******* Today in Black History – June 25, 2019 *******
1876 - The most famous Native American uprising, at Little
Big Horn, begins in the Dakota territories (present-
day Montana). General George Armstrong Custer leads
three U.S. Army battalions to their deaths, including
Isaiah Dorman, an African American cavalryman, scout,
and intermediary between the Sioux and the United
States government, who had warned Custer of the
hostile Native American presence.
1933 - James Howard Meredith is born in Kosciusko, Mississippi.
In 1962, he will become the first African American
student admitted to the segregated University of
Mississippi, after the intervention of the federal
government, an event that will be a flashpoint in the
Civil Rights Movement. Inspired by President John F.
Kennedy's inaugural address, he will decide to exercise
his constitutional rights and apply to the University
of Mississippi. His goal will be to put pressure on the
Kennedy administration to enforce civil rights for
African Americans. In 1966, he will plan a solo 220-mile
"March Against Fear" from Memphis, Tennessee to Jackson,
Mississippi. He will highlight continuing racism in the
South and encourage voter registration after passage of
the Voting Rights Act of 1965. He will not want major
civil rights organizations involved. The second day, he
will be shot by a white gunman and suffer numerous wounds.
Leaders of major organizations will vow to complete the
march in his name after he is taken to the hospital. While
he is recovering, more people from across the country will
become involved as marchers. He will rejoin the march and
when he and other leaders enter Jackson on June 26, they
will be leading an estimated 15,000 marchers, in what will
be the largest civil rights march in Mississippi. During
the course of it, more than 4,000 African Americans will
register to vote, and the march is a catalyst to continued
community organizing and additional registration. In 2002
and again in 2012, the University of Mississippi will lead
year-long series of events to celebrate the 40th and 50th
anniversaries of Meredith's integration of the institution.
He will be among numerous speakers invited to the campus,
where a statue of him commemorates his role. The Lyceum-The
Circle Historic District at the center of the campus will
be designated as a National Historic Landmark for these
1937 - Eddie Lee Floyd, rhythm and blues recording artist
("California Girl," "Knock on Wood") and songwriter is
born in Montgomery, Alabama. His recording career did
not keep him from being one of his label's most
productive writers. Virtually every Stax artist will
record his material, often co-written with either
Steve Cropper or Booker T. Jones, including Sam & Dave's
"You Don't Know What You Mean to Me", Rufus Thomas' "The
Breakdown", Otis Redding's "I Love You More Than Words
Can Say", and Johnnie Taylor's "Just the One (I've Been
Looking For)". The latter will play during the opening
credits of director Harold Ramis's film "Bedazzled."
In 1980, he will also release material on the UK record
label I-Spy Records, owned and created by the UK band,
Secret Affair. He will join old Stax collaborators
Cropper and Dunn, and front The Blues Brothers Band on
a series of world tours, and in 1998, he and Wilson
Pickett will appear on screen dueting on "634-5789" in
Blues Brothers 2000. As well as singing with The Blues
Brothers Band, he will be the special guest with former
Rolling Stone Bill Wyman's Rhythm Kings on several
dates in the US and the UK. In 2008, he will return to
Stax Records. His first new album in six years, "Eddie
Loves You So," will be released in July 2008.
1935 - Joe Louis defeats Primo Carnera at Yankee Stadium.
1941 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt issues Executive Order
8802 forbidding racial discrimination in war industries
and government service and creating the Federal
Employment Practices Committee.
1942 - Willis Reed is born in Hico, Louisiana. He will become
a professional basketball player for the New York Knicks
after an All-American career at Grambling State University.
An All-Star in his first seven professional years
(1964-71), he will lead the New York Knicks to their
first-ever title in 1970 before injuries began slowing
him down. For years, He will bang against NBA greats Wilt
Chamberlain, Wes Unseld and Kareem Abdul Jabbar, and it
will gradually take its toll. Tendinitis in his knees will
obliterate the 1971 and 1972 seasons, but his unrelenting
will and spirit will enable him to overcome the
frustration and anguish and return in 1973. The left-
handed Reed will contribute athletically and spiritually
to another Knick NBA title in 1973. Torn cartilage in his
right knee will force him to retire in 1974, cutting short
a marvelous career. A physical inside player with a soft
outside jump shot, he will be the only player named MVP of
the All-Star Game, regular season and playoffs in the same
year (1970). A five-time All-NBA selection, he will tally
12,183 points (18.7 ppg) and grab 8,414 rebounds (12.9 rpg).
Playing with a Hall of Fame cast of Dave DeBusschere, Bill
Bradley, Walt Frazier, Earl Monroe and Jerry Lucas, He will
lead the Knicks in scoring five seasons and in rebounding
six seasons. His number 19 jersey will be retired by the
Knicks. He will be enshired in the Hall of Fame in 1982.
He will named to the NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team in
1947 - James Carter "Jimmie" Walker, comedian ("JJ" on "Good Times,"
"At Ease") is born in the Bronx, New York City. He will be best
known for portraying James Evans Jr. ("J.J."), the oldest son
of Florida and James Evans Sr. on the CBS television series
"Good Times," which ran from 1974 to 1979. He will be nominated
for Golden Globe awards Best Supporting Actor In A Television
Series in 1975 and 1976 for his role. While on the show, his
character will be known for the catchphrase "Dy-no-mite!" which
he will also use in his mid–1970s TV commercial for a Panasonic
line of cassette and 8-track tape players. He will also star in
"Let's Do It Again" with John Amos, and "The Greatest Thing That
Almost Happened" with James Earl Jones. He will continue to tour
the country with his stand-up comedy routine. In 2012, his
autobiography, "Dyn-o-mite! Good Times, Bad Times, Our Times - A
Memoir," will be published by Da Capo Press.
1948 - Joe Louis KOs Jersey Joe Walcott in 11 rounds to retain the
heavyweight championship of the world.
1950 - Derrick "Duckie" Simpson is born in Kingston, Jamaica. He will
become a singer and be a founding member of a Jamaican reggae
group formed in 1972, initially as Uhuru (Swahili for 'freedom').
The group will change its name to Black Uhuru and will undergo
several line-up changes over the years, with Derrick "Duckie"
Simpson as the mainstay. They will have their most successful
period in the 1980s, with their album "Anthem" winning the first
ever Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album in 1985. In 2008, he will
take on lead vocal duties, and in 2012, the group will record a
new album, "As the World Turns," with guest appearances from
Aterciopelados and Jarabe De Palo, although this will be still
unreleased a year later due to the master files getting corrupted.
A 25th Anniversary Edition DVD of their "Live in London" concert
will be released in June 2008. In 2011, the group, now featuring
Derrick "Duckie" Simpson, Andrew Bees, and Kaye Starr, will tour
the US for the first time since 2002. In 2014, Jojo Mac will join
the group, and leave in 2016 to continue her solo career. The band
will re-record all but one track of "As the World Turns," which
will be eventually released in September 2018.
1950 - Charles H. Houston is posthumously awarded the NAACP's
Spingarn Medal for his legal work with the association
Legal Committee. He is cited as a "stalwart defender of
democracy, inspired teacher of youth, and leader in the
1964 - Racially motivated disturbances erupt in Saint Augustine,
Florida, when a mob of 800 whites attacks part of a parade
of several hundred African Americans participating in an
1968 - Lincoln Alexander of Hamilton West in Ontario, Canada, is
the first Canadian of African descent to become a member
of the Canadian Parliament.
1968 - Bobby Bonds hits a grand slam in his first major league
game playing for the San Francisco Giants.
1975 - Mozambique gains its independence from Portugal. Samora M.
Machel, leader of the Mozambique Liberation Front, becomes
the republic's first president.
2005 - The NAACP selects retired Verizon executive Bruce S. Gordon
to be its new president.
The source for these facts are "Encyclopedia Britannica,
"Before the Mayflower", "Black Firsts" and independent
research by Mr. Rene’ A. Perry, Sr.
EVERY MONTH SHOULD BE BLACK HISTORY MONTH! CHECK OUT THESE OTHER BLACK HISTORY SITES ON THE WEB
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture - located in Harlem, New York City
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Last Updated Tuesday, June 25, 2019