July 16: This Day in Black History
FEATURED: Florence Joyner
1862: Ida B. Wells was born. She was a journalist, newspaper editor, suffragist, sociologist and, with her husband, newspaper owner Ferdinand L. Barnett, an early leader in the civil rights movement. She was active in the women’s rights and the women’s suffrage movement, establishing several notable women’s organizations. Wells was a skilled and persuasive rhetorician, and traveled internationally on lecture tours. She passed away in 1931 at age 68.
1882: Violette Anderson was born. She was an attorney, judge, magistrate and served as the first female city prosecutor in Chicago. She passed away in 1937.
1896: Evelyn Preer was born. She was a pioneering stage and screen actress and blues singer of the 1910s through the early 1930s. She was known within the black community as “The First Lady of the Screen.” She passed away in 1932 of double pneumonia. She was 36 years old.
1939: Denise LaSalle was born. She is a blues and R&B/soul singer, songwriter, and record producer. She turns 74 today.
1941: Desmond Dekker was born. He was a Jamaican ska, rock-steady and reggae singer-songwriter and musician. He passed away in 2006 at age 64.
1959: ‘Poison Ivy’ by the Coasters was recorded. It reached #1 R&B and #7 Pop.
1965: Actor Daryl ‘Chill’ Mitchell was born. In 2001, he was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident. With the help of family, friends, Denzel Washington and Chris Tucker, he was able to continue his career as an actor. He turns 48 today.
1968: NFL Hall of Famer Barry Sanders was born. He is considered as one of the most talented running backs in the NFL. He turns 45 today.
1969: Rain Pryor was born. She is a comedian and an actress of stage, film and television. She turns 44 today.
1972: Smokey Robinson appeared with the Miracles for the last time at a concert at the Carter Barron Center in D.C. He had been with them for 18 years.
1977: ‘Easy’ by the Commodores was the Number One R&B song this day.
1979: Bob Douglas passed away. He was the founder of the New York Renaissance basketball team. Nicknamed the “Father of Black Professional Basketball”, Douglas owned and coached the Rens from 1923 to 1949, guiding them to a 2,318-381 record. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor in 1972, the first African American enshrined. He was 96 years old.
1983: Jazz great Herbie Hancock charted with ‘Rockit’ on this day.
1988: Carl Lewis ran a wind-assisted 100 m in 9.78 sec.
1988: Florence Joyner ran 100 m in women’s world record 10.49 seconds
1988: Jackie Joyner-Kersee sets women’s heptathlete record of 7,215 pts
1992: Buck Buchanan passed away. He was a NFL Hall of Famer. He was 51 years old.
2006: Harold Scott passed away. He was stage director, actor and educator, who broke racial barriers in American theater. He became the first African-American artistic director in the history of American regional theater at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. He was 71 years old.