Blast From The Past:
OUR HAMITE AWARD WINNER FOR 1913:
Recognize the name Bud Fowler? Don't feel bad; we didn't either until we stumbled across another gem of precious African
American history, so often buried in the history books and not taught in our schools as American history. We always thought that Jackie Robinson was the first to break the color barrier line in professional baseball, but not so. It was this man Bud Fowler who was an African-American baseball player, field manager, and club organizer.
Bud was born John W. Jackson, the son of a fugitive hop-picker and barber". In 1859, his family moved from Fort Plain, New York, to Cooperstown, and he learned baseball there. He picked up his nickname because he would always refer to the players as bud, similar to the way we might call a guy dude or man.
Fowler first played for an all-white professional team based out of New Castle, Pennsylvania in 1872. He is also documented as playing for another professional team early in 1878. On April 24, 1878, he pitched a game for the Picked Nine who defeated the Boston Red Caps, champions of the National League in 1877. He pitched some more for the Chelsea team then finished that season with the Worcester club. Mostly supporting himself as a barber, he continued to play for teams in New England and Canada for the next four years.
When playing for a team in Keokuk, Iowa, he eventually became the most popular player on the Keokuk team. The local newspaper, the Keokuk Gate City and Constitution, said of him, "a good ball player, a hard worker, a genius on the ball field, intelligent, gentlemanly in his conduct and deserving of the right opinion entertained for him by baseball admirers here."
The Western League that Keokuk played in eventually folded and eventually, Fowler moved to Binghamton, New York and played on a team there until racial tensions arose and his teammates would not play with him any longer.
Fowler died in Frankfort, New York, on February 26, 1913, after a time of illness and poverty that received national attention. His grave was unmarked until 1987 when the Society for American Baseball Research placed a memorial on it to remember his success as the first professional African American baseball player.
We understand more likely than not, Bud was the token on the team, but it just goes to prove that different races can get along if they wanted to. 1913 is the year Bud passed away, so we want to remember his incredible contributions to America by awarding him the annual 1913 Hamite Award which is given to individuals who have led an exemplary and fruitful life in our great country for other African Americans to follow. We know Jackie Robinson thanks you.
Bud Fowler, the first professional black baseball player with one of his teams,|
the Keokuk, Iowa team of the Western League
|How were blacks feeling in 1913? |
Sad & Disappointed
22 Founders of Delta Sigma Theta taken in 1913
History of Education (1900-1950)
Black and Mexican kids were excluded
| Education in 1913 |
- January 13, 1913 - Delta Sigma Theta Sorority is a not-for profit Greek-lettered sorority of college-educated women dedicated to public service with an emphasis on programs that target the African American community. Delta Sigma Theta Sorority was founded on January 13, 1913, by 22 collegiate women at Howard University.
William Howard Taft
Goodbye Taft and From the American Negro, Thanks for Nothing!
| Political Scene in 1913 |
- Democrat Woodrow Wilson was the 28th President of the United States from 1913 to 1921 and leader of the Progressive Movement. Analysis: This President, Woodrow Wilson was the only Democrat besides Grover Cleveland to be elected president since 1856. As a young person, his father defended slavery, owned slaves and set up a Sunday school for them. Both parents identified with the Confederacy and cared for wounded soldiers at their church. His upbringing would influence his decisions as President. He made promises he didn't keep. Believe it or not, many blacks supported him, but once in office, he forgot about promises he made. Wilson believed that slavery was wrong on economic labor grounds, rather than for moral reasons. He also idealized the slavery system in the South, viewing masters as patient with "indolent" slaves. Although he drafted hundreds of thousands of Negroes for the war, he believed in keeping the military segregated against the protest of black service members. Wilson scolded them "segregation is not a humiliation but a benefit, and ought to be so regarded by you gentlemen." He also instructed the segregation of the workplace in federal offices. In 1918, W. E. B. Du Bois—a leader of the NAACP who had campaigned for Wilson—was offered an Army commission in charge of dealing with race relations; DuBois accepted, but he failed his Army physical and did not serve. I can't figure out why Dubois would throw his support to this President unless he knew something we don't. Years earlier, Wilson was against blacks enrolling at Princeton University while he was president there because he didn't want to upset the white students. He also believed the KKK had proper cause and reason for the terror they inflicted upon the Negro race. It's interesting to note that another apparently racist President went down in history as one of the greatest men who had ever served in the United States. (what does that say about America?) It means a lousy U.S. President, but an excellent white President. This man resume speaks for itself. He served two terms so this meant another 8 years of despair and hopelessness for the lowly Negro citizen.
- William Howard Taft was the 27th President of the United States (1909–1913) and later the tenth Chief Justice of the United States (1921–1930). He is the only person to have served in both of these offices. Analysis: Looks like another four years of frustration for the Negro with Taft at the helm. There was hardly any help with the Negroes problems in his administration, and whites are still stepping up their assault on the little progress the black people are etching out. Congress, who was voted in by white citizens passed a law that made it a requirement to pass a literacy test in the workplace, which had the support of all the white labor unions, but to his credit, Taft vetoed the bill. For those that don't know, most blacks were still illiterate at this point in history. They had endured over 200 years of slavery, forbidden to learn to read and write. In fact if anyone was caught teaching them, it was a severe crime, a felony. After emancipation, there were schools opened for the black person to teach them to read and write but because of white displeasure and pressure, were shut done after a few short years. Slavery was outlawed but whites still controlled the Negro with certain requirements they knew they wouldn't be able to perform, like literacy test, which was already a must for those wishing to vote. This was an obvious and clear assault on the Negroes Civil Rights protected by the US Constitution. But not one single President wants to acknowledge this issue and much more for black citizens. Read a quote from his predecessor Theodore Roosevelt, and you tell me if these Presidents are in a fantasy world and out of touch with the Negro citizens.
'the President has not just a right but a duty to do anything demanded by the needs of the nation unless such action is forbidden by the Constitution or federal law."
Hey, Mr. Roosevelt, I believe we have many needs within our Constitutional rights you didn't even want to address. Amazing! I guess the black person is invisible or doesn't exist to these Presidents, or they wish would disappear. But this is our home and us ain't going nowhere, is the way the black person felt. One day you're gonna have to be fair and deal with us, and then what are you going to do when you have a community full of uneducated angry blacks as your neighbors? Taft met with Booker T. Washington and publicly endorsed his program for the uplifting of black Americans, advising them to stay out of politics at the time and emphasize education and entrepreneurship. But nothing of substance came from the meeting. Instead of laying the foundation for a robust and united America, it was all a pretense.
What is The Declaration of Independence?
It is a statement that the colonist wrote that officially declared their independence from Great Britain. They would now be called, The United States of America. This very special occasion is celebrated every July 4th in America.
The Declaration in part states:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
After becoming official, many of the political leaders set their slaves free because they felt it was hypocritical denying a race of people life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These men had a moral conscience, and strived to be true Americans.
But on the other hand, many leaders chose to hold on to their slaves because it would mean a significant loss monetarily. These men didn't have a moral conscience. They let money and greed reign supreme.
The world was watching and ridiculed the men who held on to their slaves. America's very first test in morality and would set the tone for many years to come and up unto this day. Most Americans would put money first, with the lesser group clinging to true American principles. There were 12 American Presidents who were slaveholders, 8 of them while in office.
You ugly detestable greedy creep.
Is this what America has become?
Yes, the Negro thinks so
Looking through the eyes of a young person, imagine what you would see. Many may not understand how America came to be so polarized. Since the 60s, blacks have made enormous strides, but generally speaking today a youngster might see a white class of people who seem to have it all together, professionally, socially, educationally, economically, and the blacks are always demanding.
Can you imagine how overwhelming and intimidating this could be to some? But when a young black person understands their rich history, it will without a doubt give them courage and strength to believe in themselves, and when that happens, color of skin becomes less of an issue.
Young people deserve to be told the truth about how America became this way, and not in hate or a way that puts down another race. The truth, pure and simple that can be backed up with any library or Google search. America did not just happen yesterday, it took many years for this situation to become this way, and you might be surprised to learn that it was orchestrated by some not so sweet people who didn't sincerely believe in the meaning of the U.S. Constitution or the Declaration of Independence.
During slavery, the Negro depended on their masters for every single necessity of life. Even the smallest want of a slave had to be approved by his master. It also was a severe crime for anyone caught teaching the slaves to read or write. Books were hidden from the Negro, which meant that slaves were illiterate.
The Emancipation Proclamation freed over four million slaves, most of whom had lived and worked on plantations. America wanted to help these former slaves with Reconstruction aid such as education, medical, housing, etc., attempting to place these illiterate and uneducated Negroes on the road to complete American success.
What was the general attitude of the Negro with this Reconstruction help?
YEAH, THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT, THANKS SO MUCH AMERICA, WE WILL PROVE WE CAN BECOME SELF-RELIANT
PRODUCTIVE CITIZENS! WE CAN'T WAIT TO FIND OUT WHAT'S IN THOSE BOOKS YOU HAVE BEEN HIDING FROM US. LET"S GET THIS THING STARTED!
Enthusiasm and motivation were very high to excel. The schools that had been built for the Negro were packed to capacity with students from 7-70 years of age. Educated blacks were getting elected to office as politicians. Fruitful black communities sprang up, and for the first time in American history, the Negro felt like he was a part of America, and was super happy looking toward a prosperous future.
But sadly, there were some who were not as happy, and these were the former Confederates who lived in the same cities. They didn't want any part of Negro success and to be governed by the people they just lost as slaves. So there was a great white resistance.
What was the result?
After only a few short years, the U.S. Government bowed down to these white supremacist and canceled Reconstruction aid to the former slaves. This was called the 1877 Compromise, (please click on 1877 for details) and blacks calling it the 1877 Grand Betrayal. Terrorist had attacked countless black American citizens. Negroes were hanged, tortured, raped, murdered by the whites with total impunity. The U.S. government knew and did nothing, ignoring the enforcement duties set out in the Constitution.
The little gains the Negro was able to achieve were snatched away, and in the meantime, there were still millions of illiterate, defeated, restricted and uneducated black nomads wandering around in a racist society trying to make it the best way they could, and this situation would remain this way until the Civil Rights movement of the 60s, and yes this is how the black ghetto's got their start.
There's not enough room on this web page to describe the hate and exclusion by 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 separate 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 Negro 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 Negroes 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?
We are rating each and every President up unto the Civil Rights movement of the 60s in regards to the Constitutional laws he took oath to uphold for all American citizens. The ratings can be located at the end of each President's term in office. Please keep in mind there are millions of poor and uneducated blacks in America seeking assistance into assimilating into American culture after 200 years of brutal slavery. Our focus is to find a courageous President, like Abe Lincoln that will solve this problem, and not pass it on to the next administration. Do you think the decisions of these Presidents would have an impact on the lives of blacks today? Of course it would.
Abraham Lincoln was assassinated before the Amendments to the Constitution became official, but without a doubt he understood and enforced the high standards and morality the Constitution stood for.
Andrew Johnson opposed the Fourteenth Amendment, which gave citizenship to former slaves. He fought the Negro every step of the way. Johnson was also a former slaveholder. He didn't believe all were created equal. He didn't uphold the Constitution.
Ulysses S. Grant was complete opposite of Andrew Johnson. Grant assisted the Negro in his quest of assimilation. He understood and enforced the United States Constitution.
Rutherford B. Hayes was an opportunist and sold out the Negro big time with the 1877 Compromise. He didn't understand what his country stood for.
James A Garfield was a strong defender of Civil Rights, and wanted the Negro to progress through education. Sadly he didn't get a chance to fufill his intentions because he was assassinated, but we give him the benefit of the doubt. We believe he understood the U.S. Constitution.
Chester Arthur wasn't really ever concerned with the negro issue. but he didn't make this humongous Negro problems his priority but chose to ignore it and pass it on to the next admin. He did not understand the principles of the U.S. Constitution.
Grover Cleveland actually sided with the white terrorist in the Chinese race riots and felt it was the Chinese fault. He wasn't a true believer in the U.S. Constitution, he only believed in it as far as it would benefit him, just like typical America.
Benjamin Harrison attempted to pass legislation to protect black Americans' civil rights. Nice words he had for blacks but in all honesty, we need something more concrete to hold on too. But we believe that this president understood the principles of the U.S. Constitution.
Grover Cleveland second term wasn't any better than the first. He wasn't a true believer in the U.S. Constitution, and was a no-show for the American Negro.
William McKinley didn't care much for the Civil Rights of Negroes. he failed to enforce the Constitution, because there were many abuses nationwide and he didn't act. He didn't understand or just didn't care.
Theodore Roosevelt glazed over the Negroes problems with beautiful speeches, but no action. I was pulling for this president to be fair, mainly because he was loved by many in his day, blacks included, but history shows that he failed to enforce the U.S. Constitution. Sorry Teddy.
William Howard Taft wasn't in touch with the humongous Negro problem that was left festering since the emancipation. History shows that he failed to enforce the U.S. Constitution.
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.
A man lynched from a tree. Face partially concealed by angle and headgear.
| Race in 1913 |
- There were a total of fifty one African-Americans known to have been lynched in 1913.
"It is worthy of emphasis, that the antiquity of the Negro race is beyond dispute. His brightest days were when history was an infant; and, since he early turned from God, he has found the cold face of hate and the hurtful hand of the Caucasian against him."
George Washington Williams
Dislike of black people is a relatively new phenomenon that started after the 16th century. Before this time there wasn't a thing such as racial prejudices. If color issues did arise, it was an infrequent occurrence. It's hardly mentioned in history books. For the most part, skin color was not a factor.
In fact, it's well documented how the early Greek philosophers who were all white, Socrates, Herodotus, Thales, Alexander the Great, Aristotle among others happily mingled with the blacks. Africa was known as the learning capital of the world, and many philosophers traveled to Africa to study about everything from philosophy to mathematics. Pythagoras is believed to have made it the furthest, having studied in Kemet for 23 years.
The Greek Poet Homer was one of those travelers and made the following statement:
"In ancient times the blacks were known to be so gentle to
strangers that many believed that the gods sprang from them.
Homer sings of the Ocean, father of the gods; and says that
when Jupiter wishes to take a holiday, he visits the sea,
and goes to the banquets of the blacks,--a people humble,
courteous, and devout."
Mr. Reade http://www.gutenberg.org/files/15735/15735.txt
Black people had a good reputation for being intelligent, kind and hospitable and enjoying an advanced civilization that the Greeks envied.
If alive today, Greek scholars would find it surprising how a person might believe in superiority simply because of skin color.
History makes the answer easy. After the 16th century, race became an issue for whites because of three dynamics. Greed, science, and white history (legacy).
Not to pick on white people, but it's entirely accurate they made our co-existence on this earth a race issue. This developed scorn or dislike they have for blacks continues down to our day.
- Greed The trans-Atlantic slave trade was about greed. Free black labor aided in making Europeans countries and America very rich on the backs of black slaves. This created animosity between the blacks and whites.
- Erroneous science theoriesThe introduction of false science teaching aided European and Americans in abandoning their conscience, because science didn't require one. Early Western philosophy advocated peace and treating all men with respect, but subsequent white generations did the opposite. Whites started to feel like gods themselves with their advancements in science and began to exhibit hubris, which is a Greek word denoting overconfident pride combined with arrogance. In other words, their heads became too big.
- Incomplete history recording Eurocentric history is always portrayed as the centerpiece of world history. African history was habitually erased by invading troops to eliminate its contributions and accomplishments to the world while preserving their European legacy. White history regularly portrays Africa as a wasteland full of ignorant savages, but current excavations prove the opposite. Africa was a developed continent with advanced civilizations just as good as Europe if not better.
Listed below are a few of the so-called geniuses who got the ball rolling in pitting white against black.
Not one ounce of truth could be found in what these early scientists preached as fact. Modern science doesn't agree with them. But guess what? There's still a lot of people who believe in this ridiculous white superiority crap, either conscious or unconsciously, which doesn't say much for the intelligence of these people.
Believe it or not, this is one reason a lot of whites dislike blacks today. It's not rare to hear about media services about blacks being called derogatory names associated with past world history.
So to honestly answer the question above "Why do many in America dislike black people?" At this point, it's because they want to.
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, a white officer in the Union army had the task of training colored soldiers in the Civil War. He kept a diary for our enjoyment today. (click here)
George W. Williams - History of the Negro Race in America From 1619 to 1880. (click here)
Europeans Come to Western Africa -
The Characteristics of the Negro People -
Movies in America
Actress Evelyn Preer
| Movies in 1913 |
- Evelyn Preer was a pioneering African-American stage and screen actress and blues singer of the 1910s through the early 1930s. Preer was regarded by many as the greatest actress of her time and was known within the black community as "The First Lady of the Screen"
- The "first black theater circuit" is founded by Sherman H. Dudley. It will lead to the creation of the Theater Owners Bookers Association (TOBA).
Rosa Parks in 1955, with Martin Luther King, Jr.
| Famous Birthdays in 1913 |
- February 4, 1913 - Rosa Parks African-American civil rights activist.
- April 4, 1913 - Muddy Waters was an American blues musician. He is often considered the "father of modern Chicago blues".
- April 25, 1913 - Kenneth Lee Spencer usually known as Kenneth Spencer, was an African-American opera singer and actor. A talented bass-baritone, Spencer starred in a few Broadway musicals and musical films in the United States during the 1940s.
- July 5, 1913 - Smiley Lewis was an American New Orleans rhythm and blues musician.
- September 12, 1913 - Jesse Owens was an American track and field athlete and four-time Olympic gold medalist.
- November 9, 1913 - Theodore "Ted" Rhodes was an African-American professional golfer. He taught both entertainer Billy Eckstine and heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis to play the game of golf and served as Louis' personal instructor, valet and playing partner.
John W. "Bud" Fowler
Anderson Ruffin Abbott
| Famous Deaths in 1913 |
- January 21, 1913 - Fanny Jackson Coppin African-American educator and missionary.
- February 26, 1913 - John W. "Bud" Fowler was an African-American baseball player, field manager, and club organizer. He is the earliest known African-American player in organized professional baseball; that is, the major leagues and affiliated minor leagues.
- March 10, 1913 - Harriet Tubman was an African-American abolitionist, humanitarian, and during the American Civil War, a Union spy. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made about thirteen missions to rescue approximately seventy enslaved family and friends.
- May 1913 - Florida J. Wolfe was an African-American humanitarian in the El Paso, Texas area. She was also known as "Lady Flo".
- December 29, 1913 - Anderson Ruffin Abbott was the first Black Canadian to be a licensed physician. His career included participation in the American Civil War. Abbott also enjoyed a friendly relationship with President Lincoln. On the night of Lincoln's assassination, he accompanied Elizabeth Keckley to attend the stricken president at Petersen House. After Lincoln's death, Mary Todd Lincoln presented Abbott with the plaid shawl that Lincoln had worn to his 1861 inauguration.
Asa Philip Randolph
| Famous Weddings in 1913 |
- 1913 - Blues singer Mamie Smith and William "Smitty" Smith were wed in holy matrimony.
- 1913 - Civil Rights leader Asa Philip Randolph and Lucille Campbell Green were wed in holy matrimony.
Howard Theatre at 620 T Street NW, with inset of manager, Andrew J. Thomas (ca. 1910-1919).
Vaudeville star George Walker
Egbert "Bert" Austin Williams
Howard Theatre interior
| Entertainment in 1913 |
- George Walker formed the The Frogs (club)
Why did George Walker start a black club for actors when he could have just joined the American Actors Beneficial Association? Because like everything else in America, it was becoming commonplace for blacks and whites to be separated in everything. Doctors, Realtors, Lawyers, Unions, etc. and every other organization you can think of was segregated. It's almost like whites needed a race of people such as the lowly black person to measure its greatness. Blacks had no choice but to organize for their benefit. The Negro didn't want it this way, but like a famous rapper once said: "That's just the way it is" The American Actors Beneficial Association excluded blacks from its memberships and didn't appreciate it when Walker formed the Frogs. His original start up group, The Colored Vaudeville Benevolent Association, received negative attitude from white producers. The concept of the colored man supporting himself through performance and no longer just “taking what they were given” posed a threat to the white vaudevillian and theatrical community. With this, Walker set forth to create The Frogs. On July 18, 1908, at Walker’s home at 52 West 153rd St in Harlem, eleven of the most prominent names in the industry formed together to create the African American theatrical organization. The Frogs became known for their big event “The Frolic of the Frogs” or “The Frogs Frolic” every August at the Manhattan Casino (New York City) at 155th Street and Eighth Avenue. For 50 cents, people enjoyed a combination ball, party and vaudeville show where favors were given to the ladies, and door prizes went to the three people wearing unique costumes symbolic of the frogs. With a large success in the early years of the event, “The Frolic of the Frogs” was able to tour their development in cities such as Philadelphia, Richmond, Baltimore and Washington D.C. Popularity in the frolic was found among both blacks and whites. We love happy stories like "The Frogs" had given the people of New York. Come on let's face it, 99% of the time because of racial oppression; it's was negative for the Negro. George Walker died in 1911, but his longtime friend Bert Williams would take over the company continuing its amazing success well into the 1920s.
The Howard Theatre is a historic theater, located at 620 T Street, Northwest, Washington, D.C. Opened in 1910, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. In its heyday, the theater was known for catering to an African-American clientele, and had played host to many of the great black musical artists of the early and mid-twentieth century. The Howard Theatre was billed as the "Theater of the People", and supported two theatrical organizations, the Lafayette Players and the Howard University Players.
| It's a Party in 1913 |
- Back in the early 1900s because of prejudice and racial discrimination, black entertainers had to be very careful where they traveled. They weren't always welcome in various venues, so they created what's called a Chitlin Circuit. They named it Chitlin Circuit because of blacks typical love for soul food with chitlins being near the top as favorite. So, in other words, they understood they would be love on the circuit. They knew that the clubs, juke joints, theaters, etc. in the circuit were welcoming of the black race and safe to visit. This way of life existing from the early 1900s - 1960s. Noted theaters and entertainers on the circuit included:
The Fox Theatre in Detroit; the Victory Grill in Austin, Texas; the Carver Theatre in Birmingham, Alabama; the Cotton Club, Small's Paradise and the Apollo Theater in New York City; Robert's Show Lounge, Club DeLisa and the Regal Theatre in Chicago; the Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C.;the Royal Peacock in Atlanta; the Royal Theatre in Baltimore; the Uptown Theatre in Philadelphia; the Hippodrome Theatre in Richmond, Virginia; the Ritz Theatre in Jacksonville, Florida; and The Madam C. J. Walker Theatre on Indiana Avenue in Indianapolis.
Early figures of blues, including Robert Johnson, Son House, Charley Patton, and countless others, traveled the juke joint circuit, scraping out a living on tips and free meals. These entertainers provided much-needed joy and happiness for black folks. Once the band's gig was over, they would leave for the next stop on the circuit. Sounds like a lot of fun and an exciting life!
Many notable performers worked on the chitlin' circuit, including Patti LaBelle, Count Basie, Hammond B-3, Jeff Palmer, Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, Sheila Guyse, Peg Leg Bates, The Supremes, George Benson, James Brown & The Famous Flames, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles, Dorothy Dandridge, Sammy Davis, Jr., Gladys Knight & the Pips, Ella Fitzgerald, The Jackson 5, Redd Foxx, Aretha Franklin, Jimi Hendrix, Billie Holiday, John Lee Hooker, Lena Horne, Etta James, B.B. King, The Miracles, Donna Hightower, Moms Mabley, The Delfonics, Wilson Pickett, Richard Pryor, Otis Redding, Duke Ellington, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Little Richard, Ike & Tina Turner, The Four Tops, Tammi Terrell, The Isley Brothers, Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, Little Anthony and the Imperials, Muddy Waters, Flip Wilson and Jimmie Walker.
Overtown: Historic Overtown Lyric Theatre, 819 NW 2nd Ave, Miami, FL
Black Patti Troubadours
Robert Nathaniel Dett
William Manuel "Bill" Johnson
Storyville, New Orleans
| Music in 1913 |
Popular Soul Dances:
- The Bunny Hug
- The Texas Tommy Swing
Musical Happenings in 1913:
- The Apollo Theatre in New York opens, eventually becoming a music venue and cultural symbol of unparalleled importance in African American music. The theater, which has a capacity of 1506, was built in 1913-14 as Hurtig & Seamon's New Burlesque Theater. It became the Apollo in 1934, when it was opened to black patrons – previously it had been a whites-only venue.
- The "first black theater circuit" is founded by Sherman H. Dudley. It will lead to the creation of the Theater Owners Bookers Association (TOBA).
- The word jazz is used in print for the first time, in San Francisco in reference to "speed and excitement" in a game of baseball. The word's first use to describe a genre of music this year as well.
- Sissieretta Jones formed the Black Patti Troubadours (later renamed the Black Patti Musical Comedy Company), a musical and acrobatic act made up of 40 jugglers, comedians, dancers and a chorus of 40 trained singers. Jones sung passionately and pursued her career choice of opera and different repertory regardless to her lack of audience attendance. For more than two decades, Jones remained the star of the Famous Troubadours, while they graciously toured every season and established their popularity in the principal cities of the United States. The Black Patti Troubadours reveled in vernacular music and dance. Jones retired from performing in 1915.
- W.C. Handy and Harry Pace found the first black-owned music publishing firm.
- Robert Nathaniel Dett becomes the first African American director of music at Hampton Institute in Virginia.
- Bill Johnson founds the Original Creole Orchestra featuring Freddie Keppard, who become the first African American dance band to make transcontinental tours, on the vaudeville circuit. This band carries the "jazz of New Orleans to the rest of the nation".
- Opening in 1913, the Lyric Theater quickly became a major entertainment center for blacks in Miami. The 400-seat theater was built, owned and operated by Geder Walker, a black man from Georgia. In 1915, The Miami News described the Lyric Theater as, "possibly the most beautiful and costly playhouse owned by Colored people in all the Southland." The Lyric Theater served as a symbol of black economic influence, as well as a social gathering place free of discrimination. It was a source of pride and culture within Overtown. the Lyric Theater and "Little Broadway." Little Broadway's roster of stars was spectacular, featuring such performers as Count Basie, Sam Cooke, Aretha Franklin, Celia Cruz, B.B. King, Patti LaBelle, Ella Fitzgerald, Redd Foxx and Mary Wells.
Storyville was the red-light district of New Orleans, Louisiana from 1897 to 1917. It was established by municipal ordinance under the New Orleans City Council, to regulate prostitution and drugs. The ordinance did not legalize prostitution, but rather designated a sixteen block area as the part of the city in which it was not illegal. The area was originally referred to as "The District", but its nickname, "Storyville", soon caught on. It became a centralized attraction in the heart of New Orleans. Only a few of its remnants are now visible.
Establishments in Storyville ranged from cheap "cribs" to more expensive houses, up to a row of elegant mansions along Basin Street for well-heeled customers. New Orleans' cribs were 50-cent joints, whereas the more expensive establishments could cost up to $10. Black and white brothels coexisted in Storyville; but black men were barred from legally purchasing services in either black or white brothels.
Trivia: It's interesting to note that Jim Crow even restricted the Negro male from legally purchasing the services of a prostitute. Amazing!
In the early 1900s, a Blue Book could be purchased for 25 cents. Blue Books were created for tourists and those unfamiliar with this area of New Orleans and contained, in alphabetical order, the names of all the prostitutes of Storyville, and separated them based on race.
Jazz did not originate in Storyville, but it flourished there as in the rest of the city. Many out-of-town visitors first heard this style of music there before the music spread north. Some outsiders continue to associate Storyville with the origins of jazz. It was tradition in the better Storyville establishments to hire a piano player and sometimes small bands. Famous musicians who got their start in Storyville include Buddy Bolden, Jelly Roll Morton, and Pops Foster.
At the start of World War I, Secretary of War Newton Baker did not want troops to have distractions while deploying. The Navy had troops located in New Orleans and the city was pressed to close Storyville. Prostitution was made illegal in 1917 and Storyville was used for the purpose of entertainment. Most of its buildings were later destroyed.
George Walker and Bert Williams in the early 1900s
Fashionable Bert Williams in the 1900s
Women's fashion in 1910s
Women's fashion in 1910s
Men's fashion in 1910s
| Fashions in 1913 |
Popular entertainers of the 1990s, George Walker and Bert Williams in the fancy clothes they wore back in the early 1900s. Sharp as a tack!
Fashion in the years 1910–1919 is characterized by a rich and exotic opulence in the first half of the decade in contrast with the somber practicality of garments worn during the Great War. Men's trousers were worn cuffed to ankle-length and creased. Skirts rose from floor length to well above the ankle, women began to bob their hair, and the stage was set for the radical new fashions associated with the Jazz Age of the 1920s.
During the early years of the 1910s the fashionable silhouette became much more lithe, fluid and soft than in the 1900s. Waistlines were loose and softly defined. They gradually dropped to near the natural waist by mid-decade, where they were to remain through the war years. Tunics became longer and underskirts fuller and shorter. By 1916 women were wearing calf-length dresses. Changes dress during World War I were dictated more by necessity than fashion. As more and more women were forced to work, they demanded clothes that were better suited to their new activities; these derived from the shirtwaists and tailored suits. Social events were postponed in favor of more pressing engagements and the need to mourn the increasing numbers of dead, visits to the wounded, and the general gravity of the time meant that darker colors and simpler cuts became the norm. Costume jewelry was introduced. Expensive necklaces were replaced with glass or crystal beads.
In general, styles were unchanged from the previous decade. The sack coat or lounge coat continued to replace the frock coat for most informal and semi-formal occasions. The gap between the shorter trousers and the shoes was filled with short gaiters or spats.
The most formal evening dress remained a dark tail coat and trousers with a dark or light waistcoat. Evening wear was worn with a white bow tie and a shirt with a winged collar. Gentlemen of all classes, especially the middle and working class often wore the newsboy cap and flat cap.
Pullman porters, who were mainly black, are widely credited with contributing to the development of the black middle class in America. Before the Civil War, sleeping cars were not in use. George Pullman came up with the brilliant idea of making rail travel a memorable event with servers to cater to whites every need.
During slavery, most whites didn't own slaves, and this gave them an opportunity to experience that. Pullman became the number #1 employer of blacks in the country. He was a tight businessman though because the pay was lousy with the porters working over 400 hours a month. Porters also had to purchase their clothing and accessories. They received most of their income by tips.
But the job was steady work and that meant alot for black families. Famous porters of old included, Thurgood Marshall, Oscar Micheaux, Malcolm X and the photojournalist Gordon Parks.
How did religion begin for the American Negro?
Well, it was an exciting journey for sure, but as usual, we have to go back into history for the likely answer. Before arriving in America as slaves, generally speaking, our ancestors practiced a religion which included fetishism.
What is fetishism you may ask?
Traditional Benin Voodoo Dance
Fetishism is a man-made object (such as the doll aound the lady's neck in the picture) that is thought to have power over others. Africans were extremely superstitious in their native land.
But once exposed to religious teachers in America, quickly left their superstitious past behind them, and would frown upon new arrivals of Africans who practiced fetishism in religion.
In Europe, the Roman Catholic Church had lost their grip on people with their questionable religious practices. There were many who thought the Church was wrong and formed a protest or a Protestant Reformation that resulted in the creation of tons of different religions with their doctrines and teachings claiming to be Christian.
A religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems,
and world views
that relate humanity to an order of existence.
Episcopal, Jesuits, Methodists, Protestant, Anglican, Lutheranism, Calvinism, Presbyterianism, Wesleyanism were all against Roman Catholic teachings.
But there would be a new religion on the horizon for humanity that went by the name of science. The introduction of science was in many ways entirely different than Christianity because it taught man to believe and rely on himself and his creations, rather than on a Supreme Being he couldn't see.
Faith is something foreign and unbelievable to a scientist. Also, this new form of religion would give these believers complete moral authority to do as they wished without a guilty conscience or retribution from a Surpreme Being.
This is what made slavery right or moral in the eyes of so many whites because new science taught that whites were superior and blacks inferior. The theory of evolution is another example in clear teaching that the world exists because of a big bang instead of being created, and also man evolved from apes rather than being created.
Do you believe in Evolution? If so, evolution is your religion because mainstream religion and evolution just don't jive, it's either one or the other.
During slavery, most of the first black congregations and churches were founded by free blacks, but slaves learned about Christianity by attending services led by a white preacher or supervised by a white person. Slaveholders often held prayer meetings at their plantations. Methodist and Baptist were the preferred choices of slaves because of its message.
But after slavery blacks were still restricted in the white churches so what they did next is not a surprise. They began to form their churches free from white rulership and exclusion, but kept the doctrine and teachings, but of course with a more lively twist (singing and dancing). It's clear they still had African culture in their hearts. This would mark the beginning of a new American creation, the black church.
The following is a very brief history of religion in Black America:
William J. Seymour - photo#111-yr-2015
Charles Fox Parham an independent holiness evangelist who believed strongly in divine healing, was an important figure in the emergence of Pentecostalism as a distinct Christian movement. But it wasn't until one of his black students named William J. Seymour learned these teaching and took it back to California with him that the Pentecostal movement took off like wildfire.
Seymour's preaching sparked the famous three-year-long Azusa Street Revival in 1906. Worship at the racially integrated Azusa Mission featured an absence of any order of service. (whites would later dislike this) People preached and testified as moved by the Spirit, spoke and sung in tongues, and fell in the Spirit. Blacks whites and other races would attend these services. But there was a matter of Jim Crow to be kept in mind that made it illegal for blacks and whites to mix.
So whites broke away from Seymour and began their Pentecostal churches. It's a fact that the beginning of the widespread Pentecostal movement in the United States is considered to have started with one-eyed black preacher William J. Seymour's Azusa Street Revival.
The Church Of God in Christ (COGIC) -
Church Of God in Christ Baptism
The Church Of God in Christ was formed in 1897 by a group of disfellowshiped Baptists, most notably Charles Price Jones (1865–1949) and Charles Harrison Mason (1866–1961) and is a Pentecostal Christian denomination with a predominantly African-American membership. It ranks as the largest Pentecostal denomination and the fifth largest Christian denomination in the U.S. Evangelical Baptist, and Methodist preachers traveled throughout the South in the Great Awakening of the late 18th century and appealed directly to slaves, and a few thousand slaves converted. Early COGIC leaders were very much attracted by the Pentecostal message and would break from the Baptist for this reason.
A.M.E. Church -
The African Methodist Episcopal Church, usually called the A.M.E. Church, is a predominantly African-American Methodist denomination based in the US. It is the oldest independent Protestant denomination founded by blacks in the world. It was founded by the Rt. Rev. Richard Allen in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1816 from several black Methodist congregations in the mid-Atlantic area that wanted independence from white Methodists.
Baptists are individuals who comprise a group of denominations and churches that subscribe to a doctrine that baptism should be performed only for professing believers (believer's baptism, as opposed to infant baptism) and that it must be done by complete immersion (as opposed to affusion or sprinkling). Other tenets of Baptist churches include soul competency (liberty), salvation through faith alone, Scripture alone as the rule of faith and practice, and the autonomy of the local congregation. Baptists recognize two ministerial offices, pastors, and deacons. Baptist churches are widely considered to be Protestant churches, though some Baptists disavow this identity.
An adherent of Islam is called a Muslim. Jews felt like they were chosen people who were promised a land filled with milk and honey, a holy land. This promise was made to Abraham and his seed. Abraham's wife Sarah had trouble conceiving children so to keep the promise alive and in the family she chose Hagar who was an Egyptian handmaid to have sexual relations with Abraham to bear a son, which is what they did. This son's name was Ishmael.
But something happened later that would throw things into a tizzy. At a very old age Sarah was now able to have kids and bore a son named Isaac.
Now here's the problem. Does the promise belong to Sarah's son or Hagar's son? Sarah felt it belonged to her bloodline, so she sent Hagar and Ishmael into the wilderness for them to die. But guess what? They didn't die. Muhammad who was the final prophet sent by God as identified in the Quran was born within Ishmael's seed line.
So even to this day these two groups don't care for each other.
This religion by far has proven to be the most destructive for humankind. Its users have created a world of me, me, me, by magnifying themselves, sincerely believing they are all of that and a bag of chips. Also the belief that spirited competition is healthy and useful. Win at all cost! The survival of the fittest theory. Many genocides were accomplished in the name of science. It teaches us that man originates from apes, (many blacks lost their life because of this false teaching) the earth was created from nothing and in essence humans are their gods. The bad far outweighs the good with the practice of science. Just look around.
United States Census for African Americans
in the 1910s
James Weldon Johnson
photographed by Carl Van Vechten
The Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York City
| Our Community in 1913 |
Newsworthy Events in the Black Community:
- 1913 - The Apollo Theater which has a capacity of 1506, was built in 1913-14 as Hurtig & Seamon's New Burlesque Theater, and was designed by George Keister in the neo-Classical style.
As the 50th anniversary of the Proclamation (Jubilee) approached, and was recognized in many parts of the country by a grand celebration. James Weldon Johnson, already a writer of some distinction wrote the poem to celebrate the occasion. He only had 100 days in which to write the poem. Using all of his spare time, of which there was little, Johnson hammered out "Fifty Years." There was not enough time to publish it in one of the major literary monthly journals, so he turned to the New York Times, which published it on its editorial page on January 1, 1913.
Addressing his fellow African Americans in the first stanzas, Johnson said:
O Brothers mine, to-day we stand
Where half a century sweeps our ken,
Since God, through Lincoln's ready hand,
Struck off our bonds and made us men.
Just fifty years--a winter's day--
As runs the history of a race;
Yet, as we look back o'er the day,
How distant seems our starting place!
Then, in a more assertive tone, making certain that humility did not replace self-confidence, he said:
This land is ours by right of birth,
This land is ours by right of toil
We helped to turn its virgin earth,
Our sweat is in its fruitful soil.
To gain these fruits that have been earned,
To hold these fields that have been won,
Our arms have strained, our backs have burned,
Bent bare beneath a ruthless sun.
Then should we speak but servile words,
Or shall we hang our heads in shame?
Stand back of new-come foreign hordes,
And fear our heritage to claim?
No! stand erect and without fear,
And for our foes let this suffice--
We've bought a rightful sonship here,
And we have more than paid the price. . . .
That for which millions prayed and sighed
That for which tens of thousands fought,
For which so many freely died,
God cannot let it come to naught.
- The United States Population is 93,402,151 with a total of 9,827,763 being African Americans. It looks like the Negroes are having second thoughts about bringing children into this racist and lawless society because their population increased by only 1 million from the last 10 years, where as the whites almost 17 million.
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