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A carte-de-viste depicting the Fisk University Jubilee Singers, with all nine members present.

Lesser-Known Stories

A photograph of an African American woman washing laundry outdoors in a yard. Clothes hand behind her on a line.

Atlanta Washerwomen Strike

In 1881, washerwomen in Atlanta formed a union and went on strike to demand better wages. Learn about the harsh conditions they faced and how they won.

Black and white photograph of three children walking down street.  There are houses in the background.

George Henry White

George Henry White was the last African American congressman of the 1800s. Learn about his life before and after Congress and his commitment to justice.

The inside title page is covered in decorative floral and leaf scroll work. The title reads, [ILLUMINATED / DIARY / for / 1868.]. Underneath is an illustrated image of the sea with a mast ship. The publisher below reads, [PUBLISHED BY / TAGGARD & THOMPSON, No. 29 CORNHILL, / BOSTON.]

The Remarkable Rollin Sisters

The Rollin sisters shaped the politics of Reconstruction-era South Carolina. Learn how they challenged society’s views of Black women and fought for equality.

Printed cartoon showing the assignation of Octavius Catto in Philadelphia in 1871.

Octavius Catto

Octavius Catto was a civil rights activist in Pennsylvania. Learn about his life and impact in Philadelphia’s Black community during Reconstruction.

Black and White photograph of female African American students seated in a classroom.  They appear to be sewing/  There are several women standing toward the chalkboard in the rear of the class.  There is one sewing machine in the foreground, being used by a woman.  A woman stands in the front of the class next to a dressed mannequin wearing a long-sleeved blouse and long skirt.

W.E.B Du Bois at the 1900 Paris Exposition

In 1900, W.E.B. Du Bois traveled to the 1900 Paris Exposition, a world’s fair featuring the innovations of the new century.

An illustration of a school house on fire. Some onlookers cheer, while others run towards help.

Memphis Massacre

In 1866, police and white civilians attacked the African American community in Memphis, Tennessee. Learn about the massacre and listen to survivor testimony.

Photograph of 5 women from AKA Sorority

The Mississippi Health Project II: AKA Revisits Its Model for Community Health Care

In June and October of 2021, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. offered an array of health services to Mississippi residents in underserved communities.

Portrait of Bridget Biddy Mason

Bridget “Biddy” Mason

Entrepreneur and philanthropist Bridget “Biddy” Mason helped to establish the First African Methodist Episcopal Church of Los Angeles.

A black and white photograph of two soldiers, in military fatigues, perched on the edge of the windshield, boots resting on the jeep's hood.

Black Power and 'The Black G.I.'

The Black G.I., a documentary made by the public television program Black Journal, provides a unique view of Black military life during the Vietnam War.

Photograph of Workers at the Pacific Parachute Company

The Pacific Parachute Company

Skydiving entrepreneur Howard “Skippy” Smith founded one of the first Black-owned and managed war production plants during World War II.

Cover image of "Contending Forces: A Romance Illustrative of Negro Life North and South"

Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins

Literary author and editor Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins used the power of her pen to challenge society’s assumptions about Black women.

Photograph of Homer G. Philips hospital and students

Homer G. Phillips Hospital and School of Nursing

Homer G. Phillips Hospital served as a preeminent training facility for African American nurses and physicians during segregation.

Portrait of Paul Jennings

Enslaved at the White House

Paul Jennings, enslaved by James and Dolly Madison, bought his freedom and published a personal memoir in 1865.

Black and white illustration of James McCune Smith

The First African American Physician

James McCune Smith, the first African American to hold a medical degree, fought against the false scientific claims of Black inferiority.

Preacher Jarena Lee: Praise in the Meantime

Jarena Lee experienced both the intense religiosity of the late 1700s and discrimination against women as she sought to become a preacher.

The Man Behind Tennessee Whiskey

Nathan “Nearest” Green was the first known Black master distiller and creator of the blueprint behind Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey.

Crossing the Color Line to Freedom

William and Ellen Craft, fugitives from slavery, devised a cunning plan that crossed race, gender, and class lines.

This bronze portrait bust depicts Frank McWorter, formerly enslaved American and founder of New Philadelphia, Illinois. Shown from the chest up, the bust is mounted on a black stone rectangular base with the front protruding slightly at an angle. Frank McWorter wears a coat with a swirling texture incised onto the surface. under the coat is a buttoned waistcoat, shirt, high collar and cravat. He has a mustache and sideburns, and his head is turned slightly to the viewer’s' left. The bust is signed by the artist on the back of the left shoulder.

An African American Venturer

"Free" Frank McWorter, founded New Philadelphia, Illinois, the first known town to be founded and platted by an African American.

The Water Spirit Will Take Us Home

The mass suicide by captive Africans at Igbo Landing marks one of the most significant acts of resistance by enslaved people.

Black and White Photograph of standing students

Education Crusaders

Social worker, educator, and civil rights activist Vivian Carter Mason worked across racial lines to fight for equal education in Norfolk, Virginia.