Blast From The Past:
OUR HAMITE AWARD WINNER FOR 1894:
Anna J. Cooper
Anna J. Cooper was an American author, educator, speaker and one of the most prominent African-American scholars in United States history. Let's follow this woman's amazing story.
Anna was born into enslavement in Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1858. When Anna was only eight years old, she enrolled in Saint Augustine's Normal School and Collegiate Institute and stayed there 14 years. Anna excelled in all of her classes. She distinguished herself as a bright and ambitious student, who showed equal promise in both liberal arts and analytical disciplines such as math and science. It was discouraged for women to seek higher learning at the school, but that just made Anna all the more determined to seize it.
Anna later became a tutor to help pay her school expenses. Her future husband was one of her students. Sadly, Anna's husband died an early death prompting her to enter Oberlin College, where she continued to insist on following the course of study for men.
During her years as a teacher and principal at M Street High School, Cooper completed her first book, A Voice from the South: By A Woman from the South, published in 1892. It was her only published work, although she delivered many speeches calling for civil rights and woman's rights. A Voice from the South is widely viewed as one of the first articulations of Black feminism.
She felt that the educational, moral, and spiritual progress of black women would improve the general standing of the entire African-American community. With black women becoming more successful in American culture today, we wonder how Anna would address them in line with her teachings?
Anna advanced the view that it was the duty of educated and successful black women to support their underprivileged peers in achieving their goals. You heard it ladies, Go help a brotha!
What an enchanting story. Anna wasn't that well known, but she was one more piece that fit the African-American puzzle in experiences to higher achievement. We've come a long way from tribal life in Africa. Her contributions and more like her are invaluable to us. She had two strikes against her being black and a woman, but she didn't strike out, in fact, she knocked the ball clear out of the park. We are delighted in awarding Anna J. Cooper with the 1894 Hamite Award, which is given to folks of superior endurance in learning and an unquenchable desire to excel.
On February 27, 1964, Cooper died in Washington, D.C., at the age of 105. Her memorial was held in a chapel on the campus of Saint Augustine's College, where her academic career began. She was buried alongside her husband at the City Cemetery in Raleigh.
American author, educator, and speaker|
Anna J. Cooper
|How were blacks feeling in 1894?
It seems everywhere you turn these days; there's a strike going on. Coal miners, Pullman railroad, steel mills. It adversely affects the black person when selfish businesspeople call them up as strike-breakers which are a very dangerous task. Many Negroes have lost their lives crossing a picket line.
Some blacks have left the South in the Exoduster movement and are still doing so, but there is more that chose to remain. The one's in the South are farmhands. They are doing the same work they did in slavery, but only getting paid for it.
The depression is hitting folks hard in America. There are over three million unemployed in the country. These so-called superior people just don't know how to govern people if you ask me, they are always messing up folks lives with their bad and greedy decisions. But even with all the hate, these people displays to our race, America is our beloved home and belongs to us just as immigrants who came over on their free will.
The founders of this country had high standards for sure, criteria that the black person appreciates and strives for, but the whites have a hard time living their lives. These folks are constantly acting like they are true followers of the Constitution. They are a bunch of liars. Every once in awhile a real American will step on the scene, but that's far and few.
I can't wait until The Church of God in Christ opens up a place of worship here, I heard they get so filled, they have to chant and dance all over the place, similar to the way it was in Africa. It was funny that years ago the Quakers tried to get us involved with their version of religion, but it was just too dull for us, and we had to cut them loose, but they didn't complain too much. (lol)
Octavius Valentine Catto
John W. "Bud" Fowler
Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton
Moses Fleetwood Walker
| Sports in 1894 |
- Blacks were not accepted into the league baseball games, so they started their teams, becoming professional by the the 1870s. The first known baseball game between two black teams was held on November 15, 1859, in New York City. The Henson Base Ball Club of Jamaica, Queens, defeated the Unknowns of Weeksville, Brooklyn, 54 to 43.
By the end of the 1860s, the black baseball mecca was Philadelphia, which had an African-American population of 22,000. Two former cricket players, James H. Francis and Francis Wood, formed the Pythian Base Ball Club. They played in Camden, New Jersey, at the landing of the Federal Street Ferry, because it is hard to get permits for black baseball games in the city. Octavius Catto, the promoter of the Pythians, decided to apply for membership in the National Association of Base Ball Players, typically a matter of sending delegates to the annual convention; beyond that, a formality.
At the end of the 1867 season "the National Association of Baseball Players voted to exclude any club with a black player." In some ways Blackball thrived under segregation, with the few black teams of the day playing not only each other but white teams as well. "Black teams earned the bulk of their income playing white independent 'semipro' clubs."
- The mistreatment and segregation of Blacks didn't only happen in the South, but also the Northern cities like Philadelphia.
- Octavius Valentine Catto was a black educator, intellectual, and civil rights activist in Philadelphia. As a man, he also became known as a top cricket and black baseball pioneer in 19th-century Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
- The first known professional black baseball player was Bud Fowler, who appeared in a handful of games with a Chelsea, Massachusetts club in April 1878 and then pitched for the Lynn, Massachusetts team in the International Association.
- Moses Fleetwood Walker and his brother, Welday Wilberforce Walker, were the first two black players in the major leagues. They both played for the 1884 Toledo Blue Stockings in the American Association.
- The few blacks on the white minor league teams were constantly dodging verbal and physical abuse from both competitors and fans. Then the Compromise of 1877 removed the remaining obstacles from the South's enacting the Jim Crow laws. To make matters worse, on July 14, 1887, Cap Anson's Chicago White Stockings marched his team onto the field, military style as was his custom, he demanded that the blacks not play, and later that same day, league owners voted to refuse future contracts to blacks, citing the "hazards" imposed by such athletes.
- In 1888, the Middle States League was formed, and it admitted two all-black teams to its otherwise all-white league, the Cuban Giants and their arch-rivals, the New York Gorhams. They became traveling teams known as the Colored All-Americans. They would go to various cities playing games that were not authorized by the professional white league. They would play against any team that just wanted some good, fair competition and make a little money in the process. The New York Gorhams quit playing after awhile and by 1892 the Cuban Giants were the only black team in the East still in operation on a full-time basis.
- Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton was an American jockey in Thoroughbred horse racing described by author Edward Hotaling, as "one of the great riders of the New York circuit all through the 1890s" and who holds the record as the youngest jockey to ever win the Kentucky Derby.
| Education in 1894 |
- January 9, 1894 - Texas College was founded by a group of ministers affiliated with the Christian Methodist Episcopal (CME) Church, a black denomination. They planned a full, co-educational college to serve people in eastern Texas.
US Flag with 44 stars. In use 4 July 1891–3 July 1896.
| Political Scene in 1894 |
- Democrat Grover Cleveland is the 24th President of the United States. This was his second term and bad news for African Americans. More good news for whites. Trivia: Cleveland, like a growing number of Northerners (and nearly all white Southerners) saw Reconstruction as a failed experiment, and was reluctant to use federal power to enforce the 15th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed voting rights to African Americans. Though Cleveland appointed no black Americans to patronage jobs, he allowed Frederick Douglass to continue in his post as recorder of deeds in Washington, D.C. and appointed another black man to replace Douglass upon his resignation. OH THANK YOU SO MUCH, MR. President FOR APPOINTING ONE BLACK TO OFFICE and no help whatsoever to recently freed slaves, politicians give these poor people a few years of help after centuries of abuse and think they have done something honorable, what a bunch of baloney. Your kindness and concern for black American citizens will never be forgotten. History shows up the malfeasance of all these so-called great men.
HOW LONG WILL WHITE-AMERICANS |
SIT ON THE FENCE?
Since the beginning of American history, there's always been a battle between those in authority. The problem is that some of these authorities view democracy differently. According to the dictionary, the word truth can be described as fidelity to an original or standard. Of course, we know the popular standard for American democracy is "all men are created equal and entitled to liberty, justice and the pursuit of happiness. But these authorities have disagreed for centuries if blacks should truthfully have a part in these promises.
Who's right? You be the judge.
First, we need to define democracy, and we'll let two of America's greatest Presidents do this for us by their actions and famous quotes.
Abraham Lincoln made the following quotes:
"As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this to the extent of the difference, is no democracy."
"I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and the black races.... But I hold that ... there is no reason in the world why the negro is not entitled to all the natural rights enumerated in the Declaration of Independence, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
Now it's very clear from the many negative comments Abraham Lincoln made against black people he wasn't likely to have blacks over for dinner, in fact, most whites shared his views. But that's okay; he lived in a different era than today. This site believes he would have changed his views if living in our time because one of his most admirable qualities was flexibility.
In contrast to Abraham Lincoln, the first President of the United States, George Washington evidently didn't share Lincoln's view of democracy.
Black slaves were actively sought and recruited to fight for America in the Revolutionary War and promised freedom after the victory. It's well recorded that slaves fought with courage and valor that ensured American success. George Washington himself made the comment:
Washington wrote a letter to Colonel Henry Lee III stating that success in the war would come to whatever side could arm the blacks the fastest.
But after victory in the war, America didn't keep its promises, and most blacks were forced back into slavery. Of course, George Washington had to know about this but did nothing. Washington had many slaves himself and didn't want to free them and damage his financial stake. He put money interests ahead of real Democracy. Washington was a brilliant soldier but failed as an upholder of truth and justice and set the tone for future race relations in our country by trivializing and compromising Democracy. It's sad to say, but Washington didn't stay in the truth.
So in a sense, Washington created the blueprint for this distorted and false view of Democracy
This blueprint became the norm in much of America's dealings with black people. Whites felt if their supreme leader thought so lowly of black people, they would also. Washington's inaction cannot be taken lightly because every single President after him would ignore the "Negro Problem" as they called it and continued with their lie by going against the lofty standard this country was founded. They actually became anti-Americans.
Lincoln had faced the "Negro Problem" issue head on and was very brave in doing so by instituting the Emancipation Proclamation. So we had two great Presidents with different opinions of Democracy and what it meant to be on the side of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all. Abraham Lincoln chose to put Democracy first and his personal prejudices second, but Washington put his financial interest ahead of Democracy. This is what set these two great men apart in character.
After Lincoln's death, democracy would take a wild downward spiral. One of the most biased President in American history led the attack. His name was Andrew Johnson. He fought against Reconstruction aid for blacks tooth and nail. Every favorable bill for former slaves that appeared on his desk was immediately denied. Later, there were new illegal laws created to restrict black American citizens that worked very well. This was called the Jim Crow era. It was an all-out attack on Democracy by Anti-Americans and aided by good white Americans who remained neutral by sitting on the fence and not speaking up. Read for yourself.
There's not enough room on this web page to describe the hate and exclusion by the government and white Americans against blacks during this period. Jim Crow laws touched every part of life, all across America. Blacks and whites were kept apart as much as possible. Good jobs went to whites; blacks were given the worst with less pay. Many industries wouldn’t hire blacks. Many unions passed special rules to exclude them. All juries and judges were white; blacks were illegally denied voting rights. No blacks allowed in public pools. Many restaurants would not serve blacks, and those that did had a dirty colored section. Blacks and whites went to county fairs on different days. Blacks couldn't use public libraries.|
Simple common courtesy was rarely shown the blacks. Whites beat, tortured, raped and killed blacks with no fear of punishment. Blacks were denied credit for businesses, housing, cars by the banks. Blacks were kept out of white neighborhoods with housing covenants. Oklahoma had black and white phone booths. Texas had cities where blacks were entirely restricted from living. Blacks could not leave their homes after 10:00 pm in Mobile Alabama. Blacks could not marry whites. Georgia had separate white and black parks. Prisons, hospitals, and orphanages were segregated as were schools and colleges. Blacks and whites had to use different sets of books in school, in Florida, they couldn't be stored together. When a person was sworn in at a trial, the whites used one Bible, and the blacks had a separate Bible. For those who did complete college, a crucial question had to be answered. Who was going to be their clients?
Whites didn't engage blacks in business, and the battered black person couldn't afford their services. These laws became so entrenched in American life; even unwritten laws affected black citizenship; blacks understood to stay out of white stores and establishments. Segregation was so complete that whites did not see blacks except when being served by them. After the Civil Rights movement of the 60s, blacks have made enormous gains. This is how the United States of America became a polarized country. Each and every President knew what was going on and allowed this illegal activity for 87 years. Were they guilty of not upholding the United States Constitution in the black people behalf? Is this the reason why many other nations laugh at America with its constant claims of being on the side of good and high morality?
Religion made things worse
Even though the U.S. was not founded as a Christian nation and existed solely as a secular state entirely free of religious influence in lawmaking, religion would soon be thrown into the loop. This made American people feel righteous and just in their own eyes. White's believed they were "good" and made in God's image and blacks were not. In time slogans such as "In God, We Trust" were printed on money to describe people who had snuffed out Democracy by living a lie. They felt God was on their side and loved only them.
Countless movies, radio shows, newspapers, magazines and other media would consistently portray these anti-Americans as on the side of good, morally upstanding and righteous to the world. Good white Americans that were sitting on the fence had to know this was a farce because of the way its black citizens were being treated and did nothing.
But there was a relative few brave, justice loving white Americans who spoke up and got involved for democracy with some even losing their lives, but the majority did nothing. They remained on the fence because they were also partakers of the privileged American way of living and failed to realize how this was undermining true Democracy with the prospect of one day being faced with an America they wouldn't recognize.
“Ignorance of how we are shaped racially is the first sign of privilege. In other words. It is a privilege to ignore the consequences of race in America.” Tim Wise
So, what has America become?
Because of the folly of racism and privilege by anti-Americans and the lack of action to speak out by good Americans, it appears this country has morphed into another form of power. Something that is completely different than it started out as, like an insatiable, greedy, detestable and ugly monster without a soul or conscience?
SOUTHERN HATE if I said it once I must say it again, these people ain't normal!|
The Civil War Is Over, Why Do You Still Hate Me So Much Man?
There were over 179,000 black soldiers who fought in the Civil War for their freedom and the right to become American citizens. Many brave souls died. They thought once it was over things would be better for the colored people. But it wasn't and especially in the South.
What the HELL! Why do these southern whites hate blacks so much and fight against our pursuit of happiness at every turn? They ain't normal, and surely not American, because if they were they would believe all are created equal, which is what our country was founded on.
Southern whites had enjoyed a lifestyle much better than their ancestors before them. Before arriving in America, most white immigrants were destitute and severely oppressed by their governments. Many were uneducated peasants and serfs not much better off than a black slave. When they finally encountered blacks in America, they showed little empathy toward them.
No longer on the bottom rung of the ladder of humanity, these white immigrants would also proclaim themselves superior and joined the higher class of whites in dominating blacks unmercifully for many years. Whites as a group was happy as a lark even the not so intelligent ones.
The North understood slavery to be a temporary situation, but in contrast Southern whites viewed it as a permanent institution that should be expanded into new territories that hadn't been admitted to the union yet. Stop the Slave Power at all cost was the North's goal. This reason the Civil War started, not because Abraham Lincoln had this burning desire to free the slaves.
Before the war, southern whites grew very comfortable with their lifestyle and after losing it blamed blacks for everything. Many were brilliant and proud people. Now can you imagine proud, intelligent white people who had dominated blacks for hundreds of years, and faced with the possibility of black equality and being governed by the same individuals they mistreated and spit on and looked upon as ignorant savage beast?
They viciously fought against equality for black people at every turn and opportunity. They considered themselves true Sons of the South, do or die.
They had to feel like the North was punishing and embarrassing them by giving blacks American citizenship and the right to vote. Southern whites would kill many blacks for what they perceived as upholding their honor. What did the North do? They made a show of attempting to help black people, but in the end, that's all it was a show. In reality, they used blacks as a pawn to teach the South a lesson in hopes that one day the southern faithful would reconcile their hearts to the Union of America as one big happy white American family.
Movies in America
Anna Madah Hyers dressed as 'Urlina' in the opera Urlina the African Princess (1879)
Cover of Musical Gems, a book of songs by Sam T. Jack's Creole Burlesque Co.
| Musicals / Burlesque in 1894 |
- The Hyers Sisters, Anna Madah and Emma Louise were singers and pioneers of black musical theater. With Joseph Bradford and Pauline Hopkins, the Hyers Sisters produced the "first full-fledged musical plays... in which African Americans themselves comment on the plight of the slaves and the relief of Emancipation without the disguises of minstrel comedy." Their first play was Out of Bondage (also known as Out of the Wilderness) which premiered in 1876. The Hyers Sisters under the management of their proud father not only toured in America but internationally. As small children, the father had them classically trained by German professor Hugo Sank and later opera singer Josephine D'Ormy, and they performed for private parties before making their professional stage debut. They were very well received everywhere they performed and blazed a path for other black entertainers to follow. They traveled until the mid-1880s with their shows and continued to appear on stage into the 1890s. Wow, absolutely amazing!
- Sam Lucas convinced Sam T. Jack, a burlesque impresario to feature beautiful Creole women in a risqué burlesque show. It was the first to present beautiful black women as chorus girls in place of the traditional all-male chorus. It has been called the first black burlesque show. It included original songs, sketches and comedy numbers by black artists. The Creole Show opened in Haverhill, Massachusetts, on August 4, 1890, and toured across the United States, and would stay on the circuit until 1897.
Blues singer Bessie Smith
Jackie "Moms" Mabley in her stage persona from a guest appearance on the Smothers Brothers television program in 1968
James P. Johnson
| Famous Birthdays in 1894 |
- January 27, 1894 - Frederick Douglass "Fritz" Pollard was the first African American head coach in the National Football League (NFL). Pollard along with Bobby Marshall were the first two African American players in the NFL in 1920.
- February 1, 1894 - James P. Johnson was an American pianist and composer. A pioneer of the stride style of jazz piano, he was one of the most important pianists who bridged the ragtime and jazz eras.
- March 19, 1894 - Jackie "Moms" Mabley, born Loretta Mary Aiken, was an American standup comedian. A veteran of the Chitlin' circuit of African-American vaudeville, she later appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show and the The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.
- April 15, 1894 - Bessie Smith, was an American blues singer, nicknamed The Empress of the Blues.
- August 14, 1894 - Bricktop was an American dancer, singer, vaudevillian, and self-described saloon-keeper who owned the nightclub Chez Bricktop in Paris from 1924 to 1961, as well as clubs in Mexico City and Rome. She has been called "...one of the most legendary and enduring figures of twentieth-century American cultural history."
- November 13, 1894 - Bennie Moten was an American jazz pianist and band leader born in Kansas City, Missouri.
- 1894 - Clara Smith was an African America classic female blues singer. She was billed as the "Queen of the Moaners", even though she had a lighter and sweeter voice than many of her contemporaries.
Mary Jane Patterson
| Famous Deaths in 1894 |
- March 26, 1894 - John Hanks Alexander was the first African-American officer in the United States armed forces to hold a regular command position and the second African-American graduate of the United States Military Academy.
- June 11, 1894 - Macon Bolling Allen is believed to be both the first African American licensed to practice law and to hold a judicial position in the United States.
- September 24, 1894 - Mary Jane Patterson was the first African-American woman to receive a B.A degree in 1862.
- 1894 - Frank J. Webb was an African-American novelist, poet, and essayist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Halle Tanner Dillon Johnson
| Famous Weddings in 1894 |
- 1894 - Physician Halle Tanner Dillon Johnson and John Quincy Johnson were wed in holy matrimony.
Bob Cole and John Rosamond Johnson,
African American composers
| Music in 1894 |
Popular Soul Dances:
Musical Happenings in 1894:
- Cakewalk Dance was a strutting dance popular at the end of the 19th century, developed from a black-American contest in graceful walking that had a cake as a prize.
- Buck Dances
- Maurice Arnold, 1865-1937 was one of many African-American students of Antonin Dvorak during Dvorak's 1894 stay in the United States. Arnold participated in Dvorak's famous January 23, 1894, concert at the National Conservatory of Music in New York City. Arnold's four "American Plantation Dances" were performed at the conservatory and garnered him a small measure of fame. He was also the author of "Valse Elegant" for two pianos, eight hands (1893) and "Lad Who Wears the Blue" (1898).
- By 1881, Billy Johnson was performing in minstrel shows. In 1886 he joined Lew Johnson's Minstrels and the following year moved to Hicks and Sawyer's minstrels, where he stayed for six seasons. He began writing songs and eventually landed a job with Bob Cole as songwriter and stage producer for the more upscale Black Patti Troubadours. Cole and Johnson produced a musical sketch for Black Patti, then left that company to create their musical, A Trip to Coontown (1898), the first full-length black-produced musical on an American stage. However, during the third season of this musical, the pair separated.
Hi there, I'm Annie.
Thanks for viewing my collection of wonderful soul-food dishes that my amazing ancestors cooked, and more than likely yours did too.
We didn't have much of anything back in the day and had to live off the scraps we were given. But like a famous rapper once said in his songs, we knew how to "make a dollar out of 15 cents" Enjoy.
Sweet Potatoes / Yams
Rice and Beans
Fish and Chips
Biscuits and Gravy
(images - https://pixabay.com/)
| Southern Cooking - Soul Food |
Have you ever wondered what African-Americans ate back in the day? Well, maybe we can help you with that. We've found the oldest known black cookbook to date.
This cookbook was written by an actual former slave woman that had once lived on a plantation, but gained her freedom with the Emancipation Proclamation moving from Mobile, Alabama to San Francisco, California where she published an entirely excellent collection of 160 authentic and tasty recipes of the Old South entitled;
"What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Southern Cooking"
This book is indeed a rare gemstone with tons of actual recipes that black folks enjoyed back in the day, but Mrs. Fisher cooking wasn't limited to blacks only, many whites also loved her delicious recipes and persuaded her to make a cookbook.
Here is just a sample of some of the southern foods mentioned in her book, and by the way, it wasn't called soul-food until the 1960's.
- Maryland Beat Biscuit
- Cream Cake
- Flannel Cakes
- Sallie Lund
- Egg Corn Bread
- Plantation Corn Bread
- Light Bread
- Lamb or Mutton Chops
- Pork Steak or Chops
- Ginger Cookies
- Sweet Wafers
Pickels, Sauces Etc.
- Sweet Cucumber Pickles
- Sweet Cucumber Mangoes
- Chow Chow
- Creole Chow Chow
- Cherry Chutney
- Game Sauce
- Compound Tomato
- Sweet Pickle Peaches
- Sweet Pickle Prunes
- Sweet Watermelon Kind Pickle
- Sauce for Boiled Fish or Mutton
- Milanese Sauce
- Sauce for Suet Pudding
- Pastry for making Pies of all kinds
- Preparing the Fruit for Pies
- Lemon Pies
- Cream Apple
- Sweet Potato
- Gooseberry and Cherry
- Light Bread
- Blackberry Roll
- Corn Fritters
Preserves, Spices, ETC.
- Brandy Peaches
- Quince Preserves
- Syrups for Preserves
- Preserved Peaches
- Preserved Pears
- Currant Jelly
- Cranberry Jelly
- Strawberry Jam
- Raspberry and Currant Jam Combined
- Marmalade Peach
- Crab Apple Jelly
- Blackberry Brandy
- Blackberry Syrup for Dysentery in Children
- Preserved Apricots
- Apple Sauce for Roast Pork
- Charlotte Eusse
- Spiced Currants
- Preserved Cherries
- Domestic Duck
- Wild Duck
Soups, Chowders, Etc.
- Calf 's Head
- Mock Turtle
- Green Turtle
- Oyster Gumbo
- Ochra Gumbo
- Old Fashioned Turnip
- Corn and Tomato
- Fish Chowder
- Chicken Gumbo
- Fricassed Chicken
- Fried Chicken
- Chicken fried Steak
- Meat Stews or Entrees
- Ice Cream
- Boiled Turkey
- Beef a la Mode
- Spiced Round
- Hog Maws
- Stuffed Ham
- Lima Beans
- Jumberlie a Creole Dish
- Baked Fish
- Ribs, Beef or Pork
- Boiled Corn
- Peach Cobbler
- Egg Plant Stuffed
- Chitterlings or "Chitlins"
- Corned Beef Hash
- Ladies' Custard
- Tonic Bitters
- Terrapin Stew
- Leaven Biscuit
- Pap for infant Diet
- Sorghum Syrup
- Meringue for Pudding
- Circuit Hash
What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Southern Cooking
Paperback – March, 1995
by Abby Fisher (Author), Karen Hess (Editor)
Southern Jewel Million Dollar Pound Cake
(this recipe is not from Mrs. Fisher cookbook, but has been in Annie's family for generations, it's everyones favorite!)
Butter: 1 pound
Sugar: 3 cups
Milk: 3/4 cup
Cake Flour: 4 cups (Soft as Silk Cake Flour)
Baking Powder: 1 teaspoon
Vanilla Flavor: 1 teaspoon
Lemon Flavor: 1 teaspoon
For best results, leave butter and eggs out overnight
Cream butter well, add sugar and mix until butter and sugar look like whip cream.
Beat each egg individually and then add with sugar and butter, mix well for at least a couple minutes.
Add milk and cake flour a little at a time, then add flavorings.
Spray Pam spray on entire round cake pan, and then add cake batter.
Bake about 1 hour and 15 minutes at 325.
Let cake cool for about 30 minutes, and then remove cake from cake pan.
Minister Jordan W. Early
William C. ("Billy") McClain
The illustration represents a corsage by Charvet. It is a blouse of pink cambric finely plaited, and with a white cascade frill, also of cambric, down the center. The scarf is of white cambric and the waistband of pink cambric.
Early 1890s fashion includes gray coat with covered buttons and matching waistcoat, dark trousers, short turnover shirt collar, and floppy bow tie. The short hair and pointed beard are typical.
Work fashions in the 1890s (housekeeper)
Dapper young African-American woman with Afro-textured hair wearing a hat.
The Black Victorians (Victorian Era 1800s-1900s)
| Fashions and Styles in 1894 |
- After the American Civil War and emancipation, many blacks migrated to towns or cities, where they were influenced by new styles. Many straightened their hair to conform to white beauty ideals. They wanted to succeed, and to avoid mistreatment and legal and social discrimination. Some women, and a smaller number of men, lightened their hair with household bleach. They used creams and lotions, combined with hot irons, to straighten hair. The black hair care industry was initially dominated by white-owned businesses. In the late 19th century, African-American entrepreneurs such as Annie Turbo Malone, Madam C. J. Walker, Madam Gold S.M. Young, Sara Spencer Washington and Garrett Augustus Morgan revolutionized hair care by inventing and marketing chemical (and heat-based) applications to alter the natural tightly curled texture. Men began using pomades, and other products, to achieve the standard aesthetic look.
By the 1890s, the sack coat was fast replacing the frock coat for most informal and semi-formal occasions. Three-piece suits ("ditto suits") consisting of a sack coat with matching vest and trousers were worn, as were matching coat and waistcoat with contrasting trousers.
Shirt collars were turned over or pressed into "wings", and became taller through the decade. The usual necktie was a four-in-hand or an Ascot tie, made up as a neckband with wide wings attached and worn with a stickpin, but the 1890s also saw the return of the bow tie for day dress.
Early 1890s dresses consisted of a tight bodice with the skirt gathered at the waist and falling more naturally over the hips and undergarments than in previous years. Corsets in the 1890s helped define the hourglass figure. Afternoon dresses typical of the time period had high necks, wasp waists, puffed sleeves and bell-shaped skirts. Evening gowns had a squared decolletage, a wasp-waist cut and skirts with long trains.
- Portrait of the stylish African-American impresario William C. ("Billy") McClain in late 1800s.
Yeow!, Slavery is Finally Over!|
It's smooth sailing ahead
We can't wait to get out in the workforce to make our own money
What type of employment awaits us in the 1800s?
90% of Negroes still lived in the South up until the late 1910s. Blacks looking for work in the South mainly worked on the land they lived. Most were tenant farmers that did contract work on a farm by farm basis. Some blacks were hired just for a particular job and once the job was over had to find employment elsewhere. They would work and harvest the field for the season and pay the owner out of their profits for room and board and use of farming tools.
Some but not many blacks also worked in manufacturing, and for the most part were paid comparable wages as their white counterparts. However, blacks were much less likely to hold better-paying skilled jobs, and they were more liable to work for lower-paying companies.
If blacks were not working on farms, they were engaged in unskilled labor and service jobs. They were unable to afford their homes. Because of the crazy events unfolding with voter intimidations and outright murders by the KKK, with total impunity and the total disregard for assistance from American presidents, and the end of Reconstruction help. Most black children had not attended school in the year before the Census was taken, and white children were much more likely to have attended.
Immediately after the emancipation blacks were very eager to learn, school attendance was sky high, but unfolding events that were perpetrated or voted on in approval by white citizens demoralized many blacks at this point in history before the turn of the century, and don't forget the effects of damaging Jim Crows laws which were about to formally get underway.
So a typical look at the African American family at the end of the 1800s Census lived and worked on a farm in the South and did not own their home, and children in these families were unlikely to be in school even at very young ages.
Blacks also found employment in the mining industry, which was very dangerous work. In 1883, thousands of European immigrants and a large number of African Americans migrated to southern West Virginia to work in coal mines. These coal miners worked in company mines with company tools and equipment, which they were required to lease. Along with these expenses, the miners have deducted pay for housing rent and items they purchased from company stores. Furthermore, the coal companies went as far as creating their monetary system so the miners could only shop at company-owned stores. In addition to the poor economic condition, safety in the mines was a great concern with many men either killed or permanently injured.
African-Americans also worked in the shipping business as stevedores or more commonly called, longshoreman which consisted of waterfront manual laborer involved in loading and unloading ships. In the 1800s, the word stevedore was usually applied to black laborers who loaded and unloaded bales of cotton and other freight on and off riverboats.
Work for Negroes in the Northern cties weren't much better. Many blacks probably thought that after the Civil War their streets were going to be paved golden with opportunity, but boy were they in for a surprise!
Blacks were denied at every level on the economic ladder. It has been observed that this was a period the black crime rate rose, with the white crime rate going down. Whites controlled every single aspect of gainful American employment.
Factories were going full steam ahead, but when blacks tried to enter, they were shut out, why? Mainly because the whites didn't want to work side by side with blacks, so as a result they were not hired.
The textiles and garment industries were also booming during this period, but there aren't records of blacks ever being hired.
It was possible for blacks to find work with the railroads as Pullman porters, track workers, or common laborers, but at the same time when their families and friends wanted to travel on the train, they were segregated. How demoralizing that had to be. White railroad unions blocked them out from making better pay which was in the maintenance and train building departments.
In the early 1800s, there were many black craftsmen such as carpenters, machinist, contractors, etc. who enjoyed a good reputation with their skilled art trade, but in the late 1800s that image changed due to the increase of separate but equal doctrine. It's not a dispute blacks couldn't do the work, the issue was the color of skin that kept them out of the workforce.
When a black would apply for employment at a retail store, they wouldn't hire them, saying whites did not want to be served by them. One black was fortunate enough to land a job as the cities only black clerk at a commercial bank. What was the catch? He never received a raise or promotion and dared not complained.
Businesses would hire newly arriving immigrants before hiring their American black brothers. Blacks were better educated, but just the wrong color in their eyes.
If a black person extended himself through higher learning going on to become a doctor or lawyer, one important question has to be answered. Who were going to be his paying clients? This problem persist in today's world and as long as America is around, it always will. It's a deeply entrenched belief in white people whether conscious or unconscious to avoid doing business with blacks. (generally speaking)
Whites rarely would patronize black professionals, even famous black sociologist of those days WEB Dubois made a comment "Education will get you nothing but disappointment and humiliation.'' which Dubois had to be frustrated when making that statement because he was at the forefront in African American achievement through education.
It has been noted that there were only two avenues open for blacks during this period in history which was strike-breaking and vice.
Different businesses such as the coal mines would hire blacks a strike-breakers when the whites would protest for more money. Of course, many blacks lost their lives with the violent outburst by the white workers fearing they were losing their jobs. Blacks had to take the chance along with the danger, what else could they do?
They had to feed their families too. With the women, it was the same thing. When white dressmakers went on strike, the company hired black women to take their place. So basically, blacks were used as pawns in the game.
The other avenue open to blacks was the vice, and this clearly explains how and why this phenomenon has extended down to our day for a segment of our black community. It would seem these blacks are still demoralized and traumatized from these events in history. But we have every hope they will rise and soar like the eagles. There was a lot of gambling, prostitution, lottery, and bootlegging, going on in the cities, and maybe the police kept a blind eye to it because they ignored it for a while. - At this point in history, Philadelphia was estimated to have 10,000 prostitutes and 1,000 brothels in the 1890s. Most of the vise would find it's way into the black neighborhoods with black leaders unable to stop it.
We think it's important to note that old saying that "the more things change the more they stay the same" applies here. America has made some progress in racial relations but the attitude still exist for blacks entering the workplace which is mostly white. Many will keep quiet but may not want you there, but you have your family to feed just like they do and as long as everyone does his work and obey the rules is all that matters. We're not out to win a popularity contest. But if they sincerely want to work with you, that would be wonderful!
United States Census for African Americans
in the 1890s
Drawing of frenzied stockbrokers in the 1893 depression. The panic of '93 was the worst economic depression the United States had ever experienced at the time. The U.S. economy began to recover in 1897
Anderson Ruffin Abbott
| Our Community in 1894 |
Newsworthy Events in the Black Community:
- The Church of God in Christ is founded in Memphis by Bishop Charles Harrison Mason.
- By 1894 the depression damage in America was estimated to be over three million unemployed in the country, with the city of Chicago, Illinois reporting 200,000 in that city alone.
- The United States Population is 62,947,714 with a total of 7,488,676 being African Americans.
- 1894 - Anderson Ruffin Abbott was appointed surgeon-in-chief at Provident Hospital in Chicago, the first training hospital for black nurses in the United States.
- As the region's industrial base for coal grew, skilled and unskilled workers migrated to the mines and furnaces of north-central Alabama. The 1890 Census states that 34.9 percent of the mining labor force as native-born whites. Of the remaining workforce, 46.2 percent were Negro and 18.7 percent were foreign-born immigrants. The work was very difficult, and accidents and explosions were many, with loss of life or permanently injured a common occurance.
#100 - Public Domain image - Bob Cole detail from "Pliney come out in the moonlight" (New York : J.H. Remick and Co., c1910. ). African-American Sheet Music, 1850-1920, American Memory, Library of Congresss
#101 - Public Domain image - Carl Van Vechten [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons
#102 - Public Domain image - By Oberlin College Archives [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#103 - Public Domain image -See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
#104 - Public Domain image -
US Flag with 44 stars. In use 4 July 1891–3 July 1896. Created by jacobolus using Adobe Illustrator, and released into the public domain.
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