Skip to main content

Music & Social Reform

Written by Catherine A. Paul. “Throughout the history of the United States, music has been used to bring people together. By singing together, people are able to form emotional bonds and even shape behavior…Therefore, it is unsurprising that social movements have similarly interwoven music and action to create and sustain commitment to causes and collective activities.”

Continue Reading »

Shuttlesworth, Rev. Fred

As Birmingham goes, so goes the nation. That belief was the driving force behind Shuttlesworth’s crusade for equality.

“He was the soul and heart of the Birmingham movement,” Georgia Rep. John Lewis said. It was Birmingham, he said, that brought the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

“Fred Shuttlesworth had the vision, the determination never to give up, never to give in,” Lewis said. “He led an unbelievable children’s crusade. It was the children who faced dogs, fire hoses, police billy clubs that moved and shook the nation.”

Continue Reading »

Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)

SCLC is a now a nation wide organization made up of chapters and affiliates with programs that affect the lives of all Americans: north, south, east and west. Its sphere of influence and interests has become international in scope because the human rights movement transcends national boundaries.

Continue Reading »

The Women Who Went to the Field – A Poem

The Women Who Went to the Field   Editor’s Note: Clara Barton (founder of the American Red Cross) wrote the following poem as a toast to women who served in the Civil War. It was first presented at a gala dinner held in 1892 by the Women’s Relief Corps and was later printed in many…

Continue Reading »

Villard, Oswald Garrison

Oswald Garrison Villard (1872 – 1942): Civil Rights Activist and Editor of the The Nation and the New York Evening Post   Oswald Garrison Villard (1872–1949) was an American journalist, pacifist, and civil rights advocate.  The son of railroad tycoon Henry Villard and and suffragist Fanny Villard (the daughter of abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison) and…

Continue Reading »

Oswald Villard, the NAACP and The Nation Journal

Oswald Villard, the NAACP and The Nation   In 1909, when the founders of the NAACP needed help organizing their new civil rights group, they reached out to Oswald Garrison Villard, The Nation’s future editor and owner.   An Article in the The Nation, July 2, 2009 by Flint Kellogg   In 1909, when the founders…

Continue Reading »

Principles of The Universal Negro Improvement Association (Marcus Garvey, 1922)

We of the Universal Negro Improvement Association are determined to unite the 400,000,000 Negroes of the world to give expression to their own feeling; we are determined to unite the 400,000,000 Negroes of the world for the purpose of building a civilization of their own. And in that effort we desire to bring together the 15,000,000 of the United States, the 180,000,000 in Asia, the West Indies and Central and South America, and the 200,000,000 in Africa. We are looking toward political freedom on the continent of Africa, the land of our fathers.

Continue Reading »

Garvey, Marcus

Marcus Mosiah Garvey (1887-1940), one of the most influential 20th Century black nationalist and Pan-Africanist leaders, was born on August 17, 1887 in St. Ann’s Bay, Jamaica. Greatly influenced by Booker T. Washington’s autobiography Up From Slavery, Garvey began to support industrial education, economic separatism, and social segregation as strategies that would enable the assent of the “black race.” In 1914, Garvey established the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) in Kingston, Jamaica, adopting Washington’s inspirational phrase “Up, you mighty race; you can conquer what you will.”

Continue Reading »

Springfield Race Riot of 1908

On the evening of August 14, 1908, a race war broke out in the Illinois capital of Springfield. Angry over reports that a black man had sexually assaulted a white woman, a white mob wanted to take a recently arrested suspect from the city jail and kill him….In the early hours of the violence, as many as five thousand white Springfield residents were present, mostly as spectators. Still angry, the rioters minus most of the spectators next methodically destroyed a small black business district downtown, breaking windows and doors, stealing or destroying merchandise, and wrecking furniture and equipment. The mob’s third and last effort that night was to destroy a nearby poor black neighborhood called the Badlands. Most blacks had fled the city, but as the mob swept through the area, they captured and lynched a black barber, Scott Burton, who had stayed behind to protect his home.

Continue Reading »

That Work-Relief Bill

Article by Lester B. Granger, Executive Director, Los Angeles Chapter National Urban League. “Dismay is the first reaction which thoughtful Negroes will register toward this program-not so much because of what it plans, but because of what it fails to plan”

Continue Reading »