Black History Month – Day 20

Pictures from



in 1895 – Frederick Douglass died. He was born into slavery in Maryland, he was taught how to read and write by one of his masters’ wives. On one occasion, he was sent to a poor farmer known for “slave-breaking.” He was beaten regularly, until he turned 16 and fought back. After winning that confrontation, the farmer never beat him again. He successfully escaped slavery and became a vocal abolitionist, orator and highly respected freedman.



in 1927 – Sidney Poitier was born. Although not the first black person to win an Oscar, he is the first black person, male or female, to win an Oscar for a leading role. (Lillies of the Field). He also starred in such films as Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner and In The Heat of the Night. He was on the board of directors for Walt Disney Co. from 1995 – 2003 and was ambassador of the Bahamas to Japan from 1997-2007.



in 1929 – Playwright Wallace Thurman’s play “Harlem” opened in NYC. Although his life was short, he died at the age of 32 from Tuberculosis, he moved to Harlem during the height of the Renaissance and hung out witht eh likes of Zora Neale Hurston, etc. He coined the ironic term “Niggerati” as a way to describe all the writers in Harlem.



in 2002 – At the age of 71, the NFL’s first black quarterback, Willie Thrower, passed. He QB’d for the Chicago Bears, for one game.

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