Complete A-Z list

Complete list of sources

Recent Additions / Updates

About NKAA

NKAA Brochure

African American Library Directors in the USA

Links of Interest




staff only

University of Kentucky Libraries

Notable Kentucky African Americans Database

<Women's Groups and Organizations>

Return to search page.

African American Library Employees, WPA, NYA, & Kentucky, 1940
Start Year : 1940
Though Louisville, KY, had been a leader in the training of Negro librarians beginning in 1912, by 1940 those efforts had come to an end. The training program at the Louisville Western Branch Library ended in 1931. Also gone were the 1932 library training program started by Eliza Atkins [Gleason] at the Louisville Municipal College and the 1936 state training agency housed at the Municipal College for the training of Negro library employees [source: Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky by R. F. Jones, pp. 94-95]. The continuation of the Western Branch library training program at Hampton Institute Library School ended in 1939 [now Hampton University]. The Atlanta University library school would open in 1941 [now Clark Atlanta University]. In 1940 President Franklin D. Roosevelt was reelected, the country was still experiencing the Great Depression with record unemployment, and in Europe, it was the second year of what would become known as World War II. Employment was hard to come by, including library jobs, though Louisville was still the one location in Kentucky that offered the most employment opportunities for Negro librarians and library employees, which included teens and young adult library assistants who were hired via the National Youth Administration (NYA). Some of the adult librarians and library assistants were hired via the Work Projects Administration. Changes had taken place with the federal programs by 1940; the NYA, a New Deal program created during President Franklin D. Roosevelt's first term, was no longer a part of the WPA; it moved to the Federal Security Agency with the passage of the Reorganization Act of 1939. Also in 1939, the Works Progress Administration was renamed the Work Projects Administration; both were referred to as the WPA. The WPA was a New Deal agency (a federal assistance program) that employed mostly men for public works projects. The WPA Library projects mostly hired women. The library projects were sponsored by the public library commissions or boards of education in the participating states. There was a qualified workforce in Kentucky: the Negro librarians were some of the most educated women in the state and the race. Below are the names, education levels, and additional information about African Americans in and from Kentucky who were employed as librarians and library assistants in 1940; WPA and NYA workers are indicated. - - [sources: 1940 U.S. Federal Census; Wilson Bulletin for Librarians, April 1938; and Library Extension Under the WPA, by E. B. Stanford]. [See also NKAA entries for the National Youth Administration (Kentucky), Colored Libraries, and African American Schools].

 

NYA=National Youth Administration

WPA=Work Projects Administration

 

Anna Allen (b. 1924), daughter of Booker Z. and Viola Allen / completed 8th grade / Lancaster, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Anne Anderson (b. 1907), wife of Charles W. Anderson, Jr. / completed 4th year of college / Frankfort, KY / Librarian, Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University]

Alice Baker (b. 1924), daughter of Lone and Nellie Baker / completed 9th grade / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Beulah Bolan (b. 1891), widow / completed 2nd year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public school

Gwendolyn Blakley (b. 1918), daughter of William and Martha Blakley / completed 3rd year of college / Chicago, IL (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, reading project

Lorella Bradford (b. 1917), grandniece of Charles Batts / completed 3rd year of college / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, college

Jesse M. Brashear (b. 1922), daughter of John W. and Fanny Brashear / completed 9th grade / Hardin County, KY / Library Assistant, school

Frances Bush (b. 1909), daughter of Brize and Nettie Bush / completed 1st year of college / Cincinnati, OH (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, public library

Sallie Churchville (b. 1904), single / completed 4th year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public library

Minnie Cooper (b. 1884), widow / completed 3rd year of college / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, public library

James Cowherd (b. 1916), son of Lee and Stella Cowherd / completed 12th grade / Indianapolis, IN (born in Kentucky) / Library Assistant, NYA Literary Project

Bessie Crenshaw (b. 1920), daughter of Samuel and Bessie Crenshaw / completed 1st year of college / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Anna Dell (b. 1896), divorced / completed 4th year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public school

Julius Dickerson (b. 1909), divorced / completed 3rd year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, WPA, public library

Thelma Dunlap (b. 1923), daughter of Johnie Ross / completed 11th grade / Paducah, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Gertrude Durett (b. 1911), single / completed 4th year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, Toy Library

Clara Frank (b. 1902), single / completed 10th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, WPA

Sophia Freeman (b. 1898), widow / completed 12 grade / Indianapolis, IN (born in Kentucky) / Library Assistant, high school

Thelma P. Froman (b. 1923), daughter of John Des and Minnie Froman / completed 11th grade / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Wyetta Gilmore (b. 1906), married / completed 4th year of college / Indianapolis, IN (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, public library

Vivian Glass (b. 1904), divorced / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, public library

Lillian C. Hall (b. 1891), wife of John Wesley Hall / completed 4th year of college / Indianapolis, IN (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, Attucks High School

Willa Hall (b. 1918), daughter of Bessie and Gabie Hall / completed 1st year of college / Indianapolis, IN (born in Kentucky) / Library Assistant, NYA Project

Margaret Hampton (b. 1916), single / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public library

Rachel D. Harris (b. 1869), widow / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public library

Beatrice Hatchett (b. 1921), daughter of Elisha Hatchett / completed 12th grade / Henderson, KY / Library Assistant, school work program

Hattie Hays(b. 1886), widow / completed 12th grade / Fulton County, KY / Librarian, school project

Robert Jackson (b. 1911), husband of Naomi Jackson / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, WPA Recreation Center

Marjorie Johnson (b. 1906), married / completed 6th year of college / Paducah, KY / Librarian, school

Mary Jones (b. 1919), single / completed 10th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, WPA Library

Cordelia Knight (b. 1920), daughter of Patrick and Emma Knight / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, Municipal College Library

Naomi Lattimore (b. 1904), wife of John A. C. Lattimore / completed 5th year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Illinois) / Librarian, public and college libraries

Hariett Lawson (b. 1907), single / completed 4th year of college / Gary, Indiana (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, public school

Evelyn Lewis (b. 1914), single / completed 1st year of college / Chicago, IL (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, WPA Project

Pearl Lewis (b. 1890), widowed / completed 8th grade / Letcher County, KY / Librarian, WPA Office

Charlotte Lytte (b. 1913), single / completed 12th grade / Springfield, OH (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, public college

Eva Mallory (b. 1901), wife of Robert A. Mallory / completed 1st year of college / Minneapolis, MN (born in Kentucky) / Librarian

Esther Maray (b. 1920), daughter of Caroline Maray / completed 12th grade / Cleveland, OH (born in Kentucky) / Library Assistant, NYA

Charles Marrs (b. 1917), son of Charles and Julia Marrs / completed 12th grade / Chicago, IL (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, public library

Ruth McCoy (b. 1916), single / completed 4th year of college / New Orleans, LA (born in Kentucky) / Library Assistant, university

Elnora McIntyre Muir (b. 1886), married / completed 5th year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Tennessee) / Library Assistant, public library

Mamie Melton (b. 1897), widowed / completed 8th grade / Washington, PA (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, neighborhood house

Carolyn E. Mundy (b. 1908), wife of John Mundy / completed 4th year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Tennessee) / Librarian, public school

Mary Myall (b. 1907), single / completed 4th year of college / Xenia, OH (born in Kentucky) / Librarian, university library

Hugh Osborne, Jr. (b. 1919), married / completed 4th year of college / Paducah, KY (born in Alabama) / Librarian, judge's office

Hugh Osbourne (b. 1919), single / completed 7th year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Alabama) / Law Librarian, Court of Appeals

Alice Parker (b. 1912), married / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, WPA

Noverta Peoples (b. 1922), daughter of John B. and Leana N. Peoples / completed 11th grade / Paducah, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Lizzie Pierce (b. 1882), wife of B. L. Pierce / completed 11th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, public library

Pruline Pigeon (b. 1910), wife of Barbee Pigeon / completed 8th grade / Indianapolis, IN / Librarian, WPA

Lizzie S. Price (b. 1878), wife of Henry M. Price / completed 2nd year of college / Louisville, KY / Librarian, free public library

Elmarie Robinson (b. 1911), single / completed 11th grade / Covington, KY / Librarian, public school

Rose Sellers (b. 1921), daughter of Oliver P. and Mary Sellers / completed 1st year of college / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Georgia Shipley (b. 1921), daughter of Lovie and Jerry Shipley / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, library project

Gertrude Silves (b. 1902), widow / completed 3rd grade / Louisville, KY / Librarian, Ribhi (sp) Library

Bessie R. Stone (b. 1917), married / completed 5th year of college / Frankfort, KY / Library Assistant, Kentucky State College for Negroes [now Kentucky State University]

Lee Ella Watkins (b. 1918), daughter of Virginia Watkins / completed 12th grade / Louisville, KY / Library Assistant, NYA

Bruce Weaver (b. 1917), single / completed 2nd year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Indiana) / Library Assistant, school library

Garnett Witherspoon (b. 1911), wife of James Witherspoon / completed 2nd year of college / Paducah, KY (born in Illinois) / Librarian, college

Thelma Yancey (b. 1914), single / completed 4th year of college / Lexington, KY (born in Montana) / Librarian, college

Hortense H. Young (b. 1904), wife of Coleman Milton Young II / completed 4th year of college / Louisville, KY (born in Texas) / Librarian, Municipal College Library

Subjects: Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, Works Progress Administration (WPA) / Work Projects Adminstration (WPA), National Youth Administration (NYA)
Geographic Region: Kentucky

African American WACs Who Were Born in Kentucky
Start Year : 1943
End Year : 1945
This is a partial list of the African American women born in Kentucky and served in the WACs. The information comes from the WWII Army Enlistment Records. Martha L. Bell, b.1918, Daviess County; Georgia A. Bradley, b.1900; Lena C. H. Bruce, b.1923, Kenton County; Sarah M. Carr, b.1911, Jefferson County; Gladys L. Collier, b.1923; Lula B. Collins, b.1910; Dorothy C. Davis, b.1919; Ethel W. Fields, b.1922, Jefferson County; Alma C. Fischer, b.1924; Edna M. Griffin, b.1909; Willia M. Griffin, b.1920; Zelma H. Grooms, b.1922; Elizabeth Hardyster, b.1921, Jefferson County; Ann M. Highsaw, b.1917, Jefferson County; Florence J. Hoard, b.1919, Jefferson County; Ruth Holt, b.1911; Hannah E. Huley, b.1911, Grant County; June C. Ingram, b.1921; Juanita M. Irvin, b.1920, McCracken County; Julia M. Jackson, b.1911, Jefferson County; Lula M. Johnson, b.1918, Fayette County; Alma E. Kairson, b.1918; Emma L. Lutz, b.1917; Hollie B. Martin, b.1903; Anna C. Morrison, b.1923; Mary E. Neal, b.1914; Dorthea M. Owens, b.1920; LaVenta M. Penn, b.1916; Thelma L. Pruden, b.1923, Daviess County; Catherine Roberts, b.1920, Bath County; Beaulah C. Simms, b.1924; Emma Smith, b.1922, Lincoln County; Marjorie Smith, b.1923; Mattie L. Sproul, b.1917, Barren County; Vivian Steward, b.1918; Susie D. L. Tardy, b.1920; Annie B. Thurman, b.1921, Fulton County; Ora L. Tichenor, b.1915; Anna S. Townsend, b.1923, Jefferson County; Effie M. Turner, b.1923; Joanna M. Turner, b.1900; Anna M. Wall, b.1924, Fulton County; Lena M. Warden, b.1923; Helen C. Washington, b.1919, Bourbon County; Alice T. White, b.1923, Fayette County; Thelma M. Wimbley, b.1921; Daisy B. Utterback, b.1922, Graves County; Dorothy J. Young, b.1921.
See photo images of African American WACs, including Kentuckian Willa B. Brown [Chappell], at flickr website.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Aikens, Julia E. Jackson
Start Year : 1901
End Year : 1993
In 1959, Julia Aikens became the first African American switchboard operator at the U.S. Post Office in South Bend, Indiana. Born in Hancock County, KY, she was married to Arthur Aikens; the couple moved to South Bend, IN, in 1946. Julia Aikens was a graduate of Knox Beauty College and Grigg's Business School in Chicago. She had owned a beauty shop. Aikens also served as a WAAC and a WAC during World War II, enlisting March 23, 1943, in Columbus, OH. For more see the Julia Aikens' entry in The Black Women in the Middle West Project, by D. C. Hine, et al.; and the Julia E. Aikens Collection at the Northern Indiana Historical Society.
Subjects: Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Postal Service, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Hancock County, Kentucky / South Bend, Indiana

Allensworth, Josephine L.
Birth Year : 1855
Death Year : 1939
Josephine Leavell Allensworth was born in Trenton, KY. She was the wife of Allen Allensworth, and, as her husband had done, she taught in the Kentucky common schools. Josephine Allensworth was also an accomplished pianist. She helped develop the Progressive Women's Improvement Association, which provided books and a playground to the town of Allensworth, California. In 1913, Josephine Allensworth donated the land for the Dickinson Memorial Library in Allensworth. For more see African American Women: a biographical dictionary, by D. C. Salem; Friends of Allensworth; and the Allen Allensworth's entry in On the Trail of the Buffalo Soldier by F. N. Schubert.

See photo image and additional information at blackpast.org.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration West, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Trenton, Todd County, Kentucky / Allensworth, California (no longer exists)

Alpha Chapter #90, O.E.S., P. H. A. (Midway, KY)
Start Year : 1922
End Year : 1990
The following was written by Mrs. Mollie M. Bradley. According to the charter given by Cecelia Dunlap Grand Chapter, O.E.S., P.H.A., Alpha Chapter was organized in Midway, Kentucky, August 3, 1922. The charter members were Janie Gaines, Virginia Green, Sarah Craig, Bettie Sanders, Helena Smith, Rachel G. Christy, Phoebe C. Thomas, Mary Ella Thomas, Annie Lewis, Ida Smith, and Carrie A. James. The first officers were Elisha Green, worthy patron; Janie Gaines, worthy matron; and Virginia Green, associate matron. These names are listed on the charter. The charter was signed by the grand officers of the grand chapter. They were James L. Dunlap, grand worthy patron; Mollie Williams, grand worthy matron; and Bessie H. Ballard, grand secretary. The chapter struggled for years to exist. The membership decreased, but four ladies continued to meet: Sarah C. Bradley, Rachel C. Christy, Phoebe C. Thomas, and Elizabeth Williams. The first three ladies were sisters. They are to be commended for their endurance and patience. In 1956, several ladies from Versailles joined and the membership increased. An Eastern Star Chapter (PHA) did not exist in Versailles. The chapter was renamed to Alpha Chapter #90, O.E.S., P.H.A., Midway - Versailles by the grand chapter. The Chapter was fortunate to produce several grand officers: Walter T. Bradley, Jr., grand worthy patron (1973-75); Mollie M. Bradley, grand worthy matron (1985-87); Josephine Smith and Daisy Higgins were appointed district deputies. Walter T. Bradley, [Jr.] served as worthy patron during the tenures of his mother, Sarah C. Bradley, worthy matron, (1956-58) and his wife, Mollie M. Bradley, (1978-80). In 1990, the chapter voted to disperse due to a decrease in membership. The grand chapter granted demits to those who desired to join other chapters. Mollie M. Bradley served for ten years as secretary of Alpha Chapter #90, O.E.S. The original charter of Alpha Chapter #90, O.E.S., P.H.A. and a copy of the History of Prince Hall Freemasonry in Kentucky by Dr. William Henry Ballard, Sr. 33 Degree, are in the archives of Mollie M. Bradley, Midway, Kentucky.

Subjects: Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Midway and Versailles, Woodford County, Kentucky

Anderson, Myrtle E.
Birth Year : 1907
Death Year : 1978
Myrtle E. Anderson was from Boston, MA. In 1943, she was a 1st Lieutenant in the Women's Army Corps (WACs). Anderson and 2nd Lieutenant Margaret E. Barnes Jones arrived in Camp Breckinridge, KY, with 175 enlisted African American women. The enlistees and officers were the first African American women of the U.S. Army to be stationed in Kentucky. The enlistees were given menial tasks such as cleaning latrines, and some of the women resigned from the WACs. Majors Jones and Anderson fought for better work assignments for the women. Ft. Breckinridge, also referred to as Camp Breckinridge, was disposed of by the U. S. Army on December 5, 1962. Prior to becoming a WAC, Myrtle E. Anderson had been a member of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs) Officers Training Camp at Ft. Des Moines, IA. The WAACs was transitioned into the Women's Army Corps (WACs) during 1943. According to her World War II Army Enlistment Records, Myrtle [D.] Anderson enlisted in the Army on November 25, 1942 in Los Angeles, CA, Inactive Reserve, Aviation Cadet. It was noted on her record that, as a civilian, Anderson had been an actress. While at Ft. Des Moines, she continued her acting career on stage and in film; she performed throughout the run of the play "Run Little Children" and other government-sponsored stage plays for the military [source: H. Levette, "Gossip of the movie lots," Plaindealer [Kansas], 04/02/1943, p. 6]. In June of 1943, Anderson was ill in an Army hospital in Maine, and it was thought that she would have to leave the Army [source: H. Levette, "Gossip of the movie lot," Plaindealer [Kansas], 06/18/1943, p. 6]. Anderson recuperated, however, and continued in the WACs until she was discharged June 1, 1943 [source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File]. She continued her acting career with small uncredited roles in films. She had first appeared in the film The Green Pastures in 1936, and her last film appearance was around 1957. Myrtle Anderson was born May 26, 1907 and she died October 5, 1978, in Los Angeles, CA. For more about the African American women enlistees see To Serve My Country, To Serve My Race, by B. L. Moore; "6 WACs Resign: WAC Clerks Decline to Scrub Floors," Philadelphia Afro-American, July 10, 1943, p. 1; and see photo image with Myrtle Anderson and others above the photo caption "WAACs departure from Des Moines" in the article "Speaking of WAACs," Arkansas State Press, 01/01/1943, p. 3. For more about Camp Breckinridge, see the Camp Breckinridge entry in the Kentucky Encyclopedia; and History of Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky, by P. Heady. See also the NKAA entry WACs Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY.

*Please note that there were other African American WAACs named Myrtle Anderson, one being Myrtle Estella Anderson in Kansas City, MO, who arrived at Ft. Des Moines around July of 1942 [source: "Myrtle Anderson feted by business group," Plaindealer [Kansas], 07/31/1942, p. 12]. Anderson had resigned her job as a dietician at the Wheatley Hospital, a job she had held for a year and a half before enlisting in the WAACs. Just prior to returning to Ft. Des Moines in July of 1942, she was voted vice-president of the Business and Professional Women's Club in Kansas City. [Wheatley Hospital was established and run by African Americans in Kansas City, MO, from 1902-1972 - - source: Wheatley-Provident Hospital—Kansas City, a flickr site].

*This may be the same Myrtle Anderson mentioned above. She was recognized for her military service with the American Campaign Medal; her hometown is given as Kansas City, MO.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Fort Breckinridge [or Camp Breckinridge], Henderson, Webster, and Union Counties, Kentucky (no longer exists) / Boston, Massachusetts / Los Angeles, California

Anderson, Zelda W.
Birth Year : 1921
Death Year : 2010
Zelda W. Anderson, born in Baltimore, MD, was one of the first African American women to enter the military in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC), which was later renamed the Women's Army Corps (WAC). She was a second lieutenant when she arrived at Camp Breckinridge, KY. The post commander, Colonel Throckmorton, attempted to make Anderson the mess officer. When Anderson refused his orders, Colonel Throckmorton had her name removed from the list of WACs who were to go overseas, and she was made the assistant to the (non-existent) post publications officer. Her job was to organize a warehouse of Army regulation manuals with the assistance of 12 other WACs, two German prisoners, and a white civilian who quit rather than take orders from a Negro. When Camp Breckinridge was closed, Zelda Anderson was sent to Fort Knox, KY, where she again was under the command of Colonel Throckmorton. Anderson's new assignment was to make arrangements for Negro entertainment at Fort Knox. Those who entertained the troops included Duke Ellington, Lena Horne, and Earl Hines. Anderson would greet the entertainers at the airplane landing site and find them lodging in Negro hotels, rooming houses, or private homes. The hotels in the area were not integrated. Zelda Anderson died August 13, 2010 in California [source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File]. For more see the Zelda Anderson entry in War Stories, edited by R. T. King; and the Zelda Anderson oral history transcript at the University of Nevada Oral History Program.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Baltimore, Maryland / Camp Breckinridge, Henderson, Webster, and Union Counties, Kentucky (no longer exists) / Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky

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

Bacon, Mamie
Birth Year : 1872
Death Year : 1950
Mamie Bacon was born in Shelbyville, KY, the daughter of John and Belle Howard. She was the organizer and founder of the Independent Sons and Daughters of America. Bacon was extremely active with a number of women's organizations, including the H. H. of Ruth, Good Samaritans, she was Past Grand Worthy Inspectrix and Grand Worthy Lecturer of Ohio Grand Court of Calanthe, and she served as Supreme Representative to the Biennial Session of the Supreme Court of Calanthe in Louisville, KY, in 1925. Mamie Bacon was the wife of H. Leonard Bacon, and the couple is listed in the 1910 U.S. Federal Census. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1933-37; and Cincinnati's Colored Citizens by W. P. Dabney.
Subjects: Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Shelbyville, Shelby County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Banks, William Venoid
Birth Year : 1903
Death Year : 1985
In 1975, William V. Banks, born in Geneva, KY, was the first African American to own and operate a television station in the United States, WGPR-TV in Detroit, MI. He also became the owner, in 1964, of the first black radio station in Detroit, WGPR-FM. Banks was a graduate of Lincoln Institute, Wayne State University (1926), and the Detroit College of Law (1929) [now Michigan State University College of Law]. He also became an ordained minister after completing his studies at the Detroit Baptist Seminary in 1949. Banks founded the International Free and Accepted Modern Masons and Eastern Star, serving as its supreme president. He also founded the Universal Barber College and the International School of Cosmetology in 1957. A biography of Banks' life, A Legacy of Dreams, was written by S. T. Gregory. For more see "Founder of 1st black-owned TV station dies," United Press International, 08/26/1985, Domestic News section.

See photo image of William V. Banks on p.23 of Jet, December 30, 1985-January 6, 1986.
Subjects: Barbers, Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Lawyers, Migration North, Radio, Religion & Church Work, Television, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Geneva, Henderson County, Kentucky / Detroit, Michigan

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

Barnes, Margaret Elizabeth Sallee
Birth Year : 1879
Death Year : 1947
Margaret E. S. Barnes, born in Monticello, KY, later moved to Oberlin, OH. She was editor of the Girl's Guide and of the Queens' Gardens, official publication of the Ohio Federation of Colored Women's Clubs. The organization was developed in the early 1930s by Barnes, who also served as the president. Barnes also was in charge of a million dollar drive for funds at Wilberforce University; in 1939 she had been appointed a trustee at Wilberforce by Ohio Governor John Bricker. A building on the campus was named in her honor and Barnes received an honorary doctor of humanties degree. She was a leader among African American women in the Republican Party and was a delegate-at-large for the Republican State Convention in 1940. The Margaret Barnes Welfare Club, established in 1930, was named in her honor. The club belonged to both the national and the Ohio Federation of Colored Women's Clubs. One of the organization's efforts was to provided college scholarships for the outstanding African American student in the graduating class at Elyria [Ohio] High School. The Margaret Barnes Welfare Club was the oldest African American women's club in Elyria and was still functioning in the 1990s. Margaret E. Barnes was a 1900 graduate of Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University], and taught school for four years in Harrodsburg, KY, before marrying James D. Barnes and moving to Oberlin, OH, in 1904. She was the mother of five children, one of whom was Margaret E. Barnes Jones. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1941-44; Records of the National Association of Colored Women's Clubs, 1895-1992, part 1, ed. by L. S. Williams (.pdf); and C. Davis, "Barnes club helps black youngsters achieve goals," Chronicle Telegram, 06/05/1990, p.9.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Mothers, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Monticello, Wayne County, Kentucky / Oberlin, Ohio

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

Berry, Ella
Birth Year : 1884
Death Year : 1939
Ella Berry was born in Stanford, KY, and grew up in Louisville. She was the daughter of Dave Tucker and Mathilda Portman [source: Chicago Death Record, for Ella Berry]. Berry moved to Chicago where she was one of the leading African American women political and social activists. She would become president of the Cornell Charity Club, she had been a member of the organization since 1913. She was a suffragist and became the state organizer of the Hughes Colored Women's Clubs of the National Republican Headquarters in 1919. Illinois Governor Frank O. Lowden appointed her an investigator for the Chicago Commission on Race Relations. She was also president of the Women's Second Ward Protective League, and a federal census enumerator in 1920. Ella Berry was the first African American to be employed by the Chicago Department of Welfare, she was a home visitor. She was elected to the Order of the Eastern Star, and served three terms as president of the Grand Daughter Ruler of the Daughters of the Improved Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks, which was the highest office a woman could hold in the organization. Berry used her positions within the various organizations to campaign for African American votes and for women's votes during presidential elections. She traveled between Louisville and Chicago networking and making political connections between the two cities. Ella Berry was the wife of William Berry. For more see the Ella Berry entry and picture in chapter six in The Story of the Illinois Federation of the Colored Women's Clubs by E. L. Davis; For the Freedom of Her Race by L. G. Materson; and photo of Ella Berry [online] in the New York Public Library Digital Gallery.


Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Stanford, Lincoln County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Birth Control Movement and African American Women in Kentucky
Start Year : 1933
End Year : 1943
The Kentucky Birth Control League (KBCL) in Louisville began the birth control movement in Kentucky. The organization was founded by Jean Brandies Tachau, who was also the first president. The KBCL was affiliated with the American Birth Control League, which focused on women and family planning. The first clinic opened in Louisville, KY, in 1933; Norton's Infirmary provided services for "whites only." Therefore, arrangements were made with Dr. John Hammons to see African American women in his office until there was a regular clinic. Hammons had been director of the Venereal Clinic, was on the staff of the Red Cross Hospital, and was a member of the NAACP and the Urban League. When the second clinic opened at 624 Floyd Street, it served both African American and white women, but each on separate days of the week. In 1936, the African American birth control clinic, known as Adler Mothers Clinic, opened in the parish house of the Church of Our Merciful Savior. Doctors Hammons, Laine, and Ballard, social worker Robert B. Scott, and nurse Louise Simms made up the staff. In Lexington, the Maternal Health Clinic, the city's first birth control clinic, opened in 1936 at Good Samaritan Hospital, and services were provided to both white and African American women. During the 1930s, there were also clinics in Berea and at Pine Mountain Settlement School. Birth control was not new to the women of Kentucky, but prior to the 1930s it had not been as accessible through public health services. There was opposition from several fronts, and a number of theories are discussed in the literature as to why birth control was being provided to women of particular classes and races. One other note of importance is that during the early 1930s and the Depression, birth control became one of the most profitable new industries through advertising and marketing to women consumers. Hundreds of birth control ads were placed in both white and African American media for a variety of mail order products in spite of federal and state interstate distribution laws; the items were sold as feminine hygiene products. By 1938 annual sales for birth control totaled more than $250,000,000 and continued to increase. For more information on the Birth Control Movement in Kentucky, see J. G. Myers, A Socio-historical Analysis of the Kentucky Birth Control Movement, 1933-1943 (dissertation), University of Kentucky, 2005; D. McRaven, Birth Control Women: Controlling Reproduction in the South, 1933-1973 (dissertation), University of Kentucky, 2006; and see the website Planned Parenthood of Kentucky: a history. For more on marketing during the Birth Control Movement, see Women and Health in America, by J. W. Leavitt.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Berea, Madison County, Kentucky / Pine Mountain, Harlan County, Kentucky

Black, Evelyn Jones
Birth Year : 1922
Death Year : 1972
In 1968, Evelyn J. Black became the first African American faculty member at the University of Kentucky (UK) College of Social Work. She was named the UK Outstanding Woman Professor, 1969-70. The UK Evelyn J. Black Scholarship in Children's Mental Health is named in her honor. Black had been a teacher and social worker in three states: North Carolina, Alabama, and Kentucky. She was active on a number of boards, including the Mayor's Council, Central Kentucky Mental Health Association, Central Kentucky Regional Mental Health - Mental Retardation Board, and the Fayette County Children's Bureau. She was a past president and member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. In 1973, the year after her death in a traffic accident, the Evelyn Jones Black Memorial Playground was dedicated at St. Andrews Episcopal Church. Evelyn Black had been a member of the church and helped lead the sponsorship by the church for the Neighborly Organization of Women's (NOW) preschools. St. Andrews Episcopal Church also donated $1,000 to the Evelyn J. Black Memorial Scholarship Fund at UK. In October of 1977, Evelyn J. Black was posthumously honored when the former Booker T. Washington School, on Georgetown Street in Lexington, was formally dedicated as the Black and Williams Neighborhood Community Center. In 1993, she was recognized posthumously at the 3rd Annual Homecoming Awards Banquet by the Lyman T. Johnson Alumni, an affiliate of the UK Alumni Association. Black was among the 23 graduates, faculty, and staff, "Waymakers of the '60s," all recognized for their contributions toward setting the path for future African Americans at the University of Kentucky [quote from E. A. Jasmin, "Black UK graduates to honor school's 'waymakers' of '60s," Lexington Herald-Leader, 10/01/1993, p. B3]. Evelyn Jones Black was born in Murfreesboro, TN, the daughter of P.S. and Patty L. Jones. She was the wife of William D. Black, Jr. For more see "Special People: Black and Williams Center dedicated to social worker, Happy Warrior," Lexington Herald, 10/31/1977, p. A-3; "Playground dedicated at St. Andrews," Lexington Leader, 06/12/1973, p. 19; and "Mrs. Black," in the Obituary section of the Lexington Leader, 11/01/1972, p. 12. This entry was suggested by Yvonne Giles, who also assisted with the research. There is a colored portrait of Elelyn J. Black at the University of Kentucky Archives and Records, Rm 204 King Library, the portrait is 22" X 26" inside an ornate frame located on the wall just inside the entrance.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Murfreesboro, Tennessee / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Bluster, Missouri Quisenberry
Start Year : 1899
End Year : 1994
Missouri Quisenberry Bluster was a school teacher for more than 40 years at the Oliver School in Winchester, KY. For many of those years she taught first grade during the time Oliver was a segregated school for African American children. She is remembered as a disciplinarian who cared about the children. Bluster and her parents, William and Mamie Custard Quisenberry, were born in Winchester, KY. She was the wife of Rev. Climiton Bluster (1893-1961), who was born in Alabama. Missouri Bluster, a graduate of Kentucky State University and Wilberforce University, also served as president of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women's Clubs. The Quisenberry family has been in Clark County since the early history of the state, and records of the African American Quisenberrys can be found in the slave schedules and birth records, including that of a baby girl born in 1853 to a slave woman and slave owner Roger Quisenberry. [Roger Quisenberry of Clark County owned at least 11 slaves, according to the 1850 slave schedule.] Several of the African American Quisenberry men served with the Colored infantries during the Civil War, and after slavery ended, the families settled in the communities of Blue Ball, Ford, Germantown, Kiddville, and Winchester. For more about Missouri Quisenberry Bluster, see A. D. Johnson, "Winchester teacher stressed discipline, love," Lexington Herald-Leader, 02/09/1986, City/State section, p. B1.

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

Subjects: Communities, Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Blue Ball, Ford, Germantown, Kiddville, and Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky

Bond, Ruth E. Clement
Birth Year : 1904
Death Year : 2005
Ruth E. Clement Bond was born in Louisville, KY, four years after her brother Rufus E. Clement. They were the children of George Clement, Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and Emma C. Williams Clement, the first African American woman to be named Mother of the Year. Ruth Bond's husband was J. Max Bond, Sr., and she was the mother of J. Max Bond, Jr. From 1934-1938, J. Max Bond, Sr. supervised the training of the African American construction workers at the TVA Wheeler Dam Project in northern Alabama. Mrs. Bond established a home beautification program for the wives of the workers and began designing quilt patterns (though Mrs. Bond initially did not know how to quilt, but the women she was working with were experts). The first quilt was call Black Power; it symbolized the TVA's promise for electricity. The quilts became known as the TVA Quilts and have been documented and displayed in a number of sources and venues such as the 2004 Art Quilts From the Collection of the Museum of Arts and Design. Ruth Bond was a graduate of Northwestern University in Illinois. At one point in her career, she taught English Literature and French at Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University]. For more see Y. S. Lamb, "Ruth Clement Bond; Quilter, Civic Activist," Washington Post, 11/08/2005, p. B05; and M. Fox, "Ruth C. Bond dies at 101; Her Quilts Had a Message," The New York Times, 11/13/2005, p. 43.

See photo image of Ruth Clement Bond at the Northwestern University website.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Mothers, Quilters, Women's Groups and Organizations, Collectibles
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Booker-Bryant, Ruth
Birth Year : 1923
Death Year : 2013
Ruth Booker-Bryant is a resident of Louisville, KY. She was inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame in 2003 for her participation in many demonstrations for civil rights and fair housing and for her fight to improve living conditions for African Americans. In 2011, she received the Carl and Ann Braden Lifetime Achievement Award. She was president and co-founder of Women United for Social Action. For more see "14 make rights hall of fame," FORsooth: a publication of the Louisville Chapter of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Sept. 2003; "Ruth Booker-Bryant" in the Louisville Courier-Journal, 03/10/2013, Obituaries section; and HR171 and SR242, both at the Open States website.

See photo image of Ruth Booker-Bryant at Hall of Fame 2003, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Women's Groups and Organizations, Housing, Fair Housing, Open Housing, Housing Agencies
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Boswell, Arnita Y.
Birth Year : 1920
Death Year : 2002
Arnita Young Boswell was born in Lincoln Ridge, KY. She was a graduate of Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] and Atlanta University [now Clark Atlanta University], and earned her advanced social work certification at Columbia University and advanced education at Colorado State University. She was a professor of social work at the University of Chicago (1961-1980) and Director of the Family Resources Center at the Robert Taylor Homes in Chicago. She was also the first national director for Project Head Start, the first director of the social workers of the Chicago Public Schools, and founder of Chicago's League of Black Women. Boswell was the daughter of Whitney Young, Sr. and Laura R. Young. For more see Who's Who Among African Americans, 1975-2002.

See photo image and additional information about Arnita Y. Boswell at African American Registry.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lincoln Ridge, Shelby County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

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

Brooks, Corrinne Mudd
Birth Year : 1914
Death Year : 2008
Brooks organized the first African American girl scout troop in Fort Wayne, IN. The history of African American girl scout units has not been thoroughly researched, and it is not known how many units existed in the U.S. Up to the 1950s, girl scouts were segregated by race. In the state of Indiana, the first girl scouts were formed in New Albany in 1919; the organization became a council in 1923. Brooks was an active member of the Limberlost Girl Scout Council as well as the Urban League, the Commission on the Status of Women for the State of Indiana, and the YWCA. She was also the comptroller at the YWCA. Corrinne Brooks was the wife of James W. Brooks. She was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Loretta Douglas Mudd (1897-1928), who was born in Fort Wayne, and James Mudd (1881-1968), who was born in Springfield, KY. The family moved from Kentucky to Fort Wayne in 1915 and lived on Wallace Street, according to the 1920 U.S. Federal Census. When Loretta Mudd died, Corrinne became the mother of the household; she was the oldest of her six siblings. She was also an athlete, the first girl in her high school to receive a sweater for her participation in basketball and soccer. She graduated from Central High School in 1933. She won the Civic Men's Scholarship, which was used for her courses at Indiana University Extension, located in downtown Fort Wayne. Brooks took a turn at politics: an unsuccessful candidate for the Indiana House of Representative in 1954 and 1956, she went on to become a coordinator for the Indiana voter registration drive in preparation for the 1960 presidential election, helping to register over 43,000 voters; Senator John F. Kennedy invited her to a National Conference on Constitutional Rights and American Freedom in New York. She was also founder of the Martin Luther King Living Memorial. For more on Corrinne Brooks, see her entry in The Black Women in the Middle West Project, by D. C. Hine, et al.; and "Corrinne Brooks always active in helping others," The Journal Gazette, 02/06/1996, People section. A picture of Corrine Brooks is on p. 120 in Ebony, 09/1983 [available in Google Book Search]. For more on the girl scouts see the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana website; and for a more detailed accounting of African American girl scout history, see the "Josephine Groves Holloway" entry in Notable Black American Women, by J. C. Smith.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Athletes, Athletics, Civic Leaders, Scouts (Boys and Girls), Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Fort Wayne, Indiana / Springfield, Washington 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

Burroughs, Nannie H.
Birth Year : 1879
Death Year : 1961
Nannie Burroughs moved to Louisville, KY, in 1900 to become secretary and bookkeeper of the Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention. That same year she founded the National Baptist Women's Convention. Burroughs was an activist for African American women's rights. When the National Training School for Women opened in 1909 in Washington, D.C., she became director and held the post for the rest of her life. Burroughs brought the cause for improvements in industrial conditions for African American women to the forefront of the National Association of Colored Women. She helped found the National Association of Wage Earners. For more see Biographical Dictionary of Modern American Educators, by F. Ohles, et al.; and African American Women: a biographical dictionary, by D. S. Salem.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Accountants, Bookkeepers, Certified Public Accountants, Stenographers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Washington, D.C.

Clarke, Anna Mac
Birth Year : 1919
Death Year : 1944
Anna M. Clarke, born in Lawrenceburg, KY, was a graduate of the Lawrenceburg Colored School and a 1941 graduate of Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University]. She was one of the first African American woman from Kentucky to enlist during World War II, the first to become an officer, and the first African American WAC over an all-white regiment. Clarke led the protest that desegregated the Douglas Army Airfield theater. A Kentucky Historical Marker [#1970] has been placed on the Lawrenceburg courthouse lawn in her memory. Anna Mac Clarke is buried in Stringtown, KY. For more see Women in Kentucky-Military; LWF Communications website, Anna Mac Clark answering the call to arms; WWII and the WAC by J. M. Trowbridge; and J. M. Trowbridge, "Anna Mac Clark: a pioneer in military leadership," Cochise Quarterly, vol. 26 (Winter 1996).

  See photo image and additional information about Anna M. Clarke at "Lest We Forget," a Hampton University website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Lawrenceburg, Anderson County, Kentucky / Douglas Army Airfield, Arizona / Stringtown, Anderson County, Kentucky

Coggs, Pauline Redmond
Birth Year : 1912
Death Year : 2005
Pauline Coggs was born in Paris, Kentucky, the daughter of Rev. John B. and Josephine B. Redmond. The family moved to Chicago, where Coggs graduated from high school and earned a bachelor's degree in sociology and psychology at the University of Chicago. She earned a master's degree in social work at the University of Pittsburgh. Coggs was the first African American woman to head the Washington, D.C. Urban League. She also directed the youth activities department in the Chicago Urban League, 1936-1940. She was a part-time instructor in the Department of Social Work at Howard University, 1943-1944, and later became the assistant executive secretary of the Wisconsin Welfare Council, 1947-1948. Coggs was the author of "Race Relations Advisers - Messiahs or Quislings," Opportunity, 1943. She was a confidante of Eleanor Roosevelt. The governor of Wisconsin appointed her to the Wisconsin Civil Rights Commission. Pauline R. Coggs was the aunt of Wisconsin Senator Spencer Coggs. The Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. created the Pauline Redmond Coggs Foundation, Inc. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950; C. Stephenson, "Striving to combat myths and ignorance never goes out of style," Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/04/02, B News section, p.02; and F. Thomas-Lynn, "Coggs 'silent strength' behind political dynasty," Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 07/28/2005, B News section, p. 07.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Urban Leagues
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Washington, D.C. / Chicago, Illinois / Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Coleman, Gertrude W.
Birth Year : 1934
Death Year : 2007
Dr. Gertrude W. Coleman was inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame in 2007 in recognition of her activism during Louisville school busing when she insisted that African American children be treated fairly. Coleman was also president of the Black Women of Political Action, and was on the board of the Park DuVall Health Center and fought for funding for health care. In 1992, the Black Women of Political Action joined with other civic organizations to encourage African Americans in Louisville to get out and vote; a symbolic chain of human voters stretched from downtown Louisville into the African American neighborhood in West End. For more see "Dr. Gertrude W. Coleman" at the 2007 Hall of Fame, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights website; and "Louisville voters reach out to encourage Black turnout," Lexington Herald-Leader, 11/02/1992, City/State section, p. B2.

 
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson 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 - Covington and Newport, KY
Start Year : 1920
End Year : 1921
The following Colored lodges are listed in the Directory of Covington Newport and Vicinity also Cincinnati Business Directory 1920-21.

Newport

  • Independent Order of Odd Fellows Dunbar Lodge No. 1885 met at 319 W. 4th Street

Covington
  • Below are the Colored lodges that met at the corner of Russell Avenue and Harvey Street
  • American Protestant Association - Queen Esther Court No. 1
  • Covington Lodge No. 6
  • Hod Carriers Union No. 1 - Trade Union
  • United Order True Reformers


  • Below are the Colored lodges that met at the Odd Fellows Hall on Electric Avenue
  • Carmel Temple No. 66
  • Covington Lodge No. 35
  • Covington Temple No. 6 - Sisters of the Mysterious Ten
  • David's Camp No. 7
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Crispus Attuck Lodge No. 1650
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Household of Ruth
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Patriarchie No. 21
  • Grand Council No. 51
  • Knights of Pythias - Covington Lodge No. 6
  • Knights of Pythias - Eclipse Uniform Rank No. 3
  • Knights of Pythias - Independent Order Court of Calanthe No. 7
  • Masonic - Durgin Chapter No. 6, R. A. M.
  • Masonic - Kenton Chapter No. 40
  • Masonic - Kenton Lodge No. 16
  • Queen of Sheba Temple No. 97
  • United Brothers of Friendship

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Covington, Kenton County, Kentucky / Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Frankfort, KY
Start Year : 1914
End Year : 1916
The following list of Colored lodges comes from Caron's Frankfort Directory For the Year 1914-1915-1916.

Colored lodges that met at Odd Fellows Hall, 329 W. Clinton Street, except where otherwise noted:

Grand United Order of Odd Fellows

  • Capital City Lodge No. 1597
  • Industrial Legion No. 3102
  • Patriarchie Lodge No. 41
  • Past Grand Masters Council No. 88
  • Household of Ruth No. 170
  • Juvenile Society No. 540

Knights of Pythias:
  • B. K. Bruce Lodge Co. D. (Uniform Rank). Met at 421 Washington Street
  • Pride of Frankfort No. 15 (Uniform Rank)
  • Young Men's Pride No. 12
Masonic
  • Constantine Commandery No. 15, K. T.
  • Meridian Sun Lodge No. 25, F. & A. M.
  • Tyrian Chapter No. 16, R. A. M.

Eastern Star
  • Mizpah Chapter No. 3251

Colored Lodges that met at the United Brothers of Friendship Hall at 535 Wilkinson Street, except were otherwise noted:

Good Samaritans
  • Martha Tabernacle No. 55
Sisters of the Mysterious Ten
  • Zion Temple No. 20. Met at Odd Fellows Hall
  • Ruth Temple No. 22
  • Rebecca Temple No. 13 (Juveniles)
United Brothers of Friendship
  • Charity Lodge No. 3
Grand Army of the Republic
  • George W. Monroe Post No. 44

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Henderson, KY
Start Year : 1866
End Year : 1887
The earliest Colored lodges in Henderson, KY, are listed on p. 502 of History of Henderson County, Kentucky, by E. L. Starling. The book was published in 1887 and is available online at Google Book Search.

  • St. John's Lodge No.4 (Masonic) - founded in 1866
  • Camby Lodge No.1642 (Independent Order of Odd Fellows) - founded in 1875
  • United Brothers of Friendship - founded in 1871
  • Pride of Kentucky Lodge No.105 - founded in 1880
  • Bias Lodge No.8 - founded in 1879
  • Pledies Chamber No.1 (Women) - founded 1880
  • Sons and Daughters of Zion, Lincoln Lodge No. 1 - founded in 1887

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Henderson County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Hopkinsville, KY
Start Year : 1914
End Year : 1916
The names of the Colored lodges below come from Caron's Hopkinsville Directory For the Years 1914-1915-1916.

Colored lodges that met at Friendship Hall, 28 West Second Street:

  • Grand Army of the Republic - Liewellyn Baker Post No. 200
  • Household of Ruth No. 112
  • International Order of Twelve - Rising Star Temple No. 43
  • Knights of Pythias - Court of Calanthe (Ladies' Auxiliary)
  • Knights of Pythias - Pennyroyal Lodge No.20
  • Knights of Pythias - R. N. Lander Company No. 20 (Uniform Rank)
  • Knights of Wise Men - Prelate Chamber No. 1
  • Ladies' Relief Corps - Liewellyn Baker Post 120
  • Masonic - King Lodge No. 41
  • Mystic Tie Lodge No. 1907
  • Order of Eastern Star - Naomi Chapter No. 12
  • Sisters of the Mysterious Ten - Musadora Temple No. 38
  • United Brothers of Friendship - Freedom Lodge No. 75

Colored lodges that met at Good Samaritan Hall on Campbell Street, southwest corner of Second Street:
  • Home Protective Association - Crown Council No. 80. Robert Stegar, secretary
  • Good Samaritan Association. James Allensworth, Jr., manager.

Other Colored lodges:
  • Union Benevolent Society. Henry Guynn, secretary. Met on east side of New Greenville Road, north of city limits.

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Owensboro, KY
Start Year : 1889
End Year : 1890
The following information comes from Bennett and Co.'s Owensboro City Directory 1889-90.

Masons met at Hall No. 7 on Frederica Street.

  • Guiding Star Lodge No. 14
  • Verbena Court No. 8 (Colored Ladies)
Independent Order of Odd Fellows met at Hall No. 7 on Frederica Street.
  • Owensboro Lodge No. 1892, Grand United Order of Odd Fellows
United Brothers of Friendship met at Hall No. 501 on West Third Street
  • Charity Lodge No. 5
  • United Brothers of Friendship Lodge No. 7
  • Elizabeth Temple No. 7
  • Woolfolk Camp No. 7
  • St. Martha's Temple No. 8
  • Royale House of Queen Esther No. 15
  • Past Master's Council No. 23
  • Diamond Start Lodge No. 119
Sisters' Temple or The Mysterious Ten met at 501 West Third Street.
  • Love Temple No. 83
Knights of Tabor met at 501 West Third Street.
  • K. of T. Lodge No. 251
Other Lodges that met at Hall No. 614 on West Third Street.
  • Union Benevolent Society No. 2
  • Union Benevolent Society No. 1 (Colored Young People)
  • Union Benevolent Society No. 1 (Colored Sisters)
  • Union Star Brass Band
Other Lodge that met at Hall No. 501 on West Third Street.
  • Owensboro Twilight Brass Band

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Paducah, KY
Start Year : 1896
End Year : 1919
An early listing of the Colored lodges is on p. 3 of the Paducah Daily Sun, 11/16/1896. The Masonic Hall was located at 224 Broadway, where meetings took place on the third floor. Later lists can be found in Caron's Paducah Directory For the Years 1914-1915 and For the Years 1918-1919. Below is a combined list of the Colored lodges found in both directories.

Colored Lodges that met at the Odd Fellows Hall on Adams Street:

Colored Lodges that met at the Masonic Temple at 501-505 S. 7th Street:
  • Eastern Light Chapter
  • International Order of 12, Queen Sara Tabernacle No.30
  • Johnathan and David Friendship Assembly No.1
  • Knights of Pythias, Court of Calanthe (Ladies Auxiliary)
  • Knights of Pythias, Cymbolene Lodge No.19
  • Knights of Pythias, Echo Lodge
  • Knights of Pythias, Juvenile Lodge
  • Knights of Pythias, Keystone Lodge
  • Mt. Zion Lodge No.6
  • Pride of Paducah
  • Pride of the Purchase No.12 (Co. H. Uniform Rank)
  • Queen Esther Chapter No. 4 (Order of Eastern Star)
  • Queen of the South Chapter
  • Stone Square Lodge No.5
  • Susannah Chapter No. 2 (Order of Eastern Star)
Colored Lodges:
  • Daughters of Zion Hall, located at 619 South Eighth Street
  • Hodd Carrier's Hall, located at 126 1/2 Kentucky Avenue

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Paris, KY
Start Year : 1908
End Year : 1917
There are listings of the Colored Lodges in Paris, KY, in The Inter-State Directory Company's Directory of Paris and Bourbon County Gazetteer For the Year 1908 and W. H. Hoffman's City Directory of Paris, Kentucky, 1917. Below is a combined list of the lodges from both volumes.

Colored Lodges that met at the Grand Army of the Republic Hall:

  • G. A. R. - John Brown Post No. 68

Colored Lodges that met at the United Brothers of Friendship Hall at 308 W. Eighth Street:

  • Bourbon Star Lodge No. 1697, Grand United Order of Odd Fellows
  • Callilee Temple No. 32, SMT [Sisters of the Mysterious Ten]
  • Daughters of Tabor - Rose of Sharon Tabernacle No. 99
  • Garfield Company A, Uniform Rank, Knights of Pythias
  • Good Samaritan Lodge No. 37, United Brothers of Friendship
  • Hiram Lodge No. 7, F. & A. M.
  • Household of Ruth Lodge No. 1849, Grand United Order of Odd Fellows
  • Jewell Court No.5, Court of Calathe
  • Lillian Juvenile Temple
  • Order of the Eastern Star - Jeptha Chapter No. 5
  • Phoenix Lodge No. 7, Improved Benevolent Protective Order of Elks of the World
  • St. Pythias Lodge No. 1, Knights of Pythias

Colored Lodges that met at Marble Hall on South Main Street:

  • John Brown WRC No. 15
  • McKinley Camp No. 4, Sons of Veterans

Other Colored Lodges

  • Fraternal Union of America No. 96. Met at Knights of Pythias Hall at 529 South Main Street. Margaret C. Wood, Secretary.
  • Messiah Commandery No. 3, K. T. (Masons)
  • Zerrubabel Chapter No. 5 RAM (Masons)

*Two of the earliest colored lodges in Paris were Hiram Lodge No.5 Masons, organized in 1867, and Knights Templar, organized in 1867 [source: History of Bourbon, Scott, Harrison, and Nicholas Counties, Kentucky by W. H. Perrin & R. Peter, p.119]
Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Colored Lodges - Winchester, KY
Start Year : 1908
End Year : 1913
The names of the following Colored lodges come from Inter-State Directory Company's Directory of Winchester and Clark County Gazetteer For the Year 1908 and Caron's Winchester Directory For the years 1911-12-13.

Colored lodges that met at the United Brothers of Friendship Hall at 16 North Highland Street:

  • Gates City Lodge No. 22
  • Good Samaritans - Rose of Sharon Lodge No. 24
  • Good Samaritans - Resolute Lodge No. 10
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Winchester Diamond Lodge No. 2077
  • Mosac Lodge No. 25, F. & A. M.
  • Sisters of the Mysterious Ten - Electric Temple No. 60
  • United Benevolent Society
  • United Brothers of Friendship - Eureka Lodge No. 60

Colored lodges that met at Odd Fellows Hall at 22 North Highland:
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Household of Ruth No. 285
  • Grand United Order of Odd Fellows - Juvenile Society No. 101

Other Colored lodges:
  • Benevolent Society No. 1. Met at Main and Broadway
  • Grand Army of the Republic - George Henson Post. Met at different places
  • Improved Benevolent Protective Order of Elks of the World - Shackleford Lodge No. 66. United Brothers of Friendship club rooms 22 South Maple
  • United Benevolent Hall was located at 5 East Broadway

Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Winchester, Clark 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

Colston, Lugusta Tyler
Birth Year : 1911
Death Year : 2008
Lugusta T. Colston, born in Lexington, KY, was a graduate of Wiley College and received her undergraduate library degree from Wayne State University. She was the librarian at Booker T. Washington High School in Miami, FL, for more than 30 years, and had also taught at the Booker T. Washington High School in Columbia, SC. In 1940, she was one of the seven founding members of the the Miami Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She was also a founding member of the Greater Miami Chapter of Links, an international women's civic organization, and was involved in several community organizations that included her leading role with the Minority Involvement Committee of the Miami-Dade County Division of the American Cancer Society. Lugusta T. Colston was the daughter of Mattie Mason Tyler and Charles W. Tyler. Lugusta T. Colston was a sister to Jimmie Tyler Brashear. Since the 1999 death of her husband, Nathaniel Colston, Lugusta T. Colston had been living in Southfield, MI. She is buried in Lexington, KY. For more see E. J. Brecher, "Veteran librarian at Booker T. Washington," Miami Herald, 03/09/2008, Metro and State section, p.5B.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration North, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Columbia, South Carolina / Miami, Florida / Southfield, Michigan

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

Copeland, Ivanora B.
Birth Year : 1870
Death Year : 1929
Ivanora B. Lindsey Copeland was the organizer and Past Matron of the St. John's Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star (O. E. S.) in Cincinnati, OH. She was a leading member of several women's organizations, including her tenure as Past G. A. C. and P. W. of the International O. E. S. Ivanora Copeland was also a funeral director; she shared the business with her husband, William Copeland (1848-1931), who was a member of the Ohio Legislature from 1888-1889. Ivanora Copeland was the former wife of Cyrus DeHart [source: "Was his wife, Mrs. W. H. Copeland was Mrs. Cyrus DeHart - She gets one half of $9,000," Cleveland Gazette, 05/16/1891, p. 1]. William and Iva B. Copeland are listed in the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, and Ivanora's occupation is listed as hairdresser. Ivanora Copeland was born in Mayslick, KY, the daughter of Joseph and Maria Lindsey. She attended Berea College. For more see Cincinnati's Colored Citizens, by W. P. Dabney.
Subjects: Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Migration North, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Mayslick, Mason County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Copeland, Mayme L.
Birth Year : 1893
Death Year : 1970
Mrs. Mayme L. Copeland was the rural supervisor in the State Department of Education; her office was located in Frankfort, KY. She was one of two African American education administrators in the South whose salaries were partially paid by the Southern Education Foundation. During her career, Copeland was supervisor of Christian and Todd County Schools and head of the Rural Department of the American Teachers Association. She was recognized in Mabel Carney's article on rural education for her outstanding work in teacher training for one-teacher schools. She was the wife of Dr. Thomas H. Copeland, and was a member of Iota Phi Lambda. Dr. Thomas Copeland was presiding elder of the Hopkinsville District. Mayme Copeland was a 1933 graduate of Kentucky State College, and in 1937 earned her Master's degree in rural education from Columbia University. She was secretary of the Woman's Connectional Council of the Colored Methodist Church (CME). She retired from the Kentucky State Department of Education in 1947 after 44 years of service, and having been the longest serving African American employee. For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; M. Carney, "Rural education in American Universities, 1944-45," The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 15, issue 1 (Winter 1946), p. 98; W. G. Daniel, "Current trends and events of national importance in Negro education - Section A: General Activities," The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 7, issue 2 (April 1938), p. 221; "Kentuckian gets high post," Capital Plaindealer, 09/11/1937, p.3; "Prominent Kentucky school teacher will retire July 1," Plaindealer, 06/20/1947, p. 3; and "Mrs. M. L. Copeland plans retirement," KNEA Journal, March-April 1947, vol. 18, no. 2, p. 7 [available online].
Subjects: Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Craft, Rebecca
Birth Year : 1887
Death Year : 1945
A schoolteacher from Versailles, KY, Rebecca Craft graduated from Kentucky Normal and Industrial Institute for Colored Persons [now Kentucky State University]. She and her husband, John, moved to San Diego, California, in 1910. Rebecca Craft led the fight against segregation and discrimination so that African American police and school teachers could be hired in San Diego. She also formed the Women's Civic Organization and was president of the San Diego NAACP. The civic organization served as a social welfare agency that also did fund-raising. Rebecca Craft was the aunt of Cecil H. Steppe. For more see G. Madyun, "In the Midst of things: Rebecca Craft and the Woman's Civic League," The Journal of San Diego History, vol. 34, issue 1 (Winter 1988) [available online].
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Migration West, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Versailles, Woodford County, Kentucky / San Diego, California

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

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

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

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, 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

Dunlap, Cecelia Halston
Birth Year : 1858
Death Year : 1908
The Cecelia Dunlap Grand Chapter, O.E.S., an Eastern Star organization founded in Kentucky, is more than 100 years old. The organization had existed for several years when it was named to honor the late Cecelia Dunlap in August of 1913 during a chapter meeting in Winchester, KY. Dunlap had lived in Earlington, KY. [In some sources, her first name is given as Celia or Celie.] The Grand Chapter was organized in 1895, and Cecelia Dunlap was one of the original members. According to an article in the Bee newspaper, 08/08/1895, p. 2, Cecelia Dunlap traveled to Henderson, KY, to attended the "grand session of the ladies department of Masonary." She attended the 1897 meeting in Bowling Green, KY [source: "Mrs. Celia Dunlap...," Bee, 08/05/1897, p. 2]. The following year, at the Grand Chapter meeting in Hopkinsville, KY, Celia Dunlap was elected the R. G. A. M. [source: "Colored Department," Paducah Daily Sun, 08/30/1898, p. 3]. She served as the third Grand Worthy Matron of the Grand Chapter from 1901 until her death in 1908. During her tenure, the chapter was incorporated. Celia Dunlap was often sick during her membership with the Grand Chapter, and periodically her name appeared on the sick list in the Colored Column of the Bee newspaper, beginning as early as 1895 [source: "Mrs. Celia Dunlap is slowly recovering from an attack of neuralgia." Bee, 08/25/1895, p. 4]. In 1891, the following appeared in the column "Old Kaintuck" in The Freeman, 02/14/1891, p. 6: "Celia Dunlap is recovering from a recent illness." According to the 1880 U.S. Federal Census, Celia Dunlap was born in Alabama around 1858, did washing and ironing, and was the wife of Simon Dunlap. The family of four lived in Macedonia, TN. The couple had married on February 25, 1875; Simon Dunlap and Celie Halston were joined in matrimony by Rev. James Rhodes in Maury County, TN [source: Tennessee State Marriages, 1780-2002 in Ancestry.com]. Simon Dunlap (1855-1936) was born in Mississippi. He, Celia and their three children lived in Tennessee until sometime around 1900, when they moved to Earlington, KY, where Simon Dunlap was employed as a coal miner, according to the U.S. Census. In her biography, Cecelia Dunlap is said to have been a Cherokee Indian. In the 1900 Census, the entire family is listed as Black. Cecelia Dunlap died December 8, 1908. For more information see the 1985 publication A Bright Star: a biography of Cecelia Dunlap, by Mollie M. Bradley, G. W. M., Cecelia Dunlap Grand Chapter, O.E.S., P.H.A., Jurisdiction of Kentucky; and Cecelia Dunlap Grand Chapter, Order of Eastern Star of Kentucky, P.H.A.
Subjects: Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Alabama / Earlington, Hopkins County, Kentucky / Winchester, Clark 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

Fortson, Bettiola Heloise
Birth Year : 1890
Death Year : 1917
Bettiola Fortson was a poet, essayist, and suffragist. She was born in Hopkinsville, KY, the daughter of James Fortson. At the age of nine, she was a boarder with the William Evans family on E. 13th Street in Hopkinsville, KY, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. When she turned 12, she went to live with her aunt, Toreada Mallory, on Armour Avenue in Chicago, IL. When her aunt went abroad, Fortson lived with her mother, Mattie Arnold, in Evansville, IN, where she attended Clark High School. The family of four lived on Oak Street (Mattie, who was a widow, and her children Robert, Bettie, and James Jr.) [source: 1910 U.S. Federal Census]. Bettiola Fortson would become a poet and was poet laureate of her high school class, she graduated in 1910, and returned to Chicago where she worked in the feather industry and owned her own millinery business. She was a journalist and president of the University Society Club, 2nd vice president of the Alpha Suffrage Club, and city organizer of the Chicago Federation of Colored Women's Clubs. She was the author of the 1915 title Mental Pearls: original poems and essays. For more see Toward a Tenderer Humanity and a Nobler Womanhood by A. M. Knupfer; Six Poets of Racial Uplift by E. T. Battle et. al.; Black American Writers Past and Present by T. G. Rush; and "Miss Bettiola Fortson," Broad Axe, 08/01/1914, p.2 [picture with article].
Subjects: Authors, Businesses, Migration North, Poets, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois / Evansville, Indiana

Fouse, Elizabeth B. Cook
Birth Year : 1875
Death Year : 1952
Elizabeth B. Cook Fouse was an advocate for African American women's opportunities and equal rights. A schoolteacher who was active in social and religious activities, she served as president of the Kentucky Federation of Colored Women and was founder of the Phillis Wheatley YWCA in Lexington, KY. She was a member of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority. In 1944 Fouse was appointed by Governor Simeon Willis to serve on the Kentucky Commission for the Study of Negro Affairs. She was married to W. H. Fouse. For more see Jesus, Jobs, and Justice, by B. Collier-Thomas; and the Fouse Family Papers in the Kentucky Digital Library.


See photo images of Elizabeth B. Cook Fouse and others, in the Collection Inventory [click on links at the bottom of the page] in Explore UK.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, Appointments by Kentucky Governors, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association), Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Gaines, Emma
Birth Year : 1857
Death Year : 1949
Emma Gaines was an African American leader who was a native of Kentucky and lived and died in Kansas. She led educational and social efforts as an officer of a number of organizations. For 30 years she was president of the Baptist Women's Convention of Kansas and was among the first members of the Kansas Federation of Colored Women's Clubs when it was formed in June of 1931. She was president of the General Missionary Society, president of the Mothers Conference, and held several other positions at Shiloh Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas. She was also a delegate for 30 years to the National Baptist Women's Convention, founded by Nannie Burroughs in 1900. Emma Gaines was a member of the Woman's Home and Foreign Mission Board of the National Baptist Convention and was elected vice president in 1897. She was director of the Negro Festival Choir in Topeka and led the group through numerous performances in Topeka and surrounding cities. She was one of the first officers of the National Training School for Women founded in Washington, D. C. in 1909; the school was directed by Nannie Burroughs. Gaines was a Grand Chief Preceptress of the Pearly Rose Tabernacle No. 77, Daughters of the Tabernacle, and served as president of the Daughters of Liberty. In 1899, she was elected Queen Mother of the International Order of Twelve. Emma Gaines was the wife of Thomas Gaines; both were born in Kentucky and had been slaves. Their son, Benjamin P. Gaines, was also born in Kentucky. The family left Kentucky around 1887 and settled in Topeka, Kansas. Beginning in 1927, they were the owners of Gaines and Son Funeral Home, and in 1937, the family lived above the business at 1182 Buchanan Street. The business was initially located at 305 Kansas Street when the Gaines purchased it from the Topeka Undertaking Company, which was owned by the Goodwin family from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Emma Gaines died in 1949. In 1954, the cornerstone of the Gaines Memorial Chapel was put into place, marking the beginning of construction of the church that was named in honor of Emma Gaines. The church was located on Baptist Hill across the street from Kansas Technical Institute [which later merged with Kansas State University]. For more see "The Story of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Gaines," Capital Plaindealer, 01/10/1937, p. 1; "The Baptist State Convention," Parsons Weekly Blade, 09/04/1897, p. 4; "Mrs. Emma Gaines...," Plaindealer, 09/29/1899, p. 3; "New organized undertaking firm has purchased former Topeka Undertaking Company," Plaindealer, 01/07/1927, p. 1; and "Lays cornerstone of Gaines Memorial Chapel," Plaindealer, 07/23/1954, p. 4.
Subjects: Businesses, Migration West, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Religion & Church Work, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Topeka, Kansas

Gibson, William H., Sr.
Birth Year : 1829
Death Year : 1906
Gibson, the son of Amelia and Philip Gibson, was born free in Baltimore, MD, and moved to Louisville, KY, in 1847. He was a schoolteacher who helped found the United Brothers of Friendship and the Colored Orphan's Home. He was also president of the Colored Musical Association. Gibson wrote History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, published in 1897; the book contains a career sketch of Gibson. For eight months, Gibson served as an appointed mail agent under the administration of President Grant. For more see The Encyclopedia of Louisville, ed. by J. E. Kleber; and L. M. Gibson, "William Henry Gibson," Negro History Bulletin, vol. 11, issue 9 (June 1948), p. 199.
See photo image of William H. Gibson, Sr. on p. 102 in The Sons of Allen by H. Talbert.
Subjects: Authors, Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Postal Service, Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Appointments by U.S. Presidents/Services for U.S. Presidents
Geographic Region: Baltimore, Maryland / Louisville, Jefferson 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

Haskin, Vera A. Harrison
Birth Year : 1919
Death Year : 2005
Vera Harrison [Haskin] was an officer over the unit of African American WACs at Fort Knox, KY, in 1945. She had been a member of the first WAACs Officer Cadet School at Ft. Des Moins, IA in 1942 and was a member of the advance group of WAACs at Fort Huachuca, AZ. She was executive officer of the old 33rd Post Headquarters Company. At Fort Knox, KY, Harrison was Company Commander, and in England and France, she was Commanding Officer of Company C, and Central Postal Director, Company C. In England, the WACs who had been at Fort Knox became a part of the 6888 Postal Unit, the only African American women's military unit to go overseas during WWII. Vera A. Harrison was born in 1919 in Sadieville, KY, the daughter of Anna M. and Bradley Harrison. In 1930, the family of six lived in Hamilton, OH, on Wallace Street [source: U.S. Federal Census]. Bradley Harrison supported his family as a laborer at a foundry. Vera Harrison enlisted at Fort Hayes on July 18, 1942, according to her enlistment record. She was a graduate of a four year college and was employed as a secretary. Photos and additional information on Vera Harrison Haskin are available at the National Association of Black Military Women website. 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.

Vera Haskin at the National Association of Black Military Women website.
Subjects: Migration North, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Sadieville, Scott County, Kentucky / Hamilton, Ohio / Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky

Herod, Henry Louis and Elizabeth Frances
The Herods, Henry (1875-1935) and Elizabeth (1881-1953), were Kentucky natives: Elizabeth was born in Millersburg, and Henry may have been born there, also. The couple was married in 1899 and shared their home with Henry's 15 year old nephew, all living on W. 13th Street in Indianapolis, IN, according to the 1900 U.S. Federal Census. Henry was pastor of Second Christian Church, later known as Light of the World Christian Church; he was pastor for 37 years, 1898-1935. He is credited with increasing the membership and developing educational and cultural importance among the church members and advancing community projects. He was Superintendent of the Indianapolis Flanner House from 1925-1935. He was a political leader in Indianapolis and served as secretary of the Interracial Committee of the Council of Social Agencies. Henry was a member of the First Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Nu [see p. 46 of A History of the Washington (DC) Alumni Chapter 1911-1949  (.pdf format)]. Henry was a graduate of the University of Indianapolis, Butler College, Department of Liberal Arts and Culture [now Butler University]. Elizabeth was also active in the community, serving as secretary of the Indiana Federation of Colored Women's Clubs and as president of the Indianapolis Federation of Colored Women's Clubs. She was also active with the Indianapolis YWCA and was a delegate to the national convention in 1924. For more see the Elizabeth Herod entry in "Kentucky Biographical Sketches" in Lifting as They Climb, by E. L. Davis; and "Indianapolis Y.W. representative to Buenos Aires here," The Indianapolis Star, 06/07/1924, p. 7. See Henry Herod in the Indiana Medical Journal, 1902, vol. 21, issue 1, p. 527 [available at Google Book Search]; and Indiana Blacks in the Twentieth Century, by E. L. Thornbrough and L. Ruegamer.
Subjects: Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Religion & Church Work, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association), Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Millersburg, Bourbon County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Hillman, Alice Louise
Birth Year : 1896
Death Year : 1986
Hillman was born in Tennessee, according to the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. She was a school teacher who began teaching when she was 15 years old. She taught in the Bourbon County, KY, schools for 21 years in addition to teaching in Fayette and Madison Counties, KY, and Columbia, TN. Hillman had also been active as a member of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women's Clubs, having served as president, vice president, and secretary-treasurer of the scholarship fund. She had also served as president of the Phillis Wheatley Charity Club, located in Paris, KY. Hillman's birth year is given as 1896 in the Social Security Death Index. She was the wife of grocery store owner Robert Hillman (1882-1967), who was born in KY. The couple lived on Mt. Sterling Road in Little Rock, KY. For more see J. Hewlett, "Teacher, civic leader Alice Hillman dies, Lexington Herald-Leader, Obituaries section, p. D11.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Tennessee / Little Rock and Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Hopkins, Nadine
Birth Year : 1972
Hopkins, from Owenton, KY, was named homecoming queen at Northern Kentucky University in her senior year, 1994, her nomination sponsored by the Black Women's Organization. She was the first African American homecoming queen at the university. For more see "NKU homecoming queen's coronation makes history," The Kentucky Post, 02/14/1994, p. 6K.
Subjects: Homecoming Queens, Pageants, Contests, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Owenton, Owen County, Kentucky

Howell-Young, Joyce
Birth Year : 1934
The Louisville physician was appointed to the city's board of education in 1971, the first African American woman to serve on the board. She led in the integration of the patients' rooms in the Louisville St. Joseph Hospital in the 1960s. Dr. Howell-Young is president of the Falls City Medical Society. She is agraduate of Fisk University, where she earned a B.A. in Zoology, and Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania. She completed her intern training at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, OH. Dr. Young-Howell had a private practice in Louisville, 1961-1967. She has had a number of posts including that of medical director of the Park DuValle Neighborhood Health Center, 1974-1976. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and many other organizations. Dr. Howell-Young was born in Cincinnati, OH, the daughter of Lloyd M.  Howell and Addie Belle Foster Howell. For more see "36 city officials include mayor, police court judge," in Kentucky Directory of Black Elected Officials [1972], by the Commission on Human Rights, p. 17; "Doctor says interns don't make living wage," Jet, 03/29/1962, p.27 [available online]; Who's Who Among African Americans, 1996-2009; and Joyce Howell-Young, M.D. in Who's Who in Black Louisville, Inaugural Edition, p.112.
Subjects: First City Employees & Officials (1960s Civil Rights Campaign), Medical Field, Health Care, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations, Board of Education
Geographic Region: Cincninati, Ohio / Louisville, Jefferson, Kentucky

Hughes, Brenda Lee Garner
Birth Year : 1947
Death Year : 1986

This entry was written and submitted by Dr. Sallie Powell, University of Kentucky.

Brenda Lee Garner Hughes was the first African American woman to officiate the Kentucky High School Athletic Association's "Sweet Sixteen" Girls' State Basketball Tournament. Born in Lexington, Kentucky, she was the only daughter of Mathew and Alice Garner. She graduated from Dunbar High School. As a divorced mother of Monique and Lucy Lee, Brenda worked for the U. S. Post Office and as a seasonal employee for the Lexington Division of Parks and Recreation where she learned to officiate basketball. She became the first woman to officiate the Lexington Senior Dirt Bowl basketball tournament. In 1995, she was posthumously inducted into the Dawahares Kentucky High School Athletic Association Sports Hall of Fame.

For more see:

Powell, Sallie L., "'It Is Hard To Be What You Have Had Seen': Brenda Hughes and The Black and White of the Zebra Shirt—Race and Gender in Kentucky High School Basketball," Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, Special Edition, Volume 109, No. 3 & 4, Summer and Autumn 2011, pp. 433-465.

See photo image of Brenda Hughes in UKnowledge.

Subjects: Basketball, Postal Service, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Jackson, Eliza or Isabelle (Belle) Mitchell
Birth Year : 1848
Death Year : 1942
Mitchell was born in Perryville, KY and raised in Danville, KY. Her parents, Mary and Monroe Mitchell, purchased their freedom. Belle became an abolitionist and the first African American teacher at Camp Nelson, with John G. Fee. She became a prominent teacher in Fayette County and one of the founders of the African American Orphan Industrial Home. She was actively involved with the Colored women's club movement. She was married to Jordan Jackson. For more see Biographical Sketches of Prominent Negro Men and Women of Kentucky, by W. D. Johnson; African American Women: a biographical dictionary, by D. C. Salem; and Lexington's Colored Orphan Industrial Home by L. F. Byars.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Freedom, Orphans and Orphanages in Kentucky, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Perryville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Fayette County, Kentucky

Jacobson, Harriet P.
Birth Year : 1879
Death Year : 1961
Harriet Price Jacobson was born in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Nannie Price and Robert Johnson. A teacher and poet, she taught in Oklahoma rural schools from 1893 to 1896 and in Kansas and Oklahoma city schools from 1897 to 1935. She was an advisory teacher from 1935 to 1947. Jacobson organized the East Side Culture Club in Oklahoma City in 1907 and assisted in the organization of the State Training School for Negro Boys in Boley and the Training School for Girls in Taft. She was the founder and first president of the Oklahoma Federation of Negro Women's Clubs, 1910-1915. She received an award for her 42 years of teaching. Jacobson was author of a number of published poems in publications such as Anthology of Poetry by Oklahoma Writers (1938) and The Poetry Digest Annual (1939), and in 1947 her book of poems was published, Songs in the Night. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950; and Black American Writers Past and Present. A biographical and bibliographical dictionary, by T. G. Rush, et al. See also Harriet Price Jacobson at the Uncrowned Community Builders website, and Harriet Price Jacobson at the Find A Grave website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Migration West, Poets, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Oklahoma City, Oklahoma / Kansas

Jernagin, Cordelia J. Woolfolk
Birth Year : 1895
Death Year : 1977
In 1924, Cordelia J. Woolfolk, born in Frankfort, KY, was a claims adjuster at the National Benefit Insurance Company in Washington, D.C. She was considered a woman who had landed a high position job. The insurance company was founded by Samuel W. Rutherford in 1898, it was an African American-owned business. Cordelia J. Woolfolk had previously worked for an insurance company in Frankfort, KY. According to a 1924 article by Charles E. Stump in the Broad Axe newspaper in Chicago, Cordelia Woolfolk had advanced in the insurance business from her job in Frankfort to her job in Washington, D.C. [source: "Charles E. Stump, the slick old time traveling correspondent...," Broad Axe, 04/19/1924, p.3, paragraph 6 of article]. Prior to working in insurance, she was a school teacher in Bagdad, KY. Cordelia J. Woolfolk was in Washington, D.C. as early as 1920, according to the U.S. Federal Census. In 1922, her name was on p.1666 in Boyd's Directory of the District of Columbia. She is listed in the 1933 directory and the 1934 directory; Woolfolk was employed as a stenographer and a bookkeeper. In the 1939 directory, she is listed on p.1402, and was employed at the Southeast Settlement House. The establishment was found in 1929 by Dr. Dorothy Boulding Ferebee and provided daycare and recreation for African American children. In 1945, Cordelia J. Woolfolk was a social worker in Washington, D.C. when she married civil rights activist, Rev. William Henry Jernagin (1870-1958), pastor of Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. and an internationally known church leader and activist. For more see "Jernagin takes bride," Afro-American, 08/11/1945, p.10; and "Dr. Jernagin still active pastor at 88," Afro-American, 10/19/1957, p.3.
Subjects: Accountants, Bookkeepers, Certified Public Accountants, Stenographers, Insurance Companies, Insurance Sales, Education and Educators, Migration North, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Bagdad, Shelby County, Kentucky / Washington, D. C.

Jewell, Terri Lynn
Birth Year : 1954
Death Year : 1995
Terri L. Jewell was born October 4, 1954 in Louisville, KY, and lived in Lansing, MI. She was an African American lesbian, feminist, poet, and writer. Her work appeared in hundreds of publications and she was the editor of The Black Woman's Gumbo Ya-Ya and the author of Our Names Are Many. Terri Lynn Jewell died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound on November 26, 1995 in Berlin, MI. For more information see L. Lynch, "A precious Jewell is lost forever," Lesbian News, Mar96, vol.1 issue 8, p.60; and the online article by C. Gage, "Terri Lynn Jewell, 1954-1995," at the Scribd website.
Subjects: Authors, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Lansing, Michigan

Jones, Alberta O.
Birth Year : 1930
Death Year : 1965
Alberta Odell Jones was born in Louisville, KY, the third child of Sarah (Sadie) Frances Crawford Jones and Odell Jones. She was also a first cousin of Raymond Ponder. During her brief life, Alberta Jones was at the forefront of change in Kentucky and Louisville. She was one of the first African American women to pass the Kentucky Bar (1959) and the first woman prosecutor in Kentucky (1964). [Sally J. Seals White was the first African American woman admitted to the Kentucky Bar.] Jones was prosecutor in the Louisville Domestic Relations Court; her law office was located at 2018 W. Broadway. [James A. Crumlin, Sr. was the assistant prosecutor.] Jones was Cassius Clay's [Muhammad Ali's] first attorney, taking him to California to be trained under Archie Moore. Jones was also a civil rights activist: in addition to participating in the March on Washington and the marches in Louisville, she rented voting machines and held classes to teach African Americans how to vote for the candidate of their choice. She established the Independent Voters Association and was an active member of the Louisville Urban League and the NAACP. Jones also established the James "Bulky" Welch Fund and held a fund-raiser, raffling off a car to pay Welch's medical bills and purchase the prosthetic arms to replace the ones young Welch had lost trying to retrieve his dog from under a train. Alberta Jones was a graduate of Louisville Central High School and attended the Louisville Municipal College for Negroes. When the college was merged with the University of Louisville (U of L) during desegregation, Jones continued her education at U of L and graduated third in her class. She was accepted into the University of Louisville Law School but transferred after the first year to Howard University School of Law, where she graduated fourth in her class. A picture of Alberta O. Jones hangs in the U of L Law School. She was a member of the American Bar Association, the Fall City Bar Association, and the Louisville Bar Association, serving as secretary of the latter. She was also a member of the Eta Zeta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta and the Sigma Chapter of Iota Phi Lambda. Alberta O. Jones was murdered in August 1965 -- the case has not been solved. This information was submitted by Alberta Jones's niece, Ms. Nicole M. Martin, and Jones's sister, Ms. Flora Lutisha Shanklin. For more see "Alberta Jones' funeral rites held; unsolved murders alarm West Enders," The Louisville Defender, 08/12/1965, front page and p. 6; and Legacy of Leadership: African American Pioneers in Kentucky Law (video-recording), by the University of Louisville School of Law.
See photo image of Alberta O. Jones and Cassius Clay [Muhammad Ali] in Jet, 08/26/1965, p.5.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Civic Leaders, Voting Rights, Lawyers, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Women's Groups and Organizations, Urban Leagues
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Jones, Carridder "Rita"
Carridder Jones was born in South Carolina and lived in Indiana before moving to Kentucky. A playwright and historian, Jones's research has included African American communities in Kentucky, especially the black hamlets in Lexington and Louisville. Her play, "Black Hamlets in the Kentucky Bluegrass," was a finalist in the New York Drama League's New Works Project in 2002. Another of her plays, "The Mark of Cain," was chosen by the University of Louisville's African-American theater program for the Second Annual Juneteenth Festival of New Works. She has presented her research at conferences, programs, workshops, and as productions. She is the co-founder and Director of Women Who Write. In 2006, Jones received the Sallie Bingham Award. She is author of the 2009 book A Backward Glance. For more see "Free Black Hamlets," Courier Journal (Louisville) News, 04/19/04; and "Filmmakers hope to save Bluegrass freetowns," Lexington Herald Leader, 08/10/03.

See photo image and additional information about Carridder Jones at the Oldham County History Center website, 2009.
Subjects: Actors, Actresses, Artists, Fine Arts, Authors, Historians, Migration West, Emancipation Day / Juneteenth Celebrations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Theater: Companies, Education, Exhibitions, Performers, and Performances in Kentucky
Geographic Region: South Carolina / Indiana / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Jones, Louis
Birth Year : 1852
Louis Jones was born on the Cassiday Plantation near Bowling Green, KY. About a year before his father died, Jones and his mother were sold to an owner in Okolona, MS. His father, John T. Jones, was married to Nancy J. Cassiday. While in Mississippi, Jones was freed. As an adult, he had a series of jobs, including, in 1881, working as a janitor in the Office of the Railroad and Warehouse Commission in Springfield, IL. Jones was a member of the African American community that had migrated to Springfield. He belonged to the Masons Blue Lodge No. 3, and his wife, Ada Chavons Jones, was a member of Shiloh Court No. 1 and Eastern Star Chapter No. 2. For more see History of Sangamon County, Illinois; together with sketches of its cities, by Inter-state Publishing Company (Chicago); and contact the Springfield, Illinois, African American History Foundation.
Subjects: Freedom, Migration North, Migration South, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Railroad, Railway, Trains
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Okolona, Mississippi / Springfield, Illinois

Jones, Margaret Ellen Barnes
Birth Year : 1911
Death Year : 2000
A major in the U.S. Army, Margaret E. B. Jones was with the only African American military women's unit (the 6888th Postal Unit) to go overseas during World War II. Her first post as an officer was in Kentucky, where she was over a unit of African American women assigned to clean floors and latrines in the Camp Breckinridge hospital. After that, she began lobbying for better work assignments for the women she commanded. She and Myrtle Anderson were the first African American women Army officers stationed in Kentucky. Jones' maternal grandparents had been slaves in Kentucky, and her mother, a well known community leader, was born in Monticello, KY; her name was Margaret E. Sallee Barnes. Margaret E. B. Jones, born in Oberlin, OH, was a graduate of Howard University. Her brother-in-law, Sam Jones, was athletic director at the school; he was also one of the first African American officers commissioned in the Navy. For more see C. Levy, "Maj. Margaret E. B. Jones Dies," Washington Post, 04/25/2000, Metro section, p. B7; The New York Times, 04/27/2000, late ed. Final, p. B13; To Serve My Country, To Serve My Race, by B. L. Moore; and "6 WACs Resign: WAC Clerks Decline to Scrub Floors," Philadelphia Afro-American, July 10, 1943, p. 1. For more about Camp Breckinridge, see the Camp Breckinridge entry in the Kentucky Encyclopedia [available on UK Campus and off campus via the proxy server], and History of Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky, by P. Heady. See also the entry about the WACs Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs), Grandparents
Geographic Region: Oberlin, Ohio / Fort Breckinridge [or Camp Breckinridge], Henderson, Webster, and Union Counties, Kentucky (no longer exists)

Jones, Margaret Grady
Birth Year : 1885
Margaret "Maggie" Jones was the first African American woman to serve on the Republican Precinct Committee in South Bend, IN. She was a Kentucky native, born in Haydensville. She was married to George Lee Jones, Sr., born in 1887 in Kentucky. All of the couples' children were also born in Kentucky. The family moved to South Bend in 1919, and according to the 1930 U. S. Federal Census, they lived on West Jefferson Street. George Jones, Sr. was a presser at a tailor's shop. Maggie was an active member of several organizations, including the Indiana State Republican Women, the Northern Star, and Daughter Elks. For more see the Margaret Jones entry in The Black Women in the Middle West Project, by D. C. Hine, et al.; and the Margaret Jones Collection at Northern Indiana Historical Society.
Subjects: Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Haydensville, Todd County, Kentucky / South Bend, Indiana

Jones, Susie W.
Birth Year : 1891
Death Year : 1984
Born in Danville, KY, Susie Williams Jones served as the first president and vice-president of the United Council of Church Women in North Carolina between 1944 and 1946. She was chair of the Intercultural and Interracial Relations Committee, Women's Division of Christian Service in the Methodist Church in 1944. Susie Jones' parents met when they were students at Berea College. Her husband, David Dallas Jones, was president of Bennett College for Women. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950; and chapter 21, E. H. Wilson & S. Mullalley, "Esse quam videri: Susie Williams Jones," in Worlds of Difference: inequality in the aging experience, by E. P. Stoller & R. C. Gibson.
Subjects: Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky / Greensboro, North Carolina

Jordan, Artishia Garcia Wilkerson
Birth Year : 1901
Death Year : 1974
Artishia G. W. Jordon was a teacher, civic leader, a leader in the AME Church, and supported civil rights. She was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of attorney Bernard O. and Dr. Artishia Gilbert Wilkerson. She was a graduate of Central High School, attended Howard University, graduated from the University of Chicago in 1923, and earned her master's degree in mathematics at the University of California in 1924. She was the wife of Frederick D. Jordan who was a bishop in the AME Church. Artishia Jordan served as president of the Southern California Conference Branch, and was vice-president of the Chicago Conference Branch and the Southwest Missouri Conference Branch. She organized the AME Minister's Wives Alliance of the Los Angeles vicinity. She was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and the Order of Eastern Star, and was elected to the executive council of Southern California Council of Church Women. She also served as president of the Los Angeles Metropolitan Council of Negro Women, and was a member of the Committee of Management of the Woodlawn YWCA. She was affiliated with the Sojourner Truth Home and the NAACP. Jordan was the first African American director of the Los Angeles Chapter of American Mission to Lepers. She was a contributing editor of the Afro-American Woman's Journal and was editor of the Women's Missionary Recorder from 1940 to 1944. She taught math at Central High School in Louisville and also taught at Western University. Artishia Jordan and her husband, Bishop F. D. Jordan, made several trips during the 1950s visiting AME Churches in South Africa. Artishia Jordan was author of The African Methodist Episcopal Church in Africa. Jordan Hall at Morris Brown College was named for Rev. and Mrs. Jordan. In 1976, the AME Church founded the Artishia Jordan Scholarship Fund, and after Bishop Jordan's death in 1976, the name of the fund was changed to the Artishia and Frederick Jordan Scholarship Fund. More than 1,000 students have benefited from the fund. For more see Mrs. Artishia Wilkerson Jordan in The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright; J. Jordan, "Thirtieth Anniversary of the Artishia and Frederick Jordan Fund," in the Christian Recorder Online (English Edition), 11/09/2006; and see Artishia Gilbert Wilkerson Jordan in Negro Who's Who in California, 1948 edition, by H. M. J. Williams.

See photo image of Artishia and Frederick Jordan at the Jordan Scholarship Fund webpage, a Howard University website.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Authors, Civic Leaders, Migration West, Women's Groups and Organizations, National Council of Negro Women
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Los Angeles, California

Jordan, Eleanor
Birth Year : 1953
In 2001 Governor Patton appointed Eleanor Jordan Executive Director of the Office of the Ombudsman for the Cabinet for Families and Children. Prior to that, she had served three terms as a Kentucky Representative (Louisville). In 2000 she unsuccessfully ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in Kentucky's Third Congressional District. She was the first African American candidate for national office from Kentucky. In 2007, Jordan was appointed Executive Director of the Kentucky Commission on Women by newly elected Governor Steve Beshear. For more see Kentucky Women, by E. Potter; Y. Scruggs-Leftwich, "Significance of Black Women's Vote Ignored," in Women's ENews; D. M. Clayton, "African American women and their quest for Congress," Journal of Black Studies, Jan 2003, vol. 33, issue 3, pp. 354-388; and Kentucky Governor Press Release, 01/02/2008, "Governor Beshear Appoints Executive Director of the Kentucky Commission on Women.


Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, Legislators, Kentucky, Appointments by Kentucky Governors
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Kentucky Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Start Year : 1903
The National Association of Colored Women was established in Washington, D.C., in 1896 and incorporated in 1904. The Kentucky chapter was represented by the Kentucky State Association of Colored Women's Clubs, organized in 1903 and boasting a membership of 2,500 women in 112 clubs. Kentucky's membership was second only to Tennessee among the 21 states reporting statistics in 1935. The NACW adopted the motto "Lifting As We Climb" and was dedicated to the "moral, mental and material progress made by our people. " The Kentucky clubs specialized in "Fostering Day Nurseries, Hospitals, Old Folks Homes; Homes for Delinquent Girls, Building Club Houses and Community Centers." The Lexington chapter was responsible for founding the Phillis Wheatley Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA), which participated in the nationwide "Good Homes Movement" and still operates in Lexington today. The Good Homes Movement encouraged home ownership and the maintenance of clean, comfortable living quarters. Better Homes Week was held in the spring and sponsored programs that included such activities as selecting, furnishing, and opening a model home; reconditioning older homes; teaching about home finance; and encouraging such community projects as the paving and lighting of streets and the construction of playground and recreation centers. An important department of the NACW was the "Mother, Home and Child Department." During the 1920s, the national chairmanship of this department was held by a prominent Lexington woman, Mrs. Lizzie B. Fouse. Under her leadership, pamphlets were produced on various subjects; one pamphlet declared "Around Mother, Home and Child is woven the web of civilization," and suggested that mothers organize into block circles or local clubs, adopt a slogan, read progressive literature on modern child-rearing practices, and "get busy and do something at once." From the Fouse Family Papers, M-839, Special Collections, King Building, University of Kentucky, Lexington. See also, Pictorial Directory of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women, by L. H. Smith [available full-text in the Kentucky Digital Library - Books]. For information on more current clubs, see M. Davis, "Women's Clubs past, present fills needs," Lexington Herald-Leader, 3/11/2004, Free Time section, p. E2.
 
This entry was researched, written and submitted by

Nancy O'Malley, Assistant Director [nancy.omalley@uky.edu]
William S. Webb Museum of Anthropology and
Office of State Archaeology
1020A Export Street
University of Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky 40506
Ph. 859-257-1944
FAX: 859-323-1968


See photo image of the Artistic Ten, the club formed in 1909 in Frankfort, KY. Image on p. 12 in Pictorial Directory of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women.
Subjects: Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association), Association of Colored Women's Clubs, Community Centers and Cultural Centers, Care of the Elderly
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Kentucky Conference Branch (African Methodist Episcopal Church)
Start Year : 1914
In 1914 the Kentucky Conference Branch was a separate body of the AME Annual Conference and held its first convention in Bethel AME Church in Nicholasville, KY. The prior year, the separation had taken place in St. Matthews Church in Midway, KY during the annual conference. The Kentucky Conference Branch was a women's missionary organization that existed prior to 1897. One of the sub-units was a women's group that was named the WMMS in 1897, the group's task was to collect money that was brought to the Annual Conference by the women's pastors and distributed to AME member-preachers of lesser means. Mrs. Leanna Snowden and Mrs. E. Belle Jackson were two of the women who served as presidents of the Kentucky Conference Branch before the separation in 1914, and Mrs. Snowden was president the year of the separation. There were several sub-units of the Kentucky Conference Branch and a more detailed history of the entire organization can be found in Part II of The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright, pp.427-430. Pictures of members on pp.540-541. [WMMS - Women's Mite Missionary Society]
Subjects: Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Midway, Woodford County, Kentucky / Nicholasville, Jessamine County, Kentucky

Kentucky State College, Women's Basketball, 1981 NAIA Champion
Start Year : 1981
The Kentucky State College women's basketball team won the first NAIA Women's Basketball Title in 1981. The team defeated Texas Southern 73-67 for the championship in Kansas City, MO. At the end of the regular season, the Kentucky State team was ranked 7th among the 8 teams in the tournament; the Thorobreds had a pre-tournament record of 15-7 and an overall record of 21-7. The team members included Carolyn Walker, a 5'7" senior who was the tournament's most valuable player and was named First Team All-Tournament; she averaged 20 points and five rebounds per game during the regular season. Pam King, center, was a sophomore who stood 5'11"; she was named Second Team All-Tournament. Angelia Barnett, a freshman, was a forward standing 5'10"; she was named Second Team All-Tournament. Other team members included Paula Jennels, Felicia Jordan, Darlene Brown, and Rhonda Beauford. The team was initially coached by Cornieth Y. Russell, then replaced by Ron Mitchell, who was also the school's athletic director; he became the interim coach midway through the regular season after the head coach was removed. He was named NAIA Coach of the Year after the tournament. The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Women's Basketball Tournament was established in 1981. To date, the 1981 win by the Kentucky State College Thorobreds is the team's only NAIA championship. KSC was the first HBCU (Historically Black College and University) and, so far, only HBCU to win an NAIA women’s basketball national championship. They were also the first women’s college basketball team in Kentucky to win a national championship [the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament started in 1982]. For more see "Kentucky State women win NAIA basketball crown," Jet, 04/09/1981, p. 52; NAIA website; NAIA Division I Women's Basketball Championship Records; E. Patton, "Reflecting on the past: KSU's 1981 women's NAIA championship team to be honored," State Journal (Frankfort, KY), 03/13/2013, reprinted in BSTM [Black Sports The Magazine] Special Edition, May 2013, vol. 5, pp. 4-5 [online .pdf]; and Kentucky State University website about the 1981 team’s recognition.

 
Subjects: Basketball, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Kisner, Robert G.
Birth Year : 1940
Death Year : 2004
Robert G. Kisner, an obstetrician-gynecologist, was born in Lexington, KY, son of Robert O. and Thelma Jackson Kisner. The family moved to Pittsburgh, PA, where R. G. Kisner attended grade school and graduated from Schenley High School in 1959. He went on to earn his BS at Morgan State University and his MD at Meharry Medical College in 1969. Kisner returned to Pittsburgh where he was a staff member of the Magee Women's Hospital for 31 years. After completing his internship, Kisner opened his practice in 1973 in the East Liberty section of the city; he was the second African American obstetrician in private practice in Pittsburgh. Kisner was one of the first African American doctors in many areas of medical practice in Pittsburgh, including serving as the medical director of the Family Planning Council of Western Pennsylvania. For more see "Dr. Robert Garland Kisner," 04/01/04, a Post-Gazette website; "Robert Garland Kisner - doctor who promoted family planning," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 04/01/2004, Obituary section, p. C-17; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1977-2004.


Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The Ladies (of color)
Start Year : 1847
The Ladies (of color), in Frankfort, KY, are thought to have been free African American women. In 1847 the group held a fair for "benevolent purposes" at the home of Mrs. Rilla Harris. For more see A Thousand Years Over a Hot Stove: a history of American women told through food, recipes and..., by L. Schenone, p. 131.
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Colored Fairs & Black Expos, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Lampton Street Baptist Church (Louisville, KY) [Spencer Taylor]
Start Year : 1866
Spencer Taylor, a carpenter, organized the church and led the services of the Lampton Street Baptist Church, founded in 1866 in Louisville, KY. Services were first held in Taylor's carpentry shop, located at the intersection of Preston, Jackson, Breckinridge and Caldwell Streets. The church services were later moved to a house that was built on Caldwell Street between Preston and Jackson Streets. A later Lampton Street Baptist Church building was completed by architect Samuel Plato. When the National Baptist Convention was held in Louisville in September 1928, the assembly of women at the Lampton Street Baptist Church was seriously urged by Nannie Burroughs to vote for the Republican presidential candidate, Herbert Hoover. The women had gathered at the church to conduct the business of the National Baptist Women's Convention, an organization founded by Nannie Burroughs in Louisville, KY, in 1900. The present day Lampton Baptist Church is located on 4th Street in Louisville, KY. For more see the "Lampton Street Baptist Church" entry in Weeden's History of the Colored People of Louisville, by H. C. Weeden; and in Negro Baptist History, by L. G. Jordan. For more about the 1928 Women's Convention, see L. G. Materson, "African American women, prohibition, and the 1928 presidential election," Journal of Women's History, vol . 21, issue 1 (Spring 2009), pp. 63-86.

See photo image of the Lampton Baptist Church in Louisville and the Zion Baptist Church in Georgetown, both on p.99 in the Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky, at the NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations, Carpenters
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Lexington Conference (Methodist Episcopal Church)
Birth Year : 1869
Death Year : 1964
The Lexington Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church was established in Harrodsburg, KY, in 1869. It was the third missionary conference for African Americans [the first was the Delaware Conference and the second was the Washington Conference, both established in 1864]. African Americans had been members of the Kentucky District of the Methodist Episcopal Church as early as 1787 when there were 64 Colored members, according to author F. Ockerman, Jr. When the Lexington Conference was established, it was originally a part of the Kentucky Annual Conference; beginning in the spring of 1866, a few Negro preachers were admitted into the traveling connection as a trial. New members were added as the preachers met as a group over the next three years. At the annual session in Newport, KY, in 1868, the preachers forwarded a resolution asking for their own conference, named the Lexington Conference; the resolution was approved. The conference founders were Henry Hopkins Lytle (1802-1890), from Maryland; Israel Simms (1819-1912), from New Castle, KY; Zail or Zale Ross (1824-1892), from Georgetown, KY; William Lawrence (d. 1900 in Anchorage, KY); Marcus McCoomer (1834-1899); Peter Booth (d. 1873), from Kentucky; Hanson Talbott (d. 1870), from Harrodsburg, KY; Nelson Saunders (d. 1879 in Louisville, KY); Paris Fisher; Andrew Bryant (d. 1870 in Paris, KY); Adam Nunn (b.1820), from Oberlin, OH; George Downing (1807-1880), from Virginia; Willis L. Muir (d. 1911 in Louisville, KY); and Elisha C. Moore (d. 1871), from Alabama. The first Lexington Conference was held in the Jackson Street Church in Louisville in 1870, with the membership initially including churches in Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. The women's divisions of the conference were formed after the turn of the century: Women's Home Missionary Society (1900), Ladies Aid Society (1914), Minister's Wives (1919), and Women's Society of Christian Service. The Lexington Conference was held most often in a Kentucky location, and as the membership increased, it also shifted northward with the Great Migration, after which the conference was held more in Ohio, Illinois, and Indiana. In 1946 the membership was over 17,000, with close to half from the Chicago area. The Lexington Conference was held each year until June 1964 when the conference was merged into the Cleveland district of the North East Ohio Conference. For more see Forty Years in the Lap of Methodism: history of Lexington Conference, by W. H. Riley; History of Lexington Conference, by Dr. D. E. Skelton; Black People in the Methodist Church: Whither Thou Goest?, by W. B. McClain; The Tapestry of Faith: the history of Methodism in the Cleveland District of the East Ohio Conference, by G. S. Moore and J. C. Trimble; and First United Methodist Church, Lexington, Kentucky: bicentennial history by F. Ockerman, Jr.
Subjects: Kentucky African American Churches, Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Indiana / Illinois / Ohio

Lexington Fraternal Order of Black Firefighters
Start Year : 1990
The following information comes from the unpublished manuscript, History of Black Firefighters, written by Keith L. Jackson in 1991, for the Lexington, KY Chapter of the International Association of Black Professional Fire Fighters (IABPFF). The Lexington Fraternal Order of Black Firefighters was formed in May, 1990, the first IABPFF chapter in Kentucky. Some of the founding members were Michael Horton, Clarence Jones, James Kyner, and Beverly Baker. There had been an earlier firefighter's association in Lexington, formed in the 1980s, and named the Brothers Loving Others and Opposing Destruction (BLOOD). The chapter was reorganized and the name was changed in 1990. According to Jackson, the first two African American firefighters were hired by the City of Lexington in 1969: John Drake and Charles Lindsey. In 1992, Brenda Cowan became the first African American woman firefighter and member of the Lexington Chapter of the IABPFF. A second chapter of the IABPFF was located in Louisville, KY.
Subjects: Firefighters, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Livingston, Valinda E. Lewis
Birth Year : 1937
Born in Lexington, KY, Valinda E. Lewis Livingston was an educator in the Lexington schools for 37 years. She is a graduate of old Dunbar High School and one of the top academic achievers in the school's history. She graduated from Kentucky State University (KSU) with a bachelor's degree in elementary education, then earned a master's degree in elementary education from the University of Kentucky and principalship and supervision certificates from Eastern Kentucky University. Her teaching career began at Booker T. Washington Elementary School prior to the full integration of the Lexington city school system. She taught at two other elementary schools before being named head principal of Russell Elementary. Prior to her retirement, Livingston was a district administrator for six years, overseeing the students' at-risk programs. Her post-retirement career includes serving as a member of the Board of Examiners of Kentucky's Education Professional Standards Board, chair of the Board of Regents at Kentucky State University, President of the Baptist Women State Education Convention, vice-president of the Lexington Chapter of the KSU National Alumni Association, and Sunday School Superintendent and Music Committee Chair at Shiloh Baptist Church in Lexington, KY. Livingston is also a professional singer, a soprano with the Lexington Singers. She is also a key resource for historical researchers looking to make a connection to past events in the Lexington African American community with present day people. The Valinda E. Livingston Endowed Student Scholarship for Teacher Education Majors has been established at Kentucky State University. For more see "Retired educator leaves legacy for future educators," Onward and Upward, Fall - Summer 2005 - 2006, p. 3.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Historians, Kentucky African American Churches, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Sunday School
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky

Macon, Theresa Gray
Birth Year : 1873
Death Year : 1930
Theresa G. Macon was born in Louisville, KY, and is remembered for her work with the Colored women's clubs in Illinois. She was president of the Illinois and the Chicago Federation of Colored Women's Clubs, and a chartered member of the Ida B. Wells Club. Macon was recording secretary of the National Association of Colored Women. She was mentioned in the book, Lifting as They Climb, as one of the officers and committee members from Illinois who have contributed liberally to the national projects of the National Association of Colored Women. Theresa Macon was the wife of William Macon, who was a porter. The couple and Theresa's aunt, Ellen Rush, lived on W. 56th Street, according to the 1910 U.S. Federal Census. Theresa Macon was the daughter of Seagmon and Jane Bush Gray [source: Illinois Deaths, and Still Births Index]. For more see the Theresa Macon entry in Toward a Tenderer Humanity and a Nobler Womanhood by A. M. Knupfer.
Subjects: Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois

Magowan Brothers and the Reporter (Mt. Sterling, KY)
Start Year : 1904
End Year : 1913
The Reporter Newspaper

  • The Reporter newspaper was published in Mt. Sterling, KY, by the brothers John D. Magowan and Noah W. Magowan. It was the first newspaper owned and operated by African Americans in the city of Mt. Sterling; the Mt. Sterling Advocate newspaper ran an article welcoming the Reporter. The paper was recognized as a strong voice for the Negro in Kentucky, and in 1907 when the Negro Press Association, Kentucky was formed with 14 members, N. W. Magowan was named president. One of the goals of the association was to solidify the Negro vote in the upcoming presidential election. The Reporter took on the cause. The newspaper had been established in April of 1904 as a weekly publication with Noah W. Magowan as editor, Reverend W. H. Brown and Reverend J. W. Smith associate editors, and John D. Magowan manager. [The Magowan brothers are mentioned in many sources by their first and middle initials and last names.] In January of 1908, as president of the Negro Press Association, Kentucky, N. W. Magowan made a call to all Negro press members in Kentucky to meet at the Kentucky Standard newspaper office in Louisville to discuss the political situation in the state, in reference to the presidential election and the selection of Negro delegates to the National Republican Convention. In March of 1908, the Reporter ran an editorial against William H. Taft, from Cincinnati, OH, who was campaigning to become President of the United States. The editorial was described by fellow Negro editor, W. D. Johnson of the Lexington Standard, as "unmanly, unkind, and intended to rouse race feelings against Mr. Taft." Not only did the two editors disagree about Taft, but Magowan and Johnson were two of the Negro candidates for delegate-at-large to the Republican Convention. The other candidates were J. E. Wood, editor of the Torchlight in Danville; R. T. Berry, editor of the Kentucky Reporter in Owensboro; Dr. E. W. Lane of Maysville; W. J. Gaines, Grand Master of the U. B. of F. [United Brothers of Friendship] in Covington; W. H. Steward, editor of the American Baptist in Louisville; and Dr. E. E. Underwood, editor of the Bluegrass Bugle in Frankfort. W. D. Johnson was expected to be the selected delegate among the Negro candidates. During the election, J. D. Magowan was an election officer in Mt. Sterling. When Taft became President in 1909, W. D. Johnson was rewarded for his loyalty: he was assigned to the General Land Office in Washington, D.C. Just prior to his appointment, N. W. Magowan, who had been against Taft as a presidential candidate, wrote an editorial in the Lexington Leader proclaiming W. D. Johnson's support of Taft was a forward-thinking decision, and he championed Johnson's right to a political reward for his loyalty. Magowan's good words about Johnson in the Lexington Leader were not an indication that the Reporter had changed its mission; in 1909, a letter from Berea College President William G. Frost was published in the Reporter in response to the argument presented by Rev. Morris of the Centenary Methodist Church of Lexington, who had said "the old Berea College ought to have been turned over to the Negroes." N. W. Magowan had been among the Berea graduates who attended the 1908 meeting at Berea College, hoping to adopt resolutions that would give Negroes the opportunity to help establish a new colored college if the Supreme Court did not set aside the Day Law [source: "Colored graduates meet," Citizen, 04/09/1908, available full-text at Kentucky Digital Library - Newspapers].
The Move to Washington, D. C.
  • In 1910, N. W. Magowan left the Reporter newspaper to become a clerk for the Census Bureau [source: 1910 U.S. Federal Census], having received his appointment in April of 1910 [source: "Appointment at Washington," Mt. Sterling Advocate, 04/13/1910, p. 2]. W. D. Johnson had left the Lexington Standard newspaper and moved to Washington, D.C., and N. W. Magowan and his wife were regular guests at the Johnson home. The Reporter continued to be managed by J. D. Magowan until his death in 1913. His brother remained in Washington, D.C., and in January of 1915, N. W. Magowan delivered the principal address during the installation exercises of the Charles Sumner Post and Woman's Relief Corp. N. W. Magowan was a member of the Committee on Ways and Means of the National Emancipation Commemorative Society. By 1920, he was employed as a clerk at the post office and was elected president of the Post Office Relief Association. N. W. Magowan, his wife Mary, their son Paul (1911-1984), and a boarder all lived on Q Street [source: 1920 U.S. Federal Census].
Noah and Mary Magowan
  • Mary W. Magowan (1870-1940) was from Bourbon County, KY; she had been a school teacher in Mt. Sterling, and in 1904 she was the Grand Worthy Counselor of the Independent Order of Calanthe. Noah W. Magowan was born October 26, 1868 in Mt. Sterling, KY, the son of John Wesley Magowan and Amanda Jackson Magowan [source: History of the Anti-Separate Coach Movement in Kentucky, edited by Rev. S. E. Smith, p. 171, available full-text at Kentucky Digital Library - Books]. Noah Magowan was a Berea College graduate and is listed as a student on p. 8 in the Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Berea College, 1889-90 [available online at Google Books]. N. W. Magowan was also a teacher beginning in 1887, and in 1890 was a teacher at the Colored Western School in Paris, KY [source: "A Tribute," Bourbon News, 05/02/1902, p. 5, available full-text at Kentucky Digital Library - Newspapers]. In 1892, he was elected a member of the State Central Committee, a group established to defeat the Separate Coach Bill in Kentucky [trains]. N. W. Magowan was a notary public in Mt. Sterling in 1896; he is listed on p. 902 in the Journal of the Senate of the Commonwealth of Kentucky [available online at Google Books].
John D. and Mayner D. Magowan
  • John D. Magowan was born April 26, 1877 in Montgomery County, KY, and died July 15, 1913 [source: Certificate of Death]. He was one of at least five children of John Wesley Magowan (d. 1895), a Civil War veteran whose last name had been Brooks, and Amanda Trimble Jackson Magowan (d. 1925) [sources: 1880 U.S. Federal Census; Civil War Veterans Headstone Records; Kentucky Death Record]. The John W. Magowan family lived in Smithville, located in Montgomery County, KY. After he was married, John D. and his wife, Mayner D. Magowan (b. 1879 in KY), lived in Harts, also located in Montgomery County, KY [source: 1910 U.S. Federal Census]. In addition to being a newspaper printer and publisher, John D. Magowan was a member and officer of the Colored Knights of Pythias in Mt. Sterling.
Sources
  • "Dr. Frost," Lexington Leader, 02/28/1909, p. 16; "The Negroes in Kentucky...," American Baptist, 04/15/1904, p. 2; "The Reporter, The Mt. Sterling Advocate, 04/13/1904, p. 6; "Colored Notes," Lexington Leader, 07/15/1913, p. 9; "Colored Notes," Lexington Leader, 05/09/1904, p. 21; "Negro editor," Lexington Leader, 03/08/1908, p. 4; "Call to Negro editors," Lexington Leader, 01/12/1908, p. 10; "Negro pressmen," The Mt. Sterling Advocate, 01/15/1908, p. 7; "Mrs. Mary E. Magowan...," Freeman, 03/15/1940, p. 7; "The contest in Kentucky this week...," Freeman, 04/25/1908, p. 1; "Editor W. D. Johnson," Freeman, 03/12/1910, p. 1; "West Washington," Washington Bee, 01/30/1915, p. 4.; "Lincoln's birthday," Washington Bee, 02/20/1915, p. 1; "Election of officers," Washington Bee, 12/18/1915, p. 4; "Colored Knights of Pythias here," Paducah Evening Sun, 07/27/1909, p. 5; and "Election officers," Mt. Sterling Advocate, 10/06/1909, p. 8.
Note
  • The dates for the Reporter are given as 1904-1915 in Bibliographic Checklist of African American Newspapers (2008), by B. K. Henritze, p. 58.
  • The following information was provided by Holly Hawkins, Montgomery County Historical Society: Amanda and John Wesley Magowan had five children, Noah William (1869-1945); James Edward (1870-1933); Susan Francis (b.1873); John D. (1877-1913); and Emily (b.1879). All of the sons and Susan attended the Academy at Berea. John D., James, and Noah are all buried in the Magowan Family plot in the Smithville cemetery.

Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Migration North, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Postal Service, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Railroad, Railway, Trains, Notary Public
Geographic Region: Mount Sterling, Harts, and Smithville, all in Montgomery County, Kentucky / Washington, D. C.

McLawler, Sarah
Birth Year : 1926
Born in Louisville, KY, Sarah McLawler is a vocalist, performer, and jazz organist (she played the Hammond B-3 organ). When she was a child her family moved to Chicago, where McLawler learned to play the piano and later attended Fisk University. McLawler returned to Chicago and played piano in nightclubs and led all-female combos (McLawler on piano, Lula Roberts on sax, Vi Wilson on bass, and Hetty Roberts on drums). In 1950, McLawler recorded "My whole Life Through" and "Your Key Won't Fit my Door." McLawler later married Richard Otto, a classical violinist, and together they formed a duo with Otto on violin and McLawler on organ. She helped popularize the jazz organ, which few women were playing. The couple resided in New York, recording such tunes as "Rainbow on the River" and "My Funny Valentine." Richard Otto died in 1979. For more see The Encyclopedia of Popular Music, 3rd ed., by C. Larkin; Sarah McLawler, by World Wind Records; and H. Boyd, "Black New Yorkers; Pioneer organist in concert," New York Amsterdam News, 04/24/2003, p. 34. 
 
Subjects: Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Chicago, Illinois / New York

Migration of Black Women from Kentucky to Cincinnati, OH
Start Year : 1900
End Year : 1920
"According to the census for 1900, slightly more than 50 percent of the black female population in Cincinnati migrated from Kentucky, followed by Tennessee with eight percent and Virginia with six percent." "The 1910 and 1920 Manuscript Census Records show that for both census periods, Kentucky remained the state of origin of most black women who migrated to Cincinnati." Source: Contested Terrain: African American Women Migrate from the South to Cincinnati, Ohio, 1900-1950, by B. A. Bunch-Lyons, p. 12.
Subjects: Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Miller, Davie Della Bridges
Birth Year : 1886
Death Year : 1946
Della Miller, a school teacher, insurance agent, civil rights activist, and club woman, was born in Harrodsburg, KY, the daughter of Robert and Fannie Johnson Bridges. She attended Wayman Institute, was a graduate of Central High School and Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University]. She was president of the Kentucky Conference Branch Women's Missionary Society, and also served as president of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women. She was Grand Royal Matron of the Order of the Eastern Star of Kentucky, and Grand Directress of the Household of Ruth in Kentucky. She was president of the Belle County (KY) NAACP, which was founded in 1940 and was part of the Regional NAACP of Eastern Kentucky. Miller was listed in The Crisis as one of the "First Ladies of Colored America." She and her husband, Dr. I. H. Miller, lived in Middlesboro, KY. Dr. Miller was a supervisor of the Colored Municipal Park in the West End of Middlesboro. The Della Miller African Scholarship Fund was established in honor of Della Miller by the AME Kentucky Conference Branch. The fund aided African students. For more see Mrs. Della Bridges Miller in The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright; and Mrs. Della Bridges Miller on p.305 of The Crisis, October 1943 [available online at Google Book Search]. 



Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Harrodsburg, Mercer County, Kentucky / Middlesboro, Bell County, Kentucky

Miller, Lizzie Gilliam
Miller was born in Mississippi and grew up in Louisville, KY. She graduated from Louisville Central High School, received her B.A. from Louisville Municipal College for Negroes, and attended Simmons Bible College. She was a cartographic supervisor with the Mapping Agency, U. S. Department of Defense, beginning in 1931 and continuing through the early 1980s. Miller was also the first Kentucky state director for Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. She was a former Stark Nest director, traveling throughout the U.S. establishing centers. Miller established the first mobile Nest in Opa Locke, Florida. Stark Nest was an agency that provided services for low-income families. For more see Profiles of Contemporary Black Achievers of Kentucky, by J. B. Horton.
Subjects: Cartographers, Civic Leaders, Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Mississippi / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Morbley, Gertrude Mae Nero
Birth Year : 1918
Death Year : 1988
Gertrude M. Morbley was the "Colored Notes" writer for the Lexington Herald-Leader from 1962 until the column was abolished in 1969. Morbley was 18 years old when she was hired in May of 1937 as the elevator operator at the old newspaper building on Short Street in Lexington, KY. Her move to the "Colored Notes" column came after an automatic elevator was installed, and by that time, Morbley had learned much about the newspaper business. When the "Colored Notes" column ended in 1969, Morbley moved to the accounting department. In total, Gertrude M. Morbley was employed at the Lexington Herald-Leader for 44 years. Her employment is one of the longest in the history of the newspaper. She was also a member and past Grand Matron of the Dorcas Chapter No. 29 of the Order of the Eastern Star. She was the wife of Cornelius Morbley. Gertrude M. Morbley was born October 28, 1918, in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Elijah and Eva Haggard Nero [source: 1920 U.S. Federal Census; and Kentucky Birth Index]. [Elijah Nero was a jockey and horse trainer.] For more see J. Hewlett, "Gertrude Mae Morbley, Herald-Leader worker for four decades, dies," Lexington Herald-Leader, 03/23/1988, p. B7.

See photo image of Gertrude M. Morbley in the online display of the 2013 Black History Month exhibit in UKnowledge.
Subjects: Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Colored Notes in Kentucky Newspapers
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Morris, Lois W.
Birth Year : 1919
Death Year : 1989
Born in Mississippi, Morris was the founder and president of the Louisville chapter of the National Council of Negro Women and the founder and executive director of National Black Women for Political Action. In 1969 she won the Democratic primary for 12th Ward Alderman, one of three general elections that she won for that seat. In 1977 she ran unsuccessfully for mayor in the Democratic primary. For more see the Lois Morris Papers in the University of Louisville Archives and Records Center; Women in Public Office. A biographical directory and statistical analysis, 2nd ed., compiled by the Center for the American Woman and Politics; and The Encyclopedia of Louisville, ed. by J. E. Kleber.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, National Council of Negro Women
Geographic Region: Mississippi / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Morton, Lena B.
Birth Year : 1901
Death Year : 1981
Lena Beatrice Morton, an educator and a scholar, was born in Flat Creek, KY, the daughter of Susie and William Morton. The family temporarily settled in Winchester, KY, where Morton's maternal grandfather, Reverend H. A. Stewart, was pastor of the CME Church. They later moved to Cincinnati, OH, where Lena Morton graduated from high school and was a two time graduate of the University of Cincinnati (UC). While at UC, she was a founding member of the school's first African American Greek organization, Zeta Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Morton earned her Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University in 1947. She taught English at the high school level and the university level, where she also held leadership positions such as head of the division of humanities at Texas College. Morton authored a number of works, including several books: Negro Poetry in America, Farewell to the Public Schools, Man Under Stress, Patterns of Language Usage (a study), My First Sixty Years, and The Influence of the Sea Upon English Poetry. For more see A History of Blacks in Kentucky, by M. B. Lucas and G. C. Wright; and "Lena Beatrice Morton" in vol. 6 of African American National Biography, edited by H. L. Gates, Jr. and E. B. Higginbotham.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Kentucky African American Churches, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Flat Creek, Bath County, Kentucky / Winchester, Clark County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Murphy, Donna L.
Birth Year : 1958
Born in Kansas, Donna L. Murphy grew up in Newport, KY. She was the 1974 Class 2A state high jump champion and played forward for the Newport women's basketball team. In her first Girls Sweet Sixteen Tournament, in 1975, she scored 42 points and had 25 rebounds in the first game. In 1976, the 5'10" forward was the first to be named Miss Kentucky Basketball. She was one of two high school students invited to tryout for the 1976 U.S. Olympic women's basketball team. Murphy played college ball at Morehead State University (KY) from 1977-1980, scoring 2,059 points and collecting 1,439 rebounds. In 1995 she was inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame; in 1999 she was the first woman to have her jersey retired at Morehead State University. Murphy played professional ball with the St. Louis Streak and later became head coach at a number of colleges. She was the women's basketball coach at Lexington Christian Academy (KY), 2004-2006. For more see 2003 NCAA Women's Basketball Records Book; M. Story, "Forward Helped Girls' Basketball Return with Bang," Lexington Herald-Leader, 07/25/99, Special section, p. 13; and the 2010 interview "Donna LJ Murphy," program #536 [available online] on Connections With Renee Shaw at Kentucky Educational Television (KET).

See photo image and additional information about Donna L. Murphy in "Friends of 44 are friends indeed" at the "What's Up With Merlene?" blog, 06/08/2009.
Subjects: Basketball, Women's Groups and Organizations, Olympics: Athletes, Games, Events
Geographic Region: Kansas / Newport, Campbell County, Kentucky

Negro Woman's Christian Temperance Union in Kentucky [Sojourner Truth WCTU]
Start Year : 1905
End Year : 1963
The earliest Negro branches of the Kentucky Woman's Christian Temperance Union (KWCTU) were organized around 1906 in Pineville, KY, with 15 members, and in Hopkins County, KY, with 30 members (three men were honorary members). Each branch was a sub-unit of the white branch of the KWCTU in the area. The development of Negro branches was a big step for Kentucky; it came about much later than Negro branches in some other states but had finally happened. The national Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) was founded in Cleveland, OH, in 1874, for white women. Their goal was to promote abstinence from alcohol in order to make women and families safe from the destruction resulting from alcohol use. WCTU is the oldest voluntary, non-sectarian women's organization. Chapters were formed throughout the U.S. and Canada. As more of the branches did work with the Negro populations, it was decided by the national union that there needed to be Negro branches to work with their people. The Work Among Negroes Department was formed in 1883. On the state level, the Kentucky Woman's Christian Temperance Union (KWCTU), was formed in 1881 by Mrs. Judson, who lived in Ohio, and Julia Shaw was elected president. The first state convention was held in Lexington in 1881. Though there was some work with Negroes in Kentucky, the membership was not opened to Negro women until a discussion of the topic during the KWCTU Executive Committee Meeting in 1905. It was voted that KWCTU branches would be requested to organize auxiliary unions among Negroes. In 1945, the Negro auxiliary branches were separated from the KWCTU and reorganized under the Kentucky Sojourner Truth Woman's Christian Temperance Union, with Mrs. Elizabeth B. Fouse as president. The Sojourner Truth Union was a second union in Kentucky, an auxiliary to the national WCTU. In 1956, Mrs. Decora A. Williams was president of the Sojourner Truth Union. During the KWCTU Executive Meeting, May 10, 1963, a motion by Mrs. T. E. Bowen was passed to accept Negro women members rather than have the union segregated, if the Negro women agreed. Below is a list of some of the Negro unions that were formed in Kentucky, 1906-1963.

  • 1906 Pineville (Bell County)
  • 1906 Hopkins County
  • 1907 Carlisle (Nicholas County) - Mrs. Sadie Hall
  • 1907 Lexington Negro Woman's Christian Temperance Union established a Colored industrial school in the old Good Samaritan Hospital on East Short Street. The school had a day nursery, and plans included having Negro nurses for baby care. The goal of the school was to prepare Negro children to go into the field of labor [source: see Lexington Leader below].
  • 1908 Henryville (Nicholas County)
  • 1911 Princeton (Caldwell County)
  • 1912 Paducah (McCracken County)
  • 1912 London (Laurel County)
  • 1914 Lexington, Beauchamp #2 (Fayette County) - Mrs. C. M. Freeman
  • 1915 Pembroke #2 (Christian County)
  • 1917 Winchester #2 (Clark County)
  • 1918 Nicholasville (Jessamine County)
  • 1923 Violet Whyte was paid for organization work in Winchester, Mt. Sterling, Wilmore, Nicholasville, and Harrodsburg
  • 1932 Middlesboro (Bell County)
  • 1939 Beatrice Laine, from Richmond (Madison County), endorsed as National Organizer among Negroes
  • 1939 Esther B. Isaacs, a Negro worker sent to Kentucky by the national WCTU
  • 1945 Negro KWCTU auxiliary branches are reorganized under the Kentucky Sojourner Truth Woman's Christian Temperance Union
  • 1949 Paducah (McCracken County) Sojourner Truth WCTU
  • 1952 Henderson (Henderson County) Sojourner Truth WCTU
  • No date - Jessamine County; Louisville Local No. 2 (Jefferson County) - Mrs. Annie Rice, President; Lexington Sojourner Truth WCTU (Fayette County) - Mrs. Ballard and Mrs. Elizabeth B. Fouse
For more, see the chapter by F. E. W. Harper, "The Woman's Christian Temperance Union and the Colored Woman" in Standing Before Us, by D. M. Emerson, et al. The chapter is a reprinted article from the African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, July 1888; A Glorious Past & a Promising Future, by P. Woodring; and "Industry," Lexington Leader, 08/31/1907, p. 8.
Subjects: Alcohol, Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky

New Homemakers of America, Kentucky
Start Year : 1945
End Year : 1965
The New Homemakers of America (NHA) was the African American organization that was to parallel the Future Homemakers of America (FHA). Both were established as segregated organizations for girls, beginning in 1945. The two organizations merged in 1965. Boys became members of the FHA starting in 1974-75. In 1999, FHA was renamed Family, Career and Community Leaders of America. The official magazine of the FHA was Teen Times, published four times per year. The official magazine for the NHA was Chatter Box, published two times per year. September 20, 1945, the Official Guide for the Organization and Development of the Program of the New Homemakers of America was published in Washington, D.C. During the initial years of the FHA,1944-45, Kentucky was the first state to qualify for a state charter. Among the 16 southern states, Kentucky was 8th to have NHA Chapters; there were 27 chapters with 777 members [source: The Growth and Development of New Homemakers of America by M. C. Moffitt, p.43]. The next year, there were 28 chapters with 792 members. The goal of both the NHA and the FHA was to bring together high school and junior high school home economic clubs, and NHA chapters were established in states that maintained segregated schools for African Americans. One of the NHA chapters was located at the Mayo-Underwood School in Frankfort, KY. In 1949, the state body of the Kentucky NHA was reorganized to strengthen the organization [source: "Kentucky," Chatter Box, v.5, no.1, Fall 1949, p.6]. During the year, there were four district meetings and the state convention was held in June of 1949. Two years later, the spring rally was held at Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University], and Mrs. Roxie B. Butler and her college homemaking students were hosts to the NHA delegates [source: "Kentucky in the spring," Chatter Box, v.6, no.2, Spring 1951, p.14]. The last year of the NHA, there were 2 chapters in Kentucky with 102 members; it was the lowest number of chapters and members per state [Mofitt, p.57]. For more see History of FHA-FCCLA, a Nicholas County, KY, school website; Chatter Box: for New Homemakers of America, 1945-1965 [bound issues of the Chatter Box publication]; and The Growth and Development of New Homemakers of America by M. C. Moffitt. There are photographs of members of the New Homemakers of America at Kentucky State University, within the Rufus Ballard Atwood Papers, ca. 1929-1965: New Homemakers of America - Photographs -, [n.d] [box: 27, folder: 10].

See photo image of NHA students at Mayo-Underwood School, at Kentucky Historical Society Digital Collections.

  • National Officers of the NHA from Kentucky -- Sources: The Growth and Development of New Homemakers of America by M. C. Moffitt, pp.101-106; and Chatter Box 
  1. Patricia Jane Small, Elkton, V. P. Sec. B, 1952 [previously served as Kentucky NHA reporter and historian]
  2. Barbara Lynem, Frankfort, V. P. Sec. B, 1953 (replaced P. Small)
  3. Emolyne Hines, Anchorage, Treasurer, 1954
  4. Lois Robertson, Louisville, Treasurer, 1955
  5. Mary Lois Williamson, State Adviser, 1954-55
  6. Lois Irene Robinson, Drakesboro, Secretary, 1955
  7. Emolyne Hines, Anchorage, Secretary, 1956
  8. Maxine Brown, V. P. Sec. B, 1956
  9. Sandra C. Wright, Lincoln Ridge, V.P. Sec. B, 1956-57 (replaced Maxine Brown)
  10. Naomi Thomas, Hopkinsville, Chatter Box Committee, 1958-59
  11. Emilie High, State Adviser, 1958-59
  12. Gladys Carroll, Lincoln Ridge, Secretary, 1961-62
  13. Talberta Owens, Lexington, Historian, 1963
  14. Barbara Ann Williams, Lincoln Ridge, Historian, 1963-64 (replaced T. Owens) [also served as member of the national executive council, Kentucky NHA secretary, and president of Kentucky NHA Association]
  • New Homemakers of America, Kentucky Chapters -- Source: Chatter Box
  1. Benham High School, Benham
  2. Bond-Washington High School, Elizabethtown
  3. Caverna Independent High School, Horse Cave
  4. Douglas High School, Lexington
  5. Drakesboro Community School, Drakesboro
  6. Dunbar High School, Somerset
  7. DuBois High School, Mt. Sterling
  8. Liberty High School, Hazard
  9. Lincoln Institute, Lincoln Ridge
  10. Mayo-Underwood High School, Frankfort
  11. Palmer-Dunbar High School, Wheelwright
  12. Riverview High School, Hickman
  13. Todd County High School, Todd County

Subjects: Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Norman, Florence K. Morton
Birth Year : 1894
Death Year : 1944
Norman was born Florence K. Morton in Mason County, KY. Her mother, Sallie Morton, was a widow and the mother of three girls: Mary, Florence, and Susan. In 1900 the family lived at 570 E. Fifth Street in Maysville, KY, according to the U.S. Federal Census. Florence would become the wife of musician and music arranger Fred Norman (1910-1993). The couple lived in New York. Florence Norman was the past president of the National Council of Negro Women. She had attended Howard University and the Jenifer Business College and managed the Washington Business Institute in D.C. She had also been employed as secretary to Carter G. Woodson at the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History. For more see "Mrs. Fred Norman," New York Times, 02/11/1944, p. 19.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Education and Educators, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, National Council of Negro Women
Geographic Region: Mason County, Kentucky / New York

Our Women and Children
Start Year : 1888
End Year : 1890
This women's magazine was established in the 1880s by William J. Simmons sometime after he had established the American National Baptist Convention at State University (Simmons University, Louisville, KY). The magazine was published by the American Baptist, the state Baptist newspaper. The staff consisted of women associated with State University. The magazine coverage included African American juvenile literature and the work of women in the denomination and in journalism. Some of the women writers and contributors were Mary V. Cook-Parrish, Lucy Wilmot Smith, Ione E. Woods, Lavinia B. Sneed, and Ida B. Wells. The magazine had a national reputation and readership. When William Simms died in 1890, so did the magazine. For more see Black Higher Education in Kentucky, 1879-1930, by L. H. Williams.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Potter, Mary E.
Birth Year : 1888
Potter was born in Bowling Green, KY. A physician, she was a faculty member of the Louisville National Medical College. Potter organized the Fraternal Hospital Training School for Nurses in 1922 and founded and organized the Women's Business, Civic and Political Club in 1925, which met in Louisville and published the Women's Business, Civic and Political Journal. She was the wife of Joseph U. Potter, an automobile mechanic who was born 1891 in KY. In 1920, the couple was renting a home on Walnut Street in Louisville, according to the U.S. Federal Census. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1927.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations, Nurses, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Bowling Green, Warren County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Randolph, Loretta Corryne Bacon Lunderman Spencer
Birth Year : 1903
Death Year : 1975
Loretta Spencer (Randolph), an educator, was born in 1903 in Paducah, KY, the daughter of Rev. and Mrs. Benjamin Bacon. She graduated with the highest honors from Lincoln High School, earned her A.B. from Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University], and did her graduate work at Fisk and Indiana University. Spencer taught in the Paducah schools, and was principal of Robersontown High and Ballard County High. Some time around 1932, shortly after she was hired as principal at Ballard Co., the school building burnt down. Spencer campaigned to have a new building erected, which was completed with contributions from the Slater Fund and the Parent-Teachers Association. She was also principal at Maddoxtown School in Lexington; she was the Dean of Girls at Lincoln Institute in Shelby County; and was an instructor at St. Paul School of Religion in Lexington, KY in 1947. She served as the district president of the AME Sunday School Convention, 1920-1933. She was a member of Anti-Basileus Beta Upsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority [photo at KHS]. Loretta Spencer was the wife of Charles J. Lunderman, Sr., and later married Benjamin F. Spencer. Her last husband was Dr. James E. Randolph, according to information received from Mrs. Juanita L. White, who also provided Spencer's correct birth and death dates. For more see L. C. Bacon Spencer in Who's Who in Colored America, 1933-37; and Mrs. Loretta Corryne (Bacon) Spencer in The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Reynolds, Sadiqa N.
Birth Year : 1962
Sediqua N. Reynolds was the first African American woman to clerk for the Kentucky Supreme Court, she served as the chief law clerk for Chief Justice Robert F. Stephens. She also had a private law practice for several years, and in January 2008, Reynolds was named inspector general with the Louisville Metro Government. Her duties included annual reviews and investigating complaints against nursing homes and state-run institutions. August 2009, Reynolds was sworn in as Jefferson County District Judge of the 30th Judicial District, Division 11. Her appointment was made by Governor Steve Beshear; she replaced Judge Matthew K. Eckert, who resigned. Reynolds earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Louisville and her law degree from the University of Kentucky. She was born in Newy York, and is a member of Delta Sigma Theta. For more see B. Musgrave, "2 lawyers get Health Cabinet jobs, both have backgrounds in public health," Lexington Herald-Leader, 01/09/2008, City&Region section, p.D2; Sadiqa N. Reynolds in Who's Who in Black Louisville, Inaugural Edition, p.123; "Governor Beshear announces landmark judicial appointments," Press Release, 07/01/2009, Governor Steve Beshear's Communications Office [online].

See "Meet the Judge: Sadiqua N. Reynolds" on YouTube.
Subjects: Lawyers, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations, Judges
Geographic Region: New York / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Robinson, James H., Sr.
Birth Year : 1887
Death Year : 1963
James Hathaway Robinson, Sr. was born in Sharpsburg, KY, the son of Nathaniel and Martha Robinson. He moved to Cincinnati in 1915 to teach sixth grade at Douglass School. Robinson was a World War I veteran. He would become the Executive Secretary of the Negro Civic Welfare Association, which sponsored African American social work for the City of Cincinnati. He was also author of a number of publications, including the "Cincinnati Negro Survey" (later called "The Negro in Cincinnati"), published by the National Conference of Social Work in 1919; and "Social Agencies and Race Relations," a printed address in the Proceedings of the National Inter-Racial Conference (1925). Robinson attended Fisk University, earning his A.B. in 1911. He earned a second A.B. degree in 1912, an M.A. degree in 1914, and then pursued his Ph.D. in sociology, all at Yale University. He was the first African American to receive a fellowship at Yale University, the Larned Fellowship in 1913. Robinson also studied sociology and social service at the graduate level at Columbia University from 1914-1915. James H. Robinson, Sr. was a member of several organizations, including Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and he was the only African American member of the National Council of the American Association of Social Workers. He was the husband of Neola E. Woodson, who was a graduate of the University of Cincinnati and a member of the newly formed Zeta Chapter in 1920. She was a school teacher in Cincinnati and at Covington High School. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1927; River Jordan, by J. W. Trotter, Jr.; Race and the city: work, community, and protest in Cincinnati, 1820-1970, by H. L. Taylor; and Cincinnati's Colored Citizens, by W. P. Dabney.

See photo image of James Hathaway Robinson, Sr. within the Digital Images Database at Yale University Manuscripts and Archives.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Welfare (Social Services) Organizations, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Social Workers, Sociologists & Social Scientists, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Sharpsburg, Bath County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Russell, Randa Davenport
Birth Year : 1921
Death Year : 2008
Randa D. Russell was the second graduate of the college department at Kentucky State College [now Kentucky State University] to earn a Ph.D. [The first was Sadie Yancey.] Randa D. Russell was a graduate of Central High School in Louisville, KY, and of Kentucky State College with an A.B. degree in education. She earned a bachelor's degree from North Carolina A&T [now North Carolina A&T State University], a master's from the University of Minnesota, and a doctorate (1949) from the University of Michigan. She was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and a fellow of the American School Health Association (ASHA). She also worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) promoting public health awareness in the Philippines and Taiwan. Randa Russell supported Berea College as a member of the Founders Club and by donating $75,000 to the school endowment. Russell was a professor at Virginia State University and at Spelman University. For 40 years she was a professor in the Department of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation at North Carolina A&T. She retired in 1993, a year after the death of her companion, Eva Doris McKinney, who was a retired professor of physical education at the University of North Carolina. Randa D. Russell died in Cincinnati, OH, in 2008 and is buried in Louisville, KY. She was the daughter of Julia Jones Russell and Harvey C. Russell, Sr. and a sister of Bessie Tucker Russell Stone and Harvey C. Russell, Jr. For more see "22 faculty/staff members at N.C. A&T retire," News & Record (Greensboro), 06/24/1993, p. 2; "Two Kentucky state graduates...," The Crisis, vol. 57, no. 11 (Dec 1950), p. 736; "Eva Doris Mckinney, physical ed professor," Boston Herald, 06/13/1992, Obituaries section, p. 33; and A. Howard, "Randa Russell, 86, was public health expert," Cincinnati Enquirer, 01/25/2008. See also Russell's dissertation, A Study of the Factors Related to the Teaching of Physical Education in Selected Virginia Elementary Schools.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Migration East, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Greensboro, North Carolina / Cincinnati, Ohio

Saffell, Daisy M. and George William Saffell
In 1912, Daisy Saffell (1875-1918), an "expert" embalmer in Shelbyville, KY, spoke on behalf of the National Negro Funeral Directors' Association during the 13th Annual Convention of the National Negro Business League in Chicago. Saffell estimated that there were 1,100 Colored undertakers and embalmers in the United States. [*Saffell is listed as a mulatto from Shelbyville, TN, in The Mulatto in the United States by E. B. Reuter, p.303* available full view at Google Book Search]. Saffell's death certificate lists Kentucky as both her birth and death location. She was born in Louisville, KY, where she attended school. She attended Roger Williams University and was later a graduate of Fisk University. Daisy Saffell taught for 15 years in Frankfort, KY, then left to become principal of the Lawrenceburg Colored School. She left teaching and enrolled in Clark's College of Embalming in Cincinnati, OH. With the completion of the program, Saffell became the second African American woman who was a licensed embalmer in Kentucky [Minnie Watson was first]. Daisy Saffell, who was an accomplished pianist, was editor of the Kentucky Club Woman, secretary of the District Household of Ruth of Kentucky, secretary of the Colored Funeral Director's Association of Kentucky, and treasurer of the National Association of Colored Funeral Directors. Named in her honor, the Daisy M. Saffell Colored Hospital was located in Martinsville, a community in Shelbyville, KY. Daisy Saffell was the daughter of Lizzie Travis, and in 1897 became the wife of undertaker George William Saffell (1876-1953). Daisy's funeral arrangements were handled by Thomas K. Robb, and Robb's funeral arrangements were handled by George W. Saffell. George was born in Kentucky, the son of Addie Weisger Saffell and George Saffell, according to his death certificate. In 1900, he had been a barber teacher and Daisy was a school teacher, they lived in Frankfort, KY, according to the U.S. Federal Census. By 1910, the couple had moved to Shelbyville, KY, where George was an undertaker and Daisy was a school teacher until she too became an undertaker. George Saffell was owner of the Calvary Cemetery, and he also had an ambulance service; the hearse was used as an ambulance. After Daisy's death, George Saffell married Mildred Stone in 1939. She would become a partner in the business after completing the Melton Mortuary School in Louisville, KY. George Saffell died in 1953. and Mildred continued managing the businesses. For more see "National Negro Funeral Directors' Association," Records of the National Negro Business League, Part 1 Annual Conference Proceedings and Organizational Records, 1900-1919, 13th Annual Convention, Chicago, Illinois, August 21-23, 1912, reel 2, frames 575-576; "Mrs. Daisy Saffell" on p.291 in Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky; "Race progress in Kentucky: broad achievements of Mrs. Daisy M. Saffell," Baltimore Afro-American, 05/22/1913, p.2; and "Saffell Funeral Home" by G. Graham on pp.170-171 in The New History of Shelby County Kentucky.

See photo image of Daisy Saffel[l] at the bottom of the left hand column on p.42 in the Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky, at the NYPL Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Barbers, Businesses, Education and Educators, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Women's Groups and Organizations, Negro Business League, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Shelbyville, Shelby County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Lawrenceburg, Anderson County, Kentucky

Sales, Mary E. A.
Birth Year : 1892
Born in Lexington, KY, Sales was head nurse of the Indianapolis Sisters of Charity Hospital from 1918-1920, then did private nursing before becoming a school nurse in Indianapolis, beginning in 1924. Sales was also a teacher of home nursing with the American Red Cross and attended the international Congress of Nurses in Stockholm, Sweden, in 1949. She was president of the local Colored Graduate Nurses Club and chair of the health committee at the Phillis Wheatly Y.W.C.A., and held a number of other posts within nursing and health organizations. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations, Nurses, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana / Stockholm, Sweden

Scott, Anna W. Porter
Birth Year : 1925
Scott was born in Fulton, KY, the daughter of Jevvie R. Patton Porter and Thomas M. Porter. She is the wife of John T. Scott. Anna W. Scott served with the U.S. WACs, 1944-1947, and returned to Fulton before moving to Urbana, IL, in 1958. She was the first woman elected to the Democrat State Central Committee in Illinois and was vice-chair of the State Democrat Party, 1974-1976. She ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 1976 and the Illinois House of Representative in 1977. In 1984, she was the coordinator of the 21st Congressional District for the Jessie Jackson campaign. In 1993, Scott was appointed to the Illinois Real Estate and Banking Board by Governor Jim Edgar. Anna Scott is a 1958 sociology graduate (B.S.), a 1960 education graduate (M.A.), and a 1964 social work graduate (M.S.W.) of the University of Illinois. She is a full-time sociology professor at Parkland College. For more see the Anna Wall Porter Scott entry in The Black Women in the Middle West Project, by D. C. Hine, et al.; and Anna Wall Scott at the Early American Museum website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Migration North, Military & Veterans, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Sociologists & Social Scientists, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Fulton, Fulton County, Kentucky / Urbana, Illinois

Seal, Catherine
Birth Year : 1874
Death Year : 1930
Seal was born in Hustonville, KY. Although illiterate, she led one of the largest religious cults in the United States, the Church of the Innocent Blood, which was an interracial faith. She believed that women made better leaders. She had thousands of female followers, both black and white, and she focused on caring for unmarried pregnant women. They prayed to the image of a Black Jesus. Seal's ministry was in New Orleans, LA, where her church was built. In 1930, Mother Catherine told her followers that she needed to go home to fight a spirit; she died a few hours after she arrived in Lexington, KY. She was listed as living on Charbonnet Street in New Orleans in the 1930 U.S. Federal Census. After Seal's death, Mother Rita took charge as head of the church, temporarily, warning that if the church were sold, then New Orleans would be destroyed by a flood. The property was sold in 1931 because Mother Catherine left no will. There were no unpaid debts or taxes, so the proceeds from the sale went to the Louisiana State Treasury. For more see African-American Religious Leaders, by N. Aaseng; and "Physicking Priestess" in Time, vol. 17, issue 16 (04/20/1931), pp. 63-64.
Subjects: Religion & Church Work, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Hustonville, Lincoln County, Kentucky / New Orleans, Louisiana / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Semmes, LaVaughn "Bonnie" Taylor
Birth Year : 1929
Death Year : 2006
Semmes was born in Carrollton, KY, the daughter of Paul B. and Lucille Jackson Taylor. She grew up in Lafayette, IN. In 2000 she was named the Woman of the Year by the Fort Quiaterion Chapter of the American Business Women's Association. She was named a Sagamore of the Wabash by then Governor Joe Kernan; it is the highest award given by an Indiana governor. Semmes was also awarded the Marquis De Lafayette Award for Community Service. For more than 50 years she served as director of the Hanna Community Center, the Southside Community Center, and the Lincoln Community Center. She was also a board member of the Lafayette Housing Authority. Semmes was treasurer of Church Women United and was awarded the organization's Valiant Woman Award. She was an officer of the Dorcas Chapter No. 14, Order of Eastern Star and a former president and treasurer of the Mary L. Federated Colored Women's Club. For more see Journal and Courier articles, "Woman of the Year," 01/19/2000, Communities section, p. 3B; and "LaVaughn Bonnie Taylor Semmes," 12/21/2006, Obit section, p. 2B.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Housing Authority, The Projects, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs, Community Centers and Cultural Centers
Geographic Region: Carrollton, Carroll County, Kentucky / Lafayette, Indiana

Shrader, Mildred
Shrader may have been the first White member of the NAACP in Kentucky. (She became a member in the 1960s.) She was also active in the Women's Movement and the Peace Movement. The Shraders lived in Fern Creek, KY, near the African American community of Newburg. They participated in civil rights marches and protests. Mrs. Shrader died of environmentally-induced cancer. For more see the preface of Environmental Justice: creating equality, reclaiming democracy, by K. S. Shrader-Frechette.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Fern Creek, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Smith, Elijah Strong
Smith, born in Henderson, KY, was a graduate of State University [later named Simmons College] in Kentucky. He moved to Alabama and was employed at the Union Mutual Aid Association in Mobile; the insurance company was started by C. F. Johnson, one of the wealthiest African American men in Alabama. Union Mutual Aid Association was incorporated in 1898, and had over $170,000 in income in 1913. Elijah Smith excelled within the company and after a short time was a district manager. He would soon become the district manager of the Tuscaloosa area. Smith was also president of the Negro Business Men's League in Tuscaloosa, a delegate to the national league in 1912, and secretary of the state league in 1916. He also held a number of positions within the Tuscaloosa Baptist Church and was president of the District Baptist Young People's Union and an advisory member of the Federation of Colored Women of Alabama. For more see "Elijah Strong Smith" in the Afro-American Encyclopedia; and for more on C. F. Johnson and the Union Mutual Aid Association see vol. 2, p. 208 of The Story of the Negro, by B. T. Washington [available full-text at Google Book Search]; and pp. 1134-1135 in the Annual Report of the Insurance Commissioner of the State of Alabama for year ending December 31, 1913 [available full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Businesses, Insurance Companies, Insurance Sales, Religion & Church Work, Migration South, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Negro Business League, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Mobile and Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Smith, Lucy H.
Birth Year : 1888
Death Year : 1955
Lucy H. Smith was born in Virginia, then came to Kentucky in 1910 as an assistant school principal. She pushed for the study of Black history in schools. She was the second woman president of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association and served as principal of the Booker T. Washington School in Lexington, KY. [Maude S. Brown was the first woman president of KNEA.] Smith compiled the Pictorial Directory of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women [full-text available at the Kentucky Digital Library]. She earned her master's degree in education at the University of Cincinnati. For more see Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones; Notable Black American Women, Book II; and "Mrs. Lucy Smith pioneered in Ky. education," Baltimore Afro-American, 05/11/1946, p. 13.

 
See photo image of Lucy H. Smith on [p. 5] of Pictorial Directory of the Kentucky Association of Colored Women.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Migration West, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Virginia / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Smith, Lucy W.
Birth Year : 1861
Death Year : 1889
Lucy Wilmot Smith was born in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Mrs. Margaret Smith. She began teaching in 1877 in Lexington and became a journalist in 1884 with The American Baptist. She provided sketches of women journalists for the New York newspaper, Journalism. She served as an editor and wrote special columns for Our Women and Children and was also on the staff of the Baptist Journal. She spoke out on women's rights and voting. Smith was a graduate and a teacher at State University [later Simmons University] and was the private secretary of school President William J. Simmons. She was a historian for the Negro Baptist. For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; and "Lucy Wilmot Smith," in Noted Negro Women: their triumphs and activities, by M. A. Majors; see p.9 in Negro Baptist History, 1750-1930 by L. G. Jordan [bio & picture]; and see Lucy Wilmot Smith in "The Death Roll," Lexington Leader, 12/03/1889, p.2.

See image of Lucy Wilmot Smith at New York Public Library Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Historians, Journalists, Newspapers, Magazines, Book Publishers, Music Publishers, Voting Rights, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Smith, Verna
Birth Year : 1889
Death Year : 1966
Verna Smith was the first African American woman president of the Democratic Club and president of the National Housewives League. She served as an alternate delegate to the 1944 Democratic Presidential Convention. She was the wife of James E. Smith and mother of Charlotte McGill. For more see the Smith/McGill Family Papers, 1879-1987, at the University of Louisville Libraries: Special Collections and Archives.
Subjects: Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Smith-Wright, Pamela L.
Birth Year : 1949
In 2007, Pamela Smith-Wright was the first African American elected president of the the Kentucky AMVETS Ladies Auxiliary. Smith-Wright is from Owensboro, KY, and she has served as president of Post 119 and Post 75, and she has been a member and leader of a number of organizations. AMVETS Ladies Auxiliary is a service organization made up of wives, daughters, and granddaughters of veterans. As state president, Smith-Wright oversaw 16 posts throughout Kentucky. In her political life, since 2011, Smith-Wright has been serving as the first woman Mayor Pro Tem in Owensboro, KY. She was the top vote getter in the primary and general election for a seat on the Owensboro City Commission. Pamela Smith-Wright is the daughter of the late Ethel and Willie Smith, Jr. She is graduate of Owensboro High School and was a member of the school's first track team which won the state track meet during her senior year. She is also a graduate of Cosmetology School in St. Louis, MO, and owned her own beauty shop for over 30 years. Pamela Smith-Wright also owned her own catering service for 20 years. In 2012, she was the winner of the Kentucky Martin Luther King, Jr. Citizenship Award. For more see J. Campbell, "Owensboro woman elected state leader," Messenger-Inquirer, 06/23/2007, State and Regional News section, p.1; "Mayor pro tem receives MLK Award," Messenger-Inquirer, 01/06/2012, Local News section, p.B.1; and S. Vied, "Smith-Wright elect Mayor Pro Tem," Messenger-Inquirer, 01/05/2011, Section A, p.1.
 
 
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Military & Veterans, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Owensboro, Daviess County, Kentucky

Snowden, Leanna C. Holland and John B.
Leanna Snowden, born Leanna C. Holland in 1880 in Lexington, KY, was married to John B. Snowden, Jr. (1875-1944), one of the very few African American U.S. mail carriers in Kentucky. John Jr., also born in Lexington, KY, was the son of John Sr. and Ellen Buckner Snowden. He and Leanna were married in 1889. She was a teacher in the Lexington public schools for Negro children and also a community leader. Leanna was president of the Allen C. E. League and was an active member of several organizations connected to the St. Paul A.M.E. Church in Lexington. She was the first president of the City Federation of Women's Clubs in Lexington and the first vice-president of the State Clubs. John and Leanna had a daughter, Leland Weldon Snowden (1900-1921), who attended Kentucky Negro Industrial Institute [now Kentucky State University]. For more see Centennial Encyclopedia of the American Methodist Episcopal Church..., by Richard Allen and others, Philadelphia, PA (1816), at the Documenting the American South website. Birth and death dates for the Snowdens were found in the Kentucky Death Records and the U.S. Federal Census (1900-1930).

See photo image of Leanna C. Snowden on p.211 in the Centennial Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church by R. R. Wright.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Kentucky African American Churches, Postal Service, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

St. Joseph Hospital (Lexington, KY)
The hospital was in operation in 1877, when the five Sisters of Charity arrived in October of that year. Though the hospital was segregated, there was a separate building for African Americans, and "a few women of disreputable character were also housed in a separate area." Sister Euphrasia Stafford was the administrator of the hospital for the first 40 years. She was a great supporter of Dr. John E. Hunter, the first African American physician in Lexington. Hunter, who was from Virginia, was a surgeon at the hospital for 63 years, arriving in 1889. For more see A story of Saint Joseph Hospital Lexington, Kentucky: the first 120 years, 1877-1997, by F. Krumpelman.
Subjects: Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Virginia / Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky

Still, Sina Williams
Birth Year : 1874
Sina Williams Still was a beauty culturist in Cincinnati, OH. She was born in Midway, KY, the daughter of Henry and Mary Williams. Sina Still completed a course in beauty culture in Louisville, KY, and moved to Cincinnati around 1900. She established her business around 1916 using the Poro System developed by Annie Turnbo Malone. (During the Civil War, Malone's parents left Kentucky and settled in Illinois. See Turnbo Family entry in the NKAA Database.) The Poro System was developed in Malone's Poro College in St. Louis, MO, where women were trained to become independent saleswomen of beauty and haircare products [source: Marcus Garvey Life and Lessons, edited by R. A. Hill and B. Bair, p. 406]. Sina Still was president of the Poro Club in Cincinnati; the club was founded and organized by Mrs. Callie Parrish in 1919. Sina Still was also a member of the Household of Ruth and a manager of the Orphan Asylum in Cincinnati. She was the wife of Louis (or Lewis) Still (b. 1870 in AL); the couple married in 1896. Sina Still had two daughters from her previous marriage. For more on Sina Still see her entry in Cincinnati's Colored Citizens, by W. P. Dabney. For more about the Poro Club in Cincinnati see Three Negro Pioneers in Beauty Culture, by G. L. Porter. For more information about the Poro System see E. M. Phillips, "Ms. Annie Malone's Poro: addressing whiteness and dressing black-bodied women," Transforming Anthropology, vol. 11, issue 2, pp. 4-17.
Subjects: Businesses, Cosmetologists, Beauty Shops, Hairdressers, Beauty Supplies, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Midway, Woodford County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Stone, Bessie Tucker Russell
Birth Year : 1916
Death Year : 2003
Bessie Stone was born in Louisville, KY. She was the daughter of Harvey C. Russell, Sr. and Julia Jones Russell and a sister of Harvey C. Russell, Jr. and Dr. Randa D. Russell; the family lived in the area that became known as Russell. Bessie Stone was among the first recipients of the Anderson-Mayer Fund, established to pay the tuition of African American students who were pursuing college degrees out of state due to the higher education segregation laws in Kentucky. Stone had earned a bachelor's degree from Louisville Municipal College for Negroes in 1936, the same year she received $62 from the Anderson-Mayer Fund to attend Hampton Institute Library School [now Hampton University], from which she graduated in 1937. She was the third African American librarian from Kentucky to graduate from Hampton [the first was Estella G. Grayson, from Lawrenceburg, the second Elnora M. Roy from Louisville]. Stone also earned a master's degree in guidance and counseling at the University of Cincinnati. She was a librarian at Kentucky State University, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, and the Porter Junior High School Library in Cincinnati. Stone received a number of awards for her volunteerism, and prior to her death she received the Alpha Kappa Alpha Golden Legacy Award; she had been a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha for 67 years and was the oldest sister in the organization. For more see R. Goodman, "Librarian Bessie R. Stone guided young," Cincinnati Enquirer, 04/18/2003, Metro section, p. 4B; and Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones.

  See photo image of Bessie Russell Stone at enquirer.com.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration North, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Cincinnati, Ohio

Stone, Kara L.
Birth Year : 1929
Death Year : 1995
Stone was born in Richmond, KY, the daughter of J. Lynn Stone. She was a graduate of Richmond High School and Knoxville College. After teaching for a couple of years, she joined the WACs and spent three years in France. Stone returned to the U.S. and in 1960 became the first African American graduate student at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU). After completing her masters degree, Stone taught at the Louisville School for the Blind, in the Paris, KY, School System, and was a history professor at EKU. A. B. Dunston completed Stone's oral history in 1993; the recording is part of the African American Community of Madison County Oral History Project in the Eastern Kentucky University Libraries. See also Who's Who Among African Americans, 1980-2004; and M. Bailey, "Richmond teacher has made a lasting impression," Lexington Herald-Leader, 10/10/1984, Lifestyle section, p. D1.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs), Blind, Visually Impaired
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / France

United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten
Start Year : 1861
The United Brothers of Friendship, originally a benevolent order established in 1861 in Louisville, KY, had both freemen and slave members. The organization later became a secret society with more than 60,000 members in various U.S. states, Liberia, Canada, and the West Indies. This membership included females referred to as the Sisters of the Mysterious Ten. For more see History of the United Brothers of Friendship and Sisters of the Mysterious Ten, by W. H. Gibson, Sr. (1897).
Subjects: Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Benevolent Societies
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Liberia, Africa / Canada / West Indies

WACs Beaten in Elizabethtown, KY
Start Year : 1945
In 1945, three African American members of the Women's Army Corps (WAC) were beaten by police officers for sitting in the waiting room for whites at the Greyhound bus station in Elizabethtown, KY. One of the women, PFC Helen Smith of Syracuse, NY, was taken to jail and released a few hours later, bleeding from her injuries. PFC Georgia Boson, from Texas, and Pvt.Tommie Smith, were also beaten. The women continued on their return to Fort Knox. When they arrived on base, they were summonsed by the commanding office, then lectured about obeying the supposed segregation laws of Kentucky pertaining to public buildings and transportation. The women were court-martialed. They were defended by Lieutenant W. Robert Ming, base legal officier at Godman Field under Colonel Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. The charges were later reduced to disorderly conduct. Helen Smith spent a week in the hospital recovering from her injuries. For more see Harry McAlpin, "Beat by cops: WACs to stand trial, violated Ky. Jim Crow," Indianapolis Recorder, 08/04/1945, p.1; "Wac's Beating Case" in The Negro Handbook, 1946-1947 edited by F. Murray; Creating GI Jane by L. D. Meyer; To Serve My County, To Serve My Race by B. L. Moore; and "Council demands investigation of WACs' beating," Baltimore Afro-American, 08/11/1945, p.12.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs), Court Cases, Bus Transportation: Employees, Owners, Segregation
Geographic Region: Elizabethtown, Hardin County, Kentucky / Fort Knox, Bullitt, Hardin, & Meade Counties, Kentucky / Syracuse, New York

WACs' Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY
Start Year : 1943
In 1943, six African American members of the Women's Army Corps (WACs) resigned from the Army after their unit staged a protest over job assignments. The unit was under the command of 1st Lieutenant Myrtle Anderson and 2nd Lieutenant Margaret E. B. Jones. They were the first group of African American women enlistees to be stationed in Kentucky. They were a division of the first Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs) that had been established at Fort Des Moines, Iowa in 1942; a total of 118 African American women were trained at the location. In 1943, the WAACs were being transitioned over to the WACs. The unit transferred to Kentucky had been trained to become supply clerks, but once stationed at Camp Breckinridge, they were assigned tasks such as stacking beds and scrubbing the floors of the warehouses and latrines. The women protested, and Anderson and Jones complained to their superior officer Colonel Kelly, but nothing was done. There was also the complaint that white soldiers had entered the women's barracks at night and officers had to protect them. As the tension continued to increase, the last straw came when the women were told to wash the walls of the laundry; the women went on strike. After five days, the Army responded by allowing the women to leave the service without honor. Those who resigned were Beatrice Brashear, Gladys Morton, Margaret Coleman, Mae E. Nicholas, and Viola Bessups, all from New York, and Ruth M. Jones from New Jersey. The Army's official response was that the "girls" had not been given a proper assignment and there was a disturbance. The Camp Breckinridge Public Relations Office acknowledged the resignations but had no additional comments. For more see "6 WACs Resign: WAC clerks decline to scrub floors," Philadelphia Afro American, 07/10/1943, pp. 1 & 15. For more about Camp Breckinridge, see the Camp Breckinridge entry in the Kentucky Encyclopedia, and History of Camp Breckinridge, by P. Heady.

By the final months of 1943, African American WACs were performing mail clerk duties at Camp Breckinridge, KY, as seen in photo image of Pfc. Ruby O'Brien from Beaumont, TX; Pvt. Millie Holloway from Louisville, KY; and others in photo dated November 30, 1943. Photo at NYPL Digital Gallery from U.S. Office of War Information.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Military & Veterans, Rioting, Insurrections, Panics, Protests in Kentucky, Women's Groups and Organizations, Women's Army Corps (WACs)
Geographic Region: Camp Breckinridge [or Fort Breckinridge], Henderson, Webster, and Union Counties, Kentucky (no longer exists) / Fort Des Moines [Fort Des Moines Museum], Des Moines, Iowa

Walker, Maymie Baker
Birth Year : 1869
Death Year : 1951
Walker, an educator and evangelist, was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Albert and Bettie Mitchell Walker. She was a graduate of State University [Simmons College in KY], and was later principal of the business school at Eckstein Norton University, and dean of women at Albion Academy in Franklinton, NC. She was licensed as a missionary evangelist. Walker was also employed in social services. She was a member of Israel Beard Circle No.12, and she had served as chaplain of the Kentucky Council of the Ladies of the GAR and the USO. For more see Mrs. Maymie Baker Walker in  The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Franklinton, North Carolina

Walters, Katie Knox
Birth Year : 1859
Death Year : 1896
Katie Knox Walters was a Christian advocate on behalf of her husband's work in the AMEZ Church, and she was an activist in the Colored YWCA in New York City where she chaired the library committee. She had served as vice president of the Women's Home and Missionary Society in California. According to authors Franklin and Savage, Walters raised the largest amount of money in the New Jersey AME Zion Annual Conference in 1898. [Katie Walters' death year is given as 1896 in Bishop Walters' biography.] Katie Knox Walters was the first wife of Bishop Alexander Walters. They met in Indianapolis, IN, and married in 1877, and would become the parents of five children. The family was living in Jersey City, NY, when Katie Walters died. She was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Louis and Kittie Knox. For more see African American Women and Christian Activism by J. Wisenfeld; My Life and Work by A. Walters [available full text at Documenting the American South]; and p.98 of Cultural Capital and Black Education by V. P. Franklin and C. J. Savage.

  See the image of Katie Knox Walters at New York Public Library Digital Gallery.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Migration North, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Jersey City, New York

Waring, Mary R. Fitzbutler
Birth Year : 1870
Death Year : 1958
Mary R. Fitzbutler Waring was said to have been born in Louisville, KY, but according to the 1880 U.S. Census, she was born in Amherstburg, Ontario, Canada, the daughter of doctors Henry and Sarah Fitzbutler. The family moved to the U.S. in 1875, and was living in Louisville in 1880. Waring would become a teacher at the Western Colored School, according to the 1890 Louisville City Directory. She was a 1894 graduate of the Louisville National Medical College. She married Frank B. Waring, her second husband, in 1901. According to the 1930 U.S. Census, the Warings were living in Chicago, where Mary was a physician, having graduated from the Chicago Medical College, and she was also a school teacher. She was the 1915 commissioner of the Chicago Exposition, showing progress of Colored People in Chicago, and she was the appointed representative of the National Council of Women of America. She served as president of the National Association of Colored Women, and she attended the International Council of Women in Norway in 1920. For more seeWho's Who in Colored America, 1928-29; Blacks in Science and Medicine by V. O. Sammons; and Notable Black American Women,Book II by J. C. Smith.

See photo image of Mary Fitzbutler Waring at New York Public Library Digital Gallery.

See 1898 graduation photo image of Mary Fitzbutler at Explore UK.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Colored Fairs & Black Expos, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration North, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Amherstburg, Ontario, Canada / Chicago, Illinois / Norway

Wesley, Charles H.
Birth Year : 1891
Death Year : 1987
Charles H. Wesley was born in Louisville, KY. He was the son of Matilda Harris Wesley, who was mistakenly listed as a widow in the 1900 U.S. Federal Census when she and her son Charles lived on 9th Street with Matilda's father, Douglas Harris, and other family members. Matilda Harris Wesley was not a widow in 1900; her husband (or ex-husband) Charles Snowden Wesley is listed in the 1900 U.S. Federal Census as a single man; he was living with his parents, Mary H. and J. H. Taylor, on 9th Street in Louisville and was employed at an undertakers' business. Charles S. Wesley died in April of 1902 [according to information provided to Ms. C. P. Uzelac of the Dorothy Porter Wesley Center, Inc.] His death date is given as April 28, 1904 in the Kentucky Death Index for Jefferson County, KY. His son, Charles H. Wesley, received his B.A. from Fisk University in 1911, his M.A. from Yale in 1913, and a Ph.D in history from Harvard. Wesley was the third African American to receive a doctorate in history from Harvard. As a professor, he taught history and modern language at Howard University. He later became president of Wilberforce University and Central State College [now Central State University] in Ohio. Wesley was president of the Study of Negro Life and History, 1950-1965, and executive director up to 1972. He was an AME Church minister and elder. Wesley wrote a number of articles on the problems of Negro education in the United States. In 1927 he published Negro Labor in the United States, 1850-1925, and, in 1935, Richard Allen, Apostle of Freedom. Wesley wrote the history of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity for seven decades. His last book was The History of the National Association of Colored Women's Clubs. For more see Who's Who Among Black Americans, 6th ed.; Notable Black American Men, by J. C. Smith; and Current Biography. Additional information provided by C. P. Uzelac, Executive Director of the Dorothy Porter Wesley Center, Inc.

See photo image of Charles H. Wesley and additional information at BlackPast.org.
Subjects: Authors, Education and Educators, Historians, Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Nashville, Tennessee / New Haven, Connecticut / Cambridge, Massachusetts / Washington, D.C. / Wilberforce, Ohio

West Kentucky Conference and West Kentucky Conference Branch (African Methodist Episcopal Church)
Start Year : 1880
The West Kentucky Conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church ((AME) became independent from the AME Kentucky Conference in 1880 at Richmond, KY, under Bishop J. P. Campbell. The first conference was held the following year in Paducah, KY. The West Kentucky Conference Branch, a women's missionary organization, was organized in 1908 in Franklin, KY, by Bishop C. T. Shaffer. For more information about the West Kentucky Conference and the West Kentucky Conference Branch and its sub-units, see pp.396-397 and p.430 in The Encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church compiled by Bishop R. R. Wright.
Subjects: Religion & Church Work, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Richmond, Madison County, Kentucky / Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky / Franklin, Simpson County, Kentucky

Weston, Alice Victoria Henry and William Julius Sr.
In 1948, Alice Weston was buried in Paducah, KY. She was born in 1882 in Perry, NY, the daughter of Henry and Clara E. Henry Thomas. Her father had been an escaped slave from Mississippi, and her mother was the sister of distinguished Judge Edward W. Henry (1871-1946) in Philadelphia. Alice Weston was married to Dr. William Julius Weston (1875-1936) from Henderson, KY; they met while students at Howard University. The couple moved to Kentucky, where Dr. Weston practiced medicine at Hickman, Henderson, and Paducah. Victoria Weston completed her college degree at Kentucky State University and taught at Lincoln High School in Paducah for 20 years. She was one of the most influential teachers in the city and the state. Weston, who taught history, was the first teacher in Kentucky to develop and teach a formal course in African American history that was required of all students at Lincoln High. She served in several leadership positions within her church and led general church activities held in Paducah. She was an active member of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association and served as president of the Kentucky State Association of Colored Women, which was established in 1903. Victoria and William Weston had three children, all born in Kentucky: Clara Elizabeth (b. 1904), Alice Victoria (b. 1915), and William Julius, Jr. (1906-1945); William was a police officer in Washington, D.C., who was killed in the line of duty. For more see C. G. Woodson, "Alice Victoria Weston and her family," Negro History Bulletin, vol. 11, issue 9, pp. 195-198; William Julius Weston in A Historical, Biographical and Statistical Souvenir, by D. S. Lamb [available full-text at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Education and Educators, Historians, Medical Field, Health Care, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Perry, New York / Henderson, Henderson County, Kentucky / Paducah, McCracken County, Kentucky

Wilkerson, Artishia Garcia Gilbert
Birth Year : 1868
Death Year : 1904
Artishia Garcia Gilbert was the first African American woman to pass the medical boards and become a doctor in Kentucky. She was an 1889 graduate of State University [later Simmons College, KY] and also taught at the school. She was an 1893 graduate of the Louisville National Medical College and an 1897 graduate of Howard University Medical School. She returned to Kentucky and taught obstetrics at the Louisville National Medical College and was superintendent of the Red Cross Sanitarium in Louisville. She was a member of the Green Street Baptist Church and of the board of directors of the Colored Orphan Home in Louisville. She was also an active member of the Baptist Women's Educational Convention. She was president of the Baptist Women's Missionary Convention when she died. Artishia Wilkerson was also a club woman who belonged to several organizations including the Woman's Industrial Club, Woman's Improvement Club, and Sons and Daughters of the Morning. She was born in Manchester, KY, the daughter of William and Amanda Gilbert. She was the wife of attorney B. O. Wilkerson, whom she married in 1896; the couple had three children: B. O. Jr., Artishia Garcia, and a baby boy. An incorrect death date for Artishia Wilkerson is given as December 31, 1929 in the Directory of Deceased American Physicians, 1804-1929, edited by A. W. Hafner, et al. Wilkerson died in 1904. For more see Black Women in America, 2nd ed., vol. 2; Women Doctors in Gilded-Age Washington: race, gender, and professionalization, by G. Moldow; the Artishia Garcia Gilbert entry in A Historical, Biographical and Statistical Souvenir by Howard University Medical Department [available full view at Google Book Search]; and "In Memoriam: Mrs. Artishia Gilbert Wilkerson, A.B., A.M., M.D.," American Baptist, 04/08/1904, p. 3.


Subjects: Education and Educators, Medical Field, Health Care, Women's Groups and Organizations, Hospitals and Clinics: Employment, Founders, Ownership, Incidents
Geographic Region: Manchester, Clay County, Kentucky / Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Williams, Lucille L. Brown
Birth Year : 1897
Death Year : 1982
Born in Ghent, KY, Williams moved to Indiana, where she worked as a day nursery director, owned a grocery store, and was a social services director. She was also very active in social organizations, including being the founding member of the Lucille Lucas Williams Federated Club in 1952. The Lucille L. Williams Collection is housed at the Indiana Historical Society. For more see the "Lucille L. Williams" entry in the Guide to African-American History Materials in Manuscript Collections at the Indiana Historical Society.
Subjects: Businesses, Civic Leaders, Social Workers, Women's Groups and Organizations, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Ghent, Carroll County, Kentucky / Indiana

Williams, Margaret Yeager
The first African American in the Louisville Parent Teacher Association, Williams was also the first African-American president of United Methodist Women - R. E. Jones Temple and the first African American Dean of the School of Missions. For more see C. Ritchie, "Six 'Women of Distinction' are honored," Courier-Journal (Louisville), 03/24/03, Features section, p. O13.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Grade Schools & High Schools in Kentucky
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Willis, Lucas B.
Birth Year : 1874
Death Year : 1930
Lucas B. Willis was born in Frankfort, KY, the son of Sam and Appaline Willis. He was the organizer and vice-president of the Kentucky State Funeral Director's Association, organizer and executive secretary of the Independent National Funeral Directors Association, and organizer and executive secretary of the Sisters of Charity of the State Burial Fund of Indiana. Willis was the husband of Cora L. Willis, who was also a Kentucky native. According to the U.S. Federal Census, in 1910 the couple lived on Camp Street in Indianapolis. Lucas owned an undertakers establishment and Cora was a public school teacher. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1928-29; and "Lucas B. Willis" in the articles "Vital statistics - Deaths" and "Notice of Appointment," both on p.7 of the Indianapolis Recorder, 04/05/1930.
Subjects: Migration North, Undertakers, Cemeteries, Coroners, & Obituaries, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Indianapolis, Indiana

Wilson, Hughlyne A. Perkins
Birth Year : 1931
Hughlyne A. Perkins Wilson was the first woman assistant superintendent in the Louisville, KY, public schools. She is a 1951 graduate of Howard University and earned her M. Ed. in 1964 at the University of Louisville, where she completed her thesis, A Study of the Relationship of First Grade Readiness Test Scores to Reading Achievement in the Fifth Grade. Wilson began her career with the Louisville Public Schools as a teacher in 1956. She is a member of the Urban League, Delta Sigma Theta, and Phi Delta Kappa. She was a member of the Board of Regents at Western Kentucky University. Hughlyne Wilson was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Henry W. and Gertrude Loving Perkins. She is the wife of Charles A. Wilson. For more see the Hughlyne Perkins Wilson entry in Who's Who Among Black Americans, 1975-1995; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1996-2009.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Urban Leagues
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Woman's Industrial Club of Louisville (KY)
Start Year : 1900
The Woman's Industrial Club of Louisville was founded by Nannie Burroughs in 1900. It was described as a business, charitable, and industrial club housed in a building that the club rented in Louisville, KY. Attendance was initially free, then women who could afford it paid ten cents per week for the work and Burroughs took care of the rest. They made pies and cakes and sold them. In the afternoon and evenings, Burroughs instructed the women on professions such as millinery and she taught domestic science. During the day, the organization made and sold lunches to African Americans who worked in downtown Louisville. On the advice of a white woman who came to her aid financially, Burroughs increased the weekly tuition, and each student paid something, even if it was a penny. There were 40 clubs in Louisville, and the city was to host the next biennial meeting of the National Association of Colored Women. The Woman's Industrial Club of Louisville continued to grow, and Burroughs was forced to hire teachers and let other club members manage the school while she supervised. The club eventually purchased a twenty-room building for the classes, and it also provided rooms for women who were moving to Louisville for work. The Woman's Industrial Club of Louisville and the school existed at least during the nine year period that Burroughs was in Louisville. For more see Efforts for Social Betterment Among Negro Americans, A social study made by Atlanta University [available online at Google Book Search]; Fortress Introduction to Black Church History by A. H. Pinn and A. B. Pinn; and In the Vanguard of a Race by L. H. Hammond [available online at Google Book Search and Inernet Archive].
Subjects: Bakers, Cooks and Chefs, Education and Educators, Women's Groups and Organizations, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky, Association of Colored Women's Clubs
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Women's Action Committee For Victory and Lasting Peace Convention in Louisville, KY
Start Year : 1946
While preparing for their convention in Louisville, KY, in 1946, the Women's Action Committee for Victory and Lasting Peace (WACVLP) was met with the challenge of segregation at the convention hotel. Mrs. Vera Whitehouse was chair of the WACVLP. The organization planned to hold the convention with its delegates from the National Association of Colored Women (NACW). The executive secretary of the NACW, Mrs. Christine Smith, refused to send delegates if the housing arrangements at the convention were to be segregated. The WACVLP considered moving the convention to Ohio if the segregated housing situation in Louisville could not be resolved. The Louisville hotel association discussed the matter with the WACVLP and it was decided that Negro delegates could attend the meetings, take meals, and use the same elevator as the white members. A colored pastor, Rev. Offutt, agreed to find rooms in private homes for the Negro delegates attending the convention. The Negro delegates included Miss Jane Hunter of Cleveland; Mrs. Audley Moore of New York; Mrs. Jane Spaulding of West Virginia; Mrs. Mary McLeod Bethune from Washington, D.C., member of the National Council of Negro Women; Mrs. Sadie M. Alexander, an attorney in Philadelphia; and Mrs. L. B. Fouse of Louisville. Members of the WACVLP included Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt; Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt; Mrs. Paul Mellon; Dean Virginia Gildersleeve; Mrs. Anne O'Hare McCormick; Mrs. Ogdon Reid; Miss Dorothy Thompson; Dr. Emily Hickman. As the negotiations continued, it was soon too late to move the convention to Ohio and the concession was for the Negro delegates to be able to eat, meet, and use the same elevator as the white delegates, but the hotel association would not budge on the segregated housing. The WACVLP accepted the terms. In response, Mrs. Mary McLeod Bethune declined to attend the convention. Mrs. Christine Smith withdrew the names of the five delegates who were members of the NACW. Mrs. Audley Moore, of New York, a member of the WACVLP, accepted the terms and agreed to attend the convention. Negro delegates who actually attended the WACVLP Convention were Mrs. Mary F. Waring who lived in Chicago and had grown up in Louisville; Mrs. Joy H. Earl of Cleveland; and Mrs. Emma Shores of Canton, Ohio. For more see "NACW strikes blow against Ky. Jim-Crow," The Afro American, 02/23/1946, p.15; "Women leaders refuse Jim-Crow offering of Action Committee: colored delegates may eat but not room in Ky. hotel," The Afro American, 04/06/1946, p.12; "Leaders shun Ky. meeting," Baltimore Afro-American, 04/30/1946, p.4.

*The Women's Action Committee for Victory and Lasting Peace was formerly the Committee on the Cause and Cure for War that was organized in 1925 after the U.S. rejection of the League of Nations. The Committee on the Cause and Cure for War had a name change in 1940 to the WACVLP. The name would change again to the Committee on Education for Lasting Peace. For more see finding aid at Harvard University Library for Committee on the Cause and Cure of War. Records, 1923-1948.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Women's Right to Vote in Kentucky
Start Year : 1838
End Year : 1902
In 1838, the Kentucky Legislature granted limited voting rights to unmarried women and widows who owned property, and was over 21 years old and lived in the school district. The women could vote on school board issues, on the selection of county school district trustees, and on school taxes. Few women were able to actually vote based on the criteria, and according to author J. D. Wright, Jr, the voting rights were revoked in 1902 because more African American women were going to the polls than white women. The trouble was said to have started in Lexington, KY, when an unpopular Colored man was to be named head of the Colored schools and there was an outpouring of African American women at the polls. Though the rights were revoked, the 1838 School Suffrage voting rights for women in Kentucky set a precedence that was followed by Kansas in 1861, Wyoming in 1869, England in 1870, New Zealand in 1877, and many other states in the U.S. For more see J. Reis, "Winning the right to vote," The Kentucky Post, 11/08/2004, Kentucky Life: History section, p. K4; Lexington, Heart of the Bluegrass, by J. D. Wright, Jr.; the article on black and white women voting in The Bourbon News, 02/11/1902, p. 4; and "School Suffrage in Kentucky - Boston Transcript," Friend's Intelligencer, 1902, v.59, p.221 [available at Google Book Search].
Subjects: Voting Rights, Politicians, Politics, Appointments & Elections, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Kentucky

Work, Beulah White
Birth Year : 1912
Death Year : 2008
Beulah Work was a leader and board member of the Detroit NAACP and a union organizer and labor activist for the United Auto Workers (UAW). For 40 years she was employed as a quality control specialist at Ford Motor Company, according to "Beulah Work joins the ancestors," The Michigan Citizen, April 20, 2008, p. 3. The article also mentions that Beulah Work founded and chaired the Women in the NAACP (WIN) Committee and was honored for being the most successful NAACP voter registration recruiter in Detroit. Beulah Work was one of the women interviewed for the documentary, The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter; her interview is part of the collection of outtakes held at Harvard University Library: "Records of the Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter Project, 1974-1980." Beulah Work, born and raised in Madison County, KY, was the daughter of John Andrew White, Sr. and Bertha Ballew White. In 1920, the family of six lived in the community of White Hall, where John White was a farmer. In 1930, the seven member family lived in the community of Foxtown. Beulah White graduated from Richmond High School in 1931 and soon after moved to Detroit, MI. She was the widow of Merrill Work (1905-1981) from Tennessee. See "Beulah White Work, 95," in the Obituary section of the Richmond Register, 04/15/2008.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Migration North, NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), Women's Groups and Organizations, Union Organizations
Geographic Region: Madison County, Kentucky / Detroit, Michigan

World War II Veterans from Bourbon County
Start Year : 1939
End Year : 1945
An 80 page listing of veterans is available online in Bourbon County Men and Women Who Served in World War Two. It was published by the War History Committee of the Bourbon County Woman's Club and was sponsored by Hansley Mills, Inc. The title does NOT include the name of every World War II veteran from Bourbon County, but it attempts to gather as many names as possible. More than 100 African American veterans, noted by the term "(colored)," are included, including such names as William T. Clay, Henry Stewart, Rudolph Stout, and Virgil Allen, Jr. There is not a date on the publication, but it covers the period 1939-1945 and is available via the Kentucky Digital Library collection.
Subjects: Military & Veterans, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky

Yancey, Sadie Mae
Birth Year : 1907
Death Year : 1958
Sadie M. Yancey was the top honor student when she graduated from Kentucky State College in 1935 [now Kentucky State University]. She was the first graduate of the college department at Kentucky State College to earn a Ph.D. Yancey received her doctorate from Cornell University, September 1950; she had earned her master's degree in education from the University of Cincinnati in 1942. Yancey was an advocate for education: in 1940 she was a member of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association, serving on the Committee of Expenditures of Funds on Educational Inequalities [source: KNEA Journal vol. 10, no. 2, p. 8]. Yancey gave a presentation, "What Guidance Techniques I Am Using," at the Guidance Workers Conference during the 1942 KNEA Conference in Louisville, KY. In 1950, she was the dean of women and a psychology professor at Florida A&M and was later dean of women at Howard University in Washington, D.C. She was the first president and a founding member of the National Association of Personnel Workers (NAPW), founded in 1953. The association was a combined effort of the National Association of the Deans of Women and Advisers of Girls in Colored Schools and the National Association of the Deans of Men in Negro Educational Institutions. The NAPW was renamed the National Association of Student Affairs Professionals (NASAP), and the Sadie M. Yancey Professional Service Award was established as the second highest honor that a member of that organization can receive. Yancey was also vice president of the National Council of Negro Women. She was a member of Delta Sigma Theta, and chaired the Scholarship and Standards Committee. Sadie Yancey was born in Lexington, KY, the daughter of Minnie Jackson Yancey, a domestic, and Charles Yancey, a Lexington grocer who was from Canada [source: Sadie Yancey's Certificate of Birth]. The family lived at 120 South Upper Street in Lexington. Sadie Yancey was also the granddaughter of Belle Mitchell Jackson and Jordan C. Jackson, Jr. [source: 1910 U.S. Federal Census]. For more see "Two Kentucky state graduates...," The Crisis, vol. 57, no. 11 (Dec. 1950), p. 736; "Professional Associations" in Student Services: a handbook for the profession, by S. R. Komives and D. Woodard; Sadie Yancey in The Historical Cookbook of the American Negro, by S. B. Thurman, et al.; under the heading "Died" see "Sadie M. Yancey, 51,...," Jet, Oct 16, 1958, p.43; and H. A. Davis and P. Bell-Scott, "Association of Deans of Women and Advisers to Girls in Negro Schools" in Black Women in America, vol. 1 A-L, edited by D. C. Hine, pp. 49-51; and In Search of Sisterhood: Delta Sigma Theta and the challenge of the Black sorority movement, by P. Giddings. See also Yancey's Ph.D. dissertation, A Study of Racial and Sectional Differences in the Ranking of Occupations By High School Boys, and her master's thesis, A Follow-up Study of Five Graduating Classes of the Paul Laurence Dunbar High School.

See photo image of Sadie M. Yancey at the Yancy Family Genealogy website.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Librarians, Library Collections, Libraries, Fraternal Organizations, Women's Groups and Organizations, Higher Education Before Desegregation, Kentucky, National Council of Negro Women
Geographic Region: Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky / Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Florida / Washington, D. C.

Young, Aurelia J. Norris
Birth Year : 1915
Death Year : 2010
Aurelia Young was a musician, composer, performer, writer, and educator. She was formerly a music professor at Jackson State College [now Jackson State University]. She was a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and an original charter member of the Jackson (MS) Alumnae Chapter; Young served as the first president of the chapter 1941-1943. In 2008, she attended the chapter's "Legacy of Leadership" program. Aurelia Norris was born in Knottsville, KY, the daughter of John H., a farmer, and Hilda A. Stone Norris [sources: Kentucky Birth Index and the 1920 U.S. Federal Census]. By 1930, the family of five had moved to New London, OH, where John H. Norris was employed as a mechanic. Aurelia studied piano and violin and was a top graduate of her high school class. She was a 1937 graduate of Wilberforce University, where she studied music theory, organ, and French horn. She moved to Mississippi intending to teach for one year then leave, but she stayed after she married Jack Harvey Young, Sr. in 1938. Jack Young (1908-1976) would become a distinguished civil rights lawyer in Mississippi. Aurelia Young described her role in the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement as a supporter of her husband's efforts. In 1955, Aurelia Young earned her Master of Music degree at Indiana University then continued her studies in Europe and Africa. She held the copyright [PAu002421668] to a trilogy created in 1995 entitled Trilogy. Aurelia Young died in Los Angeles, California on October 17, 2010 [source: Social Security Death Index]. For more see the Aurelia Norris Young entry in Accomplishments of Mississippi Women, funded by the National Commission on the Observance of International Women's Year; Mississippi Black History Makers, by G. A. Sewell and M. L. Dwight; P. Jenkins, "PTA hears panelist: accept me as human," Delta Democrat-Times, 10/14/1970, p. 10; Mississippi, America [videorecording] by J. McCray; and J. Irons, "The Shaping of activist recruitment and participation: a study of women in the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement," Gender and Society, vol. 12, issue 6, Special Issue: Gender and Social Movements, Part 1, (Dec. 1998), pp. 692-709.
Subjects: Activists, Civil Rights, Education and Educators, Migration North, Musicians, Opera, Singers, Song Writers, Migration South, Women's Groups and Organizations
Geographic Region: Knottsville, Daviess County, Kentucky / Jackson, Mississippi / Los Angeles, California

YWCA (Louisville, KY)
Start Year : 1915
End Year : 1998
Founded in 1912, the Louisville YWCA hosted the first interracial YWCA conference in the South, October 14-16, 1915. Four years later, it was noted in the title Child Welfare in Kentucky that the Louisville Association of the YWCA was the only one in the United States that provided a summer camp for colored girls. The Phillis Wheatley Branch of the YWCA for African Americans was established in the early 1920s and closed in the 1970s. The first Spouse Abuse Shelter in Kentucky was opened in the Louisville YWCA in 1977, and in 1981 six shelters in the state formed a statewide coalition, the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association. In 1998, the Louisville YWCA was no longer affiliated with the national YWCA and became the Center For Women and Families. For more see U.S. Women's Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles, by S. Slavin; Our History at the YWCA.org website; YWCA entry in The Encyclopedia of Louisville, edited by J. E. Kleber; and the Young Women's Christian Association of Louisville Records at the University of Louisville Libraries.
Subjects: Civic Leaders, Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

YWCA Subcommittee on Colored Work
Start Year : 1915
The YWCA's first Conference on Colored Work was held in Louisville, KY, in 1915, with both African American and white women in attendance and seated together during the programs. It was the first integrated conference by the YWCA, an experiment to see if it would work in an agreeable fashion. Louisville was considered a safe enough testing ground in the not too deep South. African American women from throughout the South who headed YWCA branches attended the conference, along with leaders from other women's organizations who wanted to establish African American YWCAs in their communities. A previous conference, held in Asheville, NC, in 1907, to discuss the YWCA's work in southern African American communities, was attended by 60 white women. The national meeting in 1913 was held in Richmond, VA, with African American student attendees seated in the balcony. It soon became obvious that more African American women were attending the YWCA conferences and establishing branches; therefore, in 1913 the Subcommittee on Colored Work was formed to respond to the work with African American women in urban areas, which was the fastest growing development. Stationed in New York, Eva Del Vakia Bowles, an African American from Albany, OH, was hired as secretary of the subcommittee, with the responsibility of helping the National YWCA to accommodate the African American members without detriment to the white membership. The 1915 conference attendees in Louisville are remembered for three areas of consensus: 1) The National Board appointed an interracial committee to promote the college associations, city associations, and new branches; 2) Training for African American staff and volunteer members would be paid for by the National Board; and 3) African American branches of the YWCA were to become branches of the local white associations or the National Board. The placement of the African American branches under the control of the local white YWCAs was protested, but to little avail. Also, African American student conferences were held annually in the South, with a white YWCA member in attendance. The YWCA Council on Colored Work was disbanded during World War I when the War Work Council was formed; work with African Americans shifted more toward the enlisted men. For more see the YWCA of the U.S.A. Records, a Five College Archive and Manuscripts Collections website; The Afro-American Woman, by S. Harley and R. Terborg-Penn; and Organizing Black America, by N. Mjagkij.

See photo image "Camping in Old Kentucky" in the NYPL Digital Gallery from the source: The work of colored women; compiled by Jane Olcott, issued by the Colored Work Committee, War Work Council, National Board Young Women's Christian Associations.
Subjects: Women's Groups and Organizations, YWCA (Young Women's Christian Association)
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

 

Return to the search page.