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Today in Black History, 3/25/2015

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• March 25, 1890 Jan Earnst Matzeliger of Lynn, Massachusetts posthumously received patent number 423,937 for a tack separating and distributing mechanism. His invention improved the mechanism whereby tacks are received in bulk and separated and distributed one at a time at intervals. Matzeliger was born September 15, 1852 in Paramaribo, Dutch Guyana (now Suriname). After working as a sailor, he settled in the United States at 19. By 1877, he had moved to Lynn, Massachusetts and was working for a cobbler. After five years of work, he received patent number 274,207 March 20, 1883 for his automatic method for lasting shoes. His machine could produce shoes ten times faster than working by hand and resulted in more than a 50% reduction in the cost of shoes. Matzeliger never saw the profits of his invention due to his death August 24, 1889. He also posthumously received patent numbers 415,726 for a mechanism for distributing tacks and nails November 26, 1889, 421,954 for a nailing machine February 25, 1890, and 459,899 for a lasting machine September 22, 1891. The United States Postal Service issued a commemorative postage stamp in his honor in 1991 and he was posthumously inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2006. “Shoes for Everyone: A Story about Jan Matzeliger” was published in 1986.

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Today in Black History, 3/24/2015

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• March 24, 1896 Lewis H. Latimer of New York City received patent number 557,076 for a Locking Rack for hats, coats, umbrellas and other articles. His invention securely held these items and only allowed the person to whom they belonged to remove them. Latimer was born September 4, 1848 in Chelsea, Massachusetts. He joined the United States Navy at 15 and after receiving an honorable discharge joined a patent law firm as a draftsman at 17. In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell employed Latimer to draft the drawings required to receive a patent for Bell’s telephone. Although Thomas Edison is credited with the invention of the lightbulb, Latimer made significant contributions to its further development. He received patent number 252,386 January 17, 1882 for the Process of Manufacturing Carbons, an improved method for the production of carbon filaments for lightbulbs. In total, Latimer received seven patents before his death December 11, 1928. He was posthumously inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2006 and Lewis H. Latimer School in Brooklyn, New York is named in his honor. His biography, “Lewis Latimer: Bright Ideas,” was published in 1997. Latimer’s name is enshrined in the Ring of Genealogy at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, Michigan.

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Today in Black History, 3/23/2015

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• March 23, 1928 Channing E. Phillips, minister, social activist and the first African American placed in nomination for President of the United States by a major party, was born in Brooklyn, New York. Phillips was a founding member of the Coalition of Conscience, a conglomeration of local organizations working to alleviate social problems in Washington, D. C. He led the D. C. delegation to the 1968 Democratic National Convention and after the death of Robert F. Kennedy Phillips was nominated as a favorite son candidate August 28, 1968 and received 68 votes. Phillip said that his candidacy was meant to show that “the Negro vote must not be taken for granted.” Phillips was also the president of the Housing Development Corporation, a government backed housing venture in the capital. Phillips died November 11, 1987.

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Today in Black History, 3/22/2015

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• March 22, 1892 Dox Thrash, painter and printmaker, was born in Griffen, Georgia. Thrash moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1911 to study at the Art Institute of Chicago. He joined the United States Army in 1917 and 14 months later was gassed and wounded while serving in France. After being discharged, he returned to the Art Institute where he studied until 1923. Thrash moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1926 and worked for the Fine Print Workshop division of the Federal Arts Project. While there, he developed the carborundum printmaking process, the use of carborundum to etch copper plates instead of other etching techniques. After this, Thrash expanded his imagery to reflect the social evolution of African Americans during the first half of the 20th century. Although he was a well-known artist by the 1940s, when he applied for a job at the Philadelphia Navy Yard as an insignia painter, he was turned down because “the job was not available for a member of my race.” Thrash remained a prominent artist in Philadelphia until his death April 19, 1965. The Philadelphia Museum of Art presented a major retrospective of his work, featuring over 100 drawings, watercolors, and prints, in 2002.

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Today in Black History, 3/21/2015

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• March 21, 1856 Henry Ossian Flipper, the first African American cadet to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point, was born enslaved in Thomasville, Georgia. After the Civil War, Flipper enrolled at Atlanta University and as a fhttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/46/Henry_O._Flipper.jpgreshman was appointed to West Point where there were already four Black cadets. Despite the difficulties caused by his White classmates, Flipper persevered and graduated June 14, 1877. As a second lieutenant, Flipper was the first non-White officer to command the Buffalo Soldiers of the 10th Cavalry. Flipper described his experience at West Point in the 1878 book “The Colored Cadet at West Point”. Flipper was found guilty of “conduct unbecoming an officer and gentleman” in 1881 and dismissed from the service based on a relationship and correspondence with a White woman. Flipper contested the charges and fought to regain his commission until his death May 3, 1940. The Department of the Army issued Flipper a posthumous Certificate of Honorable Discharge in 1976 and President William J. Clinton issued a pardon in 1990. After his discharge was changed, a bust of Flipper was unveiled at West Point and annually the Henry O. Flipper Award is given to graduating cadets who exhibit “leadership, self-discipline and perseverance in the face of unusual difficulties”. “Negro Frontiersman: The Western Memoirs of Henry O. Flipper” was published in 1963.

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Today in Black History, 3/20/2015

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• March 20, 1883 Jan Earnst Matzeliger of Lynn, Massachusetts received patent number 274,207 for his Automatic Methttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f8/Jan_ernst_matzeliger.gif/220px-Jan_ernst_matzeliger.gifhod for Lasting Shoes. His machine could produce shoes ten times faster than working by hand and resulted in a more than 50% reduction in the cost of shoes. Matzeliger was born September 15, 1852 in Paramaribo, Dutch Guyana (now Suriname). After working as a sailor, he settled in the United States at 19. By 1877, he had moved to Massachusetts and was working for a cobbler. After five years of work, he patented his invention. Matzeliger never saw the profits of his invention due to his death August 24, 1889. He also posthumously received patent numbers 415,726 for a mechanism for distributing tacks and nails November 26, 1889, 421,954 for a nailing machine February 25, 1890, 423,937 for a tack separating and distributing mechanism March 25, 1890, and 459,899 for a lasting machine September 22, 1891. The United States Postal Service issued a commemorative postage stamp in his honor in 1991 and he was posthumously inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2006. “Shoes for Everyone: A Story about Jan Matzeliger” was published in 1986.

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Today in Black History, 3/19/2015

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• March 19, 1872 Turner Byrd, Jr. of Williamsville, Michigan received patent number 124,790 for an improved apparatus for detaching horses from carriages. Byrd’s invention allowed the occupant of a carriage, when a horse became unmanageable, to simply pull a string to separate the horse from the carriage. Byrd also received patent numbers 123,328 February 6, 1872 for an improved harness rein holder, 126,181 April 30, 1872 for an improved neck-yoke for wagons, and 157,370 December 1, 1874 for an improvement in railcar couplings. Not much else is known of Byrd’s life.

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Today in Black History, 3/18/2015

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• March 18, 1846 Susan Smith McKinney Steward, the third African American female to earn a medical degree in the United States, was born in Brooklyn, New York. Steward earned her medical degree from the New York Medical College for Women, and was valedictorian of her class, in 1870. She established a private practice which she ran until 1895. While doing that, Steward co-founded the Brooklyn Women’s Homeopathic Hospital and Dispensary to serve the African American community. She also practiced at the Brooklyn Home for Aged Colored People and the New York Medical College and Hospital for Women. Steward was also an advocate for women’s suffrage and president of the Brooklyn Women’s Temperance Union. She joined Wilberforce University in 1898 as resident physician and professor of health and nutrition. Steward served in that capacity until her death March 7, 1918. The Dr. Susan Smith McKinney Junior High School in Brooklyn and the Susan Smith McKinney Steward Medical Society are named in her honor.

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Today in Black History, 3/17/2015

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• March 17, 1806 Norbert Rillieux, hall of fame engineer and inventor, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. As a Creole from a prominent family, Rillieux had access to education and privileges not available to many other Black people. In the early 1820s, he travelled to Paris, France to attend school, studying physics, mechanics, and engineering. He became an expert in steam engines and published several papers about the use of steam to work devices. At 24, he became the youngest teacher at the school. While in France, Rillieux started researching ways to improve the sugar refining process and after returning to the United States in 1833 began to develop a machine for which he was granted patent number 3237 August 26, 1843. The multiple-effect evaporation system that he devised addressed all of the shortcomings of prior sugar refining processes and by 1849 thirteen Louisiana sugar factories were using his invention. His invention was an important development in the growth of the sugar industry. In the 1850s, Rillieux presented a plan to the government of New Orleans to eliminate the moist breeding grounds for the mosquitoes that were causing a Yellow Fever outbreak. His plan was turned down. Several years later, as the Yellow Fever outbreak continued, the city accepted a plan from White engineers that was similar to the plan proposed by Rillieux. Rillieux returned to France in the late 1850s where he died October 8, 1894. A Children’s book, “Sugar Makes Sweet Norbert Rillieux Inventor,” was published in 1994. Rillieux was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2004.

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Today in Black History, 3/16/2015

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• March 16, 1827 Freedom’s Journal, the first African American owned and operated newspaper in the United States, was published with the front page declaration that “We wish to plead our own cause. Too long have others spoken for us, too long has the public been deceived by misrepresentations. We deem it expedient to establish a paper and bring into operation all the means with which our benevolent creator has endowed us, for the moral, religious, civil and literary improvement of our race.” The paper was founded by Peter Williams, Jr. and edited by Samuel Cornish and John B. Russwurm. The paper was published weekly in New York City and provided international, national, and regional information on current events and contained editorials against slavery, lynching, and other injustices. It also published biographies of prominent African Americans and listings of births, deaths, and marriages in the New York City African American community. It circulated in 11 states, the District of Columbia, Haiti, Europe, and Canada. The last edition was published March 28, 1829.

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Today in Black History, 3/15/2015

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• March 15, 1809 Joseph Jenkins Roberts, the first President of the Republic of Liberia, was born in Norfolk, Virginia. Roberts immigrated to Liberia with the American Colonization Society in 1829. He and his two brothers established a successful import and export business between the United States and Liberia. Roberts became high sheriff of the colony in 1833 and vice governor in 1839. On July 26, 1847, Liberia was declared independent and Roberts was elected the first president. He was re-elected three times, serving a total of eight years. During his tenure, Roberts expanded the borders of Liberia and attempted to integrate the indigenous people into the government. After losing the election of 1855, Roberts served the next 15 years as a major general in the Liberian army as well as diplomatic representative to France and Great Britain. He also helped to establish Liberia College and served as president from 1862 to 1876. Roberts was re-elected President of Liberia in 1872 and served in the office until his death February 24, 1876. Roberts left $10,000 and his estate to the Liberian education system. Roberts International Airport, the town of Robertsport, and Roberts Street in Monrovia are named in his honor. His image is depicted on the Liberian ten dollar bill and March 15 is a national holiday in Liberia.

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Today in Black History, 3/14/2015

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• March 14, 1882 Albert C. Richardson of South Frankfort, Michigan received patent number 255,022 for an improved hame fastener for harnesses. Richardson created several other devices that were completely unrelated to each other. He subsequently received patent numbers 446,470 February 17, 1891 for a butter churn, 529,311 November 13, 1894 for a casket lowering device, 620,362 February 22, 1899 for an insect destroyer, and 638,811 December 12, 1899 for an improvement in the design of the bottle. Not much else is known of Richardson’s life.

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Today in Black History, 3/13/2015

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• March 13, 1873 Joe Walcott (also known as Barbados Joe Walcott), hall of fame boxer, was born in Demerara, British Guyana. As a youngster, Walcott got a job as a cabin boy on a ship sailing to Boston, Massachusetts. After settling in Boston, he got a job at a gym and began boxing. Walcott made his professional debut in 1890 and won the World Welterweight Boxing Championship in 1901. He held the title until 1904. Walcott retired from boxing in 1911 with a record of 92 wins, 25 losses, and 24 draws. Walcott lost most of the money that he earned as a fighter and worked as a custodian until his death October 4, 1935. He was posthumously inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1991.

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Today in Black History, 3/12/2015

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• March 12, 1864 Charles Young, the third African American graduate of West Point, was born in Mayslick, Kentucky. After graduating from high school at 16, Young taught at a Black high school in Ripley, Ohio. He entered the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1884 and graduated in 1889. In 1903, he was appointed superintendent of Sequoia and General Grant national parks, the first Black superintendent of a national park. During the 1916 Punitive Expedition into Mexico, Young commanded a squadron of the 10th Calvary (Buffalo Soldiers) and due to his exceptional leadership was promoted to lieutenant colonel. Young was awarded the 1916 National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Spingarn Medal. He was medically retired from the military in 1917 and spent most of that year and 1918 as a professor at Wilberforce University. In late 1918, he was reinstated, promoted to colonel, and assigned as a military attaché to Liberia where he died January 8, 1922. The Charles E. Young Elementary School in Washington, D. C. is named in his honor and the Colonel Charles Young House near Wilberforce was designated a National Historic Landmark May 30, 1974. Several biographies of Young have been published, including “Colonel Charles Young: Soldier and Diplomat” (1985), “For Race and Country: The Life and Career of Charles Young” (2003),and “Black Officer in a Buffalo Soldier Regiment: The Military Career of Charles Young” (2010).

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Today in Black History, 3/11/2015

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• March 11, 1884 William Edouard Scott, artist, was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. Scott lived in Chicago, Illinois from 1904 to 1909 and trained at the School of the Art Institute. Later, he moved to Paris, France where he continued his education and was able to build a reputation from himself more easily than his race allowed in America. He received a Rosenwald Foundation grant in 1931 which allowed him to travel to Haiti “to paint those who had maintained their African heritage.” Two of his more famous paintings are “Night Turtle Fishing in Haiti” (1931) and “Haitian Market” (1950). Scott portrayed Black people on canvas in positions of prominence doing noble deeds and through his paintings hoped to reverse the stereotypical perceptions of African Americans and eventually foster an understanding among the races. In addition to paintings, Scott did 75 murals, including “Douglass Appealing to President Lincoln” (1943) for the Recorder of Deeds Building in Washington, D. C. Scott died May 15, 1964. His work is in the collections of the Indianapolis Museum of Art and the Wichita Art Museum.

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Today in Black History, 3/10/2015

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• March 10, 1849 Hallie Quinn Brown, educator, writer and activist, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Brown earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Wilberforce University in 1873 and then taught at schools in Mississippi and South Carolina. From 1885 to 1887, she was dean of Allen University and from 1892 to 1893 lady principal of Tuskegee Institute. She became professor of elocution at Wilberforce in 1893 and frequently lectured on African American issues, the temperance movement, and women’s suffrage. Brown spoke in London, England at the 1895 International Woman’s Christian Temperance Union conference and the 1899 International Congress of Women. Brown was a founder of the Colored Women’s League which merged into the National Association of Colored Women in 1894. She served as president of the Ohio State Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs from 1905 to 1912 and the National Association of Colored Women from 1920 to 1924. She also spoke at the 1924 Republican National Convention. Brown authored four books, “Bits and Odds: A Choice Selection of Recitations” (1880), “Elocution and Physical Culture” (1910), “First Lessons in Public Speaking” (1920), and “Homespun Heroines and Other Women of Distinction” (1926). Brown died September 16, 1949. The Hallie Q. Brown Community Center in St. Paul, Minnesota and the Hallie Q. Brown Memorial Library at Central State University are named in her honor.

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Today in Black History, 3/9/2015

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• March 9, 1841 The United States Supreme Court in United States v. Libellants and Claimants of the Schooner Amistad affirmed an 1840 federal court ruling that the Africans captured on the Amistad had been illegally transported across the Atlantic, because the international slave trade had been abolished, and therefore were not legally enslaved but free. Furthermore, because they were illegally confined, the Africans were entitled to take what legal measures necessary to secure their freedom, including the use of force. The case resulted from a rebellion aboard the Amistad by a group of captives that had been kidnapped in Africa and sold into slavery. The Africans were later apprehended on the vessel Amistad near Long Island, New York by the U. S. Navy and taken into custody. A film version of the events, “Amistad,” was released in 1997 and a replica of the Amistad was launched with the mission to educate the public on the history of slavery, discrimination, and civil rights in 2000. The Amistad Memorial, a monument of Sengbe Pieh, also known as Joseph Cinque, the leader of the rebellion, was dedicated September 26, 1992 outside the City Hall building in New Haven, Connecticut. Books regarding the mutiny and trial include “Mutiny on the Amistad: The Saga of a Slave Revolt and its Impact on American Abolition, Law, and Diplomacy” (1987) and “The Amistad Rebellion: An Atlantic Odyssey of Slavery and Freedom” (2012).

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Today in Black History, 3/8/2015

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• March 8, 1825 Alexander Thomas Augusta, surgeon, professor of medicine and Civil War veteran, was born in Norfolk, Virginia. Augusta attempted to study medicine at the University of Pennsylvania but was not allowed due to his race. Therefore, he enrolled at Trinity Medical College of the University of Toronto and earned his Bachelor of Medicine degree in 1856. Augusta remained in Toronto and established his medical practice, supervised staff at Toronto General Hospital, directed an industrial school, and founded the Provincial Association for the Education and Elevation of the Colored People of Canada. He returned to the United States in 1860 and received a major’s commission as surgeon for African American troops in the Union Army in 1863, the first African American physician and the highest ranking African American in the army. After the war, Augusta accepted an assignment with the Freedman’s Bureau, heading Lincoln Hospital. He also served on the staff of the Washington, D. C. Freedman’s Hospital from 1868 to 1877. Augusta died December 21, 1890. He was interred with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery.

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Today in Black History, 3/7/2015

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• March 7, 1890 William Sherman Savage, historian, educator and author, was born in Wattsville, Virginia. Savage earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Howard University in 1917, his Master of Arts degree in history from the University of Oregon in 1925, and his Ph. D. in history from Ohio State University in 1934. He was the first African American to earn a doctorate in history from the university. Savage taught at Lincoln University in Missouri from 1921 to his retirement in 1960. After retiring from Lincoln, he taught at Jarvis Christian College for an additional six years. Savage published “The Controversy over the Distribution of Abolition Literature, 1830-1860” in 1938 and “Blacks in the West” in 1976. He also wrote a number of articles about the lives and activities of African Americans in the western United States. Savage died May 23, 1981.

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Recognizing, remembering & rejoicing for Women’s History Month; From Black Women who Rock to Our Pride & Joy, The Wright Museum celebrates women during the month of March

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The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History is recognizing Women’s History Month during the month of March with a calendar packed full of events. The month-long celebration launches this Saturday, March 7, at 7 pm with jessica Care moore’s 11th Annual Black Women Rock! Concert [sold out]. The rock music showcase features high-energy, fun-filled performances from moore, Nik West, Ideeyah, Stephanie McKay and more that the entire family is sure to enjoy. Attendees can participate in workshops, visit the pop-up BWR art exhibit, and mingle with the BWR performers during the artist meet & greet. Saturday’s evening of entertainment will be followed by Black Women Rock! Community Discussion on Sunday at 12:30 pm. The discussion will be led by a panel of BWR performers and is free and open to the public.

On March 13, for the second year, The Wright Museum will host #313DLove, an event with one sole purpose – to uplift Detroit! Speakers from community centered organizations, including United Way for Southeastern Michigan, Arise Detroit, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and more, will share stories, ideas, and action items on ways others can “be part of the change” which is taking place in our beloved city. The talks take place from 1 – 5 pm with a social media campaign launching at 3:13 pm. Tickets are $31.30 and can be purchased at http://www.313dlove.com/. Those who are unable to join us in person are encouraged to join us on the web with the hashtag #313DLove.

Women’s History Month will culminate with The Wright Museum’s 2nd Annual Women’s History Month Concert: Our Pride and Joy. Taking place on Friday, March 27 at 7 pm, six legendary women will be celebrated with a compelling and joyous performance of song, spoken word, poetry and dance. The honored include, Maya Angelou, Ruby Dee, Dorothy Height and Detroit’s own Judge Claudia Morcom. During the concert, a special Sojourner Truth statue will be publicly unveiled. Admission is free; all are welcome to attend.

During March, The Wright Museum will continue to host regular programmed events including Mahogany at the Museum (March 13), The Secret Society of Twisted Storytellers (March 20), and Liberation Film Series (March 21).  As the snow melts and we enter spring, The Wright welcome families to bring in their youth to experience our extensive list of free children’s programming such as Saturday’s Family Activity Series (March 14, 21, 28), Interactive Storytime (March 8), and Links to Science (March 7 & 14).  

SPECIAL EVENTS

SOLD OUT: Black WOMEN Rock! Concert ($)
Saturday, March 7 at 7 pm
Experience the rock performance of the year at The Wright! Black WOMEN Rock! showcases the music and stories of Black women who build institutions around their craft, and empowering women who play guitar, cello, drums, sing, or write poetry, to do so on their own terms. 2015 represents the 11th year anniversary of the BWR Weekender. In addition to the concert, the weekend is filled with an assortment of other activities, including an art exhibition, workshop, panel discussion and meet-and-greet with the performers of BWR. 2015 performers include: Nik West, jessica Care moore, Ideeyah, Stephanie McKay, Denitia Odigie, Steffanie Christi'an, Monica Blaire, DJ Stacey "HOTWAXX" Hale, Kat Dyson, Sabrina Nelson, the Black Women Rock Orchestra and more! The Black WOMEN Rock! concert is SOLD OUT. For media access please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call (313) 494-5866.

Black WOMEN Rock! Community Discussion
Sunday, March 8 at 12:30 pm
The community discussion portion of the Black WOMEN Rock! weekend is an all-ages forum for talking to and learning from the Black WOMEN Rock performers, including valuable insight and advice for artists and performers of all genres. Free.

#313DLove: What’s “Wright” About Detroit Discussion Event ($)
Saturday, March 13 from 1 – 8 pm
The vision of #313DLove is a Detroit whose self-worth is high, unemployment is low, and education system is second to none. If TEDx is all about "Ideas worth spreading" #313DLove is all about "actions worth emulating.” We've gathered a handful of top-shelf people who are busy making a huge impact on our community. They will share their stories, suggest ways others can "Be part of the change" and, most importantly, what drives them to stay here in the D. The talks are from 1 – 5 pm. We have built in plenty of time so we can get busy tweeting what we love about Detroit at 3:13 with the goal of breaking Twitter. Includes after-panel afterglow in the museum’s beautiful Ford Freedom Rotunda. Tickets are $31.30 and can be purchased at www.313dlove.com.

Artist's Studio Workshop featuring Ziwadi Majiisa ($)
Saturday, March 14 at 11 am
Local artist Ziwadi Majiisa will lead an art workshop for adults on Mixed Media Assemblage. Admission is $25 or $15 for museum members.

Black Marriage Day 2015 ($)
Saturday, March 21 from 11 am – 8 pm
Joining city halls, community centers, houses of worship and other institutions in 300 communities nationwide, The Wright Museum and Marriage Resource Center present Black Marriage Day 2015. First launched in Washington, D.C., this national initiative encourages African Americans to embrace an institution by highlighting the deep-rooted historical role marriage has played among African Americans, as well as the reality that there are still black men and women who, day in and day out, meet, fall in love, get married, and stay together. Black Marriage Day 2015 will be held for married couples, as well as those who are engaged, seriously dating or looking to get married, at The Wright Museum on Saturday, March 21, beginning at 11 am. Tickets are $50 per couple in advance, $55 the day of the event. For more information, contact Angela King at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Our Pride and Joy: Women’s History Month Tribute Concert
Friday, March 27 at 7:30 pm
In honor of Women’s History Month, six legendary women are celebrated in this riveting and spectacular performance of song, spoken word, poetry, and dance by Detroit’s leading performing artists. Women to be honored include Maya Angelou, Ruby Dee, Dorothy Height, and Detroit’s own Judge Claudia Morcom. Additionally, the unveiling of a special Sojourner Truth statue will take place. Hosted by LaShaun Phoenix Kotaran. Free.

FAMILY

Family Activity Series
Every Saturday in March 14, 21, 28 at 12 pm
Join in the celebration of The Wright's 50th anniversary with this regular Saturday activity series for the whole family! Featured in March will be hip-hop dance (March 14), crafts (March 21), and discovering classical music with Rick Robinson (March 28)! Free.

Links to Science presented by the Renaissance Chapter of The Links, Incorporated
Saturdays, March 7 & 14 at 1:30 pm
Explore the wonders and wizards of science with the Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science & Technology exhibit, which explores achievements in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through interactive computer kiosks, a touchscreen video wall, and hands-on activities. Free. 

Ford Free Second Sunday
Sunday, March 8 from 1 - 5 pm
Bring your family and friends to experience the wonder of The Wright Museum with free admission every second Sunday of the month courtesy of Ford Motor Company! Free.

Don Barden Foundation Interactive Storytime
Sunday, March 8 at 2 pm
Where music, movement, and literacy collide, this interactive story performance will put your kids in the story! Children take a free book home afterwards! Made possible by the support of the Don Barden Foundation and General Motors Foundation. Free.

Crown-Making Workshop
Saturday, March 21 at 1 pm
This hands-on workshop offers attendants of all ages an opportunity to make their own crowns from templates of the designs used in Shani Peters’ University of Michigan exhibition. Free.

Meet the Scientist Saturday featuring David Head & Dr. Terrance Dillard
Saturday, March 28 at 2 pm
Do you know a curious student, a young Einstein, or a future tech wizard who is always thinking of the next big thing? Bring them to discover and explore science with activities around the Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science and Technology exhibit! David Head & colleagues from the David L. Head Foundation will discuss African American trailblazers and their inventions and contributions to science. Free. 

PERFORMANCE

Spelman College Jazz Ensemble Performance ($)
Thursday, March 12 at 7 pm
Spelman College Jazz Ensemble's unique combination of vocalists, wind instrumentalists, and rhythm section has thrilled and excited audiences across the country with their innovative and soulful sound. Organized in 1983 under the leadership of its founder/director, Joe Jennings, this talented, nationally-renowned, all-female jazz ensemble has toured throughout the United States, and has shared the stage with jazz greats such as Wynton Marsalis, Consuela Lee, Nancy Wilson, Leroy Jenkins, Valerie Capers, the Straight Ahead Jazz Quartet, the Uptown Sting Quartet, Dee Dee Bridgewater, and Regina Carter. $25 or $15 for museum members.

Mahogany @ The Museum #6 ($)
Friday, March 13 at 7 pm
The legacy of Café Mahogany lives on at The Wright Museum. Come be inspired, surrounded by good vibes and great energy, enjoy spoken word and musical artists, live painting, vendors, and much more. Powerful, political, romantic, humorous...real. A perfect night out for sophisticated young professionals. Hosted by Joel Fluent Greene. $15 online / $20 at the door.

The Secret Society of Twisted Storytellers present "Pride & Prejudice" ($)
Friday, March 20 at 8 pm
The award-winning Secret Society Of Twisted Storytellers presents a curated, live storytelling event featuring Real People. True Stories. Told Live. Featuring Twisted Storytellers Nicole Pitts, Nicholaus Rainey, Hannah Wise and more. Musical Guest Amy Jackson with Dance Guests SambaSoul: Vanessa Almeida and Jamile Lulo. Local Artisans/Exhibitors and Cash Bar! Hosted by Satori Shakoor. For Info, Tickets & Video visit: www.secretstorytellers.org

Sing a New Song Theatrical Production
Sunday, March 22 at 6 pm
"Sing a New Song" is a theatrical production depicting the life of a civil rights minister who is challenged to begin addressing the violence in the black community. He refuses to do so until violence strikes his own home. Crew and cast are asking men to bring a young man to the show, and to come early to walk through the "And Still We Rise" exhibit prior to seeing the play. Tickets are $18 in advance and $20 at the door. Purchase tickets online at http://harambeeproductions.webs.com/ or at The Wright Museum information desk.

FILM

Freedom Riders Film Screening & Discussion
Sunday, March 15 at 6 pm
The “Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle” returns with a screening of "Freedom Riders," presented by The Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development. Freedom Riders were civil rights activists who rode interstate buses throughout the segregated southern United States in 1961 and following years to challenge the non-enforcement of the United States Supreme Court decisions which ruled that segregated public buses were unconstitutional. The movie tells the terrifying and suspenseful story of a time when white and black volunteers riding a bus into the Deep South, risked being jailed, beaten or killed. Free.

180 Days: Hartsville Film Screening & Discussion
Thursday, March 19 at 6 pm
A recent Southern Education Foundation report has uncovered that, for the first time in 50 years, the majority of students attending public schools in the U.S. live in poverty. An inspiring new documentary, "180 Days: Hartsville," takes a fresh look at the nation’s poverty and education challenges from a rural South Carolina town triumphing in the face of extraordinary challenges. Co-directors Jacquie Jones and Garland McLaurin, the team behind the Peabody Award-winning documentary 180 Days: A Year Inside an American High School which premiered in 2013, joined SCETV in Hartsville, South Carolina for more than a year. They filmed in two elementary schools struggling with new curriculum standards and maintaining funding, while meeting the needs of individual students. Yet Hartsville is fighting the odds—and winning—with an astonishing 92 percent graduation rate in their city. Free. 

Liberation Film Series presents The Spook Who Sat By the Door
Saturday, March 21 at 2 pm
The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History presents a free screening of “The Spook Who Sat By the Door” followed by a community conversation with Dr. Melvin Peters, Associate Professor, Eastern Michigan University. "The Spook Who Sat by the Door" is a 1973 film based on the riveting 1969 novel of the same name by author, Sam Greenlee (1930 - 2014). It is both a powerful story of the late 1960s Black Liberation Movement in the United States, with a particular focus on Black militancy. Free. 

Chameleon Street Film Screening & Discussion
Saturday, March 21 at 3 pm
View this screening of Chameleon Street for the first time in Detroit after 20 years! This Sundance award-winning film will be followed with a panel discussion including the film director & star, Wendell B. Harris, and artist Shani Peters. Free.

The Great Detroit Film Screening and Discussion

Sunday, March 22 at 3 pm
The Great Detroit that takes a panoramic look at Detroit's history, scenery and people that emphasizes the positive aspects of the city. Following the screening will be a discussion by the film’s producer, Anthony Brogdon. Free.

Voices of the Civil War Episode 38
Wednesday, March 25 online at TheWright.org/voices
The Voices of the Civil War is a five-year film series dedicated to celebrating and commemorating the Civil War over the course of the sesquicentennial. Each month, new episodes cover pertinent topics that follow the monthly events and issues as they unfolded for African Americans during the Civil War. Within these episodes there are various primary sources – letters and diaries, newspaper reports, and more - to recount various experiences of blacks during this period. We encourage your feedback and commentary through our Voices of the Civil War blog, where you can view new and previous episodes at www.TheWright.org/voices.

HEALTH & WELLNESS

Hustle for History Weekly Dance Lessons ($)
Sundays at 5 pm
Get your groove on with our weekly hustle dance lessons taught by instructor Thomasenia Johnson of Two Left Feet.  Work your muscles, strengthen your bones and have a ball while supporting the Museum's ongoing membership efforts - this activity is great for all ages!  Free for Members, $7 for non-members. Purchase 5 lessons and receive a complimentary museum membership, making your next 12 months of hustle lessons FREE!

30 Days To Lose It! Weekly Workouts ($)
Tuesdays at 7:30 pm
Ramp it up for March with a jump, hoop & roll workout with Velonda Thompson, PhD, Institute for Population Health! Free for members, $5 for non-members. Attend 8 consecutive sessions and receive a complimentary museum membership, making your next 12 months FREE! For more information please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it " target="_blank"> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . 30 Days to Lose It! is sponsored by Beaumont Health System and St. John Providence Health System, and endorsed by the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness, Health and Sports.

LECTURES & MEETINGS

The Value of Service: Women as Leaders Abroad Panel Discussion
Wednesday, March 4 at 6 pm
The Value of Service: Women as Leaders Abroad is a joint effort between the Peace Corps – Midwest and The Wright Museum to celebrate Women’s History Month by recognizing the accomplishments and perseverance of women who uplift their communities despite the circumstances in which they are placed. The program also seeks to inspire the exploration of other cultures through a life changing, service-based experience. A panelist of local women who are Returned Peace Corps Volunteers will speak about their perspective and how they balanced their own values with their communities, specifically around gender issues. The panel will highlight women who took on leadership positions in their communities or who made an impact on their service. Recommend audience: ages 12-years-old and above.

ASALH Detroit General Membership Meeting
Sunday, March 15 at 3 pm

ASALH History Lesson on the Underground Railroad by Evelyn Millstein
Sunday, March 15 at 4:30 pm
In keeping with the mission of Dr. Carter G. Woodson, founder of Black History Month and the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the ASALH Detroit Branch will host monthly history lectures. Please join us to hear from Mrs. Evelyn Millstein who will present on the Underground Railroad. Free.

African World Festival Community Advisory Meeting
Wednesday, March 18 at 6 pm
Would you like to share your ideas and comments about the upcoming African World Festival? If so, please come to one of the upcoming AWF Community Advisory Meetings to be held monthly on the third Wednesday in the Latimer Café on the lower level. All are invited to share ideas, resources, and support as we plan for the 33rd annual African World Festival, which takes place Friday - Sunday, August 14 - 16, 2015 on the grounds of The Wright Museum. Your participation will insure it's the best AWF yet! Free.

EXHIBITIONS

And Still We Rise: Our Journey Through African American History and Culture
Permanent Exhibition
The core experience of The Wright Museum, this 22,000 square-foot exhibition takes visitors through time and across geographic boundaries from prehistoric Africa all the way to modern-day Detroit. Throughout, the efforts of everyday men and women who built families, businesses, educational institutions, spiritual traditions, civic organizations and a legacy of freedom and justice are hailed. Free with museum admission.

Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science and Technology
Permanent Exhibition
This high-tech exhibit highlights trailblazers, contemporaries and careers in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through interactive computer kiosks, a touchscreen video wall, and hands-on activities and play areas. Inspiring Minds introduces individuals from across the spectrum of fields, levels of renown, and from times past and present, with particular focuses on African American women in science, black aviators, black inventors, medical ethics, and key historical figures such as George Washington Carver. Free with museum admission.

Shadow Matter: The Rhythm of Structure – Afro Futurism to Afro Surrealism
Through August 30, 2015
This one-man show features works by New York sculptor and Inkster, Michigan-native M. Scott Johnson. Scott’s education as a sculptor began in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, where he studied under master sculptor, national hero and elder statesman of Zimbabwe stone sculpture Nicholas Mukomberanwa (1940 - 2002). Scott’s work has been strongly influenced by African American techno music, Ndyuka and Saramaka graphic art forms, Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi, and Makonde sculpture. Johnson’s work has been exhibited in galleries across the United States and internationally including the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harvard University, and The New York Botanical Gardens. Free with museum admission.

The Nataki Way: 35th Anniversary of the Nataki Talibah Schoolhouse of Detroit
Through April 19, 2015
The Nataki Talibah Schoolhouse of Detroit (NTSD) joyously celebrates 35 years of service to its students, parents, employees, and community. Carmen and George N'Namdi founded NTSD as a private school in 1978 to honor the memory of their fourteen-month-old daughter, Nataki Talibah N'Namdi, who died in 1974. The school now enrolls over 430 students. After 35 years of hard work, the NTSD continues to uplift students from diverse backgrounds and help them identify the varying roles each of us must play to make the world a better place for everyone. Free with museum admission. 

I, Charles H. Wright: My Story
Opening March 10; Through January 3, 2016
This special anniversary exhibition features the history of Charles H. Wright, M.D. (1918 – 2002), founder of the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, in his own words. It surveys his early life in Dothan, Alabama, his college years, his activism, and the path that led to the founding of the museum. Free with museum admission.

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