Democrats seized the statehouse in Louisiana coup d’etat. This White
resistance and occupation has been called the Battle of
Taking place in New Orleans,
3500 confederacy members took over the city hall, statehouse, and an arsenal. President
Grant ordered the insurgents to disperse and sent in federal troops. Twenty-seven persons (sixteen whites
and eleven Blacks) were killed in battles between the Democrats and
Republicans. A great deal damage was done and the Whites were defeated. The
uprising was so severe that the federal army remained in Louisiana
for a number of years.
Frederick Madison Roberts was born on
this date. He was an African-American mortician, news editor, school principal
He was born in Chillicothe,
Ohio the son of Andrew Jackson
Roberts and Ellen Wayles Hemings, the granddaughter of Sally Hemings. At the
age of six years, Roberts moved with his family to Los Angeles, where his father established the
first black-owned mortuary in the area. He attended Los Angeles High School,
becoming their first African American graduate. His education continued at USC
where he majored in pre-law, but he graduated from Colorado College.
He also attended the Barnes-Worsham School of Embalming and Mortuary Science,
eventually taking over his father’s mortuary business, now called A.J. Roberts
& Son. During his early career he edited the Colorado Springs Light in 1908
and returned to Los Angeles
four years later to take over the New Age newspaper, which he edited until
1948. He also was a principal of Mound Bayou Normal and Industrial Institute in
Mississippi and served as deputy assessor for El Paso County, Colorado.
In 1918, Roberts was elected to the California State Assembly as a Republican
in a hard fought racial slurred campaign. While in office Roberts sponsored
legislation to improve public education and proposed several civil rights
measures. In June 1922, he welcomed Black Nationalist leader Marcus Garvey to Los Angeles and even rode
in his parade car. He served in the State Assembly until 1934 when he was
defeated by Augustus F. Hawkins, a Democrat. Following his defeat, Roberts made
two unsuccessful attempts to become the first African American elected to
Congress from California.
On July 18, 1952, Roberts was involved in an automobile accident. He died the
next day at Los Angeles County General
Hospital and was buried at L.A.’s Evergreen
Cemetery. In 1957, the
city of Los Angeles
dedicated Frederick M. Roberts Park, 4700
Honduras St., in his memory. In 2002, the
California State Senate honored Frederick Madison Roberts for his contributions
and service to the State of California.
John Adams Hyman joins the ancestors
in Washington, DC. He was the first African American
congressman from the state of North Carolina.
On this date, Constance Baker Motley was born. She was an African-American lawyer, judge, and politician.
From New haven, Connecticut
she is one of nine children to a family who had migrated to America from the Caribbean island of Nevis.
While attending school, she was active in the New Haven Youth Council, and the
New Haven Adult Community council. Motley attended Fisk University,
transferring to New York University-graduating in 1943 with a degree in
economics. She attained her law degree from Columbia University
While at Columbia
she became acquainted with Thurgood Marshall, helping with the task needed to
file Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 through the NAACP. An instrumental
player of that legal team, Motley argued other cases before the Supreme Court,
one of her best known cases was Meredith v. Fair 1962, helping James Meredith
gain admission to the University
of Mississippi in 1962.
She furthered her cause for civil rights in 1964 by being elected to the New
York Senate, the first black woman to hold that office. In 1966, Motley was
appointed to a federal judgeship in 1966, the first African American woman to
hold that position. She made many important rulings in her new post. In 1991,
Motley ruled that it is illegal for a company to make photocopies of articles
and book excepts and assemble them into anthologies for sale to college or
She has written countless articles and legal observations which reflect her
stance on civil rights and its importance in America. One example is: Equal
Justice Under Law: The Life of a Pioneer for Black Civil Rights and Women’s
Rights 1998. This presents a detailed legal history of her fight against the
“separate but equal” racial practices of the 1950s and 1960s. In the fall of
1997 Montley served as jurist-in-residence at the Indiana University School of
Law. Constance Baker Motley died on September 28, 2005.
of the Dunbar Hotel of Los Angeles is celebrated
on this date. Built by African-American John
Sommerville it stands today at 4225
S. Central Avenue in Los Angeles.
Originally called the Hotel Sommerville, it opened with an attendance of over
5,000 people. Because of the stock market crash of 1929 it was sold and renamed
the Dunbar Hotel after the Poet, Paul L. Dunbar. At one time it was a very
fashionable hotel and was the site of the first NAACP national convention to be
held in the western region of the United States.
The Dunbar was the most popular Jazz and Blues scene in Los
Angeles for more than 20 years, it was frequented by guests such as
Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, Eddie “Rochester” Anderson, Langston Hughes and W.
B. Du Bois.
Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Selective
Service Act, allowing Blacks to enter all branches of the U.S. Military
Service and receive equal training.
The Chicago Cubs baseball team integrated for the
first time on this date in 1953. Former Kansas City Monarchs Gene Baker and Ernie Banks debuted together as the Cubs’ double-play combination
A shortstop stuck playing second base, Baker led N.L. second basemen in errors
his first three seasons. In 1961 he was named manager of the Batavia, N.Y.,
minor league team, becoming the first black manager in organized baseball.
Meanwhile, Banks who was signed for the Cubs by his Monarchs manager, Buck
O’Neil went on to hit 512 home runs and win two MVP awards in a Hall of Fame
Leontyne Price and A. Philip Randolph are among the recipients of the Medal of Freedom awarded by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
One Black killed and two whites injured in shoot-out between activists
and police officers in a New Orleans housing project.
date, Ken Griffey Sr. and his son
Ken Griffey Jr. both on the
Seattle Mariners homered in consecutive at-bats against the Anaheim Angels.
In the first inning, Senior hit a two-run homer and Junior a solo shot. Both
father and son playing together was a first for major league baseball.
date, the eldest sister of tennis stars Venus
and Serena Williams was killed in a Los Angeles suburb.
31-year-old Yetunde Price was shot
about 12:15 am in Compton, south of Los Angeles. The
suspected murder occurred after a confrontation between neighborhood residents
and Price, who was riding in a white SUV with an unidentified man. Sheriff’s
deputies and a gang squad from the local Compton Police department had
surrounded a house near the shooting but the suspects fled the building prior
to their arrival. Price died of gunshot wounds to her upper torso.
She was the owner of a Los Angeles
area beauty salon, worked as a personal assistant to her two sisters, and was
mother of three children. Price was one of five sisters who spent their early
years in the Compton
community. She was divorced and had moved to Corona, Calif. she took her
mother’s maiden name a few years ago after her parents were divorced.
On this day, Wallace Jefferson became the first Black in Texas history to be installed chief justice
of the Supreme Court of Texas. He was appointed to the court in 2001 and
received his higher position after the retirement of chief justice Tom
Phillips. Jefferson received a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State
University and earned a jurist
doctor degree from the University of Texas School of Law. He stared his career
working in appellate courts for the firm Groce, Locke, and Hebdon in San Antonio then started
his own appellate firm with Sharon Callaway and Tom Crofts. He currently holds
the chief justice position and resides with his wife and three sons in Texas.