Untold Black History: Claudette Colvin

Untold black history: Everyone is familiar with the story of Rosa Parks with her courageous refusal to give up her seat on this Alabama bus. On the other hand, Parks wasn’t the one to do so.

In 1955, Claudette Colvin took the city bus home after school when the bus driver asked her to abandon her seat to a white customer. Colvin was 15 at the time. “It’s my basic right to believe here as that lady,” she stated, referring to the Constitution. 

This is a constitutional privilege for which I have paid my fare.” Colvin felt forced to take a firm stance on the issue. “I had the impression that Sojourner Truth was pressing down on one arm and Harriet Moses was pressing down on the other, both saying, ‘Sit down daughter!'” “I was completely hooked to my seat,” she subsequently admitted to Newsweek.

untold black history

According to biography.com, it was initially contemplated by the NAACP to use Colvin’s case to challenge segregation laws, but the organization ultimately decided against it due to her age.

The Poet Maya Angelou: Untold Black History

Untold black history: Like most people, you’ve heard of Maya Angelou, even if you’ve never read any of her poetry or other writing. But did you notice that within 1944, she made history by being the first Black female cable car dispatcher in the city of San Francisco?

After weeks of unsuccessfully attempting to land an audition for the position, Angelou wrote:“I waited in the

Railways office, pretending to be waiting to be evaluated one day, which was tediously similar to all the ones that had gone before it.”

Untold black history: I was called to the receptionist’s desk, where she shuffled a stack of papers in my direction. They were employment application forms, as you might expect. She said that they needed to be completed in triplicate. 

I didn’t have much time to consider whether I’d won or lost because the regular questioning reminded me of the importance of deftly lying on the spot. How old did I at the time?

List my former positions in reverse chronological order, beginning with the most recent job held and working your way backward. What kind of compensation did I receive, and why did I leave the location? Please provide two sources (not relatives).

In the comfort of my side table, my thoughts and I constructed a cat’s ladder of half-truths and outright lies. I kept my face hidden (an ancient art) and penned the story of Marguerite Jackson, a nineteen-year-old former servant and drive for Mrs. Annie Hawkins) in Stamping, Arkansas, in a short amount of time.

‘I was put through a battery of examinations, including test results, aptitude tests, physical cooperation tests, and Rorschachs, before being hired as the city’s first black streetcar conductor on a wonderful day.’

Rebecca Lee Crumpler 

Untold black history: Rebecca Lee Crumpler went to law school at the New York Female Medical School in 1860 after eight years as a nurse, and she graduated with honors in 1860. According to Harvard, this was the first medical school to graduate female doctors in the United States. She graduated from medical school in 1864, making her the first African-American woman to get a Doctorate in the United States. Approximately 300 out of the 54,543 doctors were female, and almost none of them were African-American or Latino.

After establishing a medical clinic nearby Boston, she provided care to mothers and children living in poverty, frequently without charging a fee for her assistance.

African-Americans Fight For The Union During The Civil War.

By the conclusion of the War, around 179,000 Black men had served as warriors in the United States Army, accounting for almost 10% of all personnel. According to the Archival Institution, 19,000 more men served in the Navy. 

About 40,000 Black troops died throughout the battle, with 30,000 of them succumbing to sickness or death. Black soldiers operated in guns and infantry, so they were responsible for all noncombat support jobs necessary to keep an army running. 

untold black history

Carpenters, chaplains, chefs, guards, workers, nurses, scouts, spies, riverboat pilots, doctors, and teamsters were among those who contributed to the war effort on behalf of the black community. There were roughly 80 African-American commissioned officers on the team.

African-American Women Who Are Fighting For Such Union

Black males participating in the American Revolution have frequently been represented in films, but less is known about Black women who fought alongside them. National Archives reports that these women served as nurses, spies, and scouts, although they were not formally allowed to join the Army. The most well-known was Harriet Moses, who searched for the 2nd Virginia Soldiers and was awarded the Medal of Honor.

Annie Turnbo Malone

Annie Turnbo Shannon was one of the country’s first African-American millionaires, having made her fortune in the 1920s. She founded Poro Co., a company that produced hair styling products for the African-American population. 

Sarah Breedlove, a young woman, was hired as one of my door-to-door sales representatives. After suffering from a scalp disease that caused her hair loss, you’re probably more familiar with Breedlove as Madam C.J. Walker. He, according to biography.com, went on to create a line on African American hair production as a result of her hair loss.

Inventors Of Color

While everyone is familiar with George Washington Carver, there are a plethora of other Black inventors who have made significant contributions to our way of life. Here are only a few examples:

Lewis Howard Latimer is credited for inventing and patenting the carbon filament, which allowed lightbulbs to survive longer than those that used a paper filament, as initially developed by Thomas Edison.

Sarah Boone was an African-American dressmaker who made her mark by developing the modern-day ironing board, which she used to make her name. She was among the 1st Black women to be given a patent when her application was approved in 1892.

Garrett Morgan

untold black history

Untold black history: Whether you like them or despise them, you can thank Garrett Morgan, a 46-year-old inventor, and newspaperman, for inventing the three-position traffic light. While Morgan’s signal was not the only traffic signal (the first was placed in England in 1868), it was a significant innovation in its own right.

The addition of the third position in addition to the traditional stop and go signals improved the safety of crossing vehicles compared to prior signals, according to history.com.

“If you sleep easier at night and while you’re away from parents even if you have a surveillance system, you will know that a Black woman designed it,” says Marie Van Brittan Brown.

Marie Van Embedded scripting Brown was unhappy in her area, and she believed that the cops were untrustworthy. According to timeline.com, she “took matters into her hand and trademarked the present home security system.” “More than 50 years later, this technology is in multitudes of homes or offices worldwide.”