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Contents Introduction …3 Banneker, Benjamin … 3 Douglas, Frederick … 4, 5 Ellington, Duke … 6, 7 Howard University … 8 King, Martin Luther, Jr. … 8 Bibliography … 9 Introduction The History of Blacks in Washington, DC is as old as the city itself. On every corner of the City, there is evidence of the contribution of Blacks if we know where to look. The City was built with the help of black slave rented labor. The area around the Capitol Building was filled with tents for the blacks that had come from neighboring Maryland and Virginia plantations. On top of the Capitol Building is the statue "Freedom" which was cast in Bladensburg, Maryland with the efforts of slave labor. This study highlights some prominence figures and institutions in the nation’s Capital history. Their roles in the nation’s Capitol history were significant enough to change the course of the history of the African Americans in the U.S. Banneker, Benjamin Mathematician, astronomer, compiler of almanacs, inventor, and writer, one of the first important black American intellectuals. A free black, who owned a farm near Baltimore, Banneker was largely self-educated in astronomy by watching the stars and in mathematics by reading borrowed textbooks. In 1761, he attracted attention by building a wooden clock that kept precise time. Encouraged in his studies by a
. Banneker's almanacs were acclaimed by European scientists to whom Jefferson made them known. Separated as an infant from his slave mother (he never knew his white father). accurately Predicted a solar eclipse in 1789. secretary of state. Later. he was returned to the plantation as a field hand at 16. and published annually from 1791 to 1802 the Pennsylvania. he fled to New York City and then to New Bedford. Maryland. His oratorical and literary brilliance thrust him into the forefront of the U.C. Douglas. Mass. where he worked as a laborer for three years. However. Joseph Ellicott. government. D. eluding slave hunters by changing his name to Douglas. Delaware. at the age of eight. Douglas was invited to describe his feelings and experiences under slavery. Naturally eloquent. he worked with Andrew Ellicott and others in surveying Washington. his owner sent him to Baltimore to live as a house servant with the family of Hugh Auld. Mass. Frederick His original name is Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey black American who was one of the most eminent human-rights leaders of the 19th century. Appointed to the District of Columbia Commission by President George Washington in 1790. and Frederick was forced to continue his education surreptitiously with the aid of schoolboys in the street. and he became the first black citizen to hold high rank in the U.Maryland industrialist. and Virginia Almanac and Ephemeris. he was unexpectedly catapulted into a new career as agent for the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society. From then . Abolition movement. Banneker opposed slavery and war. Five years later.S. antislavery convention in 1841. then U. he began astronomical calculations about 1773. whose wife defied state law by teaching the boy to read.S. Frederick lived with his grandmother on a Maryland plantation until. but the plot was discovered before they could get away. he was hired out in Baltimore as a ship caulker. At a Nantucket. Auld declared that learning would make him unfit for slavery. however. along with a letter asking Jefferson's aid in bringing about better conditions for American blacks. Upon the death of his master. He tried to escape with three others in 1833. As an essayist and pamphleteer..S. He sent a copy of his first almanac to Thomas Jefferson.
he became a consultant to Pres. black-oriented press.. To avoid recapture by his former owner. was one of the founders of big-band jazz. Duke His full name is Edward Kennedy Ellington. Douglas returned with funds to purchase his freedom and also to start his own antislavery newspaper. advocating that former slaves be armed for the North and that the war be made a direct confrontation against slavery. After Reconstruction. During the Civil War (1861-65).on. he was appointed U. whose name and location he had given in the narrative. the North Star (later Frederick Douglas’s Paper). D. N. and pianist who is among the most significant figures in jazz history and. Abraham Lincoln. . and died Feb. Douglas served as assistant secretary of the Santo Domingo Commission (1871). Douglas left on a twoyear speaking tour of Great Britain and Ireland. 20. Ellington. Douglas helped to win many new friends for the Abolition Movement and to cement the bonds of humanitarian reform between the continents. bandleader. and the two men broke over this issue as well as over Douglas' support of political action to supplement moral suasion. Abroad. Douglas never flagged in his devotion to the Abolitionist cause. The Abolition leader William Lloyd Garrison disagreed with the need for a separate. and in the District of Columbia he was marshal (1877-81) and recorder of deeds (1881-86). Douglas felt impelled to write his autobiography in 1845. along with Fletcher Henderson and Don Redman. revised and completed in 1882 as Life and Times of Frederick Douglas. Douglas was born Feb. finally. despite insult.S. American composer. 1895. Douglas' account became a classic in American literature as well as a primary source about slavery from the bondsman's viewpoint. he fought for full civil rights for freedmen and vigorously supported the women's rights movement. Washington. which led to the swing era. To counter skeptics. Throughout Reconstruction (1865-77). Md.Y. minister and consul general to Haiti (1889-91).C. 7. 1817. who doubted that such an articulate spokesman could ever have been a slave. which he published from 1847 to 1860 at Rochester. and violent personal attack. Tuckahoe.
several of his musicians had strong impact on jazz styles for their particular instruments: Hodges' approach to alto saxophone ballad interpretation. at the Kentucky Club in New York City. ballets." "Sophisticated Lady. In about 1923. and Ben Webster's tenor saxophone . Charles Mingus. and. saxophonist Johnny Hodges. a leading modern-jazz composer-pianist.Ellington studied piano from age seven and in his teens was influenced by ragtime pianists at 17." and "In a Sentimental Mood. the group contained Harry Carney. Thad Jones. Sonny Greer. he began to play professionally." His best-known longer works include Black. and Beige and Reminiscing in Tempo. Bubber Miley and Tricky Sam Nanton. and the unique blend of improvisation and Orchestration that he mastered with instrumentalists who spent most of their careers With him. trombonist Juan Tizol wrote "Perdido" and "Caravan. Some pieces associated with Ellington were written by his musicians: pianist-arranger Billy Strayhorn wrote "Take the A' Train" and "Lush Life". and other significant modern composers. More than 1. including not only brief bigband pieces but ones for film scores. using each as a separate tone color and writing ensemble parts suited to each player rather than writing just for the tone quality traditionally identified with the instrument. above all. Ellington led a band that was his Laboratory for composition. and church services. Their tense or piercing sonorities constituted the essential element of the "jungle style" that asserted itself in pieces such as "Black and Tan Fantasy. Brown. and bassist Jimmy Blanton." "Do Nothin' Til You Hear from Me." The piano style influenced Thelonious Monk." "Don't Get Around Much Anymore. operas. The following year he renounced the fine arts. Broadway shows." Almost without interruption from then until his death. while Ellington's arranging concepts were assimilated by Gil Evans. toward which his parents had oriented him. In this period. George Russell. Blanton's method of hornlike solo lines played pizzicato on bass. orchestration. and dancers. Sun Ra. to devote himself to jazz. many involving symphony orchestra. He capitalized on the unique personal sounds of outstanding players such as trumpeter Cootie Williams. The Ellington tunes most frequently performed by others include "Satin Doll. choruses. Clare Fischer. he led a small group that was later the core of his large band. In part owing to the showcase Ellington provided for them.000 orchestrations were crafted by Ellington.
engineering. communications. and the statesman Ralph Bunche. senator Edward William Brooke of Massachusetts. Among the most prominent were the U. New York City Howard University Predominantly black university founded in 1867 and named for General Oliver Otis Howard. His leadership was fundamental to that movement's success in ending the legal segregation of blacks in the South and other portions of . Martin Luther.approach. D. a graduate school of arts and sciences. head of post-Civil War Freedmen's Bureau. Jr. among others. medicine. it was founded with a special obligation to provide advanced studies for blacks. Although Howard University has always been open to students of any race. It is generally agreed that Ellington's masterpieces include a group of lesser-known works done between 1939 and 1942. 1974." An autobiography. He died May 24. which show a remarkably compatible matching of improvisations and prewritten passages: "Harlem Air Shaft. Eloquent black Baptist minister. especially in the graduate schools. color. who influenced Congress to appropriate funds for the school. The university is financially supported by the U. government but is privately controlled. The university has a college of liberal arts.S. allied health services." "Ko-ko.S." "Concerto for Cootie. King. Its library is the leading research library on black American history. who established the school's political science department. or creed. dentistry. Washington. Music Is My Mistress appeared in 1973. Many of Howard's graduates advanced to leadership positions in education. sociologist E. human ecology.C. and government. Ellington was born April 29. and schools or colleges of business and public administration. Franklin Frazier. social reform. white students began attending after World War II. who led the Civil Rights Movement in the United States from the mid-1950s until his death by assassination in 1968. Although the student body at one time was virtually all black. 1899." "Jack the Bear. and law." and "Cotton Tail. playwright Imamu Baraka (LeRoi Jones).
The U. . 1929. Memphis. Bibliography The Internet is the main source of the above information. 15. King rose to national prominence through the organization of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.S. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1964. promoting nonviolent tactics such as the massive March on Washington (1963) to achieve civil rights. and died April 4. Tenn. 1968. beginning in 1986. Ga.the United States. on the third Monday in January. Atlanta. King was born Jan. Congress voted to observe a national holiday in his honor.
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