (Lexington, KY)
Start Year : 1865
Located on the northeast side of Lexington in what was a low field, the community of Brucetown was established by W. W. Bruce in 1865. The land was subdivided and provided for the homes of African Americans employed by Bruce; Brucetown was adjacent to Bruce's hemp factory. In 1878, a white mob killed three African American men in Brucetown; the murdered men were suspected of having knowledge of the murder of a white man killed two weeks prior. The three dead men were Tom Turner, who was shot, and Edward Claxton and John Davis, both of whom were hanged; a man named Stivers had been hanged earlier for the crime. In 2001, the ninth Brucetown Day celebration was held on Dakota Street in Lexington, sponsored by the Brucetown Neighborhood Association. For more information and maps see J. Kellogg, "The Formation of Black Residential Areas in Lexington, Kentucky, 1865-1887," The Journal of Southern History, vol. 48, issue 1 (Feb. 1982), pp. 21-52; "Negro Urban Clusters in the Postbellum South," Geographical Review, vol. 61, issue 3 (July 1977), pp. 310-321; "Mob Violence in Kentucky," The New York Times, 01/18/1878, p. 1; and "Brucetown plans annual festival," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/08/2001, Bluegrass Communities section, p. 2.
Subjects: Communities, Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Brucetown, Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Bryant, Carolyn
Birth Year : 1934
Carolyn Bryant, MSN, RN, was born in Lexington, KY, and grew up in Muskegon Heights, MI. She is a founding member of the the Detroit Black Nurses Association, June of 1972. The organization is a chapter of the National Black Nurses Association, Inc. Beginning in 1957, when Carolyn Bryant received her nursing license, she worked as a nurse in various locations and has been a college nursing instructor. Bryant is also a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps. She served as Vice President for Nursing in the Reserve Officers Association, and was the Burn Educator for the U.S. Army Reserve Corps. For more see the Carolyn Bryant entry in The Color of Healing by B. F. Morton. For more about the Detroit Black Nurses Association, Inc. see the entry on p.62 in Maricopa County, AZ Sheriffs by Turner Publishing Company.
Subjects: Migration North, Military & Veterans, Nurses
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Muskegon Heights, Michigan

Bryant, Charles W. "C.W."
Birth Year : 1830
Charles W. Bryant was born in Kentucky and settled in Texas after the Civil War. He had been a slave and was an agent for the Freemen's Bureau in Texas. He was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, 1868-1869, representing Harrison County, Texas. He was also a minister. For more see Forever Free: The Biographies, a website by the Texas State Library & Archives Commission; and "Bryant, Charles W," by P. M. Lucko in The Handbook of Texas.
Subjects: Migration West, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Texas

Bryant, Derek R.
Birth Year : 1951
Derek Bryant was born in Lexington, KY. He was the first African American baseball player at the University of Kentucky, where he played from 1971-1973. Bryant was drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the 8th round of the 1973 amateur draft. The 5'11" outfielder ended his career in 1979. For more see Fifty years of the University of Kentucky African-American Legacy, 1949-1999; and Derek Bryant at baseball-reference.com. Additional information provided by Buzz Burnam.
Subjects: Baseball
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Bryant, Isabella
Birth Year : 1890
In 1917, United States District Court Judge John Raymond Hazel ruled that Isabella Bryant was a U.S. citizen because her father, a former slave from Kentucky, had become a U.S. citizen when slaves were emancipated in Kentucky. At the time, Isabella Bryant was living on Caledonia Avenue in Rochester, New York. Her case was represented by lawyer Edwin C. Smith, who had asked the courts to grant Bryant the writ of habeas corpus. Isabella Bryant knew that her father was born in Kentucky around 1854. His name was Henry Bryant, he was a Methodist, and was born in the United States [source: Canada Census, 1901]. He was the husband of Ellen Bryant and the family of seven lived in Hamilton, where Isabella was born around 1890. Her father was never naturalized as a Canadian citizen; therefore, the courts determined that he was an American citizen and so was his daughter; therefore, Isabella Bryant could not be deported from the United States. The U.S. Department of Labor had described Isabella Bryant as an unwed mother of two children; supposedly, the first child was born in Canada and the second in the United States. Isabella Bryant had visited her sister, Mrs. Matilda Taylor, in July of 1915. Her sister lived at 11 Egerton Street in Rochester, NY [source: Immigration Card 446-E ; 07/25/15]. Isabella Bryant's immigration card describes her as an African(Blk) woman standing 5 feet 8 inches tall. Also on the card is her mother's name and address: Ellen Johnson, 101 Carolina Street, North Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. It is not known how long Isabella Bryant stayed in the U.S. before returning to Canada, but in August of 1915 she immigrated to the U.S. She arrived at the port of Buffalo, NY, according to the List Or Manifest of Alien Passengers Applying for Admission, Sheet No. 14, a U.S. Department of Labor, Immigration Service form. Isabella Bryant is listed as African (Blk), and her Canadian address is the same as her mother's address in North Hamilton. She entered the U.S. and lived in Rochester, NY, for two years, then the U.S. Department of Labor ordered her deported because she was said to be an undesirable alien who would probably become a public charge. Bryant refused to leave and hired lawyer Edwin C. Smith. The case was another example of the citizenship question concerning former slaves. Also, the Immigration Act of 1917 [info] had passed in February of 1917 to further ban undesirables from entering and/or remaining in the United States. In Isabella Bryant's case, having a child out of wedlock had made her an undesirable alien, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. This was the time period during World War I, just prior to the United States sending American troops into battle. The ruling by Judge John R. Hazel allowed Isabella Bryant to remain in the United States. She was still living in Rochester, NY, in 1920 and is included in the U.S. Census, where she is listed as white and single; she was employed as a domestic. There are no children listed with Isabella Bryant on the immigration forms or in the 1920 Census. For more see "Slave's daughter is an American," The Post Express, 04/12/1917, p. 33.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Hamilton, Ontario, Canada / Rochester, New York

Bryant-Johnson, Donna
Donna Bryant-Johnson was principal at Booker T. Washington School, the first public Montessori school in Lexington, KY. With Bryant-Johnson at the helm, student performance increased by 40% on the national standardized tests. She was awarded a Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award in 1994. In 1998, Bryant-Johnson quit her job as principal after pleading guilty to physically abusing her 8 year old daughter. For more see Donna Bryant-Johnson at the Milken Family Foundation website; and "Suspended Principal in Abuse Case Quits," Lexington Herald-Leader, 03/10/1998, City and Region section, p. C1.
Subjects: Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Buck, Vincent Lamont "Vince"
Birth Year : 1968
Vince Buck was born in Owensboro, KY, where he was an outstanding football player. He attended Central State University, where he was an NAIA All American and Defensive Player of the Year. In 1988, Buck, at 6'2", 185 pounds, led the nation in punt return average (34 punt returns, 21.5 yards per attempt) and interceptions (10, one for a touchdown). He was selected by the New Orleans Saints in the second round of the 1990 NFL draft. Buck played his entire professional football career with the Saints as a cornerback and safety from 1990-1995. The Saints had their first winning season in 1991 and they were in the playoffs 1990-1992. Buck broke his ankle during the 1995 season and was released in 1996. During his career, he had started in 64 of 84 games, had 354 tackles, and 10 interceptions. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1994-1999; S. Vied, "Buck lavished with praise for exploits at Central State," Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer, 11/24/1988, p. 1B; Vince Buck at databaseFootball.com; and J. DeShazier, "Buck surprised to hear of release from Saints," Times-Picayune, 05/26/1996, Sports section, p. D1.
Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky / New Orleans, Louisiana

Buckner, Gregory Derayle "Greg"
Birth Year : 1976
Greg Buckner, born in Hopkinsville, KY, is an assistant coach with the Houston Rockets. He was formerly a star basketball player in high school and college. Buckner is a graduate of North University Heights Academy in Hopkinsville, KY. Buckner, a 6'4" shooting guard and small forward, was a member of the 1992 state basketball championship team; it was the school's first, and to date, only state championship. His final year of high school in 1994, Buckner was selected First Team All-State, and averaged 21 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists per game [source: J. Pickens, "North University Heights set for compelling game," Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer, 03/23/1994, p.1B]. Buckner went on to play basketball at Clemson University where he did not miss a single game during his basketball career. "Buckner was the first player in Clemson history to start on four postseason tournament teams...he started 122 consecutive games between 1994 and 1998," according to the online Clemson Orange and White article titled "Former Tiger, NBA star Greg Buckner earns Clemson degree." All four years, Buckner also led the team in scoring and is ranked as the fourth all time leading scorer at Clemson with 1,754 points. He was ACC Rookie of the Year 1994-95, two times an All-ACC player, and helped take his team to the Sweet 16 during the 1997 NCAA Tournament. Greg Buckner was inducted into the Clemson Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005. He was a second round pick by the Dallas Mavericks in the 1998 NBA Draft. Buckner played one year of Continental Basketball before joining the Mavericks for three seasons. He would play for several other teams before ending his professional basketball playing career with the Memphis Grizzlies in 2009. As of August of 2012, Greg Buckner is a graduate of Clemson University. For more see Greg Buckner at Basketball-Reference.com; and Greg Buckner at NBA.com. 
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Buffalo Soldiers reburied in New Mexico [Thomas Smith and David Ford]
Start Year : 2009
Thomas Smith and David Ford were two of the three lost Buffalo Soldiers whose remains were reburied in the Santa Fe National Cemetery in New Mexico, July 2009; their remains had been left behind by the Army more than one hundred thirty years ago. Smith died in 1866, he was from New Market, KY. Ford died in 1868, he was from Taylor County, KY. The third soldier was Levi Morris from Akron, OH, he died in 1877. The soldiers had served in the remote outposts on the Western frontier. Their bodies were found during a U.S. Bureau of Reclamation investigation of cemetery looting at Fort Craig in southern New Mexico. For more see M. Dabovich, "Military welcomes home long-lost Buffalo Soldiers," Lewiston Morning Tribune, 07/19/2009, p.A2.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: New Market, Marion County, Kentucky / Taylor County, Kentucky

Burdett, Samuel "Sam" and Carol
Samuel (b. 1849) and his wife Carol (b. 1848) were both Kentucky natives, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. They married in 1872, then left Kentucky and settled in Seattle, WA. Samuel, a Civil War veteran, made his living as a veterinarian surgeon. In 1900, he was elected the King County wreckmaster. He co-founded the Cornerstone Grand Lodge of the York Masons, and helped organize the International Council of the World, an anti-lynching organization. He was author of A Test of Lynch Law, a 100-page book published in 1901 that fictionalized the lynching of Henry Smith in Paris, Texas. Sam Burdett died June 28, 1905 in Kilckitat, WA [source: Register of Deaths in Klickitat County, Washington]. For more see Samuel Burnett at the BlackPast.org website; Seattle's Black Victorians, 1852-1901, by E. H. Mumford; and A Spectacular Secret, by J. D. Goldsby.
Subjects: Authors, Lynchings, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration West, Military & Veterans, Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Seattle, Washington

Burdette, John
Birth Year : 1896
At the age of 25, John Burdette left his hometown, Lexington, KY, seeking employment and the opportunity to further his singing career in Chicago. [He was actually born in Garrard County, KY, according to his WWII Draft Registration Card.] Burdette was one of several lodgers living on South Parkway, including Ernest Covington, who was also from Kentucky, according to the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. Burdette sang part-time, and both he and Covington were employed full-time as elevator operators; Covington at an official building and Burdette in a furniture store on Wabash Avenue. Burdette's big break came in 1930 when he won a local contest at the Oriental Theater, singing the song "Old Man River." Burdette was declared the best baritone among the competitors. He would next sing at the Chicagoland Music Festival at Soldiers' Field and was invited back to perform for the next three years. Burdette was also a jubilee singer and in 1934 won the audience over with his rendition of "Old Man River." Burdette was still singing professionally in the 1950s; he was a member of the first integrated chorus in Grant Park Concert's Cole Porter High Program, held in Chicago, August 18-19, 1951. The guest star, Etta Moten, an African American soprano from Weimar, TX, was one of the four featured performers who were accompanied by the chorus that included African American members John Burdette and Albert Yarborough. Burdette's entire singing career took place in Chicago. For more see "Former Lexington Negro wins singing contest at Chicago," Lexington Leader, 08/17/1930, p. 16; J. B. Lieberman, "Mundy-led jubilee singers delight audience," Daily Illini, 01/16/1934, pp. 1 & 5 [online at Illinois Digital Newspaper Collection website]; and "Moten, Etta: soprano" in 1952 Negro Year Book, ed. by J. P. Guzman, p. 56.
Subjects: Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Garrard County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Burks, Ishmon, F. Jr.
Birth Year : 1945
Ishmon Burks, Jr. was born in Louisville, KY. He was the first African American Kentucky State Police Commissioner, appointed by Governor Paul Patton in 2000. Burks was promoted to Justice Cabinet Secretary in 2002. In 2011, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer named Ishmon Burks, Jr. interim chief of the Louisville Metro Police Department. Burks is a former executive vice president and COO of Spalding University. He is a graduate of Lincoln University of Missouri, Indiana University, and City College of New York. He is a retired colonel from the U.S. Army. Ishmon Burks, Jr. is the son of Ishmon Sr. and Juanita Burks. For more see "Retired Army officer first Black KSP chief," The Kentucky Post, 08/23/2000, News section, p.1K; D. Stephenson, "Burks becomes state police head," Lexington Herald-Leader, 09/01/2000, City & Region section, p. B1; and "Mayor selects Ishmon Burks as Louisville's interim police chief [Opinion: The Arena]" by T. McAdam, online at Louisville.com.


 Access InterviewListen to the Ishmon Burks oral history interviews, by Mike Jones, 10/07/2002,  at the Kentucky Historical Society website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Military & Veterans, Corrections and Police, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Burks, Juanita P.
Birth Year : 1920
Juanita P. Farley Burks is the daughter of Donna and Allen Farley of Crittenden County, KY. Ms. Burks is head of J. P. Burks Construction, Inc., a Louisville, KY, glass company she started in 1980. She is one of the leading African American women entrepreneurs in Kentucky, having served on President Carter's board of energy and, in the 1970s, was nominated by Kentucky Governor Julian Carroll to go to Washington, D.C. to help develop a federal energy policy. Burks attended Kentucky State College in the early 1940s and took business courses at the University of Louisville. In 1974, she borrowed money (for the first and last time) through a $6,000 home loan to start her first company, City Plaza, a personnel recruitment service. Burks' glass company was formed in 1980; she won a contract to install glass in the downtown Louisville Galleria, where her company put the floors down and installed $4.5 million worth of glass. Burks had worked as a maid and elevator operator in that same building when she first came to Louisville in 1942, earning $17 per week. In 1983, Burks was named Woman of Achievement, and, in 1996, Kentucky Entrepreneur of the Year. Juanita P. Burks is the mother of Ishmon Burks, Jr. For more see M. Green, "83-year-old loves business," Courier-Journal, 10/01/2003; and C. Carlton, "Faith & fashion," Courier-Journal, 04/16/2006, Arts section, p.1I.
Subjects: Businesses, Construction, Contractors, Builders, Mothers, Appointments by U.S. Presidents/Services for U.S. Presidents
Geographic Region: Crittenden County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Burley, James M.
Birth Year : 1854
James M. Burley was probably one of the first African American jewelers in Georgetown, Louisville, and Paris, KY. His business opened in 1872 in Georgetown. Burley was listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census as an unmarried watchmaker; he did marry at some point after 1880. Burley moved his business to Louisville in 1885, then to Paris, KY, sometime after 1897. He is listed in the 1900 U.S. Federal Census as divorced and living on 8th Street in Paris, KY. His specialty was gold and silver plating. Burley's work was exhibited at the New Orleans World's Exposition in 1884 [source: Scott County Kentucky: a history edited by L. Apple, F. A. Johnston, and B. Bevins, p. 220]. James M. Burley was born in Frankfort, KY. He was an 1890 valedictorian graduate of the Normal Class at State University [later Simmons College]. For more see the "James M. Burley" entry in Weeden's History of The Colored People of Louisville, by H. C. Weeden.
Subjects: Businesses, Jewelers, Watchmakers
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Burnam, Cedric C.
Birth Year : 1955
Cedric Burnam was born in Bowling Green, KY. In 2003 he became the first African American elected to the Warren County Fiscal Court; he was the District 2 Magistrate. Burnam is owner of Burnam and Sons Mortuary in Bowling Green. For more see Amy Bingham, "Warren County Officials Sworn In," Channel 13 WBKO, Bowling Green, KY; and J. Gaines, "New county magistrates tour offices," Daily News (Bowling Green) newspaper, 12/18/2002, News section.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Burns, Tommie, Jr.
Birth Year : 1933
Tommie Burns, Jr. came to Louisville, KY, from Mississippi when he was 18 years old, taking a job as a molder at the American Standard plant. While still holding his day job, Burns began cleaning Bacon's department store at night, soon hiring a crew and cleaning all of the Bacon's stores in Shively (a west-end Louisville suburb). Burns eventually quit his day job, incorporating Burns Janitor Service in 1975. He continued to develop other businesses and by 1992, Burns Enterprises had revenues of $17 million. The company consisted of almost 500 employees in six businesses: janitor service, roller rink, chemical and supply, food marts, rigging, and packing, with operations in Kentucky, Maine, New York, Georgia, and Tennessee. In 1992, Burns was the 69-year-old chairman of T&WA Inc., a company that mounts tires and wheels for automakers. The company, then 7 years old, had about $500 million in revenues. In 2001, T&WA Inc. was selected as the Minority Business of the Year at the Greater Louisville Inc.'s Annual Dinner. Tommie Burns, Jr. is the son of Tommie, Sr. and Rosetta Burns [source: 1940 U.S. Federal Census]. For more see T. R. Hill, "Sensible Chance Paid Off," Lexington Herald-Leader, 04/03/1994, Business section, p.3; R. Redding, "Entrepreneur 'Burns' up latest automotive niche. 'Janitor' lands $50 million assembly job at Toyota," bizjournals.com (from 06/20/1997 print edition); and Y. Markstaff, "Wheeling Dealing," Courier-Journal, 09/16/2002, Business section, p. 01C.
Subjects: Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Burnt Cork in Kentucky Derby, 1943
Start Year : 1943
Burnt Cork was a thoroughbred racehorse owned by Edmund Lincoln Anderson (1905-1977), aka "Rochester," the Negro comedian and former vaudeville performer who teamed with Jack Benny on radio in The Jack Benny Program and in the television series, The Jack Benny Show. Several newspapers around the country accused Anderson of entering Burnt Cork in the 1943 Kentucky Derby as a publicity stunt, and prior to the race, Anderson was advised not to enter his horse; its odds were 25-1. Anderson would not be swayed, however; he attempted to hire jockey Carroll Bierman, who had won the 1940 Kentucky Derby with longshot Gallahadion. Anderson, his wife, and his valet stayed at the home of Kentucky House Member Mae Street Kidd in Louisville; the hotels in Louisville were segregated. Mae Street Kidd did not care much for Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, but got along well with his wife. Kidd was invited to join the Andersons in their box during the derby. Burnt Cork came in last place. He had come out of the gates fast, but quickly ran out of steam and came in 10th, 38 lengths behind the winner, Count Fleet, owned by Mrs. John D. Hertz. Burnt Cork was ridden by jockey Manual Gonzalez and was trained by A. E. Silver. Edmund Anderson was disappointed in his horse's performance, but the loss became part of the comedy routine with Jack Benny ribbing "Rochester" on air during The Jack Benny Program. The newspapers and other comedians also poked fun at Anderson. During 1943, there were more than 200 newspaper stories in the United States and Canada about Burnt Cork's loss in the Kentucky Derby. Anderson continued to race Burnt Cork until the horse died in July of 1944. For more see Kentucky Derby Stories, by J. Bolus; "Rochester entry in Kentucky Derby has good chance," Corsicana Daily Sun, 04/12/1943, p. 5; "Burnt Cork is long shot," Racine Journal-Times, 04/16/1943, p. 19; "Entry of Burt Cork would end doubts of last place in derby," Salt Lake Tribune, 04/29/1943, p. 19; "Burnt Cork runs in Crete Handicap," New Castle News, 05/22/1943; and Eddie "Rochester" Anderson in Passing for Black, by W. Hall.

*The term "burnt cork" refers to theatrical makeup that was first used by white blackface performers in minstrel shows, beginning in the early 1800s. The actors presented themselves as comical and stereotyped characterizations of African Americans. There were also African American minstrel performers who wore burnt cork, including one of the most famous and highest paid blackface performers, Bert Williams. Originally the makeup consisted of burnt cork that was pulverized then mixed with water, petroleum jelly, or some other substance and smeared on the uncovered areas of skin such as the face, neck, and hands. With the popularity of blackface performances in the U.S. and abroad, soon burnt cork was commercially manufactured, advertised, and sold to performers by mail. A popular item was The "Crest Brand" Burnt Cork, billed as a healthier alternative to the original mix. It was sold by the Crest Trading Company in New York for 50 cents, plus 7 cents for postage. Other burnt cork alternatives were grease paint and shoe polish. Today, there are blackface performers around the world. For more see The Witmark's Amateur Minstrel Guide and Burnt Cork Encyclopedia, by F. Dumont [available at Google Book Search]; and Behind the Burnt Cork Mask, by W. J. Mahar.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Burse, Luther, Sr.
Birth Year : 1937
Burse was born in Hopkinsville, KY, the son of Ernestine Merriweather Perry and the stepson of Monroe Perry. He is a 1958 graduate of Kentucky State University (BS), a 1960 graduate of the University of Indiana (MEd), and a 1969 graduate of the University of Maryland (EdD). Burse has taught in public schools and at the university level and was acting president of Cheyney State College, 1981-1982 [now Cheyney University of Pennsylvania]; president of Fort Valley State College, 1983-1989 [now Fort Valley State University]; Director of Civil Rights with the U.S. Forest Service; president of the Kentucky State University National Alumni Association; and Director of Urban Programs and Diversity for the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges. Burse has received a number of awards, including the Kentucky State University Leadership Award, and he is listed among the Outstanding Educators of America. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1977-2006; and K. F. Kazi, "The Forest Service is growing diversity," Black Collegian, vol. 24, issue 2 (Nov/Dec 1993), p. 72.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Fish & Wildlife, Forestry
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Burse, Raymond M.
Birth Year : 1951
Burse was born in Hopkinsville, KY, the youngest of the twelve children of Joe and Lena Belle Burse. He was captain of his high school track and football teams and declined football scholarships to attend Centre College, where he majored in chemistry and math, graduating in 1973. While at Centre, Burse was named most outstanding individual in track at two invitational meets and was named to the All-College Athletic Conference Football Team in 1972. He also earned a Rhodes Scholarship and attended the University of Oxford, majoring in organic chemistry and graduating in 1975. While at Oxford, he became the first African American to earn three "Blues," one in rugby; Burse also participated in basketball, track, and crew. He returned to the U.S. to attend Harvard Law School, graduating in 1978. Burse has had many recognitions and awards. He served as president of Kentucky State University, 1982-1989, and is presently vice president and general counsel at GE Consumer and Industrial. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1985-2006; and M. Starks, "Raymond & Kim Burse," Who's Who in Black Louisville, 3rd ed. p.73.
Subjects: Athletes, Athletics, Education and Educators, Football, Lawyers, Track & Field, Rugby
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Butler, Darraugh Clay
Birth Year : 1955
Butler was born in Paducah, KY, to Theodore M. and Mary E. Glore. She is president of D. Butler Management Consulting in Cincinnati, OH. Butler founded the company in 1996 to encourage economic inclusion of minority- and women-owned businesses with the corporate and government sector. Butler's company is tops in the region for economic inclusion and has garnered a number of awards. In 2004, a second consulting office was opened in the Atlanta, GA area. For more see W. Hicks, "D. Butler Management Consulting delivers economic inclusion results," 09/04/2007, at North College Hill News at Cincinnati.com; G. Verna, "Small businesses made team at ballpark project," Business Courier of Cincinnati, 09/19/2003, online at bizjournals.com; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1994-2000.
Subjects: Businesses, Migration North
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio / Atlanta, Georgia

Butler, William F.
From Jefferson County, KY, William F. Butler served as president of the Negro Republican Party that was formed following the Civil War. The organization's first convention was held in Lexington, KY, in 1867. That same year, at a Civil Rights meeting held in Louisville, KY, William Butler stood and demanded equal rights for African Americans. Following the meeting, the Law League was established to "finance and secure" lawyers who would fight for African Americans' civil rights. For more see Kentucky's Black Heritage, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights; and V. B. Howard, "The Black testimony controversy in Kentucky, 1866-1872," The Journal of Negro History, vol. 58, issue 2 (April 1973), pp. 140-165.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cabell Brothers (Pharmacists)
Atwood Cabell, born 1897 in Tennessee, was the first African American pharmacist in Henderson, KY. His brothers Roger W. (1893-1972) and Delmo also became pharmacists. Delmo Boutell Cabell (1895-1977), born in Madisonville, KY, was the first African American pharmacist in Providence, KY, beginning around 1917. Roger died in Henderson, KY, and Delmo died in Detroit, MI. The Cabell Brothers are related to George and Aaron Cabell. For more on Delmo Cabell, see Who's Who in Colored America, 1933-37. For more on the Cabell Family, visit the Henderson County Public Library Genealogy and Family Files.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Pharmacists, Pharmacies
Geographic Region: Tennessee / Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Madisonville, Hopkins County, Kentucky / Providence, Webster County, Kentucky / Detroit, Michigan

Cabell, George C.
Birth Year : 1860
George Cabell was born in Henderson, KY. He was a brother of Aaron Cabell, for whom he drove a grocery wagon. George acquired his own grocery and general merchandise business in 1895. He was still managing his store in 1920, according to the U.S. Federal Census. He was also director of the Cemetery and Burial Company in Henderson. George C. Cabell was married to Lovenia Dixon Cabell. For more see Who's Who of the Colored Race, 1915.
Subjects: Businesses, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky

Calvin and Porter Townships (Cass County), Michigan
Around 1840, escaped slaves, mostly from Kentucky, found their way to Calvin and Porter in Michigan. Quakers had established the settlements, and when slave owners attempted to reclaim the slaves, their efforts were resisted and the communities continued to grow. Ex-slaves from the Saunders' plantation in West Virginia moved to Calvin in 1849 and became the majority of the township's population. Over the years the population spilled over into Porter. Both Calvin and Porter are located in the South Bend/Mishawaka metro area of Michigan on the Indiana border. Today Calvin's population is about 2,000, Porter's about 3,800. For more see the reprint by Booker T. Washington, "Two Generations Under Freedom," The Michigan Citizen, 12/19/1992, vol. XV, issue 4, p. A12;  Negro Folktales in Michigan, edited by R. M. Dorson. For more on the raids led by Kentucky slave owners see B. C. Wilson, "Kentucky kidnappers, fugitives, and abolitionists in Antebellum Cass County, Michigan," Michigan History, vol.6, issue 4, pp. 339-358.  See also the Perry Sanford entry.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Calvin and Porter, Michigan / West Virginia / West Bend, Indiana

Calvin Ruff and Libby Lightburn
Start Year : 1885
Calvin Ruff, who was white, was the son of J. Q. Ruff, a wealthy man in Galveston, Texas. Libby Lightburn was an 18 year old mulatto who had moved from Texas to Louisville, KY. In 1885, Ruff arrived in Louisville to ask Lightburn to be his wife. Interracial marriage was illegal in Kentucky, so the couple was married in New Albany, Indiana, where interracial marriage was also illegal, but since both were unknown, Ruff was able to purchase the marriage license as a Colored man. The state of Indiana had an 1840 law that made all white-black marriages null and void, and for those who married after the law was passed, if caught, the charge was a felony with the penalty of 10-20 years in the state prison. For more see "Marriage of Black and White," The New York Freeman, 06/27/1885, issue 32, Col. F; and T. P. Monahan, "Marriage across racial lines in Indiana," Journal of Marriage and the Family, vol. 35, issue 4 (Nov., 1973), pp. 632-630.
Subjects: Migration East, Interracial Marriage and State Laws
Geographic Region: Galveston, Texas / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / New Albany, Indiana

Camp Knox Team [Colored Football]
In 1920, the Camp Knox Team was a Kentucky champion of Colored football. In November of that year, the "soldiers eleven" were preparing to travel to Indiana where they would face the Ex-Collegians, a Colored football team in Indianapolis. For more see "Ex-Collegians work," The Indianapolis Star, 11/16/1920, p.12. Camp Knox would become Fort Knox. It had been established by Congress in 1918 as a field artillery training range for Camp Zachary Taylor in Louisville, KY. There were thousands of Colored soldiers stationed at Camp Zachary Taylor during WWI. For more on Camp Knox see "Fort Knox" entry in The Kentucky Encyclopedia by J. E. Kleber.
Subjects: Football, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: [Camp Knox] Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, and Meade Counties, Kentucky

Campbellsville - Taylor County, Kentucky Oral History Project (FA 202)
Start Year : 2006
The following information comes from the collection notes for Campbellsville - Taylor County, Kentucky Oral History Project (FA 202): "This collection consists of interviews (on compact discs) done with African Americans with Taylor County, Kentucky roots. The twenty-two interviews were conducted by Lynne Ferguson, a graduate of the Folk Studies Department at Western Kentucky University for Greater Campbellsville United. The project’s purpose was to collect information about the often neglected African American history in Campbellsville. The collection includes interviews, permission forms, informant information sheets and tape logs. A collection highlight is an interview with Clem Haskins, a former basketball star at Western Kentucky University, who also enjoyed a successful professional basketball career and a collegiate coaching career. An interview with his wife Harriet Yevette Haskins, who served as a WKU regent, is also included." The collection has 1 box, 23 folders, and 47 items, dated 2006, and consisting of compact discs and typescripts. All items are available at Western Kentucky University, Manuscripts and Folklife Archives.

 
Subjects: Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Campbellsville, Taylor County, Kentucky

Capers, Jean M.
Birth Year : 1913
Jean Murrell Capers was born in Georgetown, KY. Her family moved to Cleveland, OH, when she was a child. Capers was a teacher in the Cleveland schools before becoming an attorney in 1945. She is a education graduate of Western Reserve University [now Case Western Reserve University]. She was assistant police prosecutor from 1946 until 1949, when she became the first African American elected to the Cleveland City Council. The N.C.N.W. recognized her as one of the 10 outstanding women in public service in 1950. She was the director and organizer of the Central Welfare Association. Capers later became a Cleveland Municipal Court Judge. In 2006, Capers, at 93 years of age, was the oldest practicing member of the National Bar Association. She has received a number of awards, including the 2011 Ohio State Bar Association Nettie Cronise Lutes Award [article online at Call & Post website]. Jean M. Capers is a law graduate of the Cleveland Law School [which merged with the John Marshall School of Law in 1945 to become the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law]. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950; The American Bench. Judges of the nation, 2nd edition, ed. by M. Reincke and N. Lichterman; and "Capers oldest member to attend annual convention," National Bar Association Law E-Bulletin, vol. 14, issue 1 (August 2006). Photos of Jean Capers are in the African Americans of Note in Cleveland database.


Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Lawyers, Migration North, Corrections and Police, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Social Workers, Judges
Geographic Region: Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky / Cleveland, Ohio

Carpenters (Louisville, KY)
Author W. H. Gibson, Sr. mentions the following African American carpenters in Louisville, KY: John Evans, Berry Evans, Jesse Merriwether, Willis Talbot, and John Jordan. For more see The History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, by W. H. Gibson, Sr.
Subjects: Businesses, Carpenters
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Carr, Fletcher
Fletcher Carr, a native of Pennsylvania, was the first African American full-time head coach at the University of Kentucky.  Carr had been hired as an assistant football coach but chose to coach wrestling in 1973. He had been a champion wrestler when he was a student at Tampa University.  For more see Fifty Years of the University of Kentucky African-American Legacy, 1949-1999.
Subjects: Wrestling, Wrestlers
Geographic Region: Pennsylvania / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Carr, George W.
Birth Year : 1864
In 1913, Rev. George W. Carr, became the second pastor of the Hillsdale Baptist Church in Lansing, Michigan. Carr was born in Tennessee, and lived in Liberty, KY. His parents and his wife were from Kentucky, according to the 1910 U.S. Federal Census. In 1900, George W. Carr was a minister at the Second Baptist Church in Indianapolis, IN. Years later, while in Lansing, Carr was a minister and also a property owner. He is remembered for increasing the Sunday School enrollment: the church received $250 for having the greatest increase of Sunday School scholars in the city. Carr also appointed the first Sunday School superintendent and church historian. Hillsdale, the first African American Baptist Church in Lansing, is today known as Union Missionary Baptist Church. Also in 1913, Rev. Carr led the religious exercises at the Michigan Senate and House of Representatives. For more see the last paragraph "Rev. G. W. Carr of Liberty, Ky..." in the column "Marion flashes," Recorder (Indianapolis, IN), 03/17/1900, p.1; see p. 253 of the 1913 Journal of the Michigan House of Representatives [available full-text at Google Book Search]; p. 311 of the 1913 Journal of the Michigan Legislature, Senate; and the Michigan Manual of Freemen's Progress, compiled by F. H. Warren [available full text online as a .pdf, on the Western Michigan University website].
Subjects: Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Lansing, Michigan

Carr, Kipley D.
Birth Year : 1967
Kipley D. Carr was born in Bowling Green and served as the first African American student representative on the Bowling Green Independent School Board, 1983-1984, and is believed to be the first African American student representative to a local board of education in the Commonwealth. Active in the NAACP since childhood, Carr served as president of the Bowling Green-Warren County NAACP Youth Council and later as president of the Kentucky State NAACP Youth & College Division. From 1995-97 Carr was Political Action Chairman of the Kentucky State NAACP Conference, as the youngest state political action chairperson anywhere in the country. Carr played a leading role in Bowling Green's first Martin Luther King March. He later moved to West Virginia, where he became the first African American elected to the Martinsburg City Democratic Committee and served as a charter member of the city's Human Relations Commission. Carr returned to Bowling Green and was elected the first African American president of the city's Young Democrats Club in 1995. Carr served as Secretary for the Georgia State Conference, NAACP, from 2005-2011. In 2009, Carr was elected the first African American president of the College Park (GA) Historical Society, and in 2011 became the first African-American president of the Historic College Park Neighborhood Association. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 8th-15th editions. In 2012, Kipley D. Carr ran unsuccessfully for a seat in the Georgia General Assembly.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Board of Education
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Martinsburg, West Virginia / Atlanta, Georgia

Carter, Maria F. [Trimble County Common Colored Schools]
Start Year : 1874
Maria F. Carter was a school teacher in Trimble County, KY. The school term for Colored children in the county was three months, April 1-June 30th. In 1874, Carter had taught the entire term, but was not paid. The matter was taken up by the Kentucky Legislature. It was determined that a correct census had been taken of the Colored children in Trimble County, but was not reported to the Superintendent of Public Instruction, as was required by law, which resulted in no appropriations being designated for Trimble County from the Colored School Fund. Maria Carter had been legally employed by the school system. The General Assembly enacted that Carter be paid the $51.50 owed her, and that the Superintendent of Public Instruction withhold the sum from the appropriations for the Trimble County school funds. For more see chapter 338 of Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Passed (1875), v.1 [available full view at Google Book Search]. See also the NKAA entries for African American Schools in Trimble County, KY, and  African American Schools.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Trimble County, Kentucky

Casey, Dwane
Birth Year : 1957
Dwane Casey was born in Morganfield, KY. Casey, a 6' 2" guard, was on the University of Kentucky (UK) basketball team from 1976-1979; the 1977-1978 team won the NCAA Championship. Casey played in 95 games, scoring 125 total points. He served as an assistant coach under Clem Haskins for five years at Western Kentucky University until 1986, when he became an assistant coach at UK. Casey was the third former player to become an assistant coach at UK and the first African American to do so. In 1988 he filed a $6.9 million suit against the Emery Air Freight Corp. and the employees who claimed to have discovered $1,000 cash in a package Casey sent to the father of California basketball player Chris Mills. [The suit was eventually settled out of court.] Casey resigned from UK in 1989. He later served as an assistant coach overseas and in the NBA. From June 2005 - January 2007, Casey was head coach of the NBA's Minnesota Timberwolves. He was the third African American from Kentucky to be named a head coach in the NBA [the first was Bernie Bickerstaff, the second, Wes Unseld]. In 2011, Casey was named the head coach of the Toronto Raptors. For more see Dwane Casey at the Big Blue History website; J. Tipton, "UK names Casey coaching assistant," Lexington Herald-Leader, 04/19/1986, Sports section, p. C1; M. Barnhill, "Kentucky basketball coach sues freight firm in Mills case," 07/09/1988, News section, p. N8, and "Kentucky charged by NCAA - investigators say L.A. basketball star's father was paid $1000," 07/26/1988, News section, p. N1, both in the Daily News of Los Angeles (California); and "Timberwolves hire Sonics' assistant," The Grand Rapids Press, 06/18/2006, Sports section, p. C1.

See photo image and additional information about Dwane Casey at "Mavs assistant Dwane Casey in line for Toronto head job," by T. Griffin et. al. at Spurs Nation website.
 
Subjects: Basketball, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Morganfield, Union County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Minnesota

Caterers, Butchers, Confectioners, Ice Cream (Louisville, KY)
Author W. H. Gibson, Sr. lists the following as prominent African Americans in Louisville, KY -- [Caterers] George Brown, Daniel Clemmons, Frank Gray, and Thornton Thompson; [Butcher] Bartlett Taylor; and [Confectioner] Henry Cozzens, who was also a barber and had an ice cream saloon "known from New Orleans to Pittsburg [sic]." The Page Ice Cream Factory, located on West Chestnut Street, was the largest manufacturer and dealer of ice cream in the city of Louisville. The National Negro Press Association visited the factory in 1928, and members were served slices of the much requested brick ice cream known as "Neapolitan." For more see "Minutes of the Twenty-Ninth Annual Session of the National Negro Press Association Held in Louisville, KY, April 11-14, 1928," available in the Black Culture Collection, by Micro Photo Division, Bell & Howell Co., 1972; and The History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, by W. H. Gibson, Sr.
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cato (former slave/then again slave)
It was reported in the New York Times that in 1850 a widow named Shaw sold a slave named Cato to Dr. Benjamin Beall and B. Tucker. The article stated that Cato received his freedom in 1856, as had been stipulated by Shaw prior to the sale. Once free, Cato went to Cincinnati but was unable to find work, so he returned to Alexandria, KY, to work again for Beall. Cato accompanied Beall to Lexington, KY, to sell his cattle. After selling the cattle, Beall sold Cato for $900, and he was then shipped down South. In 1857, Beall sued the Cincinnati Enquirer for libel when it ran an article insinuating that he had enticed Cato back to Alexandria from Cincinnati in order to sell him into slavery. Beall won his case. For more see article 5 in the New York Times, 08/02/1865, p. 6 and the untitled article in the New York Times, 03/12/1857, p. 2.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration South
Geographic Region: Alexandria, Campbell County, Kentucky

Cato (slave jockey) [Grey Eagle v Wagner]
Start Year : 1839
On Monday, September 30, 1839, the infamous race between the Virginia-bred horse Wagner and the Kentucky-bred horse Grey Eagle took place at the Oakland Course in Louisville, KY, for a purse of $14,000. Grey Eagle was a four year old owned by hemp dealer Alfred Lawrence Shotwell of Louisville, and ridden by Stephen Welch, a white jockey who weighed 83 pounds. Grey Eagle had run the fastest two miles in the United States. Wagner, a five year old owned by John Campbell of Maryland, was ridden by Cato, a slave jockey owned by John Campbell. The race was set for three four-mile heats. The winner of two heats would be declared the champion. Bets between individuals were made in dollars and in slaves. It was estimated that there were over 10,000 people in attendance to witness Wagner win two heats back to back and be declared the overall winner. A new record of 7:44 was set in the second heat. Fans still wanted the opportunity to prove Grey Eagle's winning ability, so it was agreed that another race would take place on the same course in five days. Wagner was again the victor. Grey Eagle was injured during the competition and never raced again. Cato, the slave jockey, was given his freedom in exchange for the victories. He would continue as a jockey for John Campbell. For more see "Some Great Races," chapter three in The American Turf, by J. H. Davis [available full-text at Google Book Search]; and Black Maestro, by J. Drape.
Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Maryland

Cedar Creek and Mill Creek, KY
The Cedar Creek Black Cemetery is located in Hardin County, KY. Buried there are the descendants of the former slaves who lived in the area. After gaining their freedom, an African American community was established around the cemetery, along with the African Methodist Episcopal Church and a school. There was a second African American community near Wright Cemetery. According to author Gary Kempf, there are two cemeteries behind the Wright Cemetery where African Americans were buried. The land that held the communities and the cemeteries was taken over for the expansion of Fort Knox Military Reservation. For more see The Land Before Fort Knox by G. Kenpf.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Kentucky African American Churches, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Cedar Creek, MIll Creek, Fort Knox, Hardin County, Kentucky

Centenarian Librarians (Kentucky)
Start Year : 2009
As of 2009, the state of Kentucky had at least three African American librarians who were 100 years old or older. Mrs. Ruth Hill Jones was 100 in July, she was a librarian in the Louisville School System and at Simmons Bible College. She lives in Louisville. Eliza Atkins Gleason passed away the day of her 100th birthday, December 15, 2009. She had been head librarian at the Louisville Municipal College for Negroes, and later dean of the Atlanta University Library School [now Clark Atlanta] which she helped to develop in 1940, thus becoming the first African American library school dean in the U.S. The library school closed in June 2005. Gleason lived in Louisville. The late Della Jones was 106 in July, she was librarian at Owen County High School. She lived in Williamstown, KY. Information about Ruth Hill Jones was provided by U. S. Army Chaplin (Maj) Susan R. Addams. Information about Della Jones was provided by her great nephew, Kentucky House Member Reginald K. Meeks. For more information see Jones, Kompanik, and Onkst, "Spotlight: Eliza Atkins Gleason, Ruth Hill Jones, and Della Jones," Kentucky Libraries, vol.73, issue 4, Fall 2009, pp.20-21.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Williamstown, Grant County, Kentucky

Center of Excellence for the Study of Kentucky African Americans (CESKAA)
"Devoted to the collection, preservation, interpretation and dissemination of materials about African Americans in Kentucky and those with Kentucky connections residing throughout the nation and around the globe." Located at Kentucky State University.
Subjects: Genealogy, History, Resources Dedicated to Kentucky African Americans [Statewide]
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Center Street Colored Methodist Episcopal (CME) Church
The Center Street CME Church, first of its denomination in Louisville, KY, was led by several pastors, including Bishop Miles in the late 1860s and J. W. Bell in the 1870s. The church was host to the 3rd CME General Conference in 1874. In 1904, the church was moved and became the Chestnut Street CME Church. The church was renamed again in 1954: Brown Memorial CME Church. The church, located at 809 W. Chestnut Street in Louisville, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. For more see the entry for marker #1677 in the Kentucky Historical Society Marker Database.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Central and South American Immigration Association and Equal Rights League of the Western Continent
Start Year : 1885
Prior to the end of the Civil War, the formation of Negro colonies in Central and South America had been attempted by President Lincoln and others. In 1885, the idea was revisited by a Negro organization known as the Central and South American Immigration Association and Equal Rights League of the Western Continent. There were 50 prominent members from Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, and a few other states. The group met for several years and in 1893 were prepared to put their plan into action: Negroes in the U.S. were to form colonies prior to each colony being deported to a new homeland in various countries in Central or South America. Colonel John M. Brown, a county clerk of Shawnee County, Kansas, was president of the organization, and S. W. Wine of Kansas City was secretary. The Brazilian government had given assurance that it would help the Negro colonists. There was strong opposition to the plan from Negro leaders throughout the U.S. There was also speculation that the southern Negro labor force would be depleted and the North would lose the best members of the Negro race. For more information see The Negro a Menace to American Civilization by R. W. Shufeldt [available full view at Google Book Search]; and "Negroes going to Brazil," New York Times, 04/03/1893, p. 8. See also Proposed American Negro Colony in New Granada.
Subjects: Immigration, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Colonies, Colonization
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Central America / Brazil, South America

Chambers, Greenberry and Charlotte
Greenberry Chambers, from Barren County, KY, and a former slave, is recognized as the first permanent settler of Blaine Township in Minnesota. Chambers was a fugitive slave in 1864 when he joined Company H of the 15th U.S. Colored Infantry. After the Civil War, Chambers gathered his wife Charlotte and their five children and moved to Minnesota, where he purchased 160 acres of land thought to be totally useless. The family farmed the land for almost a decade before moving to St. Paul. Charlotte Chambers died in 1884 and Greenberry died in 1898. For more about the Chambers family see Circle Pines & Lexington, Minnesota by S. Lee; History of Upper Mississippi Valley by N. H. Winchell, et al.; and "The Story of Greenberry Chambers" at the City of Blaine website.
Subjects: Early Settlers, Freedom, Migration West, Military & Veterans, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Barren County, Kentucky / Blaine and Saint Paul, Minnesota

Chenault, John
Birth Year : 1952
John Chenault is an author, freelance writer, poet, playwright, and musician. He is author of Blue Blackness and The Invisible Man Returns. He has been a member of the New Theater/Free Theater of Cincinnati since its inception in 1967. Chenault's work has appeared in a number of publications, and he has a number of playwright credits, including the television drama, Young Men Grow Older. Chenault's musical credits are also quite extensive, including The Fools of Time, a collaboration by Chenault and composer/bassist Frank Proto that premiered in February 2000. John Chenault was born in Cincinnati, OH, the son of Mary L. Stonom Chenault and John Walter Chenault. He is a reference librarian at the University of Louisville Library. For more see John Chenault, at liben.com; a more extensive biography, John Chenault, at Answers.com; the John Chenault entry in Contemporary Black Biography, vol. 40 (2004); and Who's Who Among African Americans, 2003-2009.

See photo image and additional information about John Chenault at "Medical librarian pens opera about boxing legend Joe Louis," by UofL Today, 11/12/2009.
Subjects: Authors, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Poets, Television, Migration South
Geographic Region: Cincinnati, Ohio / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Chenault, Lawrence E.
Birth Year : 1877
Lawrence E. Chenault was born in Mt. Sterling, KY, and his family later moved to Cincinnati, OH, where he was a soloist at the Allen Temple Church. Chenault joined Al G. Field's Negro Minstrels in 1895 and two years later was a featured tenor and character, "Golden Hair Neil," with A. G. Field's Darkest American Company. He was also in Black Patti's Troubadours and a number of other groups. He performed with Ernest Hogan in the M. B. Curtis Minstrels, touring America, Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, and Hawaii. On the return to the U.S., Chenault spent time performing in San Francisco before rejoining Hogan on the Smart Set. He would become the first leading man with the Lafayette Players Stock Company. In 1928, Chenault collasped and had to take time away from acting to cope with the death of his friend, ventriloquist Johnnie Woods, who was Chenault's roommate and "constant friend, companion, and co-worker" [source: "Chenault stricken by loss of friend," The Afro-American, 09/08/1928, p.2]. He would return to acting and performed in Black films, appearing in more leading roles than any other actor in silent films: 22 films between 1920 and 1934 [filmography]. For more see "Lawrence E. Chenault" in Blacks in Blackface, by S. T. Sampson.

See stills from movies with Lawrence Chenault, available at the New York Public Library Digital Gallery site.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Mount Sterling, Montgomery County, Kentucky

Cherokee State Park (Kentucky Lake, KY)
Start Year : 1951
Cherokee State Park was a Historic Restoration Project that was completed in 2010. The park originally opened in 1951, the third segregated park for African Americans in the United States, the first in Kentucky and the South. It was publicized as "the finest colored vacation site in the South." The area consisted of 300 acres with a beach, cottages, boat and fishing docks, a picnic area, a bathhouse, and a dining hall, which seated 200. The land was leased from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) under a 19-year contract, and the land title was to go to Kentucky when the state was financially able to take on the facility. With the advent of desegregation, the park was closed in the 1960s and became part of Kenlake Park; only a few of the buildings remain today. For more see Cherokee State Park, a flier by the Kentucky State Parks; earlier articles in the Courier Journal (Louisville), 05/11/1946 & 05/31/1951; J. Lucas, "State giving lift to former Black park," Evansville Courier & Press, 07/18/2005, Metro section, p. B1; and Kentucky's Segregated Parks and 1930 Black Population [.pdf], a University of Kentucky website. See also Friends of Cherokee State Park on Facebook and K. Lough, "Cherokee Park renovation celebrated," Murray Ledger & Times website, 09/16/2010.
Subjects: Parks
Geographic Region: Kentucky Lake, Livingston, Marshall, and Trigg Counties, Kentucky

Chiles, James Alexander [Chiles v. Chesapeake & O R CO]
Birth Year : 1860
J. Alexander Chiles was one of eight children, including his twin brother, John R. Chiles, who gave him financial assistance while he was a student at Lincoln University (Pennsylvania) and the University of Michigan Law School. Chiles moved to Lexington, KY, in 1890 to open a law office at 304 W. Short Street. His business was a success; Chiles is sometimes referred to as the first African American lawyer in Lexington. By 1907, he was one of four African American lawyers in the city. Chiles argued in the Supreme Court case against the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad for desegregation of railroad coaches after he was removed by force to the Colored coach in spite of his first class ticket from Washington D.C. to Lexington. Chiles was also an active member of the Colored Seventh Day Adventist congregation in Lexington; he was a trustee, deacon, and treasurer of the first church built in 1906 at the corner of Fifth and Upper Streets. His wife, Fannie J. Chiles, was the first librarian for the church. Elder Alonzo Barry was pastor. James A. Chiles was born in Virginia, the son of Richard and Martha Chiles. In 1910, James and Fannie Chiles planned to move from Lexington to Richmond, VA. For more see Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson; Chiles v. Chesapeake & O R CO, 218 U.S. 71 (1910) [full-text online by Justia]; and "Lawyer J. Alex Chiles" in the Colored Notes of the Lexington Leader, 01/02/1910, p.2.

*Name sometimes spelled Childes.*

See 1895 photo image of J. Alexander Chiles at Explore UK.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Lawyers, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work, Railroad, Railway, Trains, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Virginia / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Christian County's First Elected Negro Officials
Start Year : 1885
The large African American population in Christian County, along with the strength of the Republican Party in the county, made it possible for some of the state's earlier political elections to be won by African American candidates in Hopkinsville, KY. Edward Glass was elected to the City Council in 1885 and re-elected continuously until 1907. By 1898, the following were also elected to office: James L. Allensworth, County Coroner; Kinney Tyler, Deputy Jailer; John W. Knight, Constable; and J. C. Lyte, Pension Examiner. In 1916, T. H. Moore was re-elected for the third time as Magistrate of the 1st District of Christian County. The elections of African Americans was not always welcomed: there were beatings and objections. One such case is the election of William Leveritt for County Physician in 1898; his appointment was approved by the county judge, which enraged many whites because Leveritt would be examining white family members, in particular white women. For more see Violence in the Black Patch of Kentucky and Tennessee, by S. Marshall; p. 35 of the Negro Year Book, by M. N. Work [full-text at Google Book Search]; and "The people of Christian County...," p. 95 of American Medico-surgical Bulletin, vol. 12, 1898 [full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Corrections and Police, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Church Street (Walton, KY)
According to the history page at the Walton, KY, website, a small African American community was developed by former slaves in North Walton after the Civil War, and the community founded the Zion Baptist Church in 1872. The Steele and Ingram families are mentioned as long-time residents of the community. Walton is located in Boone County in Northern Kentucky. For more see the Walton, Kentucky, history page, 1850s-1890s.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Kentucky African American Churches
Geographic Region: Walton, Boone County, Kentucky

Churchill, Edward A.
Birth Year : 1926
Edward Churchill was born in Louisville, KY. He was the first African American state manager and sales promotion manager for Brown-Forman Distillers Corporation. For more see Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton.
Subjects: Alcohol, Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Civil Rights Movement in Kentucky Oral History Project
Start Year : 1998
The following comes from the Civil Rights Movement in Kentucky Oral History Project website. "Since 1998 historians have collected more than 175 oral history interviews that are on file at the Kentucky Historical Society. The commission has supported the collection of additional interviews by Dr. Tracy K’Meyer at the University of Louisville, bringing the total to more than 225."

 

Access Interview "Online Digital Media Database providing comprehensive access to the audio and video interviews collected by the project and over 10,000 pages of electronic transcripts. All material is full-text searchable and can be sorted by county, subject or decade."

 
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Civil War Colored Troops, Columbus, KY
Birth Year : 1861
During the Civil War, Fort DeRussey was located within what is now the Columbus-Belmont State Park. The town of Columbus was considered the state's most powerful Confederate stronghold in 1861; the location was crucial to the defense of the Upper Mississippi River. The following year, the town would be taken over by the Union Army and Columbus would become a refuge for runaway slaves, and second to Camp Nelson for recruiting and training African American soldiers. Fort DeRussey was renamed Fort Helleck, and by the end of the war, the majority of the Union soldiers in that part of the state were African American. For more see B. Craig, "Monday PMs Feature; Fortress town became haven for runaway slaves," The Associated Press State & Local Wire, 11/28/1999.
Subjects: Freedom, Military & Veterans, Parks
Geographic Region: Columbus-Belmont State Park, Columbus, Hickman County, Kentucky

Civil War Fort at Boonesboro
Start Year : 1863
The Civil War Fort at Boonesboro, KY, was constructed in 1863 by African American Union soldiers who also manned the fort, located in Clark County. The structure was designed to protect the ford and ferry from Confederate invasion during the Civil War. With the passing of time the land was purchased, the fort becoming part of the farmland owned by Jim and Betty Nickels. For seven years, the Winchester, KY, Tourism Commission strove to raise money to buy the land and repair the fort. On July 21, 2005, the Civil War Fort at Boonesboro was reopened as part of the 2005 Kentucky Civil War Heritage Trail. The fort is now on the National Register of Historic Places. For more see C. Kirby, "A Historic Piece of High Ground - Clark County Promotes Site of Civil War Fort," Lexington Herald-Leader, 07/22/05, City&Region section, p. B1.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Boonesboro and Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky

Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp 510 at Mammoth Cave, KY
Start Year : 1926
The CCC camps were based at Mammoth Cave for the workers who were to transform the area into a national park, as Congress designated in 1926. One camp was specifically for African Americans. The Mammoth Cave location was thought to be ideal due to the large, readily-available labor force and the cave's remote location would allow for an African American camp because it was away from white communities. All of the CCC men were inducted at Fort Knox and received haircuts, uniforms, immunizations, discipline, assignments of hard work, and isolation. African American artist and enrollee D. W. Higgenbotham became ill and died at the site, and there were rumors that the campsite was haunted. Problems between the races resulted in the white enrollees being moved to a new location while the African Americans remained at Camp 510, which became known for a while as the "graveyard." For more see J. C. Schmitzer's thesis, The black experience at Mammoth Cave, Edmonson County, Kentucky, 1838-1942; and "CCC Camp 510: Black Participation in the Creation of Mammoth Cave National Park," Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, 1995, vol. 93, issue 4, pp. 446-464.
Subjects: Parks
Geographic Region: Mammoth Cave National Park, Edmonson County, Kentucky

[Clarissa] Street vs. Ferry
Start Year : 1853
In January 1853, Clarissa, a slave, was given her freedom by Judge J. Crenshaw of the Kentucky Court of Appeals; the decision was a new legal point of view. Clarissa, who was owned by Mrs. Trigg, had accompanied Mrs. Alexander to Philadelphia in 1838. Mrs. Alexander was a close relative to Mrs. Trigg. The laws of Philadelphia had been discussed prior to the trip: if a slave lived in the city for at least six months, then the slave became a free person. Mrs. Trigg was willing to take the chance that Clarissa and Mrs. Alexander might be in the city six months or longer (which they were), because she knew that Clarissa would not abandon her husband and children, who were slaves in Kentucky. Also, Clarissa, and all of the other slaves owned by Mrs. Trigg, were to be freed when Mrs. Trigg died. Clarissa returned to Kentucky and continued living as Mrs. Trigg's slave. Prior to Mrs. Trigg's death, she had taken a loan from Mrs. Ferry, her adopted daughter, and used Clarissa as collateral to secure the note. The debt was to be repaid from Mrs. Trigg's estate. However, when Mrs. Trigg died, there were not sufficient funds to repay the debt. All of the Trigg slaves except Clarissa were freed; Clarissa became the property of Mrs. Ferry. Clarissa sued Ferry to gain her freedom. For more see article 12 in the New York Daily Times, 01/31/1853, p. 6; "The Slavery agitation--will it never cease?," New York Daily Times, 02/01/1853, p. 4; and "Court of Apeals of Kentucky, January, 1853. Ferry vs. Street," The American Law Register (1852-1891), vol. 1, issue 5 (Mar., 1853), pp. 295-300.
Subjects: Freedom, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Clark, Charles H.
Birth Year : 1855
Rev. Charles H. Clark was born in 1855 in Christian County, KY, to unmarried slave parents. His father escaped from slavery, leaving Charles and his mother behind. His mother later married a man named Clark, and Charles took his stepfather's last name. Charles Clark taught school at the Mount Zion Baptist Church near Hopkinsville, KY. He was pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Chicago, IL. He served as director of both the Binga State Bank in Chicago and the Citizens Bank and Trust Co. in Nashville. The Binga Bank was the first African American bank in Chicago. Clark also organized and chaired the Board of Directors of the National Baptist Publishing Board in Nashville. He was president of the Tennessee Baptist Convention and the National Baptist Sunday School Congress, and was appointed by the Tennessee governor to the Educational Convention of Negro Leaders. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1941-44; "Charles Henry Clark" in vol. 2 of the African American National Biography, edited by H. L. Gates, Jr. and E. B. Higginbotham; and "Charles Henry Clark, LL.D" in Who's Who Among the Colored Baptists of the United States, by S. W. Bacote.

See photo image and additional information about Rev. Charles Henry Clark in Simms' Blue Book and National Negro Business and Professional Directory by J. N. Simms, at the New York Public Library Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Bankers, Banks, Finance, Financial Advisors, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Religion & Church Work, Migration South, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Christian County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois / Nashville, Tennessee

Clark, Elmer S., Jr.
Birth Year : 1929
Elmer S. Clark, Jr. is a noted horseman, and a former athlete, educator, and coach. He was the first African American to become a peri-mutual judge of harness racing in the United States. Clark was sponsored by the Sportsman's Park when he attended the Harness Horse School in Columbus, Ohio, which prepared him to become a peri-mutual judge. He was also a paddock, placing, and senior Judge over the Chicago Trotting Horse Circuit. In addition, Clark was owner and trainer of his own racehorses beginning in 1962, he received his trainer's license in Chicago and raced his thoroughbred horses in locations such as Chicago, Detroit, and Atlantic City, and he raced his horses in Canada. He bought yearlings and trained them himself. His first horse was named Calico, and a few of the other horses were named Super Chief, Road Man, and the last horse he owned was Mr. Bo Jo. Clark was fairly successful with his racehorses, and had 30-40 winners including the horse Tide Me Over, and in 1990, he retired from the horse industry. Elmer S. Clark, Jr. was born in Louisville, KY, the son of Elmer S. (d.1984) and Mary F. Ross Clark. He was raised in Lexington, KY. His father, Elmer S. Clark, Sr., was a jockey and trainer who won the first race at North Aurora Exhibition Park [later Aurora Downs] near Chicago. In the 1930s, Clark Sr. was issued a jockey's license in Florida and may have been the first African American to receive such a license in that state, but it was revoked when it was learned that Elmer S. Clark, Sr. was an African American. His racing career ended and Elmer S. Clark, Sr. moved to New York where he had a limousine service. His son, Elmer Jr., was around horses most of his life, and uncles on both sides of the family were grooms. When he was a teenager, Clark Jr. was an exercise rider at Keeneland, and he also worked on Calumet Farm. He was mentored by Ben Jones, and worked with the horses Citation, Coaltown, Ponder, and many others. He worked with African American trainers and grooms such as Henry and Ernest Louden, Theopilus Irivn, and William Perry Smith who was the trainer for Burnt Cork, a horse that ran in the 1943 Kentucky Derby. Clark left the racetrack to go to college, he was the first member of his family to attend college. He enrolled at Kentucky State [now Kentucky State University] in 1948 on a football scholarship; he had graduated from old Dunbar High School in Lexington, where he was coached in football by Norman Passmore and in basketball by S. T. Roach. In college, Clark was the quarterback of the football team that won the 1948 post-season tournament known as Little Brown Jug, the opponent was Tennessee State A & I [now Tennessee State University]. His team also won the Vulcan Bowl in January of 1949, playing against North Carolina A & T. After one year at Kentucky State College, Clark went back to working with horses for a year, and in 1951, he was drafted into the U.S. Army and served until 1953. Clark boxed some while he was in the Army. He fought in three battles during the Korean War and received an Honorable Discharge. Clark then returned to Kentucky State College where he was on the boxing team, the track team, the football team, and he was an assistant for the basketball team. He lettered in basketball, football, and boxing. After graduating from Kentucky State College in 1956, S. T. Roach informed Clark about three job openings. Clark took the teaching job in Franklin, KY, where he was also the school's football and basketball coach. While in Franklin, he met and married Catherine Sloss, and in 2012, the couple had been married for 54 years. Catherine Sloss was also a school teacher in her home town of Franklin. After one year of teaching in Franklin, Elmer and Catherine Clark moved to Chicago where Catherine was hired as a teacher in the Chicago Public School System, and Elmer was employed at Schlitz Brewing Company. He was the first African American to work for the advertising and marketing department at Schlitz. His territory was from 120th Street to the Loop and Clark promoted the beer from the brewery to the wholesalers. After four years with Schlitz, Elmer S. Clark, Jr. also became a school teacher, he taught at Dunbar High School in Chicago and he coached football and basketball. He was teaching school during the same period that he was buying and racing his racehorses. Elmer S. Clark, Jr. was recognized by the Bluegrass Black Business Association in 1993 as an outstanding African American owner and trainer of thoroughbred horses. In 1996, Clark was recognized at Pimlico Race Track in Baltimore, MD as an outstanding racehorse owner and trainer. This entry was suggested by Gregory Clark, the son of Catherine and Elmer S. Clark, Jr. Gregory Clark provided background information and copies of literature, letters, and an article citation. Additional information was acquired via a telephone interview with Elmer S. Clark, Jr. on 01/24/2012. See also Elmer S. Clark trainer record at Equibase.com; see Elmer S. Clark Jr. in the online Daily Racing Form dated between 1977-1987; see M. Davis, "Horseman knows the Rest of the Story," Lexington Herald-Leader, 10/10/2004, p.C1; and L. Shulman, "Last of a breed," Blood-Horse, 03/08/2003, pp.1392-1394 & p.1396.
Subjects: Athletes, Athletics, Basketball, Boxers, Boxing, Education and Educators, Football, Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Migration North, Track & Field
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Clark Stonewall's Children [Monticello, KY]
Start Year : 1955
In July of 1955, the children of Clark Stonewall are thought to be the first African Americans to attend a previously all white school in Kentucky. The children, ages 6-15, attended Griffin School in Monticello, KY, with 35 white children, grades 1-8. The school term ran from July to February, Griffin starting a few months before many other Kentucky schools. The Stonewall children had been home-schooled prior to their enrollment; Clark Stonewall and his wife refused to bus their children to Travis Elementary for Colored children. [Travis School was named for Oneth M. Travis, Sr.] The Stonewall family were the only African Americans in the southeast section of Wayne County. Griffin School was a one-room facility with no electricity; it was heated with a coal stove. Marie Blevins was the teacher; the previous teacher had requested a reassignment rather than teach at an integrated school. News about the school and the integration of the students was reported throughout the United States. The school was in poor condition, and the reports generated letters and donations, the latter of which were used to replace the front door of the school, add new desks, and purchase other needed items for the school. During the summer of 1955, the school board discussed the desegregation of Monticello High School and Wayne County High School. For more see "1st 6 Negroes enter state public school," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 7/19/1955; "Integration in Kentucky," Jet, 8/11/1955, p. 25; "6 Negro children go to desegregated school in Kentucky," St. Joseph News-Press, 7/19/1955, p. 2; "Kentucky integrates first public school," The Afro-American, 7/30/1955, p. 2; S. Caudill and P. Burba, "Black History Month | July 19, 1955: Griffin School," Courier-Journal.com (Louisville), 2/2/2010; and "Wayne County to start desegregation in fall," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 6/16/1955. See also the NKAA entry for African American Schools in Wayne County, KY and the entries for African American Schools.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Monticello, Wayne County, Kentucky

Clark, Yvonne Young
Birth Year : 1929
Yvonne Young Clark is a pioneer for women engineers. She was the first woman to earn an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering at Howard University in 1951, and was the first woman to complete the masters degree in engineering management at Vanderbilt University. Clark was the first woman professor in the College of Engineering and Technology at Tennessee State University and has taught at the school for more than 50 years. Prior to her move to Nashville, there had not been a professional African American woman engineer in the city. She was the first female engineer at the Ford Motor Company glass plant in Nashville, where she did a one year internship after her graduation from Vanderbilt University. Her work career began with Frankford Arsenal-Gage Laboratories in Philadelphia, and with RCA in New Jersey. Clark has received a number of awards, including the Distinguished Engineering Educator Award from the Society of Women Engineers in 1997. In 2008, an event was held by Tennessee State University to honor Clark for her years of dedication and service to the school. Yvonne Young Clark was born in Houston, TX, and raised in Louisville, KY. She is the daughter of librarian Hortense Houston Young and Dr. Coleman M. Young Jr. She is the wife of William F. Clark, Jr. who was a biochemistry professor at Meharry Medical College. For more see "She is teaching Mechanical Engineering," Plaindealer (Topeka), 01/27/1956, p.1; "Yvonne Young Clark of Nashville, Tennessee...," Jet, 09/30/1971, p.48 [available online at Google Book Search]; and "Yvonne Young Clark" in Sisters in Science by D. Jordan.
Subjects: Engineers
Geographic Region: Houston, Texas / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Nashville, Tennessee

Clarke, Daniel
Death Year : 1872
Clarke was born in Africa. When he was a child, he was captured by slave traders and brought to the U.S. He first lived in Clark County, KY, then came to Frankfort, KY, as a servant to U.S. Congressman and later Kentucky Governor James Clarke. At the end of Gov. Clarke's term (1836-1839), Daniel Clarke continued as a servant to all of the following Kentucky governors until his death in 1872. At some point prior to his death, the Kentucky Legislature passed a law giving Daniel Clarke a pension of $12 per month. A joint resolution was introduced by Senator Webb in honor of Daniel Clarke's years of dedicated service to Kentucky governors. For more see "Death of the Kentucky Governor's Servant," New York Times, 02/29/1872, p. 5. Also thought to be the same Daniel Clarke at rootsweb.com.
Subjects: Freedom, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, Slave Trade (U.S.)
Geographic Region: Africa / Clark County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Clarke, John Milton and Lewis Garrard
The Clarke brothers, John Milton (1820-1902) and Lewis (1818-1897), were born in Madison County, KY. Their father was a white weaver from Scotland. Their mother, Letitia Campbell, was the daughter of plantation owner Samuel Campbell. John and Lewis were at times seen as white slaves. The brothers escaped in 1842, Lewis to Dawn, Ontario (he later returned to Oberlin); and John to Cambridge, where he became the first African American elected to a public office on the Cambridge Common Council. The character George Harris in Uncle Tom's Cabin was based on Lewis Clarke. For more see Cambridge Historical Commission; Narrative of the sufferings of Lewis and Milton Clarke, by L. G. Clark and M. Clark [full-text at the website by S. Railton & University of Virginia]; and Literature in The Economist, 02/13/1847, p. 183.

See image of Lewis Clarke from frontispiece of Narrative of the Sufferings of Lewis Clarke by L. Clarke, at NYPL Digital Gallery.

See image of J. Milton Clarke from Narratives of the Sufferings of Lewis and Milton Clarke by L. G. Clark, at NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Freedom, Migration North
Geographic Region: Madison County, Kentucky / Ontario, Canada / Oberlin, Ohio / Cambridge, Massachusetts

Clay, Henry (former slave)
Birth Year : 1861
Clay was born to slaves in Louisville, KY, and in 1892 left for New Orleans to join a railroad construction crew that was transported to Guatemala, Central America. The crew of 75 men were to build a railroad from Puerto Barrios to Guatemala City. The pay was to be in Guatemalan silver at $10 per day per worker, but none of the men got paid because the contractor ran off with the silver and left the crew stranded. Clay remained in Guatemala for 39 years. He was one of the last three crew members still alive when he returned to the United States in 1931. Many of his fellow crew members had died fighting during the revolts in Guatemala; revolutionists were recruited with the promise of $150 in silver and a rifle. Clay had preferred to fish for a living rather than fight as a Guatemalan revolutionary. For more see "Old Negro returns, ends 39-year exile," New York Times, 07/15/1931, p. 21.
Subjects: Freedom, Military & Veterans, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Railroad, Railway, Trains
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / New Orleans / Puerto Barrios and Guatemala City, Guatemala, Central America

Clay, Kenneth H.
Birth Year : 1939
Kenneth Clay grew up in Louisville, KY. In the 1960s he opened the Corner of Jazz, the first African American culture shop in Louisville. In 1978, he co-founded the Renaissance Development Corporation, a cultural arts administrative organization that promoted Black art and culture in Kentucky. In 1983 Clay joined the staff of the Kentucky Center for the Arts, where he remained for more than 21 years. He received the Chicago Kuumba Theater's 1993 Liberation Award for Presenting African American Artists and the 1999 Governor's Community Arts Award. In July 2004, Clay left the Kentucky Center for the Arts and became a freelance arts consultant. He is president of Ken Clay & Associates. For more see "Ken Clay takes a bow," Courier-Journal, 30 May 2004; Kenneth Clay in Kentucky Minority Artists Directory, 1982; and Ken Clay in Who's Who in Black Louisville, Inaugural Edition, p.103.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Businesses
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Clay, Theodore H., Sr.
Birth Year : 1843
Theodore H. Clay, Sr. was born in Fayette County, KY, his father was from Virginia and his mother was from Kentucky. Clay grew up in Lexington and became one of the early African American horse trainers who owned his own business, [as was Dudley Allen]. Clay is listed as Colored in the Sheppard's Lexington City Directory 1873 and 1874, owner of a breaking and training stable on Deweese Street opposite Correll [Corrall] Street. He is the only "Colored" person listed under the heading 'Horse Trainer' on p.234 of the 1873-74 city directory. His account record at the U.S. Freedmen Bank dated May 26, 1871, gives his occupation as a self employed trainer, and includes his wife's name, Louisa, a child named Brice, and a brother named Marshall. The Clays lived on Deweese Street. The family is listed in the 1870 U.S. Federal Census and includes the name of a second son named Theodore, and their property was valued at $800. The Clay family would leave Kentucky and move to Kansas. In 1880 they lived in Shawnee, KS: Theodore and Maria Louisa Clay (b.1848 in KY) and their three sons, all born in Kentucky, Brice Henry Clay (b.1868), Theodore H. Clay, Jr. (b.1870), and Edward Marshall Clay (b.1873). Theodore, Sr. supported the family as a farmer. By 1900, Theodore Clay was a widower living at 545 Tracy Street in Kansas City, MO, his occupation was listed in the census as farmer. He is last listed in the 1910 census, when Theodore shared his home with his son Edward and his family.
Subjects: Businesses, Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Migration West
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Shawnee, Kansas / Kansas City, Missouri

Claybrook v Owensboro
In the late 1800s, Edward Claybrook (1821-1896) and others sued the City of Owensboro, KY, and others to prevent a segregated method of using taxes to pay for public education. Only taxes collected from African Americans were to be used for educating African American children in the city. For white children, the sum of $9,400 was available for two well-built schools, 18 teachers, and the 9-10 month school session. For African American children, $700 provided the one inferior school, three teachers, and a school session of about three months. In 1883, U. S. Circuit Judge John Barr ruled that the method of distributing school funds was unfair. "If I am correct in my conclusion, all that colored children in Owensboro are entitled to is the equal protection of the laws, in that a fair share of this fund be applied toward the maintenance of the common schools especially provided for colored children. In this view the only remedy is in equity.... United States courts have heretofore enjoined state officers from obeying state laws which were declared to be unconstitutional." For more see Claybrook and others v. City of Owensboro and others, District Court, D. Kentucky, 16 F.297 U.S. Dist. 1883; and Claybrook v. Owensboro by L. A. Coghill (thesis).
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Claysville and Other Neighborhoods (Paris, KY)
Claysville was established by African Americans at the end of the Civil War on what was then the outskirts of Paris, KY. The community was located on land that was purchased from Samuel H. Clay, whose farm bordered the area on one side. Claysville was more of a separate community than other African American neighborhoods within Paris: it included churches, stores, and businesses. The main entrance was off Main Street, under a one lane railroad viaduct hemmed on one side by a two story building, on the other side by a stream. The entrance is still in use. The back entrance was off Winchester Street. The Branch School for African American children, where inventor Garrett A. Morgan, Sr. was educated, was located in Claysville. The community has been renamed Garrett Morgan's Place, and a Kentucky Historical Marker [number 1493] was rededicated in 2000, but most still refer to the area as Claysville. The community name was spelled Clayville on the Sanborn Maps of Paris, Bourbon County [available at Kentucky Digital Library]. A Colored school house can be found on sheet two of the Oct 1901 map. The school was located on Trilby Street, Lot H. Beginning in the 1970s, Urban Renewal razed the old structures in Claysville, new homes and housing projects were constructed, and a park was added down by the stream. Many of the present residents are descendants of Claysville's earliest home owners. Other African American areas used to exist in Paris: Cottontown, off Main Street just past the railroad overpass heading toward Millersburg, down by the creek; Newtown and Judy's Alley, off High Street heading toward Lexington (homes in both areas were replaced by housing projects); and Singles Alley, off Eighth Street heading toward Georgetown, all of its older homes torn down. Ruckersville or Ruckerville, bound by Lilleston Ave., Second Street, and a creek, had a large number of African Americans. The land is thought to have been part of the Grimes' farm at one time. The old homes were razed by Urban Renewal in the 1970s and 1980s and new homes and apartments were constructed and a park was added down by the creek. Little or nothing has been published about these areas, but a visit with the various community members will garner much more information. For more on Claysville see Famous Inventor, 1877-1963, in the Kentucky Historical Marker Database; and search using the term "Claysville" in the newspaper, Bourbon News, available online at Kentucky Digital Library - Newspapers and at Chronicling America.
Subjects: Communities, Parks, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Railroad, Railway, Trains
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Clayton, Denise
Birth Year : 1952
Judge Denise Clayton was born in Louisville, KY. In 2000, Clayton became the first African American woman appointed to a circuit judgeship in Kentucky when Governor Paul Patton appointed her to the 30th Judicial Circuit, Division 7. Clayton graduated from the University of Louisville Law School and was admitted to the bar in 1976. In 1996, she became the second African American woman judge in the state; she was a Family Court judge. In 2007, Judge Clayton became the first African American woman on the Kentucky appeals court; the appointment was made by Governor Ernie Fletcher. Judge Clayton is the granddaughter of Atwood S. Wilson. She is a graduate of Defiance College and the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law. For more see the Louisville Defender, 10/12/00; "Historic choice, new circuit judge has broken barriers before," Lexington Herald Leader, 10/20/2007, Commentary section, p. A12; and "The Honorable Denise Clayton" in Who's Who in Black Louisville, 2nd ed.

See photo image and additional information about Judge Denise Clayton at the Kentucky Court of Justice website.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Judges, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cleveland Kentucky State College Club
The Cleveland Kentucky State College Club members were graduates of Kentucky State College who lived in Cleveland, OH. Beginning in 1953, the club gave an annual Derby Ball. The 1957 ball was held at the Carlton House in Cleveland and Johnnie Blakes Orchestra provided the music. There were hundreds of guests. Evelyn Morgan was chair of the Dance Committee and assisted by Gilbert Britt, Mary Grinage, and John Long. The 1957 officers of the Cleveland Kentucky State College Club were Elmer Collins, president; Jeanette Polk, recording secretary; Lillian Gantt, corresponding secretary; William Stovall, treasurer; Rose Clayhourne, reporter; and Mary Collins, historian. For more see "Kentucky St. grads have traditional Derby Ball," Cleveland Call and Post, 05/11/1957, p.3B.
Subjects: Balls, Promenades, Socials
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Cleveland, Ohio

Coe Colony (Cumberland County, KY)
Start Year : 1866
In 1866, Ezekiel and Patsy Ann Coe purchased land on Coe Ridge, located on the back of Coe Plantation in Cumberland County, KY. Ezekiel (born around 1817 in North Carolina) and Patsy (born around 1825) were of African, Indian, and White lineage and had been slaves. They reclaimed their children, who had been slaves owned by various members of the white Coe family. When brought together, Ezekiel and Patsy's family made up a small, prosperous community, the nucleus of Coe Colony. Added to their numbers were a few other African Americans and white women. White agitators tried to drive the colony out of the area, resulting in murders on both sides and a race feud in 1888. The Coe family remained on the ridge for almost a century, farming and logging prior to the Great Depression. They later took on the business of running moonshine and other activities that brought federal agents and law officers to the area. For more see The saga of Coe Ridge; a study in oral history, by W. L. Montell; KET Productions' Kentucky Life Program 518, The 'Afrilachians'The Chronicles of the Coe Colony, by S. Coe; and L. Montell, "Coe Ridge Colony: a racial island disappears," American Anthropologist, New Series, vol.74, issue 3 (Jun., 1972), pp.710-719.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky, Colonies, Colonization
Geographic Region: Coe Ridge, Cumberland County, Kentucky

Cofield, William, Sr.
Birth Year : 1940
In 1991, William Cofield was the first African American appointed to the Franklin County Board of Education; he was then elected to the board three times. Since 1986, he has been president of the Kentucky NAACP Conference, and has also served as president of the Franklin County NAACP Branch. In 2004, Cofield was named president of the National Caucus of Black School Board Members. Cofield was born in LaGrange, GA, and his family moved to Pennsylvania when he was a child, and they returned to Georgia when he was a teen. He is a graduate of Fort Valley State University, Tuskegee University, and worked on his doctorate [ABD] at Ohio State University. Cofield moved to Frankfort, KY in 1973, and was a professor at Kentucky State University. For more see In Black and White. A guide to magazine articles, newspaper articles, and books concerning Black individuals and groups, 3rd ed., edited by M. M. Spradling; and M. Davis, "An ardent advocate for kids, education," Lexington Herald-Leader, 06/27/2004, City&Region section, p.C1.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Board of Education
Geographic Region: LaGrange, Georgia / Franklin County, Kentucky

Cole, James H. and Mary D.
When James Cole died, he was the wealthiest African American in Michigan. He had been a slave born in 1837 in Mississippi. He had escaped and settled in Detroit. On his way to freedom, Cole passed through Kentucky and was aided by a slave family. He had been in Detroit a few years when he met a young girl who was a member of the Kentucky family that had helped him during his escape. Cole and the 13 year old girl, Mary D. (born 1850 in Kentucky), were later married; they would become the parents of several children, one of whom was Thomas A. Cole, the father of Florence Cole Talbert, a noted concert and operatic soprano, who performed in Kentucky in 1922. She was sponsored by the Progressive Choral Society of Bowling Green, KY. The recital took place at State Street Baptist Church. Talbert was assisted by Charles R. Taylor, a Howard University student, and R. Lillian Carpenter was the pianist. The Cole family fortune was earned by James H. Cole who was a carpenter, blacksmith, and real estate investor. James and Mary Cole are listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census. For more see P. Turner, "In retrospect: Florence Cole Talbert - Our Divine Florence," The Black Perspective in Music, vol.12, issue 1 (Spring, 1984), pp. 57-79. For more on Florence Cole Talbert, see "The Progressive Choral Society of Bowling Green, Ky...," The Crisis, April 1922, v.23, issue 6, p.274; Lost Sounds: Blacks and the Birth of the Recording Industry, 1890-1919, by T. Brooks; and The Negro Trail Blazers of California, by D. L. Beasley.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Blacksmiths, Carpenters, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Mississippi / Kentucky / Detroit, Michigan

Coleman, Fielding "Toke"
Birth Year : 1948
From Harrison County, KY, Toke Coleman was one of the first three African American basketball players at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) in 1966. (The other two were Bobby Washington and Garfield Smith.) The San Diego Rockets chose Coleman in the 10th round of the 1970 NBA draft. Coleman was an outstanding basketball player at EKU, as he was during his public school playing days in Harrison County. During his senior year of high school, the 6'3" Coleman averaged 22 points and 15 rebounds, and his team made it to the quarterfinals of the Kentucky high school basketball tournament. He is an inductee of the Kentucky Men's Basketball 10th Region Hall of Fame. Toke Coleman was a brother to the late Louis Stout. Information from W. E. Ellis, 1906-2006 A Century of Opportunity, an EKU publication (removed website); and 1970 NBA Player Draft. See "Toke Coleman, Harrison net ace, enrolls at Eastern," Park City Daily News, 09/16/1966, p.13;

See photo image of Toke Coleman provided by plfemiag, a fanbase.com website.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Harrison County, Kentucky / Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky

Coleman, Frederick Douglass, Jr.
Birth Year : 1921
Coleman was one of the early African American surgeons in the U.S. Army. He was born in Louisville, KY, the son of Frederick Douglass Coleman, Sr. and Jamye Harris Coleman, and the brother of Jamye Coleman Williams. Coleman, Jr., a physician and a minister, graduated from Fisk University and earned his medical degree from Meharry Medical College in 1944 and his D. D. from Monrovia College (Liberia) in 1955. He served as captain in the U.S. Army Medical Corps from 1953-1955 and was Commanding Officer of the 765th Medical Detachment. He was Chief Physical Examiner with the U.S. Army Hospital in Fort Campbell, KY and Battalion Surgeon of the 47th Armored Medical Bn 1st Armored Division. Coleman was a member of the integrated Montgomery County Medical Society in Clarksville, TN, and in addition to serving as pastor of a number of churches, he was a representative on the A.M.E. Church Medical Missions Board National Council of Churches. He was licensed to preach in 1939. For more see "Frederick Douglass Coleman, Jr." in Biographical Directory of Negro Ministers by E. L. Williams. For more about the Coleman family and the AME Church see The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Military & Veterans, Religion & Church Work, Migration South, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Clarksville, Tennessee

Coleman, Robert Alfonzo
Birth Year : 1932
Robert A. Coleman, a civil rights activist, was born in Hopkinsville, KY. He was a postal carrier in Paducah, KY, and the first African American president of the Paducah Local of the National Association of Letter Carriers. He was also the first to chair the executive board of the state association. Coleman was a city commissioner in Paducah beginning in 1973 and also served as mayor pro tem for six years. He is a 32-Degree Mason and past Master of Stone Square Lodge #5. He is also a veteran of the U.S. Air Force. In 2005, Coleman was inducted into the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights Hall of Fame. In 2009, the Blackburn Park in Paducah, KY, was renamed the Robert Coleman Park. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1975-2006; and the Robert A. Coleman interview [text and audio] in the Kentucky Historical Society, Civil Rights Movement in Kentucky, Oral History Project.

See photo image and additional information on Robert A. Coleman at Hall of Fame 2005, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Military & Veterans, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Postal Service, Fraternal Organizations, Union Organizations
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Coleman, Ruth A.
Birth Year : 1950
Ruth Coleman became the first African American woman graduate of the College of Engineering at the University of Kentucky in 1977. She was the only African American in her classes and one of just two women in a couple of her classes. In addition to being a civil engineer graduate, Coleman also has an associate degree in engineering technology from Lexington Technical Institute [now Bluegrass Community and Technical College] and was a math major at Transylvania University for two years. She graduated from Bryan Station High School in 1968. Coleman was employed at the Kentucky Department of Transportation's Division of Bridges [now Kentucky Transportation Cabinet]. She was born in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Cleo J. and Samuel O. Coleman, Sr. This entry was submitted by Rhetta Coleman Young, sister to Ruth Coleman. For more see J. Swartz, "Woman makes inroads in Engineering School," Lexington Herald, 05/23/1977, Lifestyle section, p. A-9.
Subjects: Engineers
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Coles County, Illinois [Anthony and Jane Bryant]
The African American settlers of Coles County, Illinois, came from Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia, and Tennessee, all around 1840. The settlers from Kentucky included Isom and Lucy Anne Bryant (Lucy was from Kentucky); the Derixson (or Derrickson) Family, escaped slaves from Nicholas County, Kentucky; and Mr. and Mrs. George Nash (George was from Kentucky). A famous slavery case that took place in Coles County involved Anthony Bryant, a free man, and his wife Jane Bryant, a slave, and her four children [some sources say six children]. Slave owner Robert Matson, from Bourbon County, wanted to take Jane and the children from Coles County back to Kentucky, and he enlisted the help of lawyers U. F. Binder and Abraham Lincoln. Matson lost the case, and the Bryant Family moved to Liberia, Africa. For more see History of Negro Slavery in Illinois and of the Slavery Agitation in that State, by N. D. Harris (1904); and J. W. Weik, "Lincoln and the Matson Negroes," Arena, v.17, 1896-97 Dec-Jun, pp.752-758 [available full view at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Migration North, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Court Cases, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Nicholas County, Kentucky / Bourbon County, Kentucky / Coles County, Illinois / Liberia, Africa

Coletown (Lexington, KY)
Start Year : 1834
Coletown is located on Walnut Hill Road in Lexington. Prior to the formation of the community, the land belonged to Sarah Johnson. Johnson willed ten acres to Milley Cole in 1834; Cole had been a slave owned by Johnson's brother, Horatio Johnson. The land was subdivided among the heirs of Milley Cole, and thus began Coletown. In 1971, there were 30 people living in the community. For more see Negro Hamlets and Gentlemen Farms: a dichotomous rural settlement pattern in Kentucky's Bluegrass Region, by P. C. Smith; and Historical Communities Near Lexington, a Bluegrass Community & Technical College website.
Subjects: Communities
Geographic Region: Coletown, Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

College of the Scriptures, Louisville, KY
Start Year : 1945
The following information comes from the College of the Scriptures website: The College of the Scriptures was incorporated on May 17, 1945, and began its classes with two students in September, 1945. R. Tibbs Maxey, Jr. was elected President and Dr. George Calvin Campbell, Vice president. A founder of the school was Isaiah Moore (1882-1972). The school was located at 709 West Magazine Street in Louisville, KY [today it is located at 4411 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY]. When the school opened in 1945, it was believed to be 'the only school in the nation incorporated for the sole purpose of training Negro ministers for the Christian Church' [source: 'Negro Bible College opens,' The Christian Science Monitor, 09/29/1945, p. 11]. The College of the Scriptures was one of the first two colleges established by the Christian Churches/Churches of Christ to make an impact in the African American communities [source: The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement, by D. A. Foster]. The second such school was the Christian Institute in Winston-Salem, N.C., organized by Robert L. Peters. The school struggled in the beginning, then closed, and was later reopened and renamed Winston-Salem Bible College. For more information see I Remember Brother Moore. by R. T. and N. Maxey; A Design for the Christian Education Department of The College of the Scriptures, Louisville, Kentucky, by T. W. Mobley (thesis); and Kurio, The College of the Scriptures yearbook.

 

See photo image of Robert Tibbs Maxey, Jr (1910-2002) and Dr. George C. Campbell (1872-1949) on an advertisement card for The College of the Scriptures at the Kentucky Digital Library (part of the Sallie Price Family Papers at the University of Kentucky).
Subjects: Education and Educators, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Collins, Alfred "Sonny"
Birth Year : 1953
Sonny Collins was born in 1953 in Madisonville, Kentucky.  He played football at Madisonville High School as a running back. He was one of the top rushers in the state, accumulating 6,200 yards from 1968-1971. Collins was also a running back at the University of Kentucky from 1972 to 1975, where he is the career rush leader with 3,835 yards, one of the top five season rushers, and one of the top ten scorers. Collins' jersey was retired in 1991, and he was inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame in 2002. He was selected by the Atlanta Falcons as the 8th pick of the 2nd round of the 1976 NFL draft. In a game against San Francisco, Collins set a record when he rushed 31 times for 107 yards. A knee injury ended his career after one year with the Atlanta Falcons. For more see the Sonny Collins' listings in the KHSAA State Football Records; Sonny Collins on the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame Membership Archive; and N. Comer, "Troubled children get new pals UK football great recruits mentors," Lexington Herald-Leader, 09/24/1991.

See photo image of Sonny Collins in the article by J. Clay, "John Clay: Ex-Cat Collins - full-time biker and granddad - smooth as ever," Lexington Herald-Leader, 07/26/2012.
Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Madisonville, Hopkins County, Kentucky

Cologne, Texas
Start Year : 1898
The community of Cologne is located on U.S. Highway 59 in Goliad County, Texas. Former slaves Jim Smith and George Washington are credited with establishing the African American settlement. The first settlers, five families of former slaves from Tennessee and Kentucky, moved to the area in 1870. First known as Centerville, the community's name was changed to Cologne when the post office was established in 1898; the post office was discontinued in 1925. In 1997, as the community was preparing for the Juneteenth celebration, the population was estimated to be 85. For more see C. Clack, "Juneteenth, born of slavery, evolves into free-form day of joy," San Antonio Express-News, section SA Life, p. 1E; Cologne, Texas, by C. H. Roell, at the Texas State Historical Association website; Cologne, Texas at TexasEscapes.com; and From These Roots by F. D. Young.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Migration West, Emancipation Day / Juneteenth Celebrations
Geographic Region: Tennessee / Cologne (was Centerville), Goliad County, Texas

Colonization Conspiracy (East St. Louis, IL)
Start Year : 1916
Prior to the East St. Louis race riots of 1917, a conspiracy took place when Democrats charged that Republicans were colonizing Negroes from the South to increase the power of the G.O.P. The state of Illinois was a doubtful win for the Woodrow Wilson presidential campaign, so, the idea was cooked up to accuse the Republicans of vote fraud among Negroes and also of importing southern Negroes to be used as strikebreakers and union busters. It was a tactic that had been used without much success in previous elections. For the 1916 election, there was a colonization investigation with the supposed findings, by Assistant Attorney General Frank Dailey, that over the previous year, 300,000 Negroes of voting age had been colonized in Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. Ten to twelve thousand had settled in East St. Louis. The Department of Justice agents interviewed many of the so-called colonists and found that they had come North seeking higher wages more so than politics. But, the newspapers were told that the colonists had been brought North as illegal voters; the jobs never existed, and there was a guilty party in Kentucky: "unscrupulous Republican politicians in Northern Kentucky had given labor contractors the names of Negroes who were to be duped." For more see E. M. Rudwick, "East St. Louis and the "Colonization Conspiracy" of 1916," The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 33, issue 1 (Winter, 1964), pp. 35-42 [quotation from page 40]; and "The Colonization Conspiracy," chapter 2 of Race Riot at East St. Louis, July 2, 1917, by E. M. Rudwick.
Subjects: Hoaxes, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky, Colonies, Colonization
Geographic Region: East Saint Louis, Illinois / Kentucky

Colored Bureau of Education, Frankfort, KY
Start Year : 1914
In January of 1914, Hardin Tolbert established the Colored Bureau of Education in Frankfort, KY, "to supply teachers who are prepared to teach and can not find a place...." -- [source: "Kentucky's Capital," Freeman, 01/31/1914, p. 4]. In March of 1914, the Bureau endorsed the work of Miss Elnora B. Lee, assistant principal of the Hardinsburg Public School [source: "--Miss Elnora B. Lee...," Freeman, 03/07/1914, p. 4]. The Colored Bureau of Education was a forerunner to the National Colored Teachers' Agency established in Louisville, KY in 1928.
Subjects: Employment Services
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Colored Christian Church (Midway, KY)
Start Year : 1834
What is thought to be the first Negro Christian Church in the United States was founded as a congregation in 1834. It was later named the Midway Colored Christian Church, then renamed the 2nd Christian Church of Midway. According to former historian, Mrs. Katherine Johnson, the initial congregation was made up of colored members of the white churches at New Union, Grassy Spring, and Georgetown, KY. Meetings were held at the Kentucky Female Orphan School, where one of the members would volunteer to lead the weekly services. Alexander Campbell, a slave who was purchased by the white Christian Church for $1000 in order to become the preacher and manager of the congregation's affairs. A log cabin church was later built for the members on the banks of Lee's Branch. Under Campbell's leadership, the church soon had 300 new members and the congregation outgrew the log cabin. In 1872, the congregation purchased the Presbyterian Church building on Stephens Street, and that church was replaced by a new building in 1906. For more see Negro Disciples in Kentucky, 1840-1925 (thesis), by C. Walker; History of the Midway Colored Christian Church, by K. Johnson (1955); and "Old slave church remembered," Lexington Leader, 12/27/1976, p.A9. See also the entry for the Stone-Campbell Movement in Kentucky.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Midway, New Union, and Grassy Spring, Woodford County, Kentucky / Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky

Colored Clinics (Bowling Green, KY)
The Warren County Colored Health Clinic is listed in Caron's Bowling Green (Kentucky) City Directory for 1937-38. The clinic was located at the State Street School at 204 State Street. G. M. Wells was director and Sophia Smith was the nurse. Few cities in Kentucky had a separate clinic facility for African Americans, before and after the 1930s. Listed in the 1941-1949 directories is the State Street Baptist Church Child Health Conference for Colored Children at 350 State Street, it is listed as an association and as a welfare organization. In 1941, Dr. Lewis Fine was listed as being in charge of the conference. State Street Baptist Church was led by Rev. R. H. Johnson in 1941. The Colored Welfare and Community Center was located at 229 State Street.
Subjects: Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Kentucky African American Churches, Medical Field, Health Care, Community Centers and Cultural Centers
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Colored Fair at Stamping Ground, KY
By the year 1900, the Colored Fair in Stamping Ground, KY, had become an annual event. The event was held at Wash's Woods. For more see "Stamping Ground," Frankfort Roundabout, 09/15/1900, p. 1.
Subjects: Colored Fairs & Black Expos
Geographic Region: Stamping Ground, Scott County, Kentucky

The Colored Home of the Friendless (Paducah, KY)
The home was located at 1404 Rudy Street in Paducah, KY, it was a orphanage for African American children, and is listed in the 1939 Paducah, KY, Consurvey Directory, v.2. Mary Belle Purdle Merriweather (1878-1947, born in Caldwell County, KY) was the matron of the home. She was the wife of WWI veteran Luke Merriweather (1877-1921).
Subjects: Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Colored Ladies' Soldiers Aid Society (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1864
The Society provided aid to Colored soldiers in the Union Army. Similar groups had formed in other states, and it is believed that after the Civil War the Louisville organization was involved with developing a school for children and assisted with the building of a hospital. In 1865, the Colored Ladies' Soldier's and Freeman's Aid Society participate the first 4th of July celebration parade by free persons in Louisville. For more see Natural Allies: women's associations in American history, by A. F. Scott; and p.129 in Autobiography of James L. Smith by J. L. Smith [available online at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Colored Libraries in the Charlotte Court and Aspendale Housing Projects, Lexington, KY (Fayette County)
Start Year : 1940
Charlotte Court was the first segregated housing projects in Lexington, KY. The completed complex had 52 apartment buildings in 1939, the year residents submitted a request to the Manchester Street Library for a colored branch on the grounds of the housing projects. The request was accepted and the branch opened in March of 1940. It was the first colored library in Lexington. The branch was managed by a separate library board made up of Negro members only. The library contained 250 duplicate books received from the Manchester Street Library. Both the Charlotte Court Colored Branch and the Manchester Street Library operated as an independent organization that was NOT connected to the Lexington Public Library. The Manchester Street Library was managed by the Junior League, a women's organization. The Junior League had established a library in the Abraham Lincoln School. The school was attended by white students only. In order to continue to provide the students with library books during the summer months, the Manchester Street library was established in 1939 with 500 books in a nearby storeroom. After the Charlotte Court branch opened, the Manchester Street Library received a request for a lending library in Aspendale, a segregated housing projects on the east side of Lexington. The Aspendale branch library was also managed by a separate library committee. The library was located in the recreation room of the Charles Young Community Center on East Third Street, with Mrs. Harrietta Jackson as librarian [source: Herald-Leader photo collection at UK Special Collections, Audio-Visual Archives, Series 1.13, Item 68]. Both the Aspendale and the Charlotte Court libraries submitted their monthly reports to the Manchester Street Library Committee. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky by R. F. Jones; A. K. Buckley, "The Manchester Street Library, Lexington," Bulletin of the Kentucky Library Association, v.9, pp.27-29; and "[Kentucky] Library Annual Report" for 1940 submitted to the Kentucky Library Extension Division.

 See photo image of the Aspendale Branch of the Manchester Street Library in the Charles Young Community Center in Lexington, KY, image within UKnowledge.
Subjects: Housing Authority, The Projects, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Women's Groups and Organizations, Colored Public Libraries in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Bowling Green, KY
Start Year : 1938
The following Colored lodges are listed in the 1937-38 edition of Caron's Bowling Green (Kentucky) City Directory.

Colored lodges that met at 606 College Street:

  • Benevolent Protective Order of Elks of the World - Spreading Oak Lodge No. 602
  • Masonic - Ancient Land Mark No. 93 F. & A. M.
  • Masonic - St. James Lodge No. 28 F. & A. M.
  • Eastern Star - Star of Venus, Chapter 12. Laura Dawson, Secretary
  • Independent Order of Odd Fellows - Bowling Green Lodge No. 1599. F. S. Abel, Secretary
  • Independent Order of Odd Fellows - House of Ruth No. 76. Mattie Brown, Secretary
  • Knights of Pythias - Court of Calanthe No. 12. Mary W. Potter, Secretary
  • Knights of Pythias - Diamond Lodge No. 23. G. T. Douglas, Secretary

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Louisville, KY
Start Year : 1872
An early listing of the Colored lodges in Louisville, KY, can be found in Caron's Annual Directory of the City of Louisville for 1872. The lodges are listed at the end of the list of white lodges under the heading "Secret and Benevolent Societies." There is also a note on pp. 47 and 48: [These Lodges claim to work under a Dispensation from the Grand Lodge of England.]

Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons

  • Mount Moriah Lodge No. 1 - meets on Third Street, southeast corner of Market Street. Moses Lawson, Master; Thomas Mead, S. W.; Isaac Colbert, J. W.; N. B. Rogers, Treasurer; and William H. Gibson, Secretary
  • St. Thomas Lodge No. 2. George A. Schaefer, Master; Octavius Young, S. W.; John Bullock, J. W.; Hampshire Comack, Treasurer, Alexander Provett, Secretary
  • Meriwether Lodge No. 2. George Taylor, Master; Q. B. Jones, S. W.; Thomas J. Johnson, J. W.; N. Bonaparte, Treasurer; M. J. Davis, Secretary; Washington Lewis, Tyler
  • Grand Lodge of Kentucky. John C. N. Fowles, Grand Master; George A. Schaefer, Grand Secretary
Independent Order of Odd Fellows
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - meets on Third Street, southeast corner of Market Street.
  • Union No. 1341. B. Preston, N. G.; James Stepney, V. G.; C. Bazel, O. G.; Edward Williams, N. F.; E. Adams, P. S.; H. M. Cephas, E. S.; Thomas Cross, Chaplain; F. Kirkman, Treasurer
  • St. John's No. 1364. N. Thompson, N. G.; William Bell, V. G.; Alfred Hill, Secretary; Oscar Bell, N.P.; J. H. Johnson, P. S.
  • St. Luke No. 1371. Bascom Pinnell, N. G.; George Mathews, V. G.; W. H. Lawson, P. S.; Frank Gray, Chaplain, J. H. Davis, Treasurer
See also the NKAA entry Masonic Lodges in Louisville, KY.

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Colored Notes (Mt. Stering Newspaper)
Start Year : 1918
In October of 1918, Robin Hamilton was the writer for "Colored Notes" in the Mt. Sterling Advocate newspaper. By November, between each item of the column was an ad for hats and clothing. The column was still being published in 1922. The Mt. Sterling Advocate was first published as a weekly paper in 1890, founded by John H. Mason and Dr. C. W. Harris. The paper is still in print today. See "Colored Notes," Mt. Sterling Advocate, 11/12/1918, p.8 and later issues. Available online full text, 1891-1922, at Chronicling America and Kentucky Digital Library - Newspapers.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Colored Notes in Kentucky Newspapers
Geographic Region: Mount Sterling, Montgomery County, Kentucky

Colored People's Column, and Colored News (Earlington Newspaper)
Start Year : 1893
Almost from the beginning, a Colored news column appeared in The Bee, a semi-weekly Republican newspaper in the mining town of Earlington, KY. The newspaper was first published in 1889, and the column, "Colored People's Column," appeared as early as 1893, and "Our Colored Citizens," appeared in 1900. By 1902, it was named "News for the Colored People" written by Reverend J. H. Gough. The column was limited to 1,000 words and the coverage area included Earlington, Mortons Gap, and Hecla, KY. African American readers were encouraged to subscribe to The Bee. The column was to appear in each newspaper issue, but would be omitted if space was needed for other news. Around 1903, the column was headed "Colored News" or "Colored Column" until it was finally decided that "Colored News" would be the heading. The Bee existed for almost 50 years, and "Colored News" can be found on the latter pages of most issues. Full text of the newspaper is available for the years 1898-1910 at Kentucky Digital Library and Chronicling America. For more about the history of the newspaper, see The Bee, a Kentucky Digital Library website.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Colored Notes in Kentucky Newspapers
Geographic Region: Earlington, Mortons Gap, and Hecla, all in Hopkins County, Kentucky

Colored Scholarship - University of Kentucky, Senior Class of 1908
Start Year : 1908
In 1908, the Kentucky Legislature passed the bill that changed the name of State College to Kentucky State University, today know as the University of Kentucky. In addition to the name change, the Legislature appropriated $500,000 for the college and the two normal schools. During that same period, there was an attempt by the 1908 senior class at State University to provide an endowed scholarship fund for African American students to attend the school. According to the yearbook, The Kentuckian 1908, (p. 135), "Closing the year we received a staggering blow by the refusal of the college authorities to accept a gift of $75,000 from the class, to endow a colored scholarship." The class was very much ahead of the times; State University was still segregated in 1908, with no African American students. There is no mention of the offering in the archived papers of then President James K. Patterson nor in the Board of Trustees' archived records. Though the University had received an increase in appropriations from the state, $75,000 would have been a lot of money for that time period; an equivalent amount in the year 2010 would be a little more than $1.6 million. The 1908 senior class leaders were Thomas R. Bryant, Class President; Helen L. McCandless, Vice President; Hattie Boyd, Secretary; James F. Battaile, Treasurer; and Ruben M. Holland, Class Representative. The Kentuckian 1908 is available online at the Explore UK website.
Subjects: Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Colored Skating Rink (Earlington, KY)
In 1910, a Colored skating rink was located across the street from the Louisville & Eastern Interurban Rail line Station in Earlington, KY. The Mt. Zion Baptist Church Sunday School used the facility for its Christmas entertainment on December 24-25, 1910. Superintendent William Killebrew and his assistants were in charge of the arrangements. For more, see the paragraph about the celebration in the Colored News section of The Bee (Earlington newspaper), 12/16/1910, p. 4, and 12/23/1910, p. 4. By the beginning of the new year, several Colored churches and Colored persons in Earlington had signed a petition to condemn the dances and perceived rowdiness that had taken place at the skating rink. The indecent entertainment was said to be destroying the lives and character of young Negroes in Earlington. See the Colored Column paragraph "There is a petition signed...," in The Bee, 01/24/1911, p. 2. The Mt. Zion Baptist Church continued to use the skating rink for its events. The skating rink was also used for a banquet by the Zadok Lodge #80 F. & A. M. The organization paid honor to two visitors to the city, Professor E. B. Davis, Grand Master of F. & A. M. of Kentucky, and Ms. Maggie Freeman, Royal Grand Matron of the Eastern Stars. See the Colored Column paragraph "Prof. E. B. Davis...," in The Bee, 06/30/1911, p. 7.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Railroad, Railway, Trains, Skating Rinks
Geographic Region: Earlington, Hopkins County, Kentucky

Colored Skating Rink (Paducah, KY)
In 1909, the Paducah Colored skating rink was up for sale. The 55 ft. lot, which had cost $4,000, was being sold for $2,500. In 1910, the rink was still in existence when the Colored revival was held there in September. The rink was located on Tenth Street. The revival was held by Lena Mason from Philadelphia, PA, with assistance from Reverend G. W. Robinson, pastor of the African Methodist Evangelical Church in Paducah. For more see "Real estate bargains," The Paducah Evening Sun, 04/03/1909, p. 5; and "Colored revival starts," The Paducah Evening Sun, 09/21/1910, p. 5.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work, Skating Rinks
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Colored Skating Rink (Paris, KY)
The City Board of Health closed the Paris Colored skating rink temporarily in 1908. Mayor James M. O'Brien issued a notice to the chief of police for the rink to be closed until further notice. The rink drew its nightly attendance from Bourbon County, which, along with several surrounding counties, had cases of smallpox. Closing the skating rink was a precaution that would hopefully prevent the spread of the disease to the entire community. For more see the articles "Vaccination in order" and "Colored skating rink closed" in The Bourbon News, 03/13/1908, p. 5.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Skating Rinks
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Colored Skating Rink (Winchester, KY)
Thanksgiving night, 1910, the Colored skating rink in Winchester, KY, was the scene of gunfire by deputy policeman, John Ballard, who was shooting at John Smith, an African American who worked at the skating rink. Ballard accused Smith of telling lies on him, and when Ballard drew his gun, there was a scuffle. Smith was able to get away without being injured. Ballard was charged with malicious shooting without wounding. The case was held over to the grand jury. For more see "Ballard held to grand jury," The Winchester News, 12/02/1910, p.1.
Subjects: Corrections and Police, Court Cases, Skating Rinks
Geographic Region: Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky

Colored Soldiers Monument
Start Year : 1924
Also called the Kentucky African American Civil Veterans Monument, the Colored Soldiers Monument is located in the Green Hill Cemetery in Frankfort, Kentucky.  It was erected by the Woman's Relief Corps No. 8, Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) in July, 1924, the only monument to Kentucky African American Civil War soldiers.  A total of four such monuments exist in the U.S.  The monument was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Colored Statue Performer
Start Year : 1885
It was reported in the New York Clipper newspaper that Charles "Barney" Hicks, manager of Kersands' Colored Minstrels, introduced the first colored statue performer, Apollo, on the minstrel stage in Louisville, KY. Hicks was the first African American to organize a company of African American minstrels; in 1865 the group of ex-slaves was known as the Georgia Minstrels. For more about the statue performer see the New York Clipper, 6/20/1885. For more on Charles Hicks see The Ghost Walks; a chronological history of blacks in show business, 1865-1910, by H. T. Sampson.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Colored Union Benevolent Society No.1 and No.2 (Lexington, KY)
Start Year : 1843
According to author Jacqui Malone, the Union Benevolent Society was formed in 1843 by free African Americans in Lexington, KY, to bury the dead, care for the sick, and give support to orphans and widows. The organization received support from whites who permitted a lodge run by slaves in 1852. The organization also secretly participated in the Underground Railroad, assisting in the escape of slaves. The organization was also referred to as the Lexington Colored People's Union Benevolent Society No 1. The Union Benevolent Society, No.2, of Colored People of Lexington, was incorporated in 1870. The organization had existed for a number of years. In 1870, the executive members were James L. Harvey, President; Jordan C. Jackson, Vice President; Henry King, Secretary; and Leonard Fish, Treasurer. For more information on the Colored Union Benevolent Society No.1 see Steppin' on the Blues: the visible rhythms of African American dance, by J. Malone. For more about Benevolent Society No. 2 see chapter 699 of Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Passed, 1869, pp.349-351 [available full view at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky, Fraternal Organizations, Underground Railroad: Conductors, Escapes, Organizations, Research, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Colored Voters' Leagues
Start Year : 1891
The Colored Voters' Leagues were politically influential civil rights organizations first established in the 1890s. In Kentucky, there was an Independent Colored Voters' League of Kentucky in 1899, they presented a bouquet of flowers to Senator William J. Goebel when he spoke before the Turner Society in Louisville, KY; Goebel was the Democratic nominee for Kentucky Governor [source: "German voters," The Evening Bulletin, 10/28/1899, p.3]. However, the Kentucky Colored Voters' League was a much later development, it was established in 1935, according to the Guide to Civilian Organizations. Fayette County, Kentucky by the U.S. Work Projects Administration in Kentucky, January 1943, p.11. The organization was said to have 2,500 members, and was open to "any registered male colored voter." The purpose was "To promote civic and legal interest of the members." The president was Charles P. Riley; Frank Tatman, Secretary; and J. Rice Porter, Chairman. The office terms were indefinite. The organization's office was located at 233 E. Second Street in Lexington, KY, and is listed in Polk's Lexington (Fayette County, KY.) City Directory, v.1939, p.136, and in v.1942, p.95. At Western Kentucky University Library, Manuscripts and Folklife Archives are two letters written in 1933 by Sherman Parks from Madisonville, KY, to Joseph F. Garnett in Hopkinsville, KY. "Parks, as an officer in the Hopkins County and Kentucky Colored Independent Voters Leagues, requests assistance, including monetary aid to promote the recruitment of African-Americans to Kentucky’s Democratic Party." - - source: bibliographic record for Sherman Parks Manuscripts. Around the country, the work of the various state organizations can be found in African American newspaper articles. One of the earliest Colored Voters' Leagues was formed in 1891 in Pittsburgh, PA, when a call was made to overthrow the politicians [source: "A Colored Voters' League," The New York Times, 12/27/1891, p.1]. By 1898, there were organizations in several states, including New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia [source: "In organization is power," Colored American, 03/26/1898, p.1]. In 1903, a Colored Voters' League was established in Kansas, "to look well towards the rights and protection of the Negro" [source: "The Legislature employe[e]s," Plaindealer, 03/06/1903, p.1]. In 1905, there was a call at the New York Colored Republican Club for the formation of a political organization known as the National Colored Voters' League that was to have state associations [source: "Colored Voters' League: form political organization of national scope," The Deseret Evening News, 02/18/1905, p.8; and "Negroes of New York...," Freeman, 03/18/1905, p.4]. The 1912 endorsement by the Colored Voters' League in Cook County, IL, had helped Honorable Joseph S. LaBuy to be elected to the Municipal Court of Chicago [source: "Hon. Joseph S. LaBuy, Democratic candidate for Judge of the Municipal Court of Chicago," Broad Ax, 11/01/1924, p.6]. In 1920, the United Colored Voters' League of Detroit held it's first annual dinner [source: "Cleveland social and personal," Cleveland Gazette, 02/07/1920, p.3]. In 1928, the Independent Colored Voters' League of Waco, TX, joined the Houston NAACP in filing a petition in federal court to restrain the Democratic Party from barring Negroes from voting in the primaries [source: "N.A.A.C.P. to fight newest Texas attempt at Negro disfranchisement," Plaindealer, 08/10/1928, p.1].
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Voting Rights, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / United States

Columbia Colored Library (Adair County, KY)
Start Year : 1908
In 1908, school teacher Parker Jackman and others establish a colored library in Columbia, KY. Jackman placed an ad in the Adair County News, 12/09/1908, p.1, col.5, to encourage the completion of the library. "Professor Parker Jackman is anxious to complete the colored library which was started several months ago. He has collected a number of books and there are many other persons about town who have promised to contribute, but they have not as to yet done so." The article does not give the location of the library. There is no record of the library in the Kentucky Library Commission reports. The other library in town was the Columbia Library which was segregated between 1911 and 1956, and a Miss Anderson was the teacher/librarian at the Columbia Colored School in 1935 [source: Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky by R. F. Jones].
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Colored Public Libraries in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Columbia, Adair County, Kentucky

Columbia (KY) Temperance Society
Start Year : 1840
Columbia Temperance Society in Adair County, KY, was probably the first white temperance society in Kentucky to have an African American member. The organization was formed in 1839 at the Baptist Church. In 1840, there were 139 members of which 44 were women, one of whom was a slave. Columbia was the first Kentucky town to prohibit the sale of alcohol. For more see Mythic Land Apart, by J. D. Smith and T. H. Appleton; and V. Kolbenschlag, 1839 entry in "Walking tour of Columbia," Columbia Magazine, issue 13 [available online].
Subjects: Alcohol
Geographic Region: Columbia, Adair County, Kentucky

Combs, George Robert
Birth Year : 1882
In 1920, George R. Combs, a Republican, was thought to be the first African American councilman in Nicholasville, KY, when he was elected to represent the Herveytown Ward. But, Andrew McAfee had been elected a city councilman in 1898. Combs, a Kentucky native, managed a grocery store and was an undertaker in Nicholasville, according to his WWI draft registration card. He was the husband of Lula M. Combs (b.1883 in KY), and the family of three lived on Hervey Street. Herveytown was an African American community on the east side of Main Street in Nicholasville, it was named after James Hervey, a banker, who had owned most of the land where the community was located. For more see Herv[e]ytown Ward under heading "Politics" in The Crisis, vol.19, issue3, January 1920, p.149 [online at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Businesses, Communities, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky

Combs, Richard "Tallow Dick"
Combs, a barber, was from Beattyville, KY. He was one of the ten men initially charged with complicity in the murder of William Goebel. While on his deathbed, Goebel had been named Governor of Kentucky following a very controversial and contested governor's race. Richard Combs was the only African American linked to the murder; though there was testimony during the trial that two Negroes had been hired to kill Goebel. W. H. Watts, a Negro janitor of the Adjunct General's Office in the Kentucky Executive Building, also testified in the case [it had only been since 1872 that Negro testimony was accepted in a Kentucky court]. Goebel had won the Democratic nomination for governor in 1899, was shot and mortally wounded January 30, 1900, while outside the Kentucky State Capitol Building, and died February 3, 1900. A senator from Kenton County, KY, he was sometimes described as ruthless, at other times as a reformer. As a reformer, he pushed for a number of changes, including more rights for women and Negroes, and he wanted to do away with lotteries and pool halls. For more see William Goebel in the Kentucky Encyclopedia; "Goebel suspects indicted," from Frankfort, KY in the New York Times, 04/19/1900, p. 1; "Prison cell for Powers," New York Times, 08/19/1900, p. 1; The First New Dealer, by U. Woodson; and V. Hazard, "The Black testimony controversy in Kentucky, 1866-1872," The Journal of Negro History, vol.58, issue 2 (April 1973), pp. 140-165.
Subjects: Barbers, Corrections and Police, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Gambling, Lottery
Geographic Region: Beattyville, Lee County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Kenton County, Kentucky

Committee on Negro Housing [Robert H. Hogan]
Start Year : 1931
In April 1931, Robert Hogan was appointed to the Committee on Negro Housing of the President's Conference on Home Building and Home Ownership, by President Hoover and R. P. Lamont, the Secretary of Commerce. The committee was chaired by Nannie H. Burroughs. The conference was held December 2-5, 1931, in Washington, D.C. Hogan, born 1883 in Georgia, was a contractor who lived on Fifth Street in Lexington, KY. He was one of 1,000 representative citizens from 48 states who participated in the conference. The Committee on Negro Housing, formed prior to the conference meeting, had been given the directive to advise the conference on the housing needs of Negroes. The committee had been created due to the Great Migration of Negroes from the south to northern cities. After four years of privately-funded research, the findings were published in 1932 in Negro Housing: Report of the Committee of Negro Housing. For more see "Lexington man named to Hoover committee," Lexington Leader, 04/10/1931, p. 20; "Committee on Negro Housing" in Organizing Black America, by N. Mjagkij"; and the Statement announcing the White House Conference on Home Building and Home Ownership, September 15, 1931," in the American Presidency Project [available online].
Subjects: Construction, Contractors, Builders, Appointments by U.S. Presidents/Services for U.S. Presidents, Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Georgia / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / United States

Community Memories: A Glimpse of African American Life in Frankfort, KY Project [Kentucky Historical Society - oral histories]
The "Community Memories" project is one of the KHS Digital Collections [Kentucky Historical Society] available online. The photographs and the oral history collection features a glance at the life of African Americans in Frankfort, Kentucky. The community's families, neighborhoods, and occupations, as well as religious and educational traditions are revealed in this collection of photographed and oral history interviews shared by local residents in 1995.
Subjects: Communities, Photographers, Photographs, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Confederate Reunion, 1900 (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1900
From May 30 to June 6, 1900, the Confederate Reunion was held in Louisville, KY. It was estimated that a hundred thousand visitors attended the reunion, one of whom was Mingo Evans, heralded as a Negro hero from Alabama. Mingo, a slave of the Evans family, accompanied Joe Evans to Virginia in 1861 with the 9th Alabama. Joe was killed in the first battle of Manassas, and Mingo took his place. Mingo was injured and discharged from the military and sent home, taking with him the skull of a Yankee soldier. When Union soldiers came for the skull, Mingo hid in the mountains until the end of the Civil War. He had paid his own way to the reunion in Louisville, traveling with the veterans of Camp Horace King. For more see the Mingo article in The Adair County News, 06/06/1900, p. 2, col. 3; and A. Shaw, "The Confederate Reunion at Louisville," The American Monthly Review of Reviews, 1900, v.22, Jul-Dec, p. 20-21 [full view available at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Alabama / Virginia

Conley, Jess
Conley, considered the last African American jockey to compete in the Kentucky Derby, was actually one of the last. Conley finished 3rd aboard Colston in 1911. He had competed in the Derby two times before: in 1898 aboard Han d'Or (finishing 4th), and in 1899 aboard Mazo (finishing 3rd). Henry King would be the next African American jockey to ride in the Kentucky Derby in 1921, and Marlon St. Julien rode in 2000. For more see Black Maestro, by J. Drape; and R. A. Frister, "Forgotten heroes: Black winners of the Kentucky Derby," Ebony, May 1989, pp.82-87 [available online at Google Books].
Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Connections with Renee Shaw (KET)
Start Year : 2005
Renee Shaw is the host, co-producer, writer, and managing editor of "Connections with Renee Shaw." The intent of the program is to show the positive side of what is happening in Kentucky communities and the people who are making it happen. The interviews are archived and available to the public at the Kentucky Educational Television (KET) website. The archive is a very good resource of local people, places, and events, most of which will not be found elsewhere.
Subjects: Resources Dedicated to Kentucky African Americans [Statewide]
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Consumers: Slavery Era Insurance Registry
The California Department of Insurance provides a registry of slave insurance that includes slaves owned in Kentucky. The registry has the insurance company names, policy numbers, and the names of the slaves and slaveholders. The information is available as web pages, and also available in .pdf.
Subjects: Slave Injury and Death Reimbursement & Insurance
Geographic Region: Kentucky / California

Convention of Colored Men of Kentucky
Start Year : 1866
The First Convention of Colored Men of Kentucky was held in Lexington, KY, March 22-26, 1866. The convention was held in Ladies Hall on Church Street. The organization was to be temporary, according to the recorded proceedings. George Perry was named chairman and Henry Scroggins was named secretary. The organization had been formed first and foremost to address the Kentucky Legislature on the issue of voting rights for African American men. Other concerns included morality, education, temperance, frugality, industry, and the overall well being of African Americans in Kentucky. Initially, the organization did not push for total equality, but rather was organized with the intent of taking one step at a time toward gaining civil rights and justice. They established the Kentucky State Benevolent Association with Henry King as chairman, Madison C. Johnson as vice president, Henry Scroggins as recording secretary, James H. Campbell as corresponding secretary, and George Perry as treasurer. There was also an executive committee that was given the power to call a convention whenever they thought it necessary; they were the managers of the association. Convention members who arrived late or left the meeting early were fined. There was an exceptionally high expectation that all who had committed to the convention would arrive on time and remain for the duration of the meeting. Delegates came from all over the state. There was also a list of honorary members, beginning with Rev. John G. Fee. A petition was raised to pay the Ladies' Educational Association for the use of their building, Ladies Hall. The petition passed and the Ladies received $25, which was $8 more than they had asked. The Benevolent Association bought stock in the Colored Citizen newspaper, which was recognized as the voice of African Americans in Kentucky. Recognition was also given to Charlotte Scott, former slave of Dr. Rucker in Virginia; Scott was leading the campaign for the erection of the National Colored Men's Monument in memory of President Lincoln. Twelve hundred copies of the Proceedings of the First Convention of Colored Men of Kentucky were printed and forwarded to prominent men such as President Andrew Johnson. For several years, William J. Simmons served as chair of the executive committee of the Convention of Colored Men of Kentucky, with one of his re-elections taking place in 1875. He chaired the committee that led in presenting grievances to the Kentucky Legislature. In 1886, his speech before the Legislature on the injustices put upon the Colored people of Kentucky was described as a masterpiece; the Kentucky Legislature order that 2000 copies be printed. It was the first time that an African American addressed the Kentucky Legislature about the plight of African Americans in Kentucky. For more about the establishment of the organization, see the Proceedings of the First Convention of Colored Men of Kentucky [available at Google Books]. For more on the text of William J. Simmons' speech, see pp. 48-50 in Men of Mark by W. J. Simmons and H. M. Turner [available at Google Books]; and Life Behind a Veil, by G. C. Wright.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Voting Rights, Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Convention of Colored Newspaper Men
Start Year : 1875
Peter H. Clark chaired a meeting in Cincinnati, OH, August 4 & 5, 1875, that called for the organization of the Convention of Colored Newspaper Men. Clark (1829-1925), born in Ohio, was an abolitionist writer and speaker and an educator. In 1849, he was the first teacher in Cincinnati's newly established public schools for Colored children, and he established the first Colored high school. Clark was highly regarded as an educator and as a political activist who could inspire Colored people to vote in Cincinnati. In 1875, Clark wanted to form an organization that would strengthen and correct the reporting of news about Colored people in the United States, particularly in the South. At the 1875 meeting, it was planned that the Convention of Colored Newspaper Men would also produce an 18 volume publication on the true history of the Colored people in the United States. Months after the meeting, Clark sounded the call for membership via articles in Colored newspapers, the articles detailing a plan of representation for each state and territory. For Kentucky, there were to be 12 representatives. Clark's plans did not materialize, but the stage was set for bringing together Colored newspapers in order to strengthen their operations and the Colored perspective of news reporting about Colored people. For more see P. H. Clark, "A Call for a National Convention of the Colored People of the United States," The Colored Tribune, 04/18/1876, p. 4 [available online at GALILEO Digital Initiative Database]; A. R. Rivera, "Afro-American Press Association" in Organizing Black America, by N. Mjagkij; Proceedings of the Convention of Colored Newspaper Men, Cincinnati, OH, 04/04/1875; and P.S. Foner, "Black participation in the Centennial of 1876." Phylon, vol. 39, issue 4 (4th Qtr., 1978), pp. 283-296.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: United States

Convention of Colored Republicans (or Colored Border State Convention)
Start Year : 1868
In 1868, a call was made by African American Republican leaders from Maryland, Delaware, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Missouri, for the Convention of Colored Republicans. The meeting was held in Baltimore, Maryland, on August 4, 1868. The initial purpose of the meeting was to organize African American men in the border states for the fight for equal rights. The call came as a result of the dissatisfaction toward the Chicago Convention that had not given African American men the right to take part in the deliberations. Chicago Convention members had "remembered the rights of the loyal citizens of the so-called reconstructed states." The Convention of Colored Republicans, which continued after the first meeting in 1868, was a national organization with state branches that included New York, Wisconsin, Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kansas, South Carolina, Ohio, and Illinois. The Colored Republican Convention in Kentucky was held in Frankfort, KY, in 1870, with almost 100 counties represented. A national convention was held in Washington, D.C. in 1888 to discuss the political and social conditions of all African Americans and the rights and privileges of citizenship. Chapters of the Convention of Colored Republicans were still active in the 1930s. For more see, "A call has been issued...," The Daily News and Herald, 06/19/1868, issue 143, col. A; and a quotation from "Convention of Border State Colored Men," The New York Times, 06/12/1868, p. 5. For more about the Chicago Convention see The American Annual Cyclopedia and Register of Important Events of the Year 1868, vol. 8, by D. Appleton and Company [available at Google Book Search]; "Colored Republican Convention in Kentucky," Bangor Daily Whig & Courier, 03/03/1870, issue 53, col. D.; and A Colored Convention," Oshkosh Daily Northwestern, 12/10/1888, p. 2.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: United States / Baltimore, Maryland / Delaware / West Virginia / Missouri / Kentucky / Washington, D.C. / Chicago, Illinois

Convention of Free Negroes of Kentucky
A convention of Free Negroes was organized in Philadelphia by James Forten in 1813. The National Convention of Free Negroes was called in 1830 by Arthur Tappan and Simeon S. Jocelyn. The convention members were anti-colonizationist, against deporting former slaves and free persons, and stood for the abolition of slavery and for equal citizenship to all free persons. The Convention of Free Negroes of Kentucky was also established with branches in various cities. The exact starting date of the organization is not known, and very little has been written about the group. According to an article in The Lima Argus newspaper, in 1847, the Kentucky Convention of Free Negroes and the Kentucky Colonization Society had agreed that a representative party of free Negroes from Kentucky would be allowed to go to Liberia for one year to inspect the colony, then return to make a full report to their constituencies. Persons were nominated from Lexington, Maysville, Danville, Richmond, and Louisville. The purpose of the proposed plan was to convince more free Negroes in Kentucky to migrate to Liberia. The chosen delegates were Stephen Fletcher, J. Merriwether, H. Underwood, and A. Hooper. They left the United States in 1847, and returned August 1848, along with S. Worrell, a North Carolina delegate. The Kentucky delegates' report on the Liberia Colony was favorable, the colony was healthy and prospering satisfactorily. However, Jesse Merriwether wrote an unfavorable report and advised against emigration to Liberia. For more see The Chronological History of the Negro in America, by P. M. Bergman and M. N. Bergman; "Convention of Free Negroes," The Lima Argus, 07/27/1847, p. 2; and "Arrival of the Liberia Packet," The Adams Sentinel, 08/14/1848, p.1.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Freedom, Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Colonies, Colonization
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky / Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Liberia, Africa

Conventions of the Colored Christian Churches in Kentucky
Start Year : 1872
There were three divisions to the annual Convention of the Colored Christian Churches of Kentucky: the State Missionary Convention, with male delegates; the Sunday School Convention, with both male and female delegates; and the Kentucky Christian Women's Board of Missions (C.W.B.M) Convention, with female delegates. The first to be organized was the State Missionary Convention, in 1872 in Lexington, KY. The goal was to organize state work in missions and develop a total brotherhood program. The Convention purchased The Christian Soldier newspaper for $100; the paper was to continue as the organ of the Brotherhood. R. E. Pearson was editor and manager, and D. I. Reid was printer. The newspaper was published monthly and cost subscribers 50 cents per year. The paper was to support itself and did not last very long. The organization's next paper began publication in 1921: the Christian Trumpet. The Convention also gave annually to the Louisville Bible School. The school, opened in 1873 to educate Negro ministers, was originally located on 7th Street in Louisville, KY. The Sunday School Convention was organized in 1880 to bring together Sunday School workers to promote the program and learn methods of teaching and managing Sunday School. Few men attended the conventions. The Christian Women's Board of Missions (C.W.B.M.) Convention was also organized in 1880 to help the church have a complete program through home and foreign missions. The group was closely connected to the Louisville Bible School, making annual donations, raising funds and pushing for a girls' school that was never built. They also gave funding to The Christian Soldier newspaper in hopes that the C.W.B.M. column would continue. Later they campaigned for subscriptions to World Call and encouraged members to read the Gospel Flea. When male delegates attended the C.W.B.M. Convention, the men were not recognized; it was a women's only organization. For more see Negro Disciples in Kentucky, 1840-1925 (thesis), by C. Walker.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Religion & Church Work, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Conwill, Houston
Birth Year : 1947
Born in Louisville, KY, Houston Conwill is a multi-talented painter and sculptor. He has received many awards, including the Prix de Rome Fellowship in 1984 and the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award in 1987. He collaborated on the creation of a terrazzo and brass project, Rivers, for the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem. Houston Conwill is the brother of artist and poet Estelle Conwill Majozo. For more see The African American Almanac, 9th ed.; St. James Guide to Black Artists, ed. by T. Riggs; and Art at the Edge, by H. Conwill and S. Krane.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Migration North, Sculptors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / New York

Cook, George
Birth Year : 1863
Born in 1863 in  Louisville, Kentucky, George Cook was a cook for Buffalo Bill Cody and a chef on a private dining car of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. He was known as "Honest Mister Cook." For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan.
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Railroad, Railway, Trains
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cook, Isabel and John Hartwell
It has been mistakenly assumed that the Cooks were Kentucky natives. John Cook was born around 1838 in Washington, D.C., his family was free. Isabel Marion Cook was born in 1843 in Tennessee. Both were graduates of Oberlin College. The couple came to Kentucky in 1864 when John was hired as a school teacher in Louisville. In 1867, they moved to Washington, D. C. where John Cook had accepted the position of chief clerk with the Freedmen's Bureau. The family, which included extended family members, lived east of 7th Street, according to the 1870 U.S Federal Census. John Cook worked during the day and attended college at night. He was a member of the first class of ten graduates from Howard University Law School in 1871. He would become a professor and dean of the school for two years prior to his death from tuberculosis in 1878. John and Isabel Cook were the parents of musician Will [William] Marion Cook. For more see A Life in Ragtime by R. Badger; and Swing Along by M. G. Carter. See the Will Marion Cook - Biography at The E. Azalia Hackley Colleciton [online], a Detroit Public Library website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Lawyers, Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Migration South, Tuberculosis: Care and Deaths
Geographic Region: Washington, D.C / Tennessee / Kentucky

Cooper, Priscilla Hancock
Birth Year : 1952
Born in Louisville, KY, Priscilla Cooper became a poet/performer, author, and teacher. As a teenager, she worked for the Louisville Defender newspaper. She is a graduate of Lincoln University of Missouri and American University Washington, D. C. Her first volume of poetry, Call Me Black Woman, was published in 1993. Cooper has numerous publications and productions and has edited three anthologies. She also teaches writing. She and Dhana Bradley-Morton founded the Theater Workshop of Louisville. They have also presented creative collaborations, the first of which was a poetic concert in 1981, I Have Been Hungry All of My Years. This was followed by Four Women and God's Trombones, and they also performed in Amazing Grace in 1993. Both are featured in the KET Production, Words Like Freedom/Sturdy Black Bridges, a poetic concert featuring African-American writing and music. Since 1998, Cooper has been the teacher of the Anti-violence Creative Writing Program, "Writing Our Stories," sponsored by the Alabama Department of Youth Services and the Alabama Writers Forum. In 2005, Cooper was awarded the Individual Artist Fellowship in Literature by the Alabama State Council. In 2006, she received the Coming Up Taller Award by the U.S. President's Committee in the Arts and Humanities. Cooper is the vice president of Institutional Programs at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. For more see B. Brady, "Architecturally Sound," CityBeat, vol. 6, issue no. 33, 2000; and Meet Priscilla Hancock, a Red Mountain Theatre Company website.

See photo image of Priscilla Hancock Cooper at Red Mountain Theatre Company website.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Authors, Education and Educators, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Poets, Migration South, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Birmingham, Alabama

Cooper, Ron
Birth Year : 1962
Ron Cooper was the first African American head football coach at the University of Louisville (U of L). He came to U of L in 1993 from Eastern Michigan University, where he had been the head football coach with a two year record of 9-13. He had also been the defensive coordinator at Murray State University, 1987-88. Cooper was at U of L for three years before being fired in December 1997; the team's record was 7-4 the first year, 5-6 the second, 1-10 the third. When he came to U of L, Cooper was one of five African American head football coaches at Division I-A schools, and at the age of 31, he was also the youngest. After leaving U of L, Cooper was hired as the head football coach at Alabama A&M, where he coached 1998-2001. The A&M team played in the 2000 championship game of the Southwestern Athletic Conference, and that year they led the nation in rushing defense. In his coaching career, Cooper has led teams to six bowl games. Ron Cooper was born in Huntsville, AL, and is a 1983 graduate of Jacksonville State University, where he lettered all four years in football. He earned his master's degree in 1986 at Appalachian State University. For more see G. Frenette, "Untapped talent pool Blacks often passed over for top spots," The Florida Times-Union, 12/15/1997, Sports section, p. B-1; The University of Louisville, by D. D. Cox and W. J. Morison; and Ron Cooper at LSUsports.net. See also the NKAA Database entry for Charles R. Strong, the second African American head football coach at U of L.


Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Huntsville, Alabama / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Corbin, KY (1919)
Start Year : 1919
On October 29, 1919, in the railroad town of Corbin, KY, a white man was attacked and robbed by two white men with painted black faces. The next day a vigilante mob took revenge on the African American community, searching homes and businesses and eventually forcing the African American railroad workers into boxcars and shipping them south to Knoxville. The Louisville & Nashville Railroad (L&N) had hired the men, along with European immigrants, to expand the railroad in Corbin. The town of Corbin suddenly had a lot of new people, and there was tension. An increase in crime was attributed to the more recent African American residents. The day of the riot, some White employers hid African Americans. After the railroad workers were shipped out, many African Americans left Corbin out of fear; few remained in the city. For more see K. O. Griggs, "The Removal of Blacks from Corbin in 1919: Memory, Perspective, and the Legacy of Racism," The Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, vol. 100, issue 3 (Summer 2002), pp. 293-310; R. Henson, Trouble Behind: A Film About History and Forgetting, Cicada Films (1990); and coverage in various Kentucky newspapers. See also National Public Radio (NPR) "Kentucky town re-examines its racial history," July 3, 2007.
Subjects: Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky, Railroad, Railway, Trains
Geographic Region: Corbin, Whitley County, Kentucky

Corbin v Marsh (Nicholas County, KY)
Start Year : 1865
The Militia Act of 1862 [from Selected Statutes] initially authorized men of African descent as laborers for the Federal Army and Navy, but the men would become soldiers. The act granted freedom to the men and their mothers, wives, and children. In October 1865, the Montgomery County Circuit Court in Kentucky decided the act of Congress was unconstitutional. The case was to be taken to the Kentucky Court of Appeals, and if necessary, to the U.S. Supreme Court for final adjudication. But it was in Nicholas County, KY, where the case of Corbin v. Marsh was taken to the Kentucky Appeals Court. The judgment affirmed that the act was unconstitutional and not law on December 11, 1865. Judge Williams dissented from the majority of the court. No opinion was sought from the U.S. Supreme Court. For more see Select statutes and other documents illustrative of the history of the United States, 1861-1898, by W. MacDonald [full-text at Google Book Search]; "The Circuit Court of Montgomery County, Kentucky, has decided the act of Congress freeing the wives and children of colored soldiers, unconstitutional," Milwaukee Daily Sentinel, 10/10/1865, issue 238, Col. C; and Corbin vs Marsh 63 Ky. 193; 1865 Ky. 2 Duv. 193.
Subjects: Freedom, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Montgomery County, Kentucky / Nicholas County, Kentucky

Cornett, Valerie C.
Birth Year : 1977
In 1995, at the age of 17, Valerie Cornett became the first African American homecoming queen at Hazard High School in Hazard, KY. For more see "Black students make history at high schools in Kentucky and Alabama," Jet, vol. 89, issue 2 (11/20/1995), p. 25.
Subjects: Homecoming Queens, Pageants, Contests
Geographic Region: Hazard, Perry County, Kentucky

Cosby, Kevin Wayne
Birth Year : 1958
Born in Louisville, KY, Kevin W. Cosby is the son of the late Clora E. and Laken Cosby, Jr. Since 1979, Rev. Kevin W. Cosby has served as senior pastor of the St. Stephen Church in Louisville, the largest African American church in Kentucky and one of the largest churches in the United States. Cosby is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and United Theological Seminary. He is the 13th president of Simmons College in Louisville, serving in that position without a salary. Cosby is author of several books, including the co-authored Get Off Your Butt! messages, musings, and ministries to empower the African American Church. Rev. Cosby has received a number of awards, including his recognition in 1992 by the U.S. Senate for his dedication to community and race relations, and in 2007 he was one of the two recipients of the Louisvillian of the Year Award. For more see the Congressional Record, "Rev. Kevin Wayne Cosby," 05/13/1992, 102nd Cong. 2nd. Sess., 138 Cong Rec S 6615; "AdFed names Cosby, Kelly its Louisvillians of the year," at bizjournals.com, 07/17/2007; and Connections with Renee Shaw, program #303 - Rev. Dr. Kevin W. Cosby [available online], 10/06/2007, at KET (Kentucky Educational Television).

See photo and additional information about Rev. Dr. Kevin Wayne Cosby, at speakers section of the 34th Annual Alexander/Pegues Minister's Conference at shawuniversity.edu.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cosby, Laken, Jr.
Laken Cosby, Jr. is a graduate of Lousiville Central High School. In 1988, he became the first African American chairman of the Jefferson County School Board. Cosby was also appointed to the Kentucky Board of Education in 1994 by Governor Brereton Jones; Cosby was vice chairman of the board for three terms. In 2002, Cosby was not reappointed to the board by Governor Patton. For more see "Cosby is Jefferson County board's first black chairman," in 1988 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Seventh Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 36; and M. Pitsch, "Longtime advocate of school reform replaced on board," Courier-Journal, 05/11/2002, News section, p. O1A.

See photo image and additional information about Laken Cosby, Jr. at Hall of Fame 2012, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website. 
Subjects: Education and Educators, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Coulter, Francine T.
Birth Year : 1949
Born in Danville,KY, Francine Coulter was elected to the Danville Independent School Board in 1977. She was the first African American ever elected to the school board. Coulter was a stenographer with South Central Bell. For more see "17 blacks are local school board members," in 1978 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Fifth Report, by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 24.
Subjects: Accountants, Bookkeepers, Certified Public Accountants, Stenographers, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Covell, Henry
Birth Year : 1850
Henry Covell is listed in the 1880 U.S. Federal Census as a horse jockey in Boston, MA. Born around 1850 in Kentucky, Covell was the husband of Helen Covell, a laundrywoman who was born in Massachusetts.
Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Migration North
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Boston, Massachusetts

Covington Desegregated Library and Services (Kenton County, KY)
Start Year : 1901
The Covington Public Library, in Covington, KY, was the first desegregated public library in the state. The building was constructed in 1900, and in 1901 the library board of trustees minutes read, "The library in all its parts shall be open to every man, woman, and child in Covington, free upon compliance with these rules." The library board had also ruled that there would be no list of prohibited books. In 1940, the Covington Public Library was one of five public libraries in a southern state that offered full privileges to all at the main public library. The other four public libraries that offered services with no race restrictions were located in Texas: Brady, Corpus Christi, El Paso, and Pecos. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky by R. F. Jones; and "Board of Trustees Rules, January 1901" an unpublished manuscript at the Kenton County Public Library.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Brady, Corpus Christi, El Paso, Pecos, Texas

Covington Tigers Baseball Team (Covington, KY)
According to writer Jim Reis of The Kentucky Post, it is not known when the Covington Tigers were organized, but they were mentioned in the newspaper as early as 1918. Although not in a league, the team played both African American and white teams. On June 24, 1918, the team beat the African American team from Camp Sherman, Ohio; about 2,000 people attended the game at Federal Park. In 1919, the team moved to Newport, KY. For more see J. Reis, "Baseball, church played key roles in black history," The Kentucky Post, 02/10/1997, p. 4K.
Subjects: Baseball, Parks
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky

Covington, Virgil
In 1999, Virgil Covington received a Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award. He was principal of the Winburn Middle School in Lexington, KY, the first school in its district to be wired for the Internet. Covington also initiated the Winburn Community Academy, a safe after-school program for children. In 2002, Covington was suspended by Superintendent Robin Fankhauser, who claimed the suspension was not disciplinary. Covington announced his retirement in May 2002; he had been employed in education for 27 years. For more see Virgil Covington at the Milken Family Foundation website and "Winburn Principal to Retire," Lexington Herald-Leader, 05/22/2002.


Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Cowan, Fred
Birth Year : 1958
Fred Cowan was born in Sturgis, KY. The 6' 8" center/forward was a member of the University of Kentucky basketball team from 1977-1981; in his freshman year the team won the NCAA Championship. Cowan played in a total of 111 games during his college career, scoring a total of 975 points. He scored a career high 44 points against Clemson in 1979. Cowan is listed as one of the top 100 players of all time at the University of Kentucky. He was selected by the Houston Rockets in the sixth round of the NBA 1981 draft but chose to play basketball in Japan, which he did for 10 years. He has had a number of businesses, including a demolition company. Today Cowan is a mortgage broker and owner of Statewide Mortgage Services in Madisonville and Lexington, KY. He is a brother of the late Brenda Cowan. For more see C. R. Hallstaff, "UK Basketball 100 years; Top 100 Players of All Time," Lexington Herald-Leader, 11/24/2002, Sports section, p. O2X; and M. Davis, "He won't die rich, and he's not trying," Lexington Herald-Leader, 05/10/2005, HealthFamily section, p. E1.

See photo image of Fred Cowan at bigbluehistory.net.
Subjects: Basketball, Businesses, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada
Geographic Region: Sturgis, Union County, Kentucky / Japan

Cox, Fannie M.
Birth Year : 1959
In 2007/2008, Fannie Cox became the third* African American president of the Kentucky Library Association (KLA). It was during her tenure that Louisville, KY, was the host city for the state's second national library conference (the first being the 1917 American Library Association Conference). The 2008 meeting was a combined event with the KLA Conference, Kentucky School Media Association, the National Diversity in Libraries Conference, and the Southeastern Library Association Conference. In 2005, she coordinated with the Western Branch Library Support Association for the successful joint banquet for the recognition of the centennial anniversary of KLA and the Western Branch of the Louisville Free Public Library. In addition to having been president of KLA, Fannie Cox has served in several leadership positions, including chair of the Special Library Section. She initiated the Conference Proceedings, the online Advocacy Clearinghouse, and the Poster Sessions, which she also chaired. She has received appointments to various ALA committees, including ALCTS Leadership Development, Collection Development and Electronic Resources, and the Advocacy Training Subcommittee. She was the recipient of the Association of College and Research Libraries Fellowship in 2000 and the National Science Foundation Fellowship in 1999. Fannie Cox is an associate professor and serves as Outreach and Reference Librarian at the University of Louisville. She earned her B.A. in 1982 and her MLS in 1998, both from Indiana University. She earned a MPA in 1992 from Kentucky State University. Fannie Cox, the daughter of the late James and Rosa Cox, was born in Indianapolis, IN. This information was taken with permission from the vita of Fannie M. Cox. For more information contact Fannie Cox at fmcox@louisville.edu.

*The first African American to become president of KLA was Rebecca T. Bingham from Indianapolis, IN, and the second was Barbara S. Miller from Louisville, KY.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration South
Geographic Region: Indianapolis, Indiana / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cox, Wesley
Birth Year : 1955
Wesley Cox, a 6'6" forward, was an outstanding basketball player from Louisville, KY, in the 1970s.  He attended Male High School and was named Mr. Basketball in 1973. Cox played his college ball at the University of Louisville (U of L), 1973-77, and started all four years of his college career [see Wesley Cox Profile, a U of L website]. He played center his first season and was named the 1974 Missouri Valley Conference Newcomer of the Year. Cox scored 1,578 career points, averaging 13.9 points per game. During his four years at U of L, the basketball team had a 90-25 record and went to the NCAA Tournament three times. They were a final four team in 1972 and 1975. Cox was selected by the Golden State Warriors during the first round of the 1977 NBA Draft, and played for two years. For more see Sports legends of the 'Ville: the 1970's Card [Sports], a louisville.com website; and Wesley Cox at Basketball-Reference.com.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Coxton Black Sox (baseball)
The Black Sox baseball team was from Coxton, KY, located in Harlan County. In the spring of 1928, the team was preparing for the season and looking for opponents. Team members included manager Leo Nelson, first baseman Charles Tyler, second baseman Copeland, third baseman Branner(?), short stop Nixon, and outfielders Scoat, Jones, and Pinkie. Source: "Coxton, KY., Black Sox." The Chicago Defender, 03/24/1928, p.9.
Subjects: Baseball
Geographic Region: Coxton, Harlan County, Kentucky

Craft, Thomas, J. Sr.
Birth Year : 1924
Thomas J. Craft, Sr. was born in Monticello, KY, the son of Wonnie Alta Travis Craft and Thomas M. Craft. For generations, his family had lived near Albany, KY. Thomas J. Craft, Sr. graduated from the Colored school in Monticello and started college in 1941, but he was drafted before he finished and served with the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II. He returned to Monticello, then went on to completed his bachelor's degree in 1948, his master's degree in 1950, and his Ph.D. in 1963. His research involved transplants, skin grafts and the problem of graft rejection. Craft conducted research with amphibians and discovered a correlation between the release of stress hormones and the rejection of skin grafts. He held tenured positions at several universities and was inducted into the Central State University Hall of Fame in 1993. Craft was a nephew of Oneth Travis, Sr. For more see African Americans in Science, Math and Invention, by R. Spangenbur and K. Moserand; and Distinguished African American Scientists of the 20th Century, by J. H. Kessler, et al.
Subjects: Biologists, Education and Educators, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Monticello, Wayne County, Kentucky / Albany, Clinton County, Kentucky

Craig, Susan Mary
Birth Year : 1827
Susan Mary Craig was one of the first African American teachers in Mercer County, KY, according to information William McKinley Wesley obtained from Ellen T. Craig Harris (b. 1855 in KY) in preparation for his 1929 thesis, The History of Education of Mercer County, Kentucky. (Susan Mary Craig's name is sometimes written as Mary Susan Craig in Wesley's thesis.) Susan Mary Craig was a teacher before the Civil War. Her father was white, and Craig received her education at a white school in Harrodsburg, KY. She opened a school after the war, and her students were her children, including Ellen T. Craig Harris along with another daughter and son; and James Harris, the husband of Ellen T. Harris [p. 186]. The school was located on Fort Street. Sallie Ann Taylor is recognized as the first African American teacher in Mercer County, and according to Wesley's thesis [p. 187], Taylor started teaching school after Susan Mary Craig died. This could mean that Taylor continued teaching at the school that Craig had established. There was also a teacher named Landonia Simms from Ohio. Simms had been hired by Susan Craig to teach the classes that were beyond Craig's level of education. It was during this time that Craig's school was moved to Greenville Street. Susan Mary Craig was the wife of Ransom Craig, a barber and Baptist minister in Harrodsburg and owner of $800 worth of real estate. The family members are all listed as mulattoes and free persons in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census. In the 1860 census, Ellen T. Craig Harris is listed as the youngest child of the Craig family. In the 1870 census, the household does not include Susan Mary Craig, and by 1880, Ransom Craig had remarried and his wife was Celia Craig (b.1832 in KY). His daughter, Ellen T. Craig Harris would become a school teacher and opened a school in her home. According to the information Ellen Harris provided to William Wesley, there were 40-50 students who paid $1 per month to attend the school. If there were two children in the same family, the cost was $1.50 per month [p. 187]. Ellen T. Craig Harris was the wife of James T. Harris. The couple had several children and Ellen's niece, Mattie Elliott, also lived with the family; they are all listed in one household in the 1910 U.S. Federal Census. In 1920, Mattie M. Elliott became principal of the Harrodsburg Colored School. Elliott was the granddaughter of Susan Mary Craig. (Mattie Elliott's name is given as Maynette Elliott in Wesley's thesis and in the Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal.) Mattie M. Elliott was born in November of 1890 in Mercer County, KY, and she and other members of the Harris family are listed as white in the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. See also the NKAA entry African American Schools in Mercer County, KY and the entries for African American Schools in Kentucky.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Harrodsburg, Mercer County, Kentucky

Crawford, James Columbus and Henrietta Arnold
James (b.1872) and Henrietta Crawford (b.1873) were born in Fayetteville, Georgia. James' mother had been a slave and remained on the plantation after her freedom. James and Henrietta were married and had a family when they left Fayetteville some time after the year 1900, according to the U.S. Federal Census. They migrated north to Louisville, KY. Two of their grandchildren are Raymond Ponder and Alberta O. Jones. Information provided by Ms. Nicole M. Martin, the Crawford's great, great granddaughter.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Fayetteville, Georgia / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Crawley, Elizabeth Gore Curtis "Lizzie Jane"
Birth Year : 1868
Elizabeth Crawley was a leader in the Colored Women's Movement in Chicago, IL, and was also an active member of social work and welfare efforts. She was chair of the executive board of the District Federation of Colored Women's Clubs, and had chaired the organization's social improvement department. She was chair of the Ideal Women's Club, and was a board of directors member of the Phillis Wheatly Home. She was a chartered member of the Imperial Art Club, and chaired the East Side Woman's Club. Crawley was born Elizabeth Gore in Nelson County, KY, the daughter of James and Miranda Gore. The family moved to Louisville where Elizabeth attended school. Her first husband, William Curtis, died in 1899; the couple had a daughter and a son. Elizabeth and her children lived with her parents on Rose Lane in Louisville, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census, and Elizabeth was a laundry woman. She and her son moved to Chicago in 1903. She married Walter Crawley, from Virginia, in 1906 and her occupation is given as a dressmaker in the 1910 Census. By 1920, the household on E. 36th Street included Lizzie and her husband Walter, her son William Curtis and his wife Alma, their daughter Elizabeth, and Lizzie's widowed mother, Miranda Gore. The Crawleys are listed in the 1940 Census where it is noted that Elizabeth completed one year of high school and Walter completed four years. For more see the Lizzie Jane Crawley entry in chapter six of The Story of the Illinois Federation of Colored Women's Clubs by E. L. Davis; and Toward a Tenderer Humanity and a Nobler Womanhood by A. M. Knupfer.

See photo image of Lizzie Jane Crawley at the New York Public Library Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Nelson County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Crenshaw, Jesse
Birth Year : 1946
Jesse Crenshaw was born in Glasgow, KY. In 1978 he became the first African American lawyer appointed Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, joining Hancey Jones, an African American who was over the Western District of Kentucky. Crenshaw has been consecutively elected to the Kentucky General Assembly since 1993 as Representative of House District 77 (Fayette County). For more see Who's Who in American Politics, 14th-17th ed.; and contact the Kentucky Legislative Research Commission.

See photo image of Jesse Crenshaw at Legislative Research Commission website.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Legislators, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Glasgow, Barren County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Crews, Cookie
Cookie Crews, from Hardy, KY, is the first African American female to be named a warden in Kentucky. Her most recent appointment came in November 2009 when she was named warden of the Kentucky State Reformatory (KSR), the state's largest prison. Her career began in January 1984 when she was a correctional officer at the Kentucky Correctional Institution for Women (KCIW). Crews was continuously promoted over the years, and in 2002 she was named Deputy Warden III at the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex (LLCC), where she also served as acting warden for seven months. In 2004, she was named warden of the Frankfort Career Development Center. In May 2006 she was named acting warden at KCIW, becoming the warden a month later. Cookie Crews is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University, where she majored in corrections and public relations. In May of 2012, Crews was promoted to Health Services Administrator with the Department of Corrections. In 2012, she also served as president of Southern States Correctional Association (SSCA). For more, see the Kentucky.gov press releases "Department of Corrections: Cooke Crews promoted to warden at Kentucky State Reformatory," 11/17/2009, and "Cookie Crews promoted to health services administrator," 05/30/2012, both press releases were issued by the Department of Corrections.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Hardy, Pike County, Kentucky

Crittenden, Breckenridge
Birth Year : 1883
Born in Midway, KY, Breckenridge Crittenden attended Cincinnati Embalming College in 1914 before becoming a funeral director in Lexington for nine years, then moved on to become a funeral director in Cincinnati. Crittenden was also general manager of the Imperial Finance Co. He was the son of Laura and Harry Crittenden, and the husband of Ella Banks Crittenden. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1930-32.
Subjects: Bankers, Banks, Finance, Financial Advisors, Migration North, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Midway, Woodford County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Crocker, Cynthia
Cynthia Crocker had been a teacher for 26 years when she received the Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award in 1999. Crocker initiated the statewide Student Technology Leadership Program (STLP) at Noe Middle School in Louisville, KY. Crocker also initiated the Parent Laptop Checkout Program as a way to provide technology and training to families without computers. For more see Cynthia Crocker at the Milken Family Foundation website.


Subjects: Education and Educators
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cross, Clarence
Birth Year : 1916
Clarence Cross, an architect, was born n Allensville, KY, the son of Ameila Tinsley Cross and Napoleon Cross. Napoleon was a farmer and supported the family of five that included Amelia's mother Jane Tinsley, according to the 1920 U.S. Federal Census. In 1927, the family moved to Kokomo, IN, where Clarence Cross completed high school. He was a student at Tuskegee Institute [now Tuskegee University] and completed one year before enlisting in the U.S. Army on January 14, 1942, at Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indiana, according to his enlistment record. After receiving an Honorable Discharge from the Army in 1946, Cross enrolled again at Tuskegee Institute and was a 1949 architecture graduate. He was a registered architect in Ohio and Indiana, and had a private practice while also employed by the Base Civil Engineering for Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. He retired from the Air Force Base in 1971. Cross was a founding partner in 1969 of the firm Cross, Curry, de Weaver, Randall and Associates; the firm was dissolved in 1997. Some of Cross' work includes his role as designer of the Second Baptist Church in Ford City, PA, and the Tabernacle Baptist Church in Dayton. For a more detailed account of the Clarence Cross biography and his accomplishments, see his entry in African American Architects, a biographical dictionary, 1865-1945 edited by D. S. Wilson.
Subjects: Architects, Businesses, Migration North, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Allensville, Todd County, Kentucky / Kokomo, Indiana / Dayton, Ohio

Cross, Dorothy
Birth Year : 1943
The education associations in Kentucky were segregated until May 1956 when the Kentucky Negro Educational Association (KNEA) was subsumed by the Kentucky Education Association (KEA) -- the organization was subsumed, not the officers or the members. The first African American hired by KEA was Dorothy Cross, who, at the time (1965), was a 22 year old senior at Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] majoring in education; she was to serve as editorial assistant and associate editor of the KEA Journal. Cross, from Hopkinsville, KY, was a graduate of Attucks High School. She was to start her new job the day after she graduated from Kentucky State College. In 1974, Dorothy Cross was still editor of the Kentucky School Journal (formerly the KEA Journal) [source: Gebbie House Magazine Directory, 1974]. For more see "Kentucky Education Assn. hires first Negro," Jet, vol. 28, issue 6 (05/20/1965), p. 14; and "Kentucky group hires 1st Negro," Washington Post Times Herald, 05/06/1965, p. A2.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Crosswhite, Adam and Sarah
In 1844 the Crosswhites and their four children escaped from Carroll County, Kentucky, and made their way through the Underground Railroad to the African American community in Marshall, Michigan. The community was made up of about 50 residents, most of whom were escaped slaves from Kentucky; the town of Marshall had about 200 residents. By 1847, the Crosswhite family had been located by Francis Giltner, who intended to claim his slaves and return them to Kentucky. On behalf of Giltner, Francis Troutman led a party of four to the Crosswhite home. The party was confronted by a crowd of African Americans and whites that numbered more than 150 people. Troutman and his comrades would not back down, so they were arrested for assault, battery, and housebreaking. The Crosswhites escaped to Canada. Francis Giltner sued the leaders of Marshall for the cost of the escaped slaves. The U.S. Circuit Court of Michigan decided in favor of Giltner. The Crosswhites would later return to settle in Marshall. Adam Crosswhite was born around 1800 and died in 1878, and Sarah Crosswhite was born around 1796; the couple is listed in the 1870 U.S. Federal Census, still living in Marshall. For more see J. H. Yzenbaard, "The Crosswhite case," Michigan History, vol. 53, issue 2 (1969), pp. 131-143; J. C. Sherwood, "One flame in the inferno: the legend of Marshall's Crosswhite affair," Michigan History, vol. 73, issue 2 (1989), pp. 40-47; and Case No. 5,453 - Giltner v. Gorham et. al - in Book 10 of The Federal Cases, pp.424-433 [full text at Google Books].

See photo image of Adam Crosswhite and additional information about he and his wife Sarah Crosswhite, at the Seeking Michigan website.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky, Court Cases, Underground Railroad: Conductors, Escapes, Organizations, Research
Geographic Region: Carroll County, Kentucky / Marshall, Michigan / Canada

Crump, Steven
Birth Year : 1957
Steven Crump, a news reporter and an award-winning documentary filmmaker, was born in Louisville, KY. He has won a number of awards for his work. Crump is a reporter with WBTV 3 in Charlotte, NC. He has produced more than 20 documentaries that focus on African Americans and the Civil Rights Era. The titles include Forgotten at the Finish Line, Souls of Passage, Nickles from Heaven, Airmen and AdversityLessons from the Lunch Counter, and Louisville's Own Ali, which was recognized as a 2008 NABJ Salute to Excellence Award title. The documentaries are aired at WTVI (Charlotte, NC) and have also aired on other educational and public television stations around the U.S. Crump is a graduate of Trinity High School in Louisville and Eastern Kentucky University. This entry was submitted by Suzanne D. Cordery. For more see M. Washburn, "Steve Crump's documentary takes us to landmarks of Civil Rights Era," The Charlotte Observer, 01/18/2009, Carolina Living section, p.1E; "New ASC Award honors lifetimes of creativity," The Charlotte Observer, 09/21/2008, Carolina Living section, p.3E; and L. M. Imuhammad, "Louisville's own Ali," The Courier-Journal, 01/15/2007, Features section, p.1E.

See photo image and additional information about Steven Crump at wbtv.com.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Historians, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Television, Migration East, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Charlotte, North Carolina

Cummings, James L.
Birth Year : 1926
James L. Cummings was born in Allensville, KY, the son of Andrew and Fannie Robbie Cummings. He is a graduate of Lane College, 1948, and Butler University School of Religion, 1959. Cummings was pastor of Trinity Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in Indianapolis, IN. He was one of the three founders of the Indianapolis Citizen's Group in 1964. The organization would become known as Citizens Forum with the goal to create block clubs to help improve city neighborhoods with community support. The model was expanded to other cities in Illinois and throughout the United States, and received many awards for its effectiveness. Cummings also served as president of the Indianapolis Ministerial Association, and was chosen as the Alpha's Man of the Year in 1960. He was a member of the masons, and was awarded a Hall of Fame citation from the Crispus Attucks High School for his community service. For more see "James L. Cummings" in Biographical Directory of Negro Ministers by E. L. Williams; and "Citizens Forum" in The Encyclopedia of Indianapolis by D. Bodenhamer et al.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Fraternal Organizations
Geographic Region: Allensville, Todd County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Cunningham, Raoul
Birth Year : 1943
Raoul Cunningham was born in Louisville, KY. He fought to bring down racial barriers in public accommodations and housing. When he was 14 years old, he was a member of the NAACP Youth Chapter, assisting with voter registration and participating in picketing segregated establishments in Louisville. He organized a Young Democrats chapter when he was a student at Howard University. Cunningham was president of the D.C. Federation of College Young Democrats and vice president of the Young Democrats Club of America. He is the state coordinator for the NAACP. In 2006, Cunningham received the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Award, given each year in Louisville. For more read the Raoul Cunningham biography and watch his interview at the KET Living the Story website; S. Sheldonstaff, "Activist Raoul Cunningham honored," Courier-Journal, 01/13/2006, News section, p. O3B; and M. Starks, "Raoul Cunningham" in Who's Who in Black Louisville, 3rd. ed., p. 63.

See photo image of Raoul Cunningham at Hall of Fame 2003, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website.

 

Access Interview Read about the Raoul Cunningham oral history interviews available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records are in the SPOKE Database.        
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Cunningham, Thomas L.
Lt. Col. (Ret.) Thomas Lee Cunningham was the first African American Kentucky graduate from the United States Air Force Academy, Class of 1967. Information acquired from the Association of Graduates of the U.S. Air Force Academy.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Kentucky

The Daily Aesthetic Projects (website and oral histories)
Start Year : 1997
The Daily Aesthetic website on African American parks in Lexington, Kentucky, prior to integration in 1956.

The Daily Aesthetic Oral History Project: "This project focuses on African American culture during the time of segregated park systems in Lexington, Kentucky. These interviews, originally conducted by Boyd Shearer, Jr. for a multimedia presentation, contain descriptions of African American park activities, particularly in Douglass Park. Activities ranged from doll shows, to carnivals, to sports programs. This community also celebrated the visual arts, music, and holidays such as the 4th of July and Easter. The focus of this collection is not discrimination experienced by African Americans at this time, but rather how the park provided a place for them to come together and cultivate a sense of identity and community."

Access Interview Read more about The Daily Aesthetic Oral History recordings available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database. The recordings are available online.

 
Subjects: Parks, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Darden, George Harry
Birth Year : 1934
George H. Darden was born in Cadiz, KY, to Sammie and Belknap Darden. He is a 1955 graduate of Kentucky State University and a 1964 graduate of Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University. He has served in many capacities, including that of chairman of the Legal Commission in Hopkinsville, KY; assistant county attorney in Hamilton County, OH; chief judge of the Cincinnati Municipal Court; and regional attorney of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Atlanta, GA. He is the husband of Gwen M. Darden, who was president of the National Association of Bench and Bar Spouses, Inc. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1985-2000.
Subjects: Lawyers, Migration South, Judges
Geographic Region: Cadiz, Trigg County, Kentucky / Atlanta, Georgia

Darling Nellie Gray (song)
Start Year : 1856
The song Darling Nellie Gray has been credited to several authors, most often to Benjamin Russell Hanby (1833-1867). The song was written around 1856. Some sources say that the song came to Hanby after he read an article in a newspaper about a Kentucky slave named Nellie Gray, who was sold away from her husband to a Georgia slave owner. Another version of the story is that Hanby wrote the song after hearing of the misfortune of escaped slave Joe Selby, who died not too long after crossing the Ohio River, having left his sweetheart Nellie Gray still enslaved in Kentucky. The story goes on to say that Hanby sent the song to a publisher and received six free copies of the song while the publisher received thousands of dollars from the sale of the famous song. The title and spelling of the song has varied over time. For more see "Darling Nellie Gray" in The New Century Perfect Speaker: a complete encyclopedia of elocution, oratory, and etiquette, edited by J. Coulter; Rushville in The Ohio Guide, by Federal Writers' Project; and "House restored to honor writer of song, Nellie Gray," The Portsmouth Times, 01/20/1937, p. 3. View album cover and listen to The Mills Brothers & Louis Armstrong perform "My Darling Nelly Gray" on YouTube.


Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Ohio / Kentucky / Georgia

Darnes, Rebecca and William
The Darneses were activists and community leaders in Cincinnati, OH. William Darnes, a barber, was born in 1809 in Pennsylvania. Rebecca, his wife, described as a mulatto, was born in 1811 in Kentucky. Both she and her husband were free, according to the 1850 Census. Her mother was born in Maryland. The Darneses were fairly well-off real estate owners in Cincinnati. William had been a Master Mason at the St. Cyprian Lodge in Pittsburgh, PA. When he arrived in Cincinnati, he had applied for admission to the white lodge and was denied. William Darnes would become a founding member of the St. Cyprian Lodge in Cincinnati, which was approved in 1847. In 1849, it would become the first African American grand lodge in Ohio. Rebecca was a member of the Daughters of Samaria and a member of the Society of Friends. Around 1844, she and her husband had joined others, including Salmon P. Chase, to assist in Lydia P. Mott's efforts to establish a home for orphaned and homeless Colored children in Cincinnati. The Darneses also helped raise Alexander G. Clark (1826-1891), who was William Darnes's nephew and would become a civil rights leader in the West. For more see Frontiers of Freedom, by N. M. Taylor; History of the Negro Race in America, 1619-1880, vol. 2, by G. W. Williams [available full text at Project Gutenberg and Google Book Search]; African American Fraternities and Sororities, by T. L. Brown, G. Parks and C. M. Phillips; and "Alexander G. Clark" in the Encyclopedia of African American Business, by J. C. Smith, M. L. Jackson and L. T. Wynn. [*Rebecca Darnes was an aunt, by marriage, to Alexander G. Clark. His mother, Rebecca Darnes Clark, has been described as African.]
Subjects: Barbers, Civic Leaders, Migration North, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Realtors, Real Estate Brokers, Real Estate Investments
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Pennsylvania / Cincinnati, Ohio

Darrell, Betty L.
Birth Year : 1934
Betty L. Darrell was born in Louisville, KY, to Jerome and Cleoda Mason McDonald. She was among the first African Americans to attend the University of Louisville, from which she graduated with a BA in 1955. Darrell lso received an MA from Washburn University in 1969. She was a schoolteacher in Louisville and later served as the director of the Racial Justice Association and Project Equality, both in New York, and was director of the New York/New Jersey Minority Purchasing Council. From 1984-1995, Darrell was director of the Minority Business Enterprise Development of Pepsi Cola North America. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1990-2000; T. Deering, "Pepsi sponsors luncheon to link minority firms," Sacramento Bee, 07/10/1992, Business section, p. B1; G. A. Drain, "NBL plans coalition to solve Black entrepreneur's problems," Michigan Chronicle, 02/08/1994; and J. D. O'Hair, "Pepsi appoints director," Michigan Chronicle, March 1995.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Businesses, Education and Educators, Migration North
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / New York / New Jersey

Davids, Tice
Davids was a Kentucky slave who successfully escaped to Ohio in 1830. The term "Underground Railroad" is thought to have been coined based on his escape. His owner had been pursuing Davids but lost track of him in Ohio. It is said he claimed that Davids disappeared as if swept away on an underground railroad. For more see The Virtual Underground Railroad Experience: and "The Railroad and its passengers," chapter 1 in Stories of the Underground Railroad by A. L. Curtis [provided online by the Community College Open Textbook Collaborative].
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Underground Railroad: Conductors, Escapes, Organizations, Research
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Davis, Edward Benjamin and Bettie Webb
Both Edward B. Davis (1875-1934) and Bettie W. Davis (1878-1974) were born in Scott County, Kentucky. Ed was the son of Katie Davis, and he and Betty lived at 133 Bourbon Street, according to Ed's death certificate. Betty and Ed Davis were teachers at the Georgetown Colored School, Ed was also the school principal, they are listed in the 1910 and the 1920 U. S. Federal Census. In 1923, Betty established the first African American library in Georgetown; it was within the school. The library was later named the Charles Steele Library, serving as the Colored branch of the Georgetown Public Library. In 1934 Davis replaced her deceased husband as principal of the school, serving in that capacity until 1940; the school name had been changed from the Chambers Avenue School to the Ed Davis School in 1934, it was named after her husband [source: "K.N.E.A. Kullings," Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, v.4, no.2, p.25]. She also established the Betty Webb Davis Scholarship Loan Fund within the Ed Davis Alumni Association. Bettie Webb Davis was the daughter of Robert and Mary Webb [source: 1880 U.S. Federal Census]. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1941-44, and Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones. See also the NKAA entry African American Schools in Scott County, KY.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky

Davis, William Henry
Birth Year : 1872
Born in Louisville, KY, William H. Davis graduated from Louisville Colored High School in 1888 [later known as Louisville Central High School]. He taught himself shorthand and typewriting, then was employed by the law firm Cary & Spindle. He was also a private secretary for Louisville Mayor Todd and owned a thriving shoe store in Louisville. He taught typewriting and shorthand in the Colored schools because African Americans were excluded from the classes taught in Louisville. In 1899 he moved his family to Washington, D.C., and in 1902 was awarded a Doctorate of Pharmacology from Howard University. Dr. Davis went on to hold many posts with the federal government and opened the Mott Night Business High School. For more see Evidences of Progress Among Colored People, by G. F. Richings at the Documenting the American South website; and Dr. William H. Davis in the John P. Davis Collection.


Subjects: Businesses, Education and Educators, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Shoes: Finishers, Makers, Repairers, Shiners, Stores
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Washington, D.C.

Davistown (Garrard County, KY)
The community, referred to in Kentucky Place Names as a Negro settlement, is located in Bryantsville, KY, near the Boyle County line on Fisher Ford Road, east of the Dix River, about 7.5 miles north of Lancaster. The community was named after W. M. Davis, owner of the tract of land that was subdivided. Source: R. M. Rennick, Kentucky Place Names, p. 78.
Subjects: Communities
Geographic Region: Davistown, Garrard County, Kentucky

Dawson, Carlos
Birth Year : 1977
Dawson, born in Clifton Forge, VA, became the first African American editor of the University of Kentucky yearbook, The Kentuckian, in 1998. A graduate of Alleghany High School in Covington, VA, he earned his B.A. in Journalism with minors in Music Theory and History from the University of Kentucky; he is also a graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, KY, with a M.A. in Pastoral Counseling. Dawson is a freelance poet, writer, and graphic designer. He is also a fitness trainer at Jefferson Fitness Club and a men's mentor at CrossOver Inc. For more see Kentucky Kernel, 02/18/98. Additional information provided by Carlos Dawson.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Poets
Geographic Region: Clifton Forge and Covington, Virginia / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Wilmore, Jessamine County, Kentucky

Dawson, Dermontti
Birth Year : 1965
Dermontti Dawson, born in Lexington, KY, is considered one of the greatest centers in the history of professional football. He was an all-state lineman at Bryan Station High School in Lexington and a four-year letterman (1984-1987) at the University of Kentucky, where he played guard. He was a second round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers, spending his entire professional career with the team, 1988-2000. Dawson was inducted into the University of Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003. In 2005, he was named to the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees. In 2012, Dermontti Dawson was selected for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He had been a finalist each of the previous three years, and three years prior to that he had been a nominee. He is the second player from Kentucky to be selected for the Pro Football Hall of Fame and joins George Blanda. He is the third player selected from Kentucky. For more see "UK to Retire Dermontti Dawson's Jersey, no. 57," Sports Report, 08/24/2001 at scout.com; "Ex-Cat Dawson voted into Pro Football Hall of Fame - Only second UK player to gain entry," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/05/2012, p.A1.

See photo images of Dermontti Dawson at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Photo Gallery.

Access Interview Read about the Dermontti Dawson oral history interview available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item record in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

DB Bourbon Candy, LLC [Robyn C. Stuart and Johnnye Smallwood Cunningham]
Start Year : 2005
DB Bourbon Candy, LLC is a successful home business located in Frankfort, KY. While there are many candy companies and makers of bourbon balls in Kentucky, DB Bourbon Candy is believed to be the only African American owned company of its kind in the state. The owner is Robyn C. Stuart, daughter of the late Johnnye Smallwood Cunningham. The company's original candy recipe belonged to Johnnye Cunningham who would make bourbon balls during the holidays for family and friends. The bourbon balls were rolled in powered sugar. Cunningham passed away in 2002, and her daughter, Robyn Stuart, began making the bourbon balls, dipped in chocolate, for family and friends. In tribute to her mother, Stuart expanded the treats into a candy business with 38 different flavors besides bourbon. Also available are chocolate covered grapes, pineapples, and strawberries. DB Bourbon Candy clients include the Kentucky NFL Hall of Fame and Barnstable-Brown Derby Gala. The business is about giving back to children; in memory of Johnnye Smallwood Cunningham, DB Bourbon Candy,LLC gives toward school supplies for children in need. Johnnye S. Cunningham was born in Lexington in 1937, about a year after bourbon balls were created in Kentucky. Both the candy and the bourbon are unique to Kentucky, approximately 95% of the bourbon in the United States is distilled in Kentucky. For more about the DB Bourbon Candy, LLC business, see the first half of "Sweet Treats" program #441 on Connections With Renee Shaw, a Kentucky Educational Television Production [available online]; and visit the website DB Bourbon Candy, LLC. For more about the history of Kentucky bourbon balls see Kentucky Bluegrass Country by R. G. Alvey.
Subjects: Alcohol, Businesses, Bakers, Cooks and Chefs
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Deane, Robert
In 1999, Robert Deane became the first African American Chief of Police at Western Kentucky University, located in Bowling Green, KY. He was also the first African American Chief of Police at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Deane is also a retiree of the Detroit Police Department, having served with the department for 27 years. For more see J. Riley, "Ex-Detroit cop named school's new chief - New chief inherits successful but money-strapped department," Daily News (Bowling Green, Kentucky), 11/11/1999; and "UW-Parkside names interim police chief," Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/20/1999.

See photo image of Robert Deane at the Western Kentucky University website.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Wisconsin / Detroit, Michigan

Decker, Charles E.
Birth Year : 1913
Charles E. Decker, a Republican, was elected to the Indiana House of Representatives in 1946 and finished his term in 1948. He was unsuccessful in his bid for re-election. Decker was the only African American from Evansville [Vanderburgh County] to be elected to the Indiana Legislature. Decker also served as president of the Vanderburgh County Congress of Industrial Organizations (C.I.O.). He was the first Negro arbitrator for an Indiana labor dispute [source: p.64 in The History of Evansville Blacks by D. W. Sprinkles]. Decker was a member of the International Harvester Local 1106 in Evansville in 1952, and was one of the leaders to head the Indiana Republican party campaign for votes. Beginning in 1953, Decker was appointed director of Fair Employment Practices Commission. He is mentioned on several occasions in the organization's newsletter and he is also listed in the Roster of State and Local Officials of the State of Indiana. Charles E. Decker was born in Kentucky, the son of Edward and Inez Decker, according to the 1920 U.S. Federal Census, the family of four lived on William Street in Evansville, IN. In 1930, Charles E. Decker was a waiter at a hotel in West Baden, IN, and in 1940, he was a waiter at a hotel in Evansville, IN [source: U.S. Federal Census]. He was the husband of Eloise Decker. For more see Charles E. Decker on p.13 in the online publication "Hoosier History: This Far By Faith: Black Hoosier Heritage: Early Rural Communities," a Indiana Humanities Council website [.pdf]; "Indiana County elects first state assemblyman," The Afro-American, 11/24/1946, p.27; and "GOP names labor leaders in drive for workers' vote," Indianapolis Recorder, 08/30/1952, p.1.
Subjects: Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Legislators (Outside Kentucky), Union Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Evansville, Indiana

Deer Lodge and Choteau Counties, Montana
In the 1870s a small group of African Americans left Kentucky and settled in Deer Lodge and Choteau Counties, Montana. They were the forerunners; by 1880, the bulk of the African American population in Montana had come from Kentucky, including the Johnson, Broose and Dodgeston families. Montana would become a state in 1889. For more see C. McMillen, "Border state terror and the genesis of the African-American community in Deer Lodge and Choteau Counties, Montana, 1870-1890," The Journal of Negro History, vol. 79, issue 2 (1994), pp. 212-247.
Subjects: Communities, Migration West, Exodusters [African Americans migrating West around Reconstruction Era]
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Deer Lodge and Choteau Counties, Montana

Denning, Joe William
Birth Year : 1945
Joe W. Denning was born in Bowling Green, KY, son of Marion E. and Evelyn Huskey Denning.  He is a 1970 graduate of the Kentucky State Police Academy and attended Western Kentucky University.  In 1975, Denning, a former state trooper, became the first African American to serve on the Bowling Green School Board.  In 1991, he was elected a city commissioner. Denning was pro-tem mayor of Bowling Green, KY in 2011, and later replaced Mayor Elaine Walker after her resignation to become the Kentucky Secretary of State.  Denning was elected mayor of Bowling Green in 2012. He is the first African American Mayor for the city. For more see "17 blacks are local school board members," in 1978 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Fifth Report, by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 24; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1985-2006.

See photo image and additional information about Joe W. Denning "Commissioner Joe Denning will become city's first black mayor"  by A. Robinson, 01/08/2011, at bgdailynews.com.
Subjects: Corrections and Police, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Mayors
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Depp, Chantel R. Brown
Birth Year : 1969
Chantel R. B. Depp was born in Versailles, KY, the daughter of Charles E. Brown Jr. and Geraldine Collins Brown. In 1986, she was the first (and to date, the last) African American named homecoming queen of Woodford County High School. Depp was the school's prom queen in 1987; 20 years earlier, in 1967, her mother had been voted prom queen. Depp was Ms. Black U of L in 1988-89; Ms. Woodford County Fair Queen in 2000; and 3rd runner-up in the Mrs. Kentucky America Pageant. She was the first African American to be hired in the executive office of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources; she joined the staff in 2004 as an employment recruiter and served as a staff assistant to the commissioner. Depp received the Diversity Award at the 2006 Southeastern Association of the Fish Wildlife Agencies Conference. She was the recipient of the 2005 Employee Support Award from Kentucky State University's Office of Career Counseling and Placement for her student recruitment efforts. Chantel Depp is a communication graduate of the University of Kentucky and earned a master's degree in public administration at Kentucky State University with a perfect 4.0 GPA. She is a graduate of the Governor's Minority Management Trainee Program. Depp is an instructor and model with Images Model Talent Agency, and since 1999 has been a choreographer with the Woodford County Fair Pageant Board. She has also been a dance coach and is an active leader in the St. Paul A.M.E. Church. Depp is the sister of Charliese Brown-Lewis. This information is taken, with permission, from the resume of Chantel Brown Depp.

See photo image of Chantel R. Depp at the Kentucky State University website.
Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Education and Educators, Homecoming Queens, Pageants, Contests, Fish & Wildlife, Forestry
Geographic Region: Versailles, Woodford County, Kentucky

Diamond Jubilee (Louisville, KY)
Diamond Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky; the story of seventy-five years of the association and four years of convention activities was published, per order of the General Association, by the Diamond Jubilee Commission. Louisville, Ky., American Baptists, 1943. This edition and a 1954 edition are available at Western Kentucky University Library.
Subjects: Religion & Church Work, Jubilees
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Dickerson, William H.
Dickerson was elected State Evangelist of Kentucky in 1895 during the State Convention of the Christian Church in Hustonville, KY. He was a pastor at Millersburg, Mayslick, and Nicholasville (1895), all in Kentucky. Under Dickerson's directorship, Nicholasville had the most modern Christian church in the state; the building cost over $6,000. For more see Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Hustonville, Lincoln County, Kentucky / Millersburg, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Mayslick, Mason County, Kentucky / Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky

Dillard, William O., Sr.
Birth Year : 1938
Dillard was born in Hopkinsville, KY. In 1968, he became the first African American deputy sheriff in Christian County and in 1981 became the first African American elected sheriff in Kentucky. He received his law enforcement training at Eastern Kentucky University. For more see "Kentucky's first black sheriff one of six black county officials," in the 1982 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Sixth Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 18; and Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton.
Subjects: Corrections and Police
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Dillon, Celita L.
Birth Year : 1967
In 2009, Master Celita L. Dillon, from Louisville, KY, became the first African American woman master from Kentucky to be inducted into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame. At the time, she had studied martial arts for almost two decades, and taught martial arts at the Newburg Boys and Girls Club. For more see D. Poore, "Newburg woman scores first in martial arts," Courier-Journal (Louisville), Neighborhoods section, 04/22/2009, p. 11A.

See video of Master Celita Dillon performing Pyong 2 on YouTube.
Subjects: Martial Arts
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Dils Cemetery
Located in Pikeville, KY, Dils Cemetery is thought to be the first integrated cemetery in Eastern Kentucky. For more see Appalachian Quarterly, June 1998, p. 99.
Subjects: Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Pikeville, Pike County, Kentucky

Dinwiddie, William Thomas
Birth Year : 1865
William T. Dinwiddie was born in Lincoln County, KY and he grew up in Danville, KY. After his graduation from the Danville Colored school, he completed a two year course at Knoxville College and later graduated from Meharry Medical and Dental School [now Meharry Medical College, School of Dentistry] in Nashville. Following his graduation, Dr. Dinwiddie became Chair of Prosthetic Dentistry at Meharry. He left Meharry to become a dentist in Lexington, KY. Dr. Dinwiddie had a large practice located in the medical building at 118 North Broadway. He was one of the first African American dentist in Kentucky. Dr. Dinwiddie was also a carpenter and master mechanic. In 1898 he married Addie B. Dinwiddie (b.1871 in Kentucky), his first wife, and in 1905 married Georgia McLaughin Dinwiddie (born 1875 in Danville, KY). For more see Evidences of Progress Among Colored People, by G. F. Richings at the Documenting the American South website; and Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration South, Carpenters, Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering, Dentists
Geographic Region: Lincoln County, Kentucky / Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Knoxville and Nashville, Tennessee / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Directory of African Americans in Lexington, Kentucky: 1893
Start Year : 1893
Compiled by Doris Wilkinson, the directory is part of the Project on the African American Heritage. A copy is available at the University of Kentucky Libraries' Special Collections.
Subjects: Directories
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Division of Negro Education (Kentucky)
Start Year : 1924
In 1924, the Division of Negro Education was formed within the Kentucky Department of Education, and Professor L. N. Taylor was hired as supervisor of Negro rural education. On April 25, 1924 he addressed the Kentucky Negro Educational Association (KNEA) and also made a $10 donation to the organization. The Division of Negro Education brought the issue of secondary education for Negroes closer to the State Department of Education, according to Claude E. Nichols in his master's thesis, Reorganization of Negro High Schools in the State of Kentucky. From 1924-1943, Taylor addressed the KNEA membership at the annual conference, collected concerns and kept members up to date on education matters, and continued to make a financial donation to the organization each year. Taylor retired from the Department of Education in 1943; KNEA presented him with a 17-jewel watch. He was presented the Lincoln [Institute] Key in 1944, the same year that Sam B. Taylor was named Supervisor of Negro Education. From 1945-1947, Whitney M. Young, Sr. served as the Assistant Supervisor and Coordinator of Negro Education, the first African American to be hired in the Division of Negro Education. For more see the Proceedings of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association and the Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, April 23-26, 1924 through November-December 1948 [both titles available online in the Kentucky Digital Library]; and Negro Education in Kentucky [thesis], by J. A. Bond. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Dixville and Other Communities in North Middletown, KY
One of the earliest mentions of the African American community of Dixville is a 1901 newspaper article in The Bourbon News. The community is also mentioned in Jacqueline Sue's book, Black Seeds in the Blue Grass. Dixville is located in North Middletown, KY, on the main road that heads toward Mt. Sterling. Albert B. Wess, Sr. was reared in Dixville: he was born on Deweese Street in Lexington and the family moved to Dixville when he was a small child. His father was a prominent member of the Dixville community, owning several homes and the Tom Wess Grocery Store. The store was in operation long before Albert Wess and his twin sister, Alberta, were born in 1923, and the store closed a year before Tom Wess died in 1936. The 2nd Christian Church was across the street from the store and nearby was a UBF&SMT [United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten] Lodge Hall. Tom Wess belonged to the lodge. The present day church in Dixville is Wiley Methodist Church. In 2007, the first Annual Dixville Picnic was held. Three other African American communities were located in North Middletown. One was Kerrville (1), on Highway 460 about one mile outside North Middletown. The Francis M. Wood High School, grades 1-8, was located in Kerrville (1), and Florence H. Wess (d.1932), mother to Albert Wess, was one of the schoolteachers and the music teacher; she also played piano at the church. Kerrville (2) was next to the other Kerrville; and Smoketown was one mile on the other side of North Middletown, heading toward Little Rock. A few of the families that lived in these communities had the last names of Carter, Cason, Mack, Kenney, Green, McClure, Butler, Fields, Dorsey, and Gibbs. This information comes from Albert B. Wess, Sr. See the article in The Bourbon News, 11/19/1901, p. 5. If you have more information about Dixville or the other communities, please contact Michell Butler.
Subjects: Businesses, Communities, Kentucky African American Churches, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Religion & Church Work, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Dixville, Kerrville, Smoketown, North Middletown, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Doram, Dennis and Diademia
Dennis and Diademia Doram were free African Americans who lived in Danville, KY. Diademia, her mother, and her siblings were emancipated in 1814. As an adult, she and her husband, Dennis, owned hundreds of acres of land and had a considerable sum of money in the bank. Their portraits, by Patrick Henry Davenport, hang side by side in the Kentucky Journey Gallery at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History in Frankfort, KY. The center received 65 original documents of the Doram-Rowe family, including the emancipation papers for Diademia's immediate family. For more see "Kentucky Historical Society places portrait treasures on display," Kentucky Historical Society News, January 2006; A. Jester, "Pictures of Prosperity - Restored Portraits of Couple Show the Fruits of Freedom Black History Month Freed Slaves," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/02/2002; or visit the Kentucky Historical Society.

See image of Dennis and Diademia Doram at A State Dvided, a KET [Kentucky Educational Television] website.
Subjects: Freedom
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Douglass Deamons (high school basketball), Lexington, KY, 1957
Start Year : 1957
Prior to 1957, the boys high school basketball teams did not play in an integrated tournament in Lexington, KY. The Douglass High School team, the Deamons, was the first all-Negro team to play in the 43rd district tournament, February of 1957. The game took place in the University of Kentucky Memorial Coliseum. The Deamons were initially intimidated by the size of the gym and the crowd but were able to pull it together and beat the Nicholasville High School basketball team 87-45. All of the Douglass starters scored in double digits. Sam Corman was the leading scorer for Nicholasville.

  • Douglass High School - George Bell 21 points; Lyman Jones 20 points; John Burdette 18 points; Paul Price 15 points; Henry Bell 13 points; Coach Charles Livisay
  • Nicholasville High School - Sam Corman 18 points; Harlan Veal 12 points; Knight 2 points; Brumfield 2 points; Belcher 2 points; Royse 5 points; Hager 2 points; Goss 2 points - Coach Ralph Carlisle
For more see B. Thompson, "Douglas[s], Lafayette, Dunbar, advance in 43rd tourney," Lexington Leader, 02/28/1957, p. 9.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Dowe, Jessica
Birth Year : 1956
From 2003-2005, Dr. Dowe practiced medicine in Munfordville, KY, the first African American to do so; she practiced with Dr. James Middleton at the Family Medicine Clinic of Hart County. Dr. Dowe is also one of the original board members of the Munfordville YMCA. She is also a speaker with the American Medical Association (AMA) Minority Affairs Consortium, "Doctors Back to School," a program that encourages elementary children to consider medicine as a career. Dr. Dowe has a number of publications and many years experience as a pharmaceutical and toxicology researcher, and she serves as an investigator in clinical pharmacology research for a number of companies. She has also served as Medical Services Director at the Jefferson County Department of Corrections. Dr. Dowe presently practices medicine in Elizabethtown, KY, and is a clinical instructor in Family and Geriatric Medicine at the University of Louisville. She is also a charter member for the first Faith-based Recovery Program for Addiction in Elizabethtown; the program is associated with the First Baptist Church, which is led by Reverend B. T. Bishop. Dr. Dowe was born in Alabama and is the daughter of Jessie and Janie Dowe. She graduated in 1978 from Dillard University with a degree in chemistry, earned a Ph.D. in pharmacology at Howard University, and attended the University of Louisville, where she earned her MD in 1996. This information is taken from, with permission, the curriculum vita of Dr. Jessica Dowe. Contact Dr. Dowe at Xavier Healthcare in Elizabethtown, KY, for more information.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Kentucky African American Churches, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Researchers, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents, YMCA (Young Men's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Munfordville, Hart County, Kentucky / Elizabethtown, Hardin County, Kentucky / Alabama

Drake, John B., Jr.
Birth Year : 1943
In 1969, John Drake, Jr. became the first African American firefighter in Lexington, KY. In 1991, Drake, a 22 year veteran, was Lexington's Firefighter of the Year. He was promoted to Lieutenant on January 13, 1992. John Drake was born in Lexington, KY, and lived in Michigan and Wisconsin. He returned to Lexington and was employed at the TRANE Corporation before becoming a firefighter. In 1969, the decision was made by the city of Lexington to hire Black firefighters, Drake applied and was hired. For more see B. Neumann, "Lexington firefighter provides positive public image," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/27/1991, Community section, p. 10; and History of Black Firefighters by K. L. Jackson.
Subjects: Firefighters
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Duffy, William M., Jr.
Birth Year : 1953
Born in Louisville, KY, Duffy was a 1976 graduate of the Louisville School of Art. Beginning in 1980, he has shown his work in exhibitions throughout the U.S., winning either a purchase or merit award in 30+ competitive shows. In 1997, he received an official commendation for sharing his artistic gifts with students and staff in the Jefferson County Public Schools. For more see the William M. Duffy website.
Subjects: Sculptors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Dulin, James W.
Dulin is from Christian County, KY. He worked in the coal mines. In 1972, he became the first African American elected to the Earlington City Council  and in 1973 became the first African American appointed mayor of Earlington; he completed the term of the previous mayor. Dulin was the second African American mayor in Kentucky. For more see Human Rights News, Aug.-Oct., 1973, p. [4], col. B.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Mayors
Geographic Region: Christian County, Kentucky / Earlington, Hopkins County, Kentucky

Duncan, Clark and Julia
Born in 1849 in Logan County, KY, Clark Duncan was a hotel employee in Springfield, IL; he was a member of the community of African Americans who had migrated from Kentucky to Springfield. Clark Duncan was the son of George Duncan and Louisa Orendoff [later Stevens] (b.1835 in KY); it is not known if the family was free or enslaved. During the Civil War, Clark Duncan had served with the 15th Colored Infantry and he was 1st Sargent with Company B of the 6th Colored Cavalry. After the war for a few years, he alternated living in Springfield, IL, and Russellville, KY. He was married to Springfield native Julia Chavious, the daughter of Malan Chavious (d. 1879), who was from Kentucky and had been a barber in Springfield. Julia Chavious Duncan was Grand Treasurer of the Grand Court of Illinois. Clark Duncan was a Knight Templar, a Mason, and Senior Warden in Lodge No. 3. Like George Stevens and other African Americans in Springfield, Clark Duncan voted for Ulysses S. Grant during the 1868 presidential election. The Duncan family lived at 312 N. Thirteenth Street in Springfield, IL. Clark Duncan died April 7, 1929 in Springfield, IL, according to the Illinois, Deaths and Still Births, 1916-1947, at FamilySearch.com. For more see History of Sangamon County, Illinois; together with sketches of its cities, by Inter-state Publishing Company (Chicago) [available online at Google Book Search]; and contact the Springfield, Illinois, African American History Foundation.
Subjects: Barbers, Voting Rights, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Russellville, Logan County, Kentucky / Springfield, Illinois

Duncan, George
Duncan's birth place has been given as Lynchburg, VA, and Louisville, KY. He was an entertainer who partnered with Billy Brooks from Washington, D.C. Known as Brooks & Duncan, they spent much of their careers abroad. Writer Rainer Lotz refers to them as "an African American team of eccentric knockouts." Brooks and Duncan left the United States in 1878 with a minstrel company, and living and performing in various countries for almost 50 years. In 1922, they were in Egypt leading the Devil's Jazz Band with four Greek musicians. For more see R. E. Lotz, "A Musical Clown in Europe," The Black Perspective in Music, vol. 18, issue 1/2 (1990), pp. 116-126 [quotation from p. 116]; and "Lord have a duck" in Some Hustling This!: taking jazz to the world, 1914-1929, by M. Miller.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Europe / Egypt, Africa

Duncan, Lillian W.
Birth Year : 1914
Lillian Duncan was an officer with the African American WACs at Fort Knox, KY, in 1945. Duncan was the Plans and Training Officer. When her unit was shipped to England, Duncan became a Second Lieutenant and was Executive Officer in Company C. The WACs who had been at Fort Knox, KY, became a part of the 6888 Postal Unit, the only African American women's military unit to go overseas during WWII. Lillian Duncan was born in 1914 in Taladega, AL, and enlisted at Fort McClellan on September 30, 1942, according to her enlistment record. She was a graduate of a four year college and was employed as a teacher. She had also been a WAAC at Fort Huachua, AZ, and was a member of the 32nd and 33rd WAACs basketball team. There is a photo of the team playing basketball outside, the photo is within the New York Public Library Digital Gallery [photo available online]. For more see "WAC overseas postal unit does good job in handling mail," New York Amsterdam News, 05/05/1945, p.8A. For information on earlier WAC unit in Kentucky see Myrtle D. Anderson and Margaret E. B. Jones entries in the NKAA Database.

Subjects: Basketball, Education and Educators, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Taladega, Alabama / Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky

Duval, Edward
Birth Year : 1852
Edward Duval, born in Kentucky around 1852, was a jockey in Springfield, OH, according to the 1880 U.S. Federal Census.

Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby, Migration North
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Springfield, Ohio

Dyer, Deborah L. and Jacqueline Smith (1956-2005)
In 1991 Deborah Dyer and Jacqueline Smith started Central Kentucky Research Associates, Inc. (CKRA) with a $500 investment. The first independent medical research company in Kentucky, CKRA today has offices in Lexington, Richmond, and Mt. Sterling, Kentucky. The company, which conducts drug studies for pharmaceutical companies, is one of the few owned by women (or African American women) who are not doctors. In 1999 the company was named a Small Business of the Year Finalist, and the owners were named finalists for Working Woman Entrepreneurial Excellence Awards in 2000. Smith was awarded an Outstanding Alumna Award in 2002 from Eastern Kentucky University. She died in 2005 from a massive stroke while attending a meeting in Florida. Smith was a graduate of Madison Central High School and Eastern Kentucky University, both in Richmond, Kentucky. In 2008, the Jacqueline Yvonne Miller Smith Visiting Professorship was established in the Center for Advancement of Women's Health at the University of Kentucky. For more see V. H. Spears, "A Rock for all those who knew her, Jacqueline Smith: 1956-2005," Lexington Herald Leader, 11/15/2005, City&Region section, p. B1; and "Spotlight on philanthropy" in Advancing Women's Health, issue 6, fall 2008.

See photo image of Deborah Dyer and Jacqueline Smith at the CKRA website.
Subjects: Businesses, Medical Field, Health Care, Researchers, Nurses
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / Mt. Sterling, Montgomery County, Kentucky

Early African American Theaters in Lexington, KY
The Frolic Theater, operated by an African American, opened in 1907 and closed in 1910. In 1910, the Gem Theater opened, closing by 1916; the Gem had films and live entertainment and was part of the vaudeville circuit. The Pekin Theatre at 415 West Main Street, owned by Gray Combs, was also in operation in 1910. Of the six movie theaters in downtown Lexington, four allowed African Americans to sit in the segregated balcony seats. In 1947, the American Theater Corporation in Indianapolis opened the Lyric Theatre at the corner of Third Street and Elm Tree Lane in Lexington. When the theater opened, it was billed as "the nation's finest colored theater." There were movies and live entertainment from greats such as Big Maybelle, the Oreos, Dizzy Gillespie, Cab Calloway, and many others. The Lyric Theater closed in 1963, but the building is still standing, though in disrepair. For more see C. T. Dunn's Gaines Fellowship Senior Thesis, Finding Voice for the Lyric Theater: an Oral History; Brazley and Brazley, Inc., the unpublished Research for the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, Survey and History of the Lyric Theatre; G. A. Waller, Main Street Amusements: movies and commercial entertainment in a Southern city, 1896-1930; articles in the Lexington newspapers: the Herald, the Leader, and the Lexington Herald-Leader; and H. T. Sampson, The Ghost Walks; a chronological history of blacks in show business, 1865-1910.

See photo image of the Lyric Theatre and additional information at the Lyric website.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky, Movies and Films
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Early African American Theaters in Louisville, KY
The first African American moving picture theater in Louisville was opened by Edward Lee in 1908, located at 13th and Walnut Streets. Lee also owned the Taft Theatre at 1314 Cedar Street and The New Odd Fellows Theatre that opened in 1908. The New Tick Houston Theatre on Walnut Street between Ninth and Tenth Streets was opened to African Americans in 1910. This information comes from The Ghost Walks; a chronological history of blacks in show business, 1865-1910, by H. T. Sampson.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Minstrel and Vaudeville Performers, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Early Bowling Associations & Louisville, KY
Prior to the integration of the American Bowling Congress (ABC), the Women's International Bowling Congress (WIBC), and the National Negro Bowling Association (NNBA), the city of Louisville, KY, served as the southernmost city for tournaments and city leagues. The ABC, founded in 1895, had a "white males only" membership. The WIBC was founded in 1916 for white women. In 1949, the NAACP was considering challenging the membership clauses of both organizations with lawsuits. In addition to the restricted membership, no tournaments were played in southern locations beyond Louisville until after the organizations were integrated in 1950. The NNBA was an African American bowling organization that was established in Detroit, Michigan, in 1939. Initially, the majority of its members were from Detroit, Chicago, and Cleveland. By 1942, there were more than 300 teams in city leagues in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, and Louisville, KY. The membership continued to grow, and in 1944 the name was changed to The National Bowling Association (TNBA), and the membership was opened to all persons. [This was a completely separate organization from the previously named National Bowling Association founded in 1875 and based in New York with a whites only membership.] Today the TNBA is one of the three major associations for amateur bowlers in the United States. For more see J. H. Rigali and J. C. Walter, "The Integration of the American Bowling Congress: the Buffalo experience," Afro-Americans in New York Life and History, vol. 29, no. 2 (July 2005), pp.7ff.; The Unlevel Playing Field, by D. K. Wiggins and P. B. Miller; Organizing Black America, by N. Mjagkij; and A Hard Road to Glory, by A. Ashe, Jr.

See the National Bowling Association website.
Subjects: Bowlers and Bowling
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Early Schools for Negro Deaf and Blind Children
Start Year : 1884
In 1884, the Kentucky School for Negro Deaf was established in Danville, KY, as a division of the Kentucky Asylum for the Tuition of the Deaf and Dumb. The Colored Department was managed by Morris T. Long, William J. Blount, Frances Barker, and Mabel Maris. The first African American student, admitted in 1885, was 25 year old Owen Alexander from Owenton, KY; he remained at the school for one year. He had become deaf at the age of 3 after having scarlet fever. The Kentucky Institute for the Education of the Negro Blind was located in Louisville, KY, in 1886. Both schools are listed in Adjustment of School Organization to Various Population Groups, by R. A. F. McDonald [full view available via Google Book Search]. For more about the early years of the Danville school, see volume 1 of Histories of American Schools for the Deaf, 1817-1893, edited by E. A. Fay. See also G. Kocher, "Diplomas bring tears of joy - blacks who attended from 1930 to 1955 get overdue awards," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/04/2011, p.A1. See photo image of the Kentucky School for the Blind Colored Department Building at the American Printing House for the Blind website. See also entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.


Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Deaf and Hearing Impaired, Blind, Visually Impaired
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Owenton, Owen County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Early Shelby County School for Free Persons and Slaves
Start Year : 1849
In 1849, C. W. Robinson, a white minister, attempted to establish a Sunday School for free Negroes, and for slaves who were given permission by their masters to attend the school. For his efforts, Rev. Robinson was flogged in the school room by the Shelby County chief patrol officer. The story was printed in the Shelby News, and retold in the Northhampton Herald and The North Star. There were about 150 free Negroes in Shelby County in 1850 [source: U.S. Federal Census]. For more see "A Preacher flogged," The North Star, 07/20/1849, p.3. See also entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Shelby County, Kentucky

Eastern Colored Branch Library, Louisville, KY (Jefferson County)
Start Year : 1914
The Eastern Colored Branch Library opened in Louisville on January 28, 1914; it was the second Carnegie Colored Library built in the U.S. At that time, Louisville was the only city in the U.S. with two Colored libraries. There was an earlier library referred to as the East End Branch of the Colored Library. It was established in January of 1907 and was located in Eastern School. Assistant Librarian, Mrs. E. G. Harris [Rachel Davis Harris], was in charge of the collection. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones; and "Confirmation classes held," Freeman, 01/19/1907, p.1.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Colored Public Libraries in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Eaves, Jerry Lee
Birth Year : 1959
Born in Louisville, KY, Jerry L. Eaves played high school basketball at Ballard in Louisville and was selected as a McDonalds' All-American in 1978 after his team won the Kentucky state basketball championship. Eaves played college ball at the University of Louisville and was a member of the 1980 NCAA Championship team. The 6'4" guard was selected by the Utah Jazz in the 1982 NBA draft and ended his professional playing career five years later with the Sacramento Kings. He played in a total of 168 games and had 1,132 points and 414 assists. Eaves was head basketball coach at North Carolina A & T University 2003-2012. For more see Jerry Eaves at Basketball-Reference.com.
Subjects: Basketball, Migration West, Migration East
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Utah / Sacramento, California / North Carolina

Eckstein-Norton Institute Musical Company
The company was comprised of the school's director of the conservatory, Hattie Gibbs, and Lulu Childers, A. L. Smith, and W. B. Hayson. The group gave concerts to secure funds for the replacement of the main building, which had burned in 1892. The school also had the Eckstein-Norton University Singers, a student singing company that performed for public relations and student recruitment events. Eckstein-Norton Institute was located in Cane Springs, KY. The school opened in 1890 and was merged with Lincoln Institute in 1912. For more about the musical company see Out of Sight: the Rise of African American Popular Music, 1889-1895, by L. Abbott and D. Seroff. For more about Eckstein-Norton see the school's Letter Copy Books,1891-1911 by C. H. Parrish.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Cane Springs, Bullitt County, Kentucky

Ecton, Virgil E.
Birth Year : 1940
Virgil E. Ecton was born in Paris, KY. He is a graduate of Indiana University (1962) and Xavier University. For 31 years he was employed at the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and served as the Executive Vice President and COO before leaving the organization in 2001 to become Vice President of University Advancement at Howard University. Ecton is known for his exceptional fund raising ability: he raised more than 1.6 billion dollars while employed at UNCF. He is a founding member of the National Society of Fund-Raising Executives' Certification Board. In 2011, Ecton was appointed vice president for federal affairs at Tuskegee University. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1975-2006.

See photo image and additional information about Virgil E. Ecton at the Tuskegee University website.
Subjects: Businesses, Education and Educators, Migration North, United Negro College Fund (UNCF)
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Washington, D.C.

Edmonds, John Buell
Birth Year : 1945
John Buell Edmonds is a recognized gospel singer from Bowling Green, KY, the son of Addie and Jewel Edmonds. The following information comes from the John Edmonds' website. In 1964, Edmonds' group was named "John Edmonds and the Angelic Specials." Six years later the group relocated to Los Angeles, CA, and their name was changed to "John Edmonds' Gospel Truth." They performed for U.S. soldiers in Vietnam and other overseas locations as affiliates with the Hollywood Overseas Committee and the USO. In 1974, the group signed with Opryland, in Nashville, TN, and was the first African American gospel group to have regular shows in Opryland. They recorded three albums while in Nashville. Edmonds returned to California in 1979, before coming home to Bowling Green, KY, where he is the music director at the Mt. Zion Baptist Church.  In 2010, Edmonds celebrated 50 years as a singer and performer.  He started performing when he was 15 years old, singing and playing piano with the teen group "Gospel Ambassadors," in Bowling Green, KY. Today, John Buell Edmonds has 14 albums. He has received a number of awards, including the American Institute for Public Service Jefferson Award, and the Kentucky Governor’s Award for the Arts. In 2013, John Edmonds was a speaker on the six week, documentary program series, "America's Music: A Filmed History of Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway," sponsored by Western Kentucky University Libraries.  For more see N. Jordan, "A Golden gospel - Bowling Green's Edmonds is celebrating 50 years as a singer and performer, The Daily News, 05/21/2010; Interview with John Buell Edmonds (FA 198) by Michelle Ross, Gospel Musicians (FA 191) by Dale W. Johnson, and the Interview with John Edmonds by LuAnne Beth Cervelli (FA 376), all available at Western Kentucky University, Manuscripts and Folklife Archives; and John Edmonds, Singer/Musician, program #117, a KET Mixed Media program.

 

  See John Edmonds, Performing Artists, a Ky.gov webpage.

 

  See John Edmonds' website.
Subjects: Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky

Edrington, Gustavus V.
Birth Year : 1813
Gustavus V. Edrington was an escaped slave from Kentucky. When his owner attempted to take him back to Kentucky, the Brookville, IN, community came to his rescue. Edrington had come to Brookville by way of Butler County, OH, where he married Malinda Jefferson in 1838. Malinda was born in 1823 in Ohio, and Edrington was born in Virginia in 1813; they were both described as Mulattoes. Shortly after their marriage, the couple moved to Iowa, where their four children were born; Iowa was a free state. In 1850, the year their fourth child was born, the Edringtons moved to Brookville, Franklin County, IN. They are listed as free in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census. Gustavus owned a barbershop. Brookville was a fairly new town: the area had been inhabited by several American Indian tribes before the Moravian missionaries settled there in 1801. Franklin County was incorporated in 1811. Many families were drawn to the area when construction was started on the Whitewater Canal in 1834; it would become a major avenue for waterway transportation. And the population jumped again with the building of the Duck Creek Aqueduct in 1848. There were 2,315 heads-of-households in 1830, and 17,979 persons in 1850, including 115 free Blacks (nine born in KY) and 104 free Mulattoes (five born in KY). Slavery had been prohibited in the Indiana territory by the Northwest Ordinance of 1787, but it allowed the reclaiming of fugitive slaves. Settlers from Kentucky and Virginia who owned slaves ignored the ordinance, and the Indiana territorial legislature created laws that circumvented the ordinance, thus allowing for both slavery and indefinitely indentured servants. The abolitionist members of the legislature gained control around 1809 and were able to overturn many of the pro-slavery and indentured servant laws. Gustavus Edrington had been in Brookville about six years when his owner and a posse from Kentucky arrived and identified Edrington as a fugitive slave; he was put in jail and was to be taken back to Kentucky and slavery. News of his capture spread fast, and when night fell, the men of Brookville went to the jail and released Gustavus Edrington. They next found the men from Kentucky and told them to leave town or they would be hanged--the men left town. Edrington continued his barber business in Brookville until some time during the Civil War when he moved to Centerville, IN, and opened a barbershop and a soda fountain. For more see "Slave hunters got rebuff at Brookville," Greensburg Daily News, 11/27/1936, p. 4; "Bury me in a free land: the Abolitionist Movement in Indiana," by Gwen Crenshaw (an IN.gov website).

Subjects: Barbers, Freedom, Migration North, Riots and Protests Outside Kentucky
Geographic Region: Virginia / Kentucky / Butler County, Ohio / Iowa / Brookville, Franklin County, Indiana / Centerville, Indiana

Edson, Edward Frank and Mary M.
According to Northwest Black Pioneers: a centennial tribute, Edward (b.1863 in Kentucky) and Mary Duvall Edson (b.1866 in Tennessee) were two of the early African American pioneers in urban Tacoma, Washington. The Edsons had been living in Kentucky and resettled in California before moving to Washington in 1889. Mr. Edson owned a barber shop and Mrs. Edson was a music teacher. The couple, who lived at 1422 K Street, helped establish the Allen A.M.E. Church. For more see "Tacoma" on page 38 of Northwest Black Pioneers: a centennial tribute, by R. Hayes.
Subjects: Barbers, Migration West, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Kentucky / California / Tacoma, Washington

Edwards, Brian C.
Birth Year : 1970
In 2009, Brian C. Edwards was appointed by Governor Steve Beshear to serve as Circuit Judge of the 30th Judicial Circuit in the 11th Division.  In 2010, Edwards defeated John J. Vandertoll to remain a Jefferson County Circuit Judge, his term ends in 2019. Judge Edwards was one of three African American appointees to be elected in Jefferson County in 2010. He also serves as a presiding Drug Court Judge. Judge Edwards was the 2004 recipient of the Frank E. Haddad, Jr. Outstanding Lawyer Award given by the Louisville Bar Association. Judge Edwards has practiced law for more than 17 years. He has served as an adjunct professor at the Brandeis School of Law, and as an assistant professor and associate director of the Center for the Study of Crime and Justice in Black Communities, both at the University of Louisville. Judge Edwards, born in Louisville, KY, is a 1992 graduate of Northwestern University (BA) and earned his law degree (JD) at the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1996.

 

   See photo image and additional information about the Hon. Brian C. Edwards at the Citizens for Better Judges website.
Subjects: Lawyers, Judges
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Edwards, Sallie N.
Birth Year : 1910
Born in Beaumont, KY, Edwards participated in the March on Washington Movement of 1941 and the American Council on Human Rights. She was a social worker. She wrote articles that appeared in Southwestern Christian Advocate and other magazines and taught at Stowe Teachers College in St. Louis, MO. For more see Supplement to Who's Who in Colored America, 1950; and Harris Stowe State College, a St. Louis positive..., an African American Registry website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Education and Educators, Social Workers
Geographic Region: Beaumont, Metcalfe County, Kentucky / St. Louis, Missouri

Eilers v Eilers [Anna F. Anderson]
Start Year : 1964
In September 1964, eight months after Anna F. Eilers married Marshall C. Anderson, the courts took her five children away. Anna, who was white, was from New Haven, KY. She had divorced her previous husband and father of the children, George Eilers, in 1963. Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Lyndon R. Schmid awarded custody of the children to Anna. In January 1964, Anna and Marshall C. Anderson, an African American musician and restaurant employee, were married in Chicago, IL. [Marriage between the races was still illegal in Kentucky and 17 other states.] When they returned to Louisville, KY, the couple lost their jobs in retaliation for their marriage. George Eilers sued to have the children taken away from Anna, and Judge Schmid had the children placed in a children's institutional home. Anna and Marshall moved to Indianapolis, IN, in 1964, by which time the two oldest children had been placed in foster homes. Prior to their move, the Andersons had retained Attorney James Crumlin of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. to help regain custody of the children. The custody case took place during the same time period that the Virginia Supreme Court had upheld the state's anti-miscegenation law in the Richard and Mildred Loving case [NY Times article]. The Andersons' custody case went to the Kentucky Court of Appeals in 1966, where the Appellate Court upheld the ruling of the Jefferson County Circuit Court. The case was next taken to the federal court where it became national news; it was the first appeal to the federal courts on constitutional grounds for child custody. The Andersons' case was temporarily linked to the Lovings' case, which was pending in the federal courts, and the results were expected to be landmark decisions. The link was broken when District Judge Henry L. Brooks declined to take jurisdiction over the Andersons' case because it was determined that the mother had not exhausted her appeals in the Kentucky courts, and the indirectness of the attack on the Kentucky miscegenation laws was a weakness of the case; therefore, there was no federal question. For a third time, the Anderson case was brought before the Kentucky Court of Appeals. The court reversed the judgment for proceedings consistent with the opinion. "No reason appears which would warrant interference with the custody order from which this appeal was taken. That order shall remain in effect until further order of the trial court or any court of competent jurisdiction." For more see F. Ward, "Mixed couple suffers ordeal," Jet, 04/07/1966, pp. 46-49, and "Mixed couple losses custody bid," Jet, 10/27/1966, p. 15 [both articles available full-text at Google Book Search]; B. A. Franklin's articles in the New York Times: "Kentucky facing race custody suit," 03/25/1966, p. 29, and "Judge bars case of miscegenation," 06/26/1966, p. 30; "N.A.A.C.P. to fight ruling on custody," New York Times, 07/08/1966, p. 12; and Anna Frances Eilers (now Anna Anderson), Appellant, v. George F. Eilers, Appellee, Court of Appeals of Kentucky, 412 S.W.2d 871: 1967 Ky, March 17, 1967.
Subjects: Mothers, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Court Cases, Interracial Marriage and State Laws
Geographic Region: New Haven, Nelson County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Election Day Riot (Frankfort, KY)
Start Year : 1871
On the evening of August 7, 1871, the election polls had just closed when a race riot developed between African American and white voters in Frankfort, KY, at the market-house precinct. It was the second year of voting for African American men in Kentucky, and tension was high. After a scuffle, whites and African Americans took cover on separate sides of Broadway and began shooting and throwing rocks and boulders at each other across the railroad tracks that ran down the center of the street. Police Captain William Gillmore and Officers Jerry Lee and Dick Leonard rushed to the scene; Gillmore was killed and Lee and Leonard were injured. Other police arrived, but they were driven back. A Mr. Bishop, who was also white, was killed, and several others on both sides were injured. State Troops were ordered into downtown Frankfort to bring the rioting under control. An African American, Henry Washington, who supposedly fired the first shot, was apprehended for the murder of Captain Gillmore. Frankfort Mayor E. H. Taylor, Jr. had appointed the state militia to guard the jailhouse. After the State Troops had gone, the militia dispersed when about 250 armed and masked white men stormed the jailhouse at mid-morning and removed Washington and another African American man, Harry Johnson, who was accused of the rape of a Mrs. Pfeifer. Both men were hanged. For more see "Kentucky Elections. Rioting reported in various places - Two whites killed in Frankfort - Negro prisoners lynched," New York Times, 08/09/1871, p. 1; and "A Democratic riot," printed in the New York Times, 08/15/1871, p.6, from the Louisville Commercial, August 10, 1871.
Subjects: Voting Rights, Lynchings, Corrections and Police, Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Elizabethtown (KY) Emancipation Day
Start Year : 1882
The 1882 celebration held in Elizabethtown, KY, was joined by African Americans from southern Illinois. The event is noted as the first recorded Emancipation celebration for southern Illinois. For more see S. K. Cha-Jua, America's first Black town: Brooklyn, Illinois, 1830-1915, p. 104.
Subjects: Freedom, Emancipation Day / Juneteenth Celebrations
Geographic Region: Elizabethtown, Hardin County, Kentucky

Elliott, Cynthia E.
From Jackson, KY, Elliott is a lawyer who in 1997 was appointed by Gov. Paul Patton to serve as Special Justice to the Kentucky Supreme Court, the first African American woman appointed to the post. She is a two-time graduate of Wayne State University in Michigan, where she received her undergraduate and law degrees. For more information see the Kentucky government press release, "Governor Patton Appoints First African-American Woman as Special Justice to Kentucky Supreme Court," 09/14/97.
Subjects: Lawyers, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: Jackson, Breathitt County, Kentucky

Ellis, Betty Marie
Birth Year : 1925
In June of 1948, the student admission application for Betty Marie Ellis, who was white, was rejected by Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] because the Day Law forbid black and white students from attending the same school in Kentucky. Ellis was furious about the law. "Had I the financial and legal backing, I would like very much to contest the law as it stands." Betty Marie Ellis was a civil rights activist who was not working with any particular organization. She was the first white student to apply for admission to Kentucky State College. Ellis was a 25 year old college graduate from Peru, IN, and was studying for a master's degree in religious education at the College of the Bible [now Lexington Theological Seminary] in Lexington, KY. She was also the director of religious education at the First Christian Church in Shelbyville, KY. She had attended school with Negro children in Peru, IN, where the schools were integrated and so was Manchester College in North Manchester, IN, where Ellis earned her bachelor's degree. In response to being denied admission to Kentucky State College, Ellis wrote letters of protest to Dr. Atwood, President of Kentucky State College; Kentucky Governor Earl Clements; and Boswell B. Hodgkin, Superintendent of Public Instruction in Kentucky. Betty Marie Ellis was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. A. F. Ellis. For more see the document "Kentucky State College rejects white girl; she blasts governor, Jim Crow laws," Monday, June 14, 1948, p.44 [second page missing] within the file Kentucky State College (Frankfort), Louisville Municipal College, & West KY Vocational Training School (Paducah), part of The Claude A. Burnett Papers: The Associated Negro Press, 1918-1967, Part 3: Subject Files on Black Americans, 1918-1967, Series A, Agriculture, 1923-1966 -- Proquest History Vault; and see Betty Marie Ellis on p.65 in Tracks: Chesapeake & Ohio, Nickel Plate, Pere Marquette, vol. 29, issue 7. See also the NKAA entry for Mrs. Geraldine Cox Ogden, the first white student admitted to Kentucky State College. See also Barry Coleman Moore, the first white football player at Kentucky State College.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Migration South, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky
Geographic Region: Peru, Indiana / Manchester, Indiana / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Shelbyville, Shelby County, Kentucky

Ellis, James A. "Jimmy"
Birth Year : 1940
Born in Louisville, KY, Ellis trained with Mohammad Ali, World Heavyweight Boxing Champion, from 1968-1970, but lost the title to Joe Frazier. One of the lightest heavyweight fighters, Ellis was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004. He was inducted into the Kentucky Hall of Fame in 1989. His career began in 1961 in Louisville; he retired from boxing in 1975. For more see the Kentucky Encyclopedia 2000; and B. Brianstaff, "Louisville's forgotten champ," The Courier-Journal, 10/05/2004, Sports section, p. 01C. See photo image of Jimmy Ellis at cyberboxingzone.com.

Subjects: Boxers, Boxing
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Elm Tree Lane and Kinkeadtown (Lexington, KY)
The west side of Elm Tree Lane was part of the Templeton Subdivision in 1889. Around 1914, the east side of the street became Elm Tree Heights. Kinkeadtown was bottomland that included more recently Illinois, Kinkead, and Mosby Streets; it was around the area where Elm Tree Lane intersects with Fourth and Fifth Streets. The land had been subdivided by abolitionist George B. Kinkead in 1870 and sold exclusively to African Americans. Populated by about 20 families in 1880, it grew to include over 300 residents. The section of Elm Tree Lane and the remainder of Kinkeadtown, between Fourth and Fifth Streets, were purchased by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government in the 1990s. The shotgun and T-plan houses were demolished in preparation for the extension of Rose Street. For more see J. Kellogg, "The Formation of Black Residential Areas in Lexington, Kentucky, 1865-1887," The Journal of Southern History, vol. 48, issue 1 (Feb. 1982), pp. 21-52.; "Kinkeadtown: Archaeological Investigation of an African-American Neighborhood in Lexington, Kentucky," Archaeological Report 377 by Nancy O'Malley, University of Kentucky Department of Anthropology; Martin Luther King Neighborhood Association; and N. O'Malley, "The pursuit of freedom: the evolution of Kinkeadtown, an African American post-Civil War neighborhood in Lexington, Kentucky," Winterthur Portfolio-A Journal of American Material Culture, vol. 37, issue 4 (Winter 2002), pp. 187-217.
Subjects: Communities
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Elmore, Ronn
Birth Year : 1957
Born in Louisville, KY, Ronn Elmore left Kentucky at the age of 16 and became an actor and dancer in Europe before becoming a minister and marriage counselor. He is a graduate of Antioch University (B.A.), Fuller Theological Seminary (M.A.) in California, and Ryokan College (Ph.D.), also in California. In 1989, Elmore developed the Relationship Center and the Relationship Enrichment Programs in Los Angeles. In the 1990s he also started a radio show and was a guest on television and other media, where he spoke on love, marriage, and family. Elmore has published several books, including How to Love a Black Man in 1996 and How to Love a Black Woman in 1998. Elmore is also the founder of Kingdom Shelter, which provides housing for homeless men. For more see African-American Religious Leaders, by N. Aaseng; and the Dr. Ronn Elmore website.

 
Subjects: Authors, Migration West, Radio, Religion & Church Work, Television, Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Los Angeles, California

Engine Co. #8 (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1872
The #8 firehouse was located at 725 S. 13th and Maple Streets in Louisville. The house had been built in 1872 and was used by an all-white fire company until December, 1923, when ten African Americans were hired for Louisville's first African American fire department. In 1937 a second African American firehouse was established at Roseland and Jackson Streets. Roy Stanley was the first African American to ride out of an integrated fire house in Louisville. For more see M. Young, "Exhibit features Black firefighters," The Louisville Defender, 03/12/1992, p. 2.
Subjects: Firefighters
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Estill, Monk
Death Year : 1835
Monk Estill arrived in Kentucky in the 1770s as a slave and was later freed, the first freed slave in Kentucky. He made gunpowder at Boonesborough, KY. His son, Jerry, was the first African American born in Kentucky. For more see the Kentucky Encyclopedia 2000 [electronic version available on the University of Kentucky campus and off campus via the proxy server], and The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan.


See depicted image and additional information about Monk Estill at Madison County Historical Society website.
Subjects: Businesses, Early Settlers, Freedom
Geographic Region: Boonesborough, Madison County, Kentucky

Eubanks, Charles Lamont [Eubanks v University of Kentucky]
Birth Year : 1924
In the fall of 1941, Eubanks, a 17-year old from Louisville, KY, was the plaintiff in the first Kentucky case the NAACP brought against a university. Eubanks had volunteered to be the subject in an attempt to integrate the University of Kentucky (UK); Eubanks was an honor student who had graduated from Central High School and applied for admission to the UK College of Engineering. His application was denied because Eubanks was an African American and the Kentucky Day Law did not permit African Americans and whites to attend the same schools. While the Eubanks' case was pending, the Kentucky Board of Education voted to establish a two year engineering course at the HCBU Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] for African American students seeking an engineering degree. Eubanks' counsel, Charles H. Houston and Thurgood Marshall, objected to the two-year makeshift engineering program and an amended complaint was filed with the Federal District Court in Lexington, with a request for $5,000 in damages. As the case dragged on, Eubanks suffered with depression, he was criticized for creating tension between Kentucky African Americans and whites, he was rejected from joining the Army, and his wife divorced him. Eubanks signed an affidavit asking that the case not be continued and the case was dismissed in 1945. Thurgood Marshall was disappointed at the outcome of the case. Charles W. Anderson blamed Kentucky State College President Atwood for weakening the case when he allowed the two-year engineering course to be created at the school. But in spite of all that happened, the Charles Eubanks v University of Kentucky case is still considered a landmark in the struggle for equal rights in higher education. For more see Making Civil Rights Law by M. V. Tushnet; Fifty Years of Segregation by J. Hardin; and A History of Blacks in Kentucky by M. B. Lucas and G. C. Wright. See also Lyman T. Johnson, the case that desegregated the University of Kentucky.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Evans, William D., II
Birth Year : 1899
Born in Louisville, KY, Evans was also known as Bill, Happy, and Gray Ghost. A versatile baseball player, he played center, right and left fields; shortstop; and third base. Tall and skinny, he was an outstanding defensive player. Evans had been a star on his high school football and baseball teams in Louisville. His baseball playing career began in 1924 and ended in 1934, after which Evans went on to manage the Chattanooga Black Lookouts and the North American Aviation teams. He was also a sportswriter for the Louisville News and founder of the Midwest Association of Coaches. For more see The Biographical Encyclopedia of the Negro Baseball Leagues, by J. A. Riley.
Subjects: Baseball
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Evans, William L., Sr.
Birth Year : 1886
Born in Louisville, KY, Evans received an A.B. from Fisk University in 1909, took advanced study at Columbia University, from 1910 to 1911, and earned his M.A. from the University of Buffalo in 1930. He was Industrial Secretary of the Chicago Urban League, 1919-1923, worked with Plato and Evans Architectural Firm, 1923-1927, and was executive secretary of the Buffalo Urban League, beginning in 1927. Evans had also been a teacher before moving to Buffalo. He was a member of the Buffalo Commission in the New York State Commission Against Discrimination. Evans was the author of three articles: "Federal Housing Brings Racial Segregation to Buffalo," "Race, Fear and Housing," and "The Negro Community in 1948." He was the father of W. Leonard Evans, Jr. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1933-37 & 1950; and Strangers in the Land of Paradise, by L. S. Williams.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Architects, Education and Educators, Fathers, Migration North, Sociologists & Social Scientists, Urban Leagues, Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois / Buffalo, New York

The Family of Jack and Sallie Foster [Blyew v. United States]
Birth Year : 1868
In Lewis County, KY, during the summer of 1868, five members of the Foster family were attacked by John Blyew and George Kennard, who used a carpenter's ax and some other bladed tool to hack at the bodies of the family members. Jack, his wife Sallie, and his grandmother Lucy Armstrong, who was blind, were killed outright. Richard, the Foster's 16 year old son, took shelter under his father's body. He later regained consciousness and crawled 300 yards to a neighbor's house for help. Richard died two days later. The two youngest children were the only survivors: Laura Foster, 8 years old, hid and was unharmed, while her 6 year old sister, Amelia, was hacked about the head but lived. A posse was formed and Blyew and Kennard were arrested and indicted on four counts of murder. The court hearings began October 26, 1868, with the following evidence presented: Richard Foster's dying statements, Laura Foster's written testimony [it was illegal in Kentucky for African Americans to give testimony against whites during criminal proceedings], and the testimony of those who investigated the crimes. One of the reasons given for the murders was retaliation for the Civil War and the potential for another war about African Americans. The trial was held in U.S. Court for the District of Kentucky before Judge Bland Ballard. The prosecuting attorney was Benjamin H. Bristow, who would later become the first U.S. Solicitor General and serve as Secretary of the Treasury in the Grant Administration before becoming a Republican presidential nominee in 1876. Two years prior to the Foster family murders, Congress had passed the Civil Rights Act of 1866, which gave jurisdiction to federal courts for all causes, civil and criminal, affecting persons who are denied or cannot enforce any of the rights secured to them in the courts or judicial tribunals of the state or locality, where they may be. The understanding of the provisions of the act was the reason Blyew and Kennard were tried in a federal court. Their case was presented to an all-white jury [it was still illegal to have African American jurors in such cases in Kentucky]. None of the jury members were from Lewis County. Blyew and Kennard were found guilty and sentenced to hang. The case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court as a Writ of Error. Blyew v United States was one of the first cases for the full court to analyze the provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1866. Kentucky Governor J. W. Stevenson called for a special legislative session, and funds were appropriated for use in the Blyew v United States case to hire the distinguished lawyer, Judge Jeremiah S. Black, to represent Kentucky's sovereign rights as a challenge to the constitutionality of the Civil Rights Act of 1866. It was determined by the governor and many of the Kentucky legislators that the 1866 Act exceeded the authority of Congress and was an unconstitutional intrusion of authority. The U.S. Supreme Court deliberated for more than a year before rendering a judgment on April 1, 1872, that reversed the convictions of Blyew and Kennard with a 5-2 majority. Prior to the decision, the Negro testimony law in Kentucky was repealed, and Blyew and Kennard were indicted and to be tried in the Lewis County Circuit Court in 1873. In Blyew's case, there was a hung jury, and the case was then to be prosecuted in federal court. But before the retrial could take place, Blyew escaped. In George Kennard's case, he was convicted and sentenced to hard labor for his natural life. He was pardoned by Governor Blackburn in 1885 due to his health. Kennard died of senility on April 5, 1923 in Carter County, KY, according to his death certificate. John Blyew was recaptured in 1890, and the Lewis County Circuit Court convicted and sentenced him to life in prison. Governor W. J. Worthington pardoned Blyew in 1896, and Blyew, his wife Emma, and granddaughter Mary, were residing in Cincinnati, OH in 1900, according to the U.S. Federal Census. The surviving Foster sisters, Laura and Amelia, were taken in by a white family named Ruggles. It has been written that Laura, who was born around 1860, died of measles after living with the Ruggles for a few years, but according the U. S. Census, she was with the Ruggles' family as a servant up to 1880. Amelia (1862-1936), who was described as having horrendous scars on her head, was single and remained in Lewis County doing housework up until 1934 when she became ill, according to her death certificate. For more see Blyew v. United States, 80 U.S. 13 Wall. 581 (1871) [full-text at Justia.com]; R. D. Goldstein, "Blyew: variations on a jurisdictional theme," Stanford Law Review, vol. 41, issue 3 (Feb. 1989), pp. 469-566; and Race, Law, and American Society, by G. J. Browne-Marshall.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky, Court Cases, Blind, Visually Impaired
Geographic Region: Lewis County, Kentucky

Farris, Elaine
Birth Year : 1955
On June 22, 2004, Elaine Farris became the first African American school superintendent in Kentucky, at age 49. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from Eastern Kentucky University and is pursuing her doctorate at the University of Kentucky. She has taught in Winchester, where she was also an assistant principal and principal. Elaine Farris was the school superintendent of Shelby County in 2004. She left that post in 2007 when she was named Deputy Commissioner with the Kentucky Department of Education. In 2009, Farris was named Superintendent of Clark County Schools. For more see G. Kocher, "A Kentucky first, a racial barrier broken, Shelby County breaks ground by hiring black schools chief," Lexington Herald-Leader, 06/23/04; R. H. Ismail, "4 Kentucky educators named to key state-level positions," Lexington Herald-Leader, 06/30/2007, p. B2; and KET's "Connections with Renee Shaw" - #310: Elaine Farris.

See photo image of Elaine Farris at the Kentucky Council on Post-secondary Education website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Shelby County, Kentucky / Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky

Farris, Samuel
Birth Year : 1845
Samuel Farris was born in Barren County, KY. At a young age, he was taken to Mississippi to work on a cotton plantation. After his master died, Farris attempted to make his way back to Kentucky but ended up in Alabama, then later made his way to Memphis. He worked on steamboats for 13 years, then changed his occupation to undertaking. His business was located at 104 DeSoto Street in Memphis, according to the Memphis, TN, City Directory for 1890 and for 1891. In the 1890s Samuel Farris was a member of the A.M.E. Church and considered a wealthy businessman -- worth $15,000. For more see the Samuel Farris entry in Afro-American Encyclopaedia: Or, the Thoughts, Doings... by James T. Haley, pp. 207-208 [UNC University Library, Documenting the American South].

  See photo image of Samuel Farris on p.208 of the Afro-American Encyclopaedia by J. T. Haley.
Subjects: Businesses, Freedom, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Migration South
Geographic Region: Barren County, Kentucky / Memphis, Tennessee

Fergus Falls (Otter Tail County, Minnesota)
Around 1849, 40 free African Americans, most from Virginia and Kentucky, arrived near what is today St. Paul, Minnesota. Minnesota had recently been organized as a territory, and small groups of Kentuckians would continue to make their way to the area for the next half century. In 1896, real-estate agents distributed fliers to Kentucky African American veterans visiting the fairgrounds in St. Paul; the fliers highlighted Fergus Falls as a good settlement area. About 50 African Americans from Kentucky moved to Fergus Falls in 1897, joining others who had been there since the end of the Civil War. The community was described in a newspaper article as "the first exclusive Colored colony in Minnesota." The family of activist Mary Lee Johnson, who was born in Kentucky, moved to the area sometime after 1910. The lack of suitable homesteads and employment led many to leave the area. By 1970 only 15 residents remained in the African American community of Fergus Falls. For more see the quote in the article "Colored colony," Illinois Record, 05/14/1898, p.2; African Americans in Minnesota, by D. V. Taylor; and P. Miller, "Activist Mary Lee Johnson dies," Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities, 10/12/1997, News section, p. 7B.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Communities, Freedom, Migration West, 1st African American Families in Town
Geographic Region: Virginia / Kentucky / Fergus Falls, Otter Tail County, Minnesota

Ferguson, Andrew
Birth Year : 1828
Andrew Ferguson was a slave born in Paris, KY, owned by Dr. Andrew Todd. Ferguson was given his freedom with the condition that he live in Liberia, Africa. At the age of 24, his name is listed among the freeman, all bound for Liberia, in the 1853 publication of The African Repository, v.29, p. 70 [available full-text at Google Book Search]. Ferguson remained in Liberia for two years, then returned to the U.S. as a free man and settled in Louisville, KY, where he was employed as a janitor in the Hamilton Building. He was a member of the Board of Missions for Freedom Colored Church that had been holding services in a rented hall. When it came time for the church to find a permanent home, Ferguson confidentially encouraged Pastor J. R. Riley to consider a church on Madison Street that was for sale by a German denomination. Once the pastor had made up his mind, Ferguson, with the pastor in attendance, paid $4,880 in cash for the building. The deed was made out to the trustees of the church. After the purchase, Ferguson continued as an unassuming member of the congregation, holding no positions in the church. For more see "A Noble Deed of a Colored Man," The Presbyterian Monthly Record, vol. 32 (1881), pp. 321-322 [available full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Freedom, Liberia, Liberian Presidents & Diplomats, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Ferguson, Denver and Sea (brothers)
Denver Darious Ferguson (1895-1957) and Sea Ferguson (1899-1974) were born in Brownsville, KY, the sons of Samuel H. and Mattie Whitney Ferguson. Denver was a journalist and established The Edmonson Star News. He was also a WWI veteran then moved to Indianapolis in 1919 and owned a printing company. Sea, a college graduate, followed his brother to Indianapolis and worked in his printing company. The brothers would leave the printing business, and around 1931 they began establishing entertainment businesses on Indiana Avenue: Trianon Ballroom, Royal Palm Gardens, the Cotton Club, and Sunset Terrace Ballroom. They also established Ferguson Brothers' Booking Agency and brought many big name African American entertainers to Indianapolis, and some lesser known names including Kentucky natives Jimmy Coe and Gene Pope. The Ferguson brothers also owned Ferguson Hotel. They are recognized for making Indianapolis a major stop on the African American entertainment circuit. Denver Ferguson was said to be quite a wealthy man up to WWII [source: "Denver Ferguson, pioneer businessman dies," Indianapolis Record, 05/18/1957, pp.1&7]. Sea Ferguson is said to have become a millionaire as a result of his real estate business. He was also an officer with the The National Negro Bowling Association (TNBA). Sea Ferguson is said to be the 3rd African American to build a bowling center; Ferguson's Fun Bowl opened in March 1941 at 750 N. West Street in Indianapolis, IN. For more see The Jimmy Coe Discography website; and "Sea Ferguson's Fun Bowl," The African Diaspora Archaeology Network, March 2008 Newsletter, p.9 [online .pdf].
Subjects: Bowlers and Bowling, Businesses, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Realtors, Real Estate Brokers, Real Estate Investments
Geographic Region: Brownsville, Edmonson County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Ferguson, Thelma B.
Birth Year : 1959
Ferguson, born in Memphis, TN, was the first African American woman to be named President of Chase Bank Kentucky. The appointment was made in 2005, and in 2008 Ferguson was promoted to the new position of Market Manager for the Metro New York area with JP Morgan Chase & Co. It is believed that Ferguson was also the first African American woman to head a major bank in Kentucky. For more see "Chase's promotion of Ferguson is well received," Business First, 07/29/2005 [available online]; and Thelma Ferguson in Who's Who in Black Louisville, Inaugural Edition, pp.64-65.
Subjects: Bankers, Banks, Finance, Financial Advisors, Migration North
Geographic Region: Memphis, Tennessee / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Fields, Sharon B.
Birth Year : 1951
Sharon B. Fields was born in Paris, KY, she is an educator, politician, and a minister. She was also the first African American woman to become a city commissioner in Paris, KY. William B. Reed, the first African American commissioner in the city, was one of the candidates during Fields' first run for a seat on the commission in 1989. Fields was a new contender and had her supporters, but for some, her candidacy represented a split in the African American vote and it was feared that she would greatly decrease the chances of having at least one African American city commissioner. Others felt that one African American male candidate was most appropriate. Fields lost her first election by 3 votes. But, she was appointed to the commission when one of the commissioners stepped down. In 1990, she was a teacher at Paris High School and a city commissioner. She was a commissioner, off and on, for 10 years. Today, Rev. Fields is a member of the Paris Independent School Board of Education. She has also served as pastor of the Eminence Christian Church in Eminence, KY. Reverend Fields earned her undergraduate degree in education at Eastern Kentucky University, a masters in education at Georgetown College (KY), a masters in public affairs at Kentucky State University, and a divinity masters at Lexington Theological Seminary. She was the first African American woman vice moderator and moderator for the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. Reverend Fields is also an author, she has written numerous articles for religious magazines such as Just Women; articles for the Bourbon Times and The Bourbon Citizen; and an article for Essence Magazine on social security benefits for out-of-wedlock children. She is the co-author of In Other Words--; stories of African American involvement in the early years of the Stone-Campbell movement in Kentucky. This entry was submitted by Kellie Scott of the Paris Bourbon County Public Library. For more information on Sharon B. Fields as a city commissioner, see the commission records at the Bourbon County Clerk's Office; also contact Sharon B. Fields.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Fifth Street Baptist Church (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1815
The church was founded in 1815, known at that time as the First Baptist African Mission. In 1842 the congregation separated from the First Baptist Church of Louisville, forming the Colored Baptist Church of Louisville. It is one of the oldest African American churches in the city, and one of the oldest among African American Baptist churches. The church archive is available at the University of Louisville Archives and Record Center. Historical Sketch of The Fifth Street Baptist Church of Louisville, Kentucky, by G. A. Hampton, is included in the archive collection.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Figgs, Ukari O.
Birth Year : 1977
Ukari Figgs was born in Georgetown, KY. In high school, she was an outstanding student and athlete, leading the Scott County girls' basketball team to a state title in 1995, the year she was named Miss Basketball of Kentucky. She played college ball at Purdue University, helping them win the 1999 women's NCAA title; Figgs was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four. She graduated in 1999 with a degree in mechanical engineering and was drafted into the WNBA; Ukari Figgs was the first African American woman from the Bluegrass region to play in the WNBA. She was a member of the 2001 Los Angeles Sparks WNBA title team. In 2004, Figgs retired from the WNBA, where she had averaged 6.5 points, 3.1 assists, 2.3 rebounds, and had played in 151 games on three different teams. She was an engineer at Toyota Manufacturing in Georgetown, KY, and an assistant coach with the male varsity team at Scott County High School from 2004-2009. Figgs was named the assistant coach to the Purdue women's basketball team in 2009. Two years later, June 2011, Ukari Figgs was named the University of Kentucky's assistant athletic director for women's basketball. For more see Ukari Figgs, WNBA player information and Ukari Figgs Announces Retirement. See also M. Carmin, "Coaching lures Figgs back to Purdue," Journal and Courrier, 04/14/2009, Sports section, p.1,3C; and J. Tipton, "Figgs named women's basketball AD - 1995 Miss Basketball coached at Purdue," Lexington Herald-Leader, 06/11/2011, p.D6.

See photo images and additional information about Ukari Figgs at the Los Angeles Sparks website and WNBA.com.
Subjects: Basketball, Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering
Geographic Region: Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky / Los Angeles, California / West Lafayette, Indiana / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Filipino Students Denied Admittance to School [Louisville, KY]
Start Year : 1904
In 1904, four engineering students from the Philippines were denied admittance to DuPont Manual Training High School in Louisville, KY. The Kentucky Board of Education ruled that the students' color debarred them from the privilege of public schools. The question the board pondered was whether Filipinos were Negroes. It was decided that the term "Colored" applied to Negroes, Indians, and all other brown races. The law required the separation of races in Kentucky schools. The four students were located elsewhere; they were members of the Filipino Student Movement, an American government plan for the Americanization of selected Filipino students. The first group of students was comprised of 75 males between the ages of 16 and 21 who ranked highest on the program examination and met other criteria. Four students were recommended for Kentucky University [University of Kentucky] and four for the DuPont Manual Training High School. None of the students came to Kentucky: the engineering students were redirected elsewhere and the Kentucky University students decided to attend the University of Michigan. When a student completed his studies in the United States, he was to return to the Philippines to become an employee of the civil service for the equal number of years spent in the United States. Control of the Philippines had been passed from Spain to the United States with the signing of the 1898 Treaty of Paris that ended the Spanish-American War; the United States paid 20 million dollars to Spain for the Philippines. For more see "Their color debars them," Spokane Daily Chronicle, 07/07/1904, p. 3; "Filipino students," Evening Bulletin, 07/07/1904, p. 4; "The Filipino students," Evening Bulletin, 09/07/1904, p. 1; and p. 929 of the "Report of the Superintendent of Filipino Students in the United States covering the Filipino Student Movement, from its inception to June 30, 1904," in the Fifth Annual Report of the Philippine Commission 1904, Part 3, by the Bureau of Insular Affairs, War Department. For more about the U.S.-Philippines relationship, see Bound to Empire, by H. W. Brands and Crucible of Empire, by J. C. Bradford.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Race Categories
Geographic Region: Philippines / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Finney, Nikky
Birth Year : 1957
Born in Conway, South Carolina, Nikky Finney is an associate professor of creative writing and a former director of the African American Studies and Research Program at the University of Kentucky. She is a graduate of Talladega College in Alabama. She is a nationally recognized poet and author of books of poetry including On Wings Made of Gauze, Rice, and The World is Round. Her work has also been published in anthologies. She was a screenwriter on the documentary, M & M. Smith: for posterity's sake. In 2011, Nikky Finney received the National Book Award in Poetry. In 2012, Nikky Finney left the University of Kentucky and returned to South Carolina. For more see "BIBR talks to Nikky Finney," Black Issues Book Review, March/April 2003, vol. 5, issue 2, pp. 28-29; K. Hamilton, "You are only as writerly as the last thing you've written," in Monty, a supplement to the print magazine, Montpelier at James Madison University; and D. Shafa, "Stepping up," Kentucky Kernel, 09/27/06, Campus News section. UKnow article, "UK Professor Nikky Finney wins National Book Award for Poetry," available online, a University of Kentucky publication website.



  See photo and additional information about Nikky Finney at "The Beauty and Difficulty of Poet Nikky Finney" by N. Adams, 04/08/2012, 6:39 AM, a NPR website.

Access Interview Read about the Nikky Finney oral history interviews available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.

 

  See the Nikky Finney interview with Renee Shaw, program #843, "Connections with Renee Shaw" at the KET (Kentucky Educational Television) website.

 
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Migration West, Poets
Geographic Region: Conway, South Carolina / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Firmatown (Woodford County, KY)
Start Year : 1877
(Also known as Fermantown.) There are two accounts of how Firmatown came to be: The first states the land was given to freemen by their former master, the second that an African American man named Furman won 18 acres in a lottery with a ten cent ticket. In either case, in 1877 there was a landowner named Furman living in Firmatown, along with R. Peters, R. Brown, and H. Smith. By the turn of the century there were 150 people in the community. An 1892 picture of the Fermantown Colored School is included in the Hifner Photo Collection at the Kentucky Historical Society website. For more see Negro Hamlets and Gentlemen Farms: a dichotomous rural settlement pattern in Kentucky's Bluegrass Region, by P. C. Smith.
Subjects: Communities, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Firmatown (Fermantown), Woodford County, Kentucky

First African Baptist Church (Lexington, KY)
Start Year : 1790
The First African Baptist Church is considered the first west of the Allegheny Mountains, and is said to predate the first Baptist Church for whites. The church was founded by Peter Durrett, who was a slave also known as Old Captain. Durrett was born in Caroline County, Virginia in the 1700s and arrived in what is now the state of Kentucky around 1785. He and his wife lived in Lexington and the First African Baptist Church was located at the corner of what would become known as Lexington and Euclid Streets. Durrett preached to the slaves who were allowed to attend his church, and there was a beginning congregation of 50 members. Today the First African Baptist Church is located at 465 Price Road in Lexington, KY. For more about the history of the church and it's preachers, the community, and other African American churches that developed from the First African Baptist Church, see One Grain of the Salt by Dr. L. H. McIntyre.
Subjects: Early Settlers, Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

First Open Housing Ordinances in Kentucky
Start Year : 1966
Bardstown and Nelson County, KY, were first in the state to adopt the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights' model open housing ordinance, which prohibited racial discrimination in housing, effective July 28, 1966. Covington and Kenton County were next to pass the ordinance, followed by Lexington and Fayette County. Source: A Kentucky Civil Rights Timeline, by KET (Kentucky Educational Television); and Freedom on the Border, by C. Fosl and T. E. K'Meyer.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky / Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Fite, Samuel "Sam"
Birth Year : 1864
Owner of Fite's Studio in Owensboro, KY, he was considered the best photographer in the city. Fite, who was thought to be from Kentucky, was born in Canada. His wife was Georgia Fite, she was born in 1868 in Tennessee, and the couple lived on Elm Street in Owensboro, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. For more see Evidences of Progress Among Colored People, p. 511, by G. F. Richings at the Documenting the American South website.
Subjects: Photographers, Photographs, Migration South
Geographic Region: Canada / Tennessee / Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Fitzpatrick, Jack "Jackie"
The 6'4" center was a member of the 1953 Kentucky High School Athletic League (KHSAL) championship basketball team from Dunbar High School in Somerset, KY. The team was unbeaten for the season and runners-up in the 1954 National High School Tournament, held at Tennessee State University in March of that year. The tournament matched the best African American high school teams from as many as 17 states. Fitzpatrick played college ball at Knoxville College, a historically black college in Tennessee. He continued his career by playing guard for the Harlem Globetrotters and Saperstein's Chicago Majors, an American Basketball League team, from 1961 to 1963. Jack Fitzpatrick was inducted into the Dawahares-Kentucky High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 2005. For more see Shadows of the past, by L. Stout; P. Kuharsky, "Black teams lived out hoop dreams," The Tennessean (newspaper), 02/24/2005, p. 1C; and the KHSAA 2005 Inductees (pdf).
Subjects: Basketball, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Somerset, Pulaski County, Kentucky

Foley, Shirley, Jr.
Birth Year : 1916
Born in Louisville, KY, Mr. Shirley Foley, Jr. was a 1938 graduate of Fisk University and a 1940 graduate of Indiana University. Foley was married to the late Mary Frances Eaves, who was also from Louisville. He lived in Silver Spring, MD. Foley worked for the federal government for 38 years, including a tour of duty in the Pentagon's Department of Defense, and later was with the U.S. Department of Labor. He also did a two year temporary assignment in the U.S. Virgin Islands, assisting in the establishment of the Federal Office for Alien Employment Certification. Foley retired from the U.S. Department of Labor as a Manpower Development Specialist and traveled all over the world. He is the great-grandson of Pvt. Calvin Byrd (a.k.a. Calvin Brown), a slave born in Louisville, who ran away and enlisted in the 108th Infantry in 1864. Foley is also the nephew of Esther Maxwell Barrens. This information came from Mr. Shirley Foley, Jr. For an overview of Alien Employment Certification, see A. Weber, "The Role of the U.S. Department of Labor in Immigration," International Migration Review, vol. 4, issue 3 (Summer 1970), pp. 31-46.
Subjects: Employment Services, Immigration, Migration North
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Silver Spring, Maryland

Foree, Jack C.
Birth Year : 1935
Foree was born in New Castle, KY, the son of Etta and Jesse Foree. He attended a segregated, two-room grade school in New Castle and received his high school diploma from Lincoln Institute. He is also a graduate of Kentucky State University, Spalding University, and Indiana University. Foree was a math teacher and administrator in the Jefferson County School System. He is now the president of Sky Brite of Louisville, Inc., a janitorial service he founded in 1970. Foree is also president of Grace Bible College, Inc., located in Louisville. He is a veteran of the U.S. Army. Information submitted by Jake Karnes. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1988-2007.
Subjects: Businesses, Education and Educators, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: New Castle, Henry County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Foreign Labor
At the close of the Civil War, Kentucky and other southern states were faced with a labor shortage. The slaves were free and labor stabilization was an ongoing issue. Plantation owners across the south led the movement to bring in foreign labor, claiming it was necessary because paying wages for Negro labor had made the Negro prone to laziness and unreliability. Foreign laborers were sought from the north, Europe, and China. Approximately 3,500 persons, including a small contingency of Chinese immigrants, came to Kentucky, most settling in Louisville. It was not nearly enough to address the labor shortage, however. For more information see A History of Kentucky, by T. D. Clark; and R. T. Birthoff, "Southern Attitudes Toward Immigration, 1865-1914," The Journal of Southern History, vol. 17 (Aug. 1951), pp. 328-360.
Subjects: Immigration
Geographic Region: Kentucky

The Forgotten Kentucky Regiments: United States Colored Troops From Kentucky
The Civil War in Morgan County website.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Morgan County, Kentucky

Former Kentucky Slaves form town near Amherstburg, Ontario, Canada
Start Year : 1817
According to the Abolitionist, as early as 1817 a community of about 150 escaped slaves from Kentucky had made their home in Upper Canada. The former slaves had escaped at various times. They were witnessed by Captain Stuart, who lived in Upper Canada between 1817-1822. When Stuart returned to the area in 1828, the population had doubled. The former slaves had formed a town (name unknown) on a tract of land purchased a few miles from Amherstburg, Canada. For more see p. 37 of the Abolitionist, vol. 1, issue 3 (March 1833) [available at Google Book Search]. Author Betty DeRamus mentions in her book that Amherstburg was a well-known haven for escaped slaves, but the city was not always a safe place for them. For more see Forbidden Fruit, by B. DeRamus; and An Enduring Heritage, by R. E. Reindeau. For earlier accounts of Amherstburg as a receiving station for escaped slaves, see The Underground Railroad from Slavery to Freedom, by W. H. Siebert.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Migration North
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Amherstburg, Ontario, Canada

Fort Knox Officers Training
Start Year : 1947
In 1947 the first desegregated class of army officers was trained at Fort Knox Armory School. In the year 2000, Warren Taylor was the last survivor from that class. For more see M. Woolhouse, "Fort Knox pioneered integrated military," The Courier-Journal, 07/04/2000.
Subjects: Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky

Fort Spring (Fayette County, KY)
Formerly referred to as Slickaway and Reform, the community was located on Versailles Road. The more recent name, Fort Spring, is from a local tavern that had a spring under it; the tavern had been used as a fort during the Civil War. The community was established by white residents, and in 1826 Henry and Patty Sthreshley sold 1 1/2 acres of land to freeman Henry Clark. A few other African Americans moved to the area. Following the Civil War, adjoining land owned by Mr. H. W. Worley may also have been sold to African Americans, which added to the population of the community. By 1882, Fort Spring had 100 African American residents, making them the majority in the community. For more see the Kentucky Atlas & Gazetteer, and Negro Hamlets and Gentlemen Farms: a dichotomous rural settlement pattern in Kentucky's Bluegrass Region, by P. C. Smith.
Subjects: Communities
Geographic Region: Fort Spring (Slickaway, Reform), Fayette County, Kentucky

Foster, Leonard N. "Leo"
Birth Year : 1951
Born in Covington, KY, Leonard Foster was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in 1971 and remained with them until 1976, when he was traded to the New York Mets. He played second and third base and shortstop. Foster ended his baseball career in 1977. For more see Leo Foster in the Baseball Almanac.

 
Subjects: Baseball
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky

Fowler, Sharon
Birth Year : 1947
Fowler is mayor of West Buechel. She is in her third term; she was elected mayor in 1994 and re-elected in 1998. She was also on the West Buechel City Council from 1990-1994. Fowler is owner and director of Paradise Island Academy Day Care Center. West Buechel, located in Jefferson County, KY, was incorporated into a 6th class city in 1952. For more see S. Smith, "W. Buechel mayoral matchup looks familiar," Courier-Journal, 10/11/2006, Neighborhoods section, p. 1C.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Mayors
Geographic Region: West Buechel, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Fox, Robert and Samuel
The Fox brothers owned a grocery store and one of the three leading undertaking businesses in Louisville, KY. Their undertaking business would eventually be merge with that of J. H. Taylor. In 1870, the Fox brothers and Horace Pearce went against the public streetcar policies when they boarded the Central Passenger's car at Tenth and Walnut Streets. All three men were removed from the car and jailed and their case would be resolved in U.S. District Court. Robert Fox (b.1846) and Samuel Fox (b.1849 ), both born in Kentucky, were the sons of Albert and Margaret Fox. For more see History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, by W. H. Gibson, Sr.; and the entry Streetcar Demonstrations.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Businesses, Civic Leaders, Jim Crow, Corrections and Police, Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Railroad, Railway, Trains, Court Cases
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Francis, Delma J.
Birth Year : 1953
Francis is from Lancaster, KY, the daughter of Marie Terry Francis and George Francis, Jr. She is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University and the University of Louisville. Francis was the first African American editor of the Eastern Kentucky publication, The Eastern Progress, from 1974 to 1975. She was the first woman to work on the city desk of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, in Richmond, Virginia, and is presently a reporter with the Minneapolis Star Tribune. For more see H. Hagans, "First black Progress editor faced more than deadlines," The Eastern Progress Online, 02/23/2006; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1992-2006.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers
Geographic Region: Lancaster, Garrard County, Kentucky / Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky

Francis, Edward and Eliza
Edward Francis (b.1830 in VA) was a former slave of Edy Francis from Madison County, KY. He enlisted in the Union Army in 1864 and was trained at Camp Nelson, KY. He was a member of the 114th Infantry Regiment, U.S. Colored Troops. Francis and Eliza (b.1839 in KY), the parents of three children, could not read or write, yet much of what is known about them comes from the letters that were written for them while Edward was away in the Army. Their letters are an example of how soldiers kept in touch with their families when neither were literate. When the war ended, Edward Francis' unit was transferred to Texas, where they served for two additional years. When he returned home to Madison County, Francis and Eliza had two more children. Edward married Susan Miller in 1893. For more see M. Meyers and C. Propes, "I Don't fear nothing in the shape of man," Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, vol. 101, issue 4 (2003), pp. 457-478.
Subjects: Freedom, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Virginia / Madison County, Kentucky

Frankfort, KY, Klan Violence
Start Year : 1871
On March 25, 1871, a letter was sent to the U.S. Congress asking for protection from the Ku Klux Klan for the newly-freed African Americans in Kentucky. The letter was from Colored citizens of Frankfort & vicinity, signed by Henry Marrs, a teacher; Henry Lynn, a livery stable keeper; N. N. Trumbo, a grocer; Samuel Damsey; B. Smith, a blacksmith; and B. T. Crampton, a barber. The letter contained a list of 116 incidents of beatings, shootings, hangings, tarring and feathering, and other violence that had taken place around the state. For more see Documentary History of the Negro People in the United States, vol. 2, ed. by H. Aptheker.
Subjects: Barbers, Businesses, Freedom, Lynchings, Blacksmiths
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Franklin Colored Benevolent Society No.1 (Franklin, KY)
Start Year : 1874
The Act to incorporate the organization was passed by the Kentucky General Assembly in February 1874, with R. R. Burnley as president; William Butts, vice president; John H. Perdue [or Purdue], secretary; and King Boisseau as treasurer. The organization purpose was "intellectual, moral, and social improvement of its members, and works of benevolence and charity." [John H. Purdue may be the great great grandfather of John J. Johnson. For more see Chapter 486 of the 1874 publication Acts Passed at the...Session of the General Assembly, pp. 543-544 [available at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Grandparents, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Franklin, Simpson County, Kentucky

Free Blacks, Negroes, and Mulattoes in the 1800 Kentucky Tax Lists
Start Year : 1800
The Second Census of Kentucky 1800 was constructed from the tax lists in the existing Kentucky counties. Below are the names of free Blacks, Negroes and Mulattoes, all taxpayers who were included in the listing. They were among the 739 free Colored persons in Kentucky in 1800. There may have been others named on the lists, but their race was not noted.

  • Robert Anderson, Barren County
  • William Anderson, Barren County
  • John Baker, Nelson County
  • William Blakey, Barren County
  • Abner Bourne, Barren County
  • Peter Brass, Franklin County
  • William Cousins, Nelson County
  • William Daily, Fayette County
  • Isam Davis, Lincoln County
  • Adam Evens, Lincoln County
  • Michael Jackson, Lincoln County
  • Abraham Levaugh, Warren County
  • John Lewis, Jefferson County
  • Bristo Mathews, Lincoln County
  • Edward Mathews, Lincoln County
  • Gloster Rawls, Nelson County
  • George Stafford, Gallatin County
  • Moses Tyre, Bullitt County
  • William Walker, Nelson County

Subjects: Early Settlers, Freedom, Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county A-C], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county D-J], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county K-M], Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870 [by county N-Z]
Geographic Region: Kentucky Counties: Bullitt, Fayette, Franklin, Gallatin, Jefferson, Lincoln, Nelson, Warren

Free, Lee
Birth Year : 1891
Lee Free was a horseman who was born in Hopkinsville, KY. In 1915, he was among 30 horsemen, mostly Americans, who were returning to the United States aboard the ship Bohemian from Liverpool, England, on March 17, 1915 [source: List or Manifest of Alien Passengers for the United States]. Lee Free was 24 years and 4 months old. He lived at 318 Jefferson Street in Louisville, KY. He was 5'8" tall and had a scar on his right cheek.
Subjects: Jockeys, Horsemen, Horse Breeders, Trainers, & The Derby
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / England / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Free Persons of Color in Fayette County, Kentucky, 1838
Information taken from the Directory of the City of Lexington and County of Fayette For 1838 & '39, by J. P. B. Mac Cabe.
Subjects: Directories, Freedom
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Free Persons of Color in Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky, 1859
Information taken from Lexington City Directory. Williams' Lexington Directory, City Guide, and Business Mirror, Volume 1 - 1859-60, compiled by C. S. Williams.
Subjects: Directories, Freedom
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Free Station (Owen County, KY)
Start Year : 1847
Tom Frazier was the first slave to be freed in Owen County, KY, in 1825. He had been owned by members of the Hardin family and Benjamin F. Hawkins. The next slave to be freed was Tobias in 1827; he had been owned by Alexander Guthrie. By 1843, there were 1,143 slaves in Owen County, including those owned by Susannah Herndon Rogers. In 1847, Rogers' will emancipated her slaves, and her property was divided into 10 lots and given to her former slaves, all of whom had the last name Locust. The community that was formed became known as Free Station. In 1849, it became law in Kentucky that a security bond must be posted for every slave who was freed. The law would stall the emancipation of Rogers' brother's slaves [James Herndon]. For more see Mountain Island In Owen County, Kentucky: the settlers and their churches, by J. C. Bryant.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom
Geographic Region: Free Station, Owen County, Kentucky

Freemen Community on Samana Bay (Dominican Republic)
Birth Year : 1824
In 1824, an isolated community of about 200 freemen (or escaped slaves) from Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Kentucky was established on Samana Bay as a colony of the Haitian Republic. It has also been written that Haitian President Jean Pierre Boyer conspired with abolitionists in Pennsylvania to finance the passage and resettlement of the former slaves as a strategic move to strengthen his rule. Boyer and his forces had overthrown the previous government of Spanish Haiti in 1822 and slavery had again been abolished. There were a series of rebellions, and Boyer was overthrown in 1843. Haiti became independent in 1844. The Dominican Republic also became independent from Haiti in 1844, and the territory included Samana Bay and the American inhabitants. There would be several attempts by Haiti to retake the Dominican Republic, and the Dominican government sought protection by attempting to become annexed to either Spain or the U.S. During the American Civil War, there were plans by the Lincoln Administration to purchase the country, but the plans fell through. In 1874, Samana bay and inlet were purchased by an American company, backed by the U.S. Government. Samana was redeveloped into what was to become an independent country. The ownership lasted for one year; the company overextended its finances and was not able to pay the annual rent owed to the U.S. Government, so the treaty was revoked. At various points throughout the 19th Century and the early 20th Century, the U.S. Government pursued the idea of annexing the Dominican Republic and leasing Samana Bay to be used as a naval station; Congress vetoed the plans. The U.S. did not establish a presence in the Caribbean until the Spanish-American War. For more see American Negro Songs, by J. W. Works; Central and South America, by A. H. Keane and C. R. Markham [available full-text at Google Book Search]; and Adventure Guide to the Dominican Republic, by H. S. Pariser. See Samana.org website.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Migration Outside the U.S. and Canada, Colonies, Colonization
Geographic Region: Kentucky / South Carolina / Pennsylvania / Haiti / Samana Bay, Dominican Republic

Freetown, Kentucky
Start Year : 1846
Located on the Kentucky-Tennessee border, around 1846 it became the first African American community in Monroe County, KY. The community members were the freed slaves of William Howard, who gave them 400 acres to build homes. Albert Martin gave the land for the church, which was also built in 1846. For more see Mount Vernon AME Church in African American Historic Places by B. L. Savage and C. D. Shull.
Subjects: Communities, Freedom, Kentucky African American Churches
Geographic Region: Freetown (Gamaliel), Monroe County, Kentucky

Friday, Rufus M.
In May of 2011, Rufus M. Friday was named the president and publisher of the Lexington Herald-Leader. He is the first African American named to the post. Rufus M. Friday had been the president and publisher of the Tri-City Herald in Washington (state), beginning in 2005. While there, he was named the 2010 Martin Luther King Jr. Spirit Award winner. Rufus M. Friday is a native of North Carolina. He is a graduate of North Carolina State University and played tight end on the football team. For more information see D. Foster, "Herald's publisher wins MLK Jr. Spirit Award," Tri-City Herald, 01/17/2010 [online]; and J. Patton, "Herald-Leader publisher Tim Kelly to retire; Rufus Friday to succeed him," Lexington Herald-Leader, 05/06/2011, p.A1. This entry was suggested by Lisa A. Brown.

See video of Rufus M. Friday at Bethel Church Transformation 2008 Conference, on YouTube.

See video of Rufus M. Friday on Connections with Renee Shaw, program #719 at Kentucky Educational Television.

Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration West, Migration East
Geographic Region: Gastonia, North Carolina / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Frye, Helen Fisher
Birth Year : 1919
Helen F. Frye was born in Danville, KY. In 1963 she became the first African American woman to receive a library science degree from the ALA-accredited library school at the University of Kentucky. [James R. O'Rourke graduated from the UK Library School in 1957, and may be the first African American graduate.] Frye and two other students attempted to attend a University of Kentucky extension class taught in Danville in 1954, but they were forced to drop the class because they were African Americans. Though the university graduate program was integrated in 1949, it only applied to students who took classes on campus. Frye filed a lawsuit, but it was dropped when none of the other African American students would testify that they too had been forced to drop the extension class. Later Frye went to the University of Kentucky campus to earn her library degree. In 2006, she was nominated by Danville native Dr. Frank X. Walker for the University of Kentucky's Lyman T. Johnson Award, then chosen as one of the two recipients by the UK Libraries and the UK School of Library and Information Science to receive the award for her many years of service as a librarian, teacher, and civil rights activist. One of her oral history interviews is included in the Civil Rights Movement in the Kentucky Oral History Project at the Kentucky Historical Society. There is an oral history interview in the Centre College Special Collections in Danville. There is an oral history interview at Eastern Kentucky University that was done by David R. Davis as part of the Danville School Integration Project. There are two oral history interviews at the University of Kentucky, one in the African American Alumni Project, and one in the Lexington Urban League Project. Among her many accomplishments, Helen Fisher Frye helped organize the first integrated production on the Centre College campus in 1951: Porgy and Bess, featuring Danville native R. Todd Duncan. Helen F. Frye was one of the first African American students to enroll at Centre College. In addition to her library degree, she earned her B.A. in elementary education at Kentucky State University in 1942, and an M.A. in secondary education from Indiana University in 1949. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones; Fifty Years of the University of Kentucky African-American Legacy, 1949-1999; and Helen F. Frye's oral history interviews.

Access Interview Read the transcript and listen to the oral history interview [Firefox browser] at Eastern Kentucky University with Helen Fisher Frye interviewed by David R. Davis, at Kentucky Digital Library.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Fryson, Sim E.
Birth Year : 1947
Since 1995, Fryson has been the CEO and president of Sim Fryson Motor Co. Inc., located in Ashland, KY. The company was listed among the Top 100 Black Businesses by Black Enterprise Magazine. Fryson, the second African American to own a Mercedes-Benz dealership, has more than 30 years experience in auto sales. Born in Charleston, WV, he served in Vietnam with the U.S. Air Force. He is a graduate of General Motors Institute, the University of Detroit, and West Virginia State University. For more see D. E. Malloy, "Sim Fryson in company of champions," Herald Dispatch (West Virginia), 02/27/05, p. 12G; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1990-2007.
Subjects: Automobile Dealerships and Factories, Businesses, Migration West, Military & Veterans
Geographic Region: Charleston, West Virginia / Ashland, Boyd County, Kentucky

Fulton KY's Historic African American Railroaders Oral Histories & More
The following information is from the Fulton KY's Historic African American Railroders website.

 

"The Oral History Project is a series of ten oral history interviews with Fulton’s Illinois Central workers and/or family members,  that focuses on the everyday lives of the African American Illinois Central Workers of the Historic Fulton KY Railroad Station. The 1940 -1970 heyday of the railroad is the primary era of interest for the project, though some of the subjects began their work on the railroad, earlier and some later.

 

The interview videos and 240 pages of photos and backstories are archived by the Kentucky Oral History Commission for 300 years and the videos are available for continuing research and general public use (a research fee is charged) as interested."

 

  See list of interviews and photographs at Fulton KY's Historic African American Railroaders Oral History website.
Subjects: Railroad, Railway, Trains, Oral History Collections
Geographic Region: Fulton, Fulton County, Kentucky

Fuqua, Harvey
Birth Year : 1929
Harvey Fuqua was born in Louisville, KY, the son of Lillian Fuqua. [Chicago has also been given as his birth location.] He was married to Gwen Gordy, a sister of Berry Gordy. Fuqua, who is still recording today, has had an extensive career as a singer, songwriter, record producer, talent scout, developer, and manager. He was owner of Tri-Phi Records and Harvey Records and helped develop Motown Records in Detroit, MI. He founded the Moonglows, a doo-wop group, with Bobby Lester (who was from Louisville, KY), Alexander Graves, and Prentiss Barnes; he sometimes shared the lead vocals with Lester. Fuqua and Lester had sung together in high school, and Fuqua had sung with Barnes in Cleveland when they were members of the group, Crazy Sounds, the group who would become the Moonglows. In Detroit, the Moonglows gave Marvin Gaye his start, and Fuqua helped produce the song "Sexual Healing" plus a number of other songs by other artists [Gaye's father was from KY]. The Moonglows were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000. He served as the road manager for Smokey Robinson and is credited with discovering Sylvester, for whom he produced the single "You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)." Fuqua left Motown for RCA Records in the early 1970s. This entry was suggested by Tiffany Bowman, a family member of Harvey Fuqua's who lives in Louisville, KY. For more see Harvey Fuqua, a Wikipedia entry; Fuqua performing "Don't Be Afraid of Love" on YouTube; the Harvey Fuqua entry in The Encyclopedia of Popular Music, 3rd. ed., edited by C. Larkin; Notable Black American Men, Book II, by J. C. Smith; and Encyclopedia of Rock, by P. Hardy, et al.

Subjects: Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Cleveland, Ohio / Detroit, Michigan

Gaines, Wallace A.
Birth Year : 1858
Gaines moved to Covington, KY, from Dayton, OH. In 1882 he was appointed a U.S. Storekeeper by Secretary of the Treasury John Sherman. In 1892 he was elected a state delegate-at-large to represent the Republican State League at Buffalo, NY. In an 1898 letter from Sam J. Roberts to President McKinley, Gaines was referred to as "the most trusted Lieutenant among the Negroes in the campaigning for delegates and electoral votes and is the recognized Negro Leader of Kentucky..." Sam J. Roberts was editor of the Lexington Leader and a Republican political operative. For more see Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson. Quote from p.303 of The Racial Attitudes of American Presidents, from Abraham Lincoln to Theodore Roosevelt by G. Sinkler.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Migration South
Geographic Region: Dayton, Ohio / Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / New York

Galbreath, Haywood
Birth Year : 1956
Haywood Galbreath was born in Mayfield, KY, oldest of six children. When he was 13 years old, he was adopted by a white family. In 1977 he hosted a weekly affairs radio program in Mayfield. Galbreath would become a photojournalist, an actor, and a stuntman. In 1986 he established the H. G. Star-1 Production Co. and H. G. Star-1 News Photos. In 1997 the H. G. Star Company was the first African American-owned news photo service to record the Emmy awards from inside the auditorium. Galbreath is the author of The O. J. Simpson Murder Trial: the complete photo journal of the trial of the century. For more see O. J. Simpson Facts and Fictions, by D. M. Hunt; Minority Photo - Journalism Institute (MPJI); and Anatomy of a Trial, by J. Hayslett.

See photo image of Haywood Galbreath at the MPJI website.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Authors, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Photographers, Photographs, Radio
Geographic Region: Mayfield, Graves County, Kentucky

Gambling Houses (Newport, KY)
Beginning in the late 1800s, Covington and Newport, KY, were known for their gambling and prostitution houses and organized crime. Newport was referred to as "sin city." One of the African American gambling houses in the area was the Alibi Club, owned by Melvin Clark in 1952. The club was acquired by Screw Andrews (Frank Andriello) when Clark was kicked out of Newport after shooting and killing Andrews' casino manager. Clark returned to Newport in 1954 and opened the Coconut Grove. He was later killed by Screw Andrews. Other casinos and clubs that catered to African Americans were the Congo, the Copa, Golden Lounge, the Rocket, York Streets, the Sportsman, and the Varga. For more see Newport, the real sin city, by J. Laudeman; Syndicate wife: the story of Ann Drahmann Coppola, by H. Messick; Sin City Revisited: a case study of the official sanctioning of organized crime in an "open city", by M. DeMichele, G. Potter, Justice and Police Studies, Eastern Kentucky University; Cathie John's website, Gambler shot gangland style in Newport; and D. Baker, "Builder was in business with kin of crime figures," Kentucky Post, 11/02/2002, News section, p. K1.
Subjects: Gambling, Lottery
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky

Garden of Eden (Fort Worth, TX)
Start Year : 1860
Garden of Eden is a historically Black community in Fort Worth, TX, that was settled by freed slaves from Kentucky and Tennessee around 1860. There were 54 households along the Trinity River. Today, the community has a population of 20, descendants of the original settlers. The Garden of Eden had fallen on hard times until the neighborhood association was developed in 2004. Since then the area has been designated a historic neighborhood. Garden of Eden received the 2004 Neighborhood of the Year Award. A cookbook, Recipes from Out to the House, contains a history of the community. In 2008, the city of Fort Worth began adding water and sewer lines to the church; others rely on septic tanks. For more see J. Milligan, "Historically black neighborhood reclaiming paradise," Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 03/10/2008, Domestic News section; and Garden of Eden Neighborhood Association website.

See photo images and additional information about the Garden of Eden community in the article "In the Garden of Edan," by T. Vita, 02/25/2005, at the Preservation website.
Subjects: Communities, Migration West
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Tennessee / Garden of Eden, Fort Worth, Texas

Gardner, Carwell
Birth Year : 1966
Born in Louisville, KY, Carwell Gardner played high school football at Trinity High School in Louisville, where he was a first-team all-state linebacker. He played his college ball first at the University of Kentucky, from 1985 to 1988, where he was the third leading tackler for the 1986-1987 season. After a series of run-ins, disagreements, and an injury, Gardner transferred to the University of Louisville (U of L). He sat out one year before joining the U of L football team as a fullback for the 1989-1990 season, rushing and receiving for 500 yards. Gardner was selected in the second round of the 1990 NFL draft by the Buffalo Bills and ended his professional career with the San Diego Chargers in 1997. He played in 101 total games, rushing for 749 yards. He is the brother of Donnie Gardner. For more see J. Clay, "Defensive end Carwell Gardner leaves UK's football team," Lexington Herald-Leader, 03/22/1988; and Carwell Gardner at the ESPN.com website.

See photo image a stats for Carwell Gardner at the NFL.com website.
Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Gardner, Redondo Lee "Donnie"
Birth Year : 1968
Born in Louisville, KY, Gardner played defensive lineman at Trinity High School there; he was considered among the best high school defensive linemen in Kentucky. Gardner played college ball at the University of Kentucky for four seasons before being dismissed from the team his senior year (in 1989). He had been the only true freshman to letter his first year, and in his final season he was second on the team in sacks with four and eighth on the team with 49 tackles. Gardner was taken in the 7th round of the 1990 NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and played for one season. He is the brother of Carwell Gardner. For more see J. Clay, "Claiborne kicks Donnie Gardner off team," Lexington Herald-Leader, 11/14/1989; and Donnie Gardner at the databaseFootball.com website.
Subjects: Football
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Garrett, Matt
Matt Garrett, the son of Vivian Maddox, was born in Newport, KY. He graduated from Lincoln Grant High School and West Virginia State College [now West Virginia State University]. In 1970 he was the first African American to bowl a 300 game (at the Southland Bowling Alley in Flint, Michigan). Winner of the TNBA National Doubles title and TNBA All Event Title, he was inducted into the Flint Bowling Hall of Fame in 1992. For more see 2001 Award Winner at Greater Flint Afro-American Hall of Fame, a Flint Public Library website.

 
Subjects: Bowlers and Bowling, Migration North
Geographic Region: Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky / Flint, Michigan

Gavlin, Chrystel L. C.
Birth Year : 1968
Chrystel Gavlin is a 1986 graduate of Jessamine County High School in Nicholasville, Kentucky. She earned a B.A. in Elementary Education at the University of St. Francis in Joliet, IL, in 1990 and graduated from the Northern Illinois University College of Law in 1996. She was the Assistant State's Attorney for Dupage County in Wheaton, IL, the second African American to hold that post. In 2001, Gavlin opened her own law practice in Joliet, IL. For more see "February is Black History Month," The Jessamine Journal, 02/23/2006, p. A8.

See photo image of Chrystel Gavlin, Board of Trustees at the University of St. Francis website.
Subjects: Lawyers, Migration North
Geographic Region: Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky / Joliet, Illinois

Gay, Tyson
Birth Year : 1982
Tyson Gay is an outstanding track star from Lexington, KY, the son of Daisy Gay Lowe and Greg Mitchell. He is a graduate of Lafayette High School in Lexington, where he won three State Class 3A 100-meter championships and in 2001 set the standing record of 10.6 seconds. Gay attended Barton Community College in Kansas, where he won the Junior College 100-meter Crown in 2002. His successful career running both the 100 and 200-meter races continued in Arkansas. In 2006, Track and Field ranked Gay 2nd in the world in the 100 and 1st in the 200. At the 2007 USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships, Gay set a new record of 19.62 seconds in the 200, beating the record of 19.66 set by Michael Johnson in 1996. Through the years, he has won a number of competitions around the world. He set an American record of 9.7 seconds in the 100 meter race at the 2009 World Championships, and later that year broke the record again at a competition in Shanghai when he ran the 100 meters in 9.69 seconds. At the 2012 Olympics in London, England, Gay came in 4th in the 100 meter race. Tyson Gay's success continues. For more see M. Maloney, "Catch him if you can - Lexingtonian is split-second away from being world's fastest human," Lexington Herald-Leader, 03/04/2007, Main News section, p. A1; and M. Maloney, "Gay, in a runaway - Lexington native tops Michael Johnson's meet record," Lexington Herald-Leader, 06/25/2007, Sports section, p. D1.

See photo image and additional information about Tyson Gay at the bio.True Story website.
Subjects: Track & Field
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Great Bend, Kansas / Arkansas

Gaylord, Harry A.
Birth Year : 1967
Over more than a century, Harry A. Gaylord was one of the very few African American Kentuckians to become a law librarian; the first was Issac E. Black in 1869. Gaylord, born in Concord, NC, was reared in Lexington, KY, the son of librarian and Kentucky native Ruth B. Gaylord and the late Harry Gaylord. He is a graduate of Lafayette High School (in Lexington) and the Illinois Institute of Technology, where he earned a B.A. in architecture. Finding that the architecture market was on a downswing, Gaylord took a job as a library assistant at a Chicago law firm. After four years of doing legal research (1991-1996), he earned his M.S. in Library Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1997 and was immediately hired as a librarian with the Supreme Court of Illinois in Springfield, IL. Gaylord is presently the librarian at BTSB Bookstore in Jacksonville, IL. Gaylord is an active member of the African American Librarians of Springfield. He is author of several articles in Online Information Review and the tribute "Classie Murray had great career at library," Springfield State Journal-Register (3/20/2007), Editorial section, p. 7. A survey of African American Law Librarians is included in Celebrating Diversity: a legacy of minority leadership in the American Association of law libraries, by C. A. Nicholson, R. J. Hill, and V. E. Garces (2006). Information provided by Harry A. Gaylord and Ruth B. Gaylord.

See photo image of Harry Gaylord at the BTSB Bookstore website.
Subjects: Architects, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration North
Geographic Region: Concord, North Carolina / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Chicago and Springfield, Illinois

Gaylord, Ruth A. Burton
Birth Year : 1938
Born in Richmond, KY, Ruth Gaylord graduated from Richmond High School in 1956, Berea College in 1962, and the University of Kentucky (UK) College of Library and Information Science in 1984. She was first a library assistant for the Lexington (KY) Public Library's "InMobile," a bookmobile that provided library services to children in the Lexington inner-city areas. The service was headquartered at Black and Williams Cultural Center on Georgetown Street. While working full-time, Gaylord was also raising four children and caring for her critically ill husband, who was frequently in the hospital; Mr. Harry Gaylord passed away in 1981. Ruth completed her M.S. in Library Science in 1984, becoming the eight African American to graduate from the UK Library Science program (at the time the College of Library and Information Science) and the first to be employed at the Lexington Public Library. Gaylord said that being the first and only African American librarian at the Lexington Public Library was more of a challenge earlier in her career, but she was determined to succeed. Ruth is not bitter about the past because it was a wise decision for her to attend library school, and she loved being a librarian. She was the Assistant Manager at the Eagle Creek Branch in 2006 when she was nominated by the Lexington Public Library for the Lyman T. Johnson Award. Gaylord was selected by the University of Kentucky Libraries and the School of Library and Information Science as one of two recipients to receive the Lyman T. Johnson Award for her many years of service as a librarian and for her perseverance, dedication, and contributions to the profession. Ruth Burton Gaylord retired from the Lexington Public Library, May 2008. She is the mother of librarian Harry A. Gaylord. For more information see "Profile on Ruth Gaylord," News from Lexington Public Library, Sept./Oct., 1984, p. 3; and "Frye, Gaylord receive Torch Award," Lexington Herald-Leader, 12/06/2006, Communities section, p.D2.

See photo image of Ruth B. Gaylord receiving the Lyman T. Johnson Award in 2006 (with Emmett "Buzz" Burnam and Frank X Walker), a flickr site by nonesuchkid.
Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Community Centers and Cultural Centers
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

General Hospital School of Nursing, Integrated (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1954
In January 1954, the registered nurses training program at the General Hospital School of Nursing in Louisville, KY, was integrated. The last issue to be resolved was housing; the incoming Negro students had been encouraged to live at home rather than move into the student nurses home. The integration had come about with the election of Mayor Andrew Broaddus (1900-1972), a Democrat, who was mayor from 1953-1957. Broaddus had pledged to integrate the program if he were elected mayor. Louisville General Hospital was the teaching and research hospital for the University of Louisville Medical School. Dr. Maurice F. Rabb, Sr. had been added to the hospital staff in 1948 as a part-time resident for advanced work in anesthesiology; Rabb had been practicing medicine in Kentucky for 15 years. He was not allowed to eat in the cafeteria of General Hospital. In 1950, the first Negro student had been accepted into a practical-nurses training class. But prior to 1954, Negro applicants to the registered nursing program had been encouraged to go elsewhere. Once it was mandated the school accept Negro students for this program, the City-County Board of Health declared that Negro students could live in the student nurses home as well. The first three students were Lillian Delores Foxhill, who would be living at home; Latach Mae Scott, who would also be living at home; and Flora M. Ponder, who would be living in the nurses home. For more information see "Louisville policy unsettled on race," New York Times, 02/04/1949, p. 26; "City Hospital will train Negro nurses," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 12/10/1953; "3 Negro student nurses begin school at General," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 02/06/1954; and the Louisville General Hospital Records, which are available at the University of Louisville Libraries Special Collections and Archives.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Nurses, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Giles, Yvonne Y.
Birth Year : 1944
Born in Lexington, KY, Yvonne Giles was the first African American woman elected to the La Grange City Council, in 1986, and then re-elected in 1987. She is the director of the Isaac Hathaway Museum, that was located in the Lexington History Center [the old court house] in Lexington. In July 2011, the Museum moved to Georgetown Street in the Robert H. Williams Cultural Center that is housed in the building that served as the Lexington Colored Orphan Industrial Home. Yvonne Giles is also known as the "Cemetery Lady" because she is one of the leaders in the effort to preserve the history and integrity of African American cemeteries in Lexington. She is the author of Stilled Voices Yet Speak, a history of African Cemetery No.2 in Lexington, KY. She has published many  brochures on African American history in Lexington, and made significant contributions to Lexington tourism publications. For more see "Hopkinsville has 3 blacks on city council," in 1988 Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials, Seventh Report, by the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, p. 25; Y. Giles, "African American Burials; Fayette County's storied past," Ace Weekly (April 26, 2007), p. 9; and M. Davis, "Search for the dead," Lexington Herald-Leader, 04/06/02, Main News section, p. A1. Also see entries for Isaac Scott Hathaway Museum and African Cemetery No. 2.
Subjects: Genealogy, History, Historians, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / La Grange, Oldham County, Kentucky

Gilliam, Joe W., Sr.
Birth Year : 1930
Born in Steubenville, Ohio, Joe Gilliam, Sr. attended Indiana University, West Virginia State College [now West Virginia State University], and graduate school at the University of Kentucky. Gilliam, a well-respected football coach, began his coaching career at Oliver High School in Winchester, KY, in 1951. He was awarded the Kentucky High School Football Association's Coach of the Year title. Gilliam left Kentucky to coach at Jackson State College [now Jackson State University] in Mississippi, where his team won a national championship. He then was an assistant coach at Tennessee State University, from 1963-1981, before becoming the head coach. Gilliam's career record, spanning 35 years, is 254-93-15, with five undefeated teams and five teams that lost only one game. In 2007, Joe Gilliam, Sr. was inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame. He was the father of one of the first African American pro football quarterbacks, Joe Gilliam, Jr. (1950-2000), who was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1972. For more see Shadows of the past, by L. Stout; "Joe Gilliam Sr. targets TSU with age bias suit - former football head coach for Tennessee State University," Jet, 02/08/1993; and Coaching the empty backfield offense, by J. W. Gilliam, Sr.

See photo image and additional information at "TSU Coaching Legend Gilliam, Sr. Honored in Roast," 05/29/2012, a TSU Tigers website.
Subjects: Authors, Fathers, Football
Geographic Region: Steubenville, Ohio / Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky / Mississippi / Tennessee

Gilmore, Artis
Birth Year : 1949
Born in Florida, Artis Gilmore came to Kentucky in 1971 to play center for the Kentucky Colonels of the American Basketball Association (ABA). The 7'2" Gilmore previously played for two years at Gardner-Webb College and had an outstanding playing career at Jacksonville University. He was a first-round draft choice when the Kentucky Colonels selected him. The Kentucky Colonels existed from 1967-1976 and won the 1975 ABA Finals. Gilmore was named rookie of the year and player of the year his first year in the league, was overall league leader in rebounds and had many more accomplishments during his ABA career. In 1976, the ABA and NBA merged, and Gilmore continued his career with several NBA teams. He retired in 1989 as one of the all-time leaders in number of games played and rebounds. For more on Artis Gilmore see Who's Who of Sports Champions (1995). For more about the Kentucky Colonels see Remembering the ABA: Kentucky Colonels.

See photo images and additional information on Artis Gilmore at NBA.com.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Jacksonville, Florida / Kentucky / Boiling Springs, North Carolina

Givens, Jack L. "Goose"
Birth Year : 1956
Jack Givens was born in Lexington, KY. A 6' 4" forward and guard, he scored 41 points while leading the University of Kentucky to the 1978 NCAA Championship. He was a three-time All-SEC player and second leading scorer in the history of the school. Givens was the first African American All-American in Kentucky. He was drafted by the Atlanta Hawks and played for two years. Jack Givens is a brother to Reuben Givens and the newphew of Lou Johnson. For more see Jack Givens at databaseBasketball.com.

See photo image and additional information about jack Givens at bigbluehistory.net.

Access Interview Read about the Jack L. Givens oral history interviews available at the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, item records in the SPOKE Database.
Subjects: Basketball
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Givens, Mrs. Fanny Rosalind Hicks and James Edward Givens
Mrs. Fanny R. Hicks Givens was an artist, songwriter, educator, and police matron. She was born in 1872 in Chicago, IL; her parents were Kentucky natives who had migrated North. In the early 1890s, Givens was living in Louisville, KY, she was head of the art department at State University [later known as Simmons University, KY]. The art department had 23 students and their works were exhibited at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. She painted a portrait of John R. Walter, Minister of Madagascar and presented it to President Harrison. The portrait was hung in the White House. In 1895, Fanny R. Hicks married James Edward Givens. James Givens was born in 1861 in Greenwood, VA, the son of Jefferson and Mary Ann Dickerson Givens. James Givens was a graduate of Harvard College. He arrived in Louisville in 1892 to become a Latin and Greek instructor at State University. He was later a Latin and English professor at Louisville Colored High School [later known as Louisville Central High School]. He was founder of New South, a weekly newspaper published in Louisville beginning in 1894. From 1898-1900, James E. Givens was the second president of the State Normal School for Colored Persons [later known as Kentucky State University]. He was a storekeeper when he died of typhoid fever in 1910 at his home, 507 Jacob Street, in Louisville, KY, according to the Kentucky Death Records. James Givens was buried in the Eastern Cemetery in Louisville. Prior to his death, he was attended by Dr. Ellis D. Whedbee, husband to Bertha Whedbee, the first African American woman to be employed by the Louisville Police Department. In 1920, the Givens family was living on Finzer Street in Louisville, KY: Mrs. Givens, her daughter Fanny, niece Evaline Williams, and nephew James E. Givens. Mrs. Fanny R. Givens was a portrait artist, and in 1915 she attempted to raise $100,000 to build an Art Institute for the development of Negro artists. She was also a songwriter, on March 23, 1908, she had received a copyright for the words and the song titled "Hallelujah! Christ is Risen," [C 177237]. She was also chair of the Ways and Means Committee in Louisville. She sailed to Liberia, Africa, leaving from the Baltimore port aboard the ship Byron, December 10, 1921, according to her passport application. In 1923, Mrs. Givens and her daughter Fanny were missionaries for the National Baptist Convention, and were to sail to Sweden, the British Isles, France, Holland, Belgium, Denmark, and Germany, according to their U.S. Passport. They were to leave the Port of New York on June 30, 1923, sail to their destinations aboard the Olympic, and return to the U.S. within one year. In 1930, Mrs. Givens would become one of the first African American women to be hired by the Louisville Police Department. Fanny R. Hicks Givens died of breast cancer in Louisville in 1947, according to her death certificate, she was buried in Eastern Cemetery. For more see Mrs. Fanny R. Givens on p.202 in The Crisis, v.18, no.4, August 1919, [available at Google Book Search]; p.366 in Catalog of Copyright Entries, new series volume 3, nos 1-5, January 1908, by Library of Congress Copyright Office [available at Google Book Search]; Black Higher Education in Kentucky, 1879-1930 by L. H. Williams; "Mrs. Fannie R. Givens" on pp.252-253 of the Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky; and the Louisville Division of Police by M. O. Childress, Sr. See the James Edward Givens entry in Harvard College, Class of 1892-1896, Secretary's Report, No.11 by Harvard College [available at Google Book Search]; see "James Edward Givens" entry in Harvard College Class of 1892, Twenty-fifth Anniversary Report, 1892-1917 by Harvard College; and "Prominent Colored Educator" in The Mt. Sterling Advocate, 03/23/1910, p.1. See photo image of Fanny R. Givens at Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Great Lakes Region website.

Subjects: Artists, Fine Arts, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Corrections and Police, Religion & Church Work, Migration South
Geographic Region: Chicago, Illinois / Greenwood, Virginia / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Givens, Reuben, and Ruth Newby Givens Roper
Givens and Roper are the parents of actress Robin Givens, former wife of heavyweight boxer Mike Tyson, and Stephanie Givens, former professional tennis player. Both Reuben Givens and Ruth Newby Givens Roper are Lexington natives. Reuben was a star baseball and basketball player at Douglass and Lafayette High Schools. He was coached by Charles H. Livisay at Douglass. In 1962, Givens averaged 24.7 points in basketball, winning the Fayette County scoring title, but he did not receive the trophy after the sponsor backed out. He was the first African American basketball player at Lafayette; Douglass High was closed as part of the school system's integration plan. Givens graduated from Lafayette in 1964, the same year he married Ruth Newby. The family lived in New York, where Reuben Givens was tending his options as a professional basketball and baseball player. Ruth had been living in New York with her mother since her parents had divorced when she was a small child; she met Reuben while visiting family in Lexington. Reuben and Ruth Givens divorced in 1969. Reuben Givens, who still resides in New York, is the son of Betty and Dave Givens, the nephew of professional baseball player Lou Johnson, and a brother of University of Kentucky basketball player Jack Givens. For more see the Lexington Herald-Leader articles: B. Reed, "Robin Givens' dad a former Douglass High star," 10/20/1988, Sports section, p. C1, and "Robin Givens' parents are Lexington natives," 10/15/1988, Sports section, p. D17.
Subjects: Baseball, Basketball, Fathers, Migration North, Mothers
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / New York

Glenn, James H., III, "Jimmy"
From Owensboro, KY, in 1999, James H. "Jimmy" Glenn, III, was the first African American to become president of the University of Kentucky Student Government Association. He also received the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government Distinguished Citizen Award. For more see the Kentucky Kernel, 03/24/00.

See video of Jimmy Glenn as UK Student Government President on YouTube.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Glover, Clarence E.
Birth Year : 1947
Clarence E. Glover was born in Horse Cave, KY, and played basketball and baseball at Caverna High School. He was named All-State and All-American in basketball. Glover played college basketball at Western Kentucky University and helped lead the team to the 1971 NCAA Final Four. The team lost to Villanova in double overtime, 92-89. Glover was a 6'8" forward and averaged 8.4 points per game. He was the first round, tenth pick, of the Boston Celtics in the 1971 NBA Draft, and played for one season, averaging 2.6 points per game. He played with the Hartford Capitols in the CBA (Continental Basketball Association) from 1972-1974. Clarence Glover went on to become a high school teacher, basketball coach, and a high school principal. He earned his graduate degree from Butler University, and he is a co-founder of Frenchburg Academy, an alternative school in Frenchburg, KY. He is the assistant principal of Farnsley Middle School in Louisville, KY. Clarence Glover was inducted into the 2007 WKU Athletic Hall of Fame. For more see Clarence Glover at Basketball-Reference.com; "All-Star fever hits Bowling Green" at visitbgky.com; "What the Hell Happened to...Clarence Glover?" at the celticslife website.

See photo images and video with Clarence Glover at the celticslife website.
Subjects: Basketball, Education and Educators, Migration North
Geographic Region: Horse Cave, Hart County, Kentucky / Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Frenchburg, Menifee County, Kentucky

Glover, James M. "Juicy"
Birth Year : 1931
Born in Sawmill Hollow near Cumberland, KY, Glover played high school football at Benham Colored High in Benham, KY. He attended Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] where he was an All-American linebacker, graduating in 1956. He was drafted into the NFL and became its first African American center. Glover returned to Kentucky and became the assistant football coach at Kentucky State University. He was inducted into the school's Athletics Hall of Fame in 1975. For more see Shadows of the Past, by L. Stout; and C. Carlton, "Coal Country Common Bond," Lexington Herald-Leader, 08/31/1997.
Subjects: Football, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Sawmill Hollow, Cumberland County, Kentucky

Godfrey, Linda R.
Birth Year : 1947
Linda R. Godfrey, born in Lexington, KY, has been a leader on several fronts since graduating in 1965 from old Henry Clay High School [on Main Street], where she was a member of the second integrated class to graduate from the school. Godfrey, a nurse, has worked at several locations in Lexington and is presently a case manager and diabetes nurse specialist at the Veterans Affairs (VA) Hospital off Cooper Drive, providing outreach and care coordination for returning combat veterans. She is a retired Army Nurse, having served (1985-2000) with the 475th MASH hospital unit out of Frankfort, KY. Godfrey also taught health education classes at multiple military hospitals throughout the U.S. and in Japan, Ecuador, and Barbados. She also served as an Army nurse in Saudi Arabia and Iraq during Operation Desert Storm in 1991. She received an Army commendation medal and has received a number of awards for her work with veterans, including the Federal Woman of the Year in 2000. In Lexington, Godfrey was a board member of Hospice when the program was being developed in 1977, coordinating the volunteers. For 13 years she taught pediatric nursing and basic medical surgical nursing at Kentucky State University and today is a part-time lecturer for the clinical labs and nursing programs. Godfrey also teaches health education and diabetes classes throughout the year at local churches. She has served two terms as president of the Northside Neighborhood Association, one of the oldest and largest neighborhood associations in Lexington. Godfrey, one of the original members, is past chairperson of the Historic Preservation Commission of the Fayette-Urban County Government and is completing her second term as vice-chair of the Fayette-Urban County Planning Commission. Linda Godfrey is a graduate of Appalachian School of Practical Nursing [which was on Warren Court in Lexington, KY], where she earned her LPN degree in 1968. In 1972, she earned her RN degree from Lexington Community College [now Bluegrass Community and Technical College] and in 1980 graduated with honors from the University of Kentucky College of Nursing. She is a charter member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, Delta Psi Chapter. Godfrey, who grew up in Kinkeadtown, attends the Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Pricetown, founded by her great grandfather, Matthew Garner. Pricetown is one of the Negro hamlets founded at the end of slavery. This entry was submitted by William Anthony Goatley with detailed information from Linda Godfrey.

 

Access InterviewLisen to the online interview with Lind R. Godfrey (Part 1 and Part 2), interviewed by Mike Jones, 07/27/2002, at the Kentucky Historical Society website.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Communities, Education and Educators, Kentucky African American Churches, Medical Field, Health Care, Military & Veterans, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations, Nurses, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents, Grandparents
Geographic Region: Kinkeadtown, Pricetown, Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Iraq / Japan / Ecuador / Barbados

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