The Dahomey Amazons or Mino was an all-female military regiment of the Fon people of the Kingdom of Dahomey in the present-day Republic of Benin. They existed from the 17th century to the end of the 19th century. While European narratives refer to the women soldiers as “Amazons,” because of their similarity to the semi-mythical Amazons of ancient Anatolia, they called themselves Ahosi (king’s wives) or Mino (our mothers) in the Fon language.
The Ahosi were extremely well trained, and inculcated with a very aggressive attitude. They were ferocious fighters with a reputation for decapitating soldiers in the middle of battle, as well as those who were unfortunate to become their captives.
Seh-Dong-Hong-Beh was one of the great leaders of the Mino. In 1851 she led an army of 6,000 women against the Egba fortress of Abeokuta. Because the Mino were armed with spears, bows and swords while the Egba had European cannons, only about 1,200 survived the extended battle.
— Read on atlantablackstar.com/2013/10/29/10-fearless-black-female-warriors-throughout-history/2/
Artist Edmonia Lewis was a prominent black sculptor in the 19th century.
At the drop of a hat, any art buff could name a prominent 19th-century artist, whether it’s Vincent Van Gogh, Edgar Degas or Pierre-Auguste Renoir.
But how sharp is your knowledge of prominent black artists of that same era?
Considering the 19th century’s extreme racial divide, and the Civil War breaking out midway (April 9, 2015 will mark 150 years since the end of the war), it was difficult for black artists to break out. However, art still prevailed and quite a few artists were able to make a name for themselves, in the U.S. and abroad.
— Read on mashable.com/2015/03/15/19th-century-black-artists/
Sidney Barthwell was once the owner of the largest black-owned drugstore chain, Barthwell Drugs, in the United States. He opened a new store every two years until he had a total of 13 stores around Detroit.
Barthwell was born in Cordele, Georgia on February 17, 1906. As a young child, he attended Lucius H. Holsey Academy of Excellence. In 1922, he left Georgia when he was 14 to join his father in Chicago and found work in a meat packing plant. Barthwell attended the prestigious Cass Technical High School where he was enrolled in a course that specialized in pharmacological sciences. After graduating from high school in 1925, Barthwell attended Detroit Technological Institute and graduated in 1929 with a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy.
— Read on blackthen.com/sidney-barthwell-one-owner-largest-black-owned-drugstore-chain-barthwell-drugs/
Read moor on the Barthwell’s here
The work of Marcellous Lovelace is based in escaping the worst situation possible. Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago to a down to earth southern family. My background in Art came from the heart and soul of Africans all over the world. My paintings are Images of what I study and continue to live through. Using basically anything to draw and paint with my works are always about something building positivity and whats important, because the world we live is so negative and unimportant. Coming from a world of police brutality and racism stands a Man who is not afraid to be exactly who he is all the time regardless of who it affects. If it is Political or Reality I’m going to paint it just as it is. My imagination allows me the freedom to live in Actual Facts and not taint my self in materialism and a fabricated world of clothing with shiny trickles. I’m a Man who is brave, strong, thoughtful, intelligent and defined by my realistic character…
— Read on 2017blackart.wordpress.com/2015/06/03/2014-protect-yourself-from-the-beast-art-by-marcellous-lovelace-2/
The sad and harsh reality for Black people is that there is nothing that separates the Trayvons, Erics, and Sandras from any of us,” says Atlanta-based photographer Ervin A. Johnson of the young African American men and women victims of police violence in the United States. As a Black man, the photographer has faced that fact head-on, and from the anxiety and despair that comes with it, he derives the power to make his voice—and so many others—heard. For #InHonor, Johnson applies solvents to his photographic portraits, allowing the physical distortion of pigment to stand in for the brutality that has been and continues to be done to living, breathing Black bodies.
#InHonor, admits Johnson, resulted in large part from the guilt that came with standing on the sidelines while others marched and in some cases, risked their lives in protest of the persecution of Black Americans. The shootings, strangulations, and abuse of Black citizens brought with them currents of fear, intimidation, and feelings of helplessness; these experiences, stresses Johnson, are not unique to him, but ultimately, he chose to speak out in a way that only he could do.
Johnson began by photographing his friends and acquaintances and was quickly overwhelmed with eager faces wanting to be a part of the #InHonor movement. He continues to photograph throughout Atlanta, New York, and Chicago, with upcoming sessions in the latter in November. The process of decomposing the prints is one he’s honed over a long period of time, and he’s hesitant to go into technical details, explaining only that he has over the course of the project gained control over the ways in which various solvents interact with and disrupt the photographic paper.
While many have been quick to comment on the aesthetic merits of Johnson’s method, he confesses that hearing people describe the work as “beautiful” is upsetting. With each portrait, the artist and his subject have revisited the traumas people who have died and been violated, and in turn, they have acknowledged that they are in fact, as innocent men and women of color, in very real danger. The process is a painful one, and the erasure of pigment, no matter how artfully executed, is a reminder of violence and an elegy to those who have been lost to it.
— Read on www.featureshoot.com/2015/10/inhonor-portraits-make-visible-the-violence-that-has-been-done-to-black-bodies-cry-out-for-change/
William Claire Harding was born in Wichita, Kansas, on November 13, 1904. I don’t know anything about his parents or his upbringing, but indirect evidence suggests that the family probably moved to Chicago when he was relatively young. In the early 1920s he attended Knox College of Galesburg, Illinois, for at least a year; by fall 1924, he had transferred to Wilberforce University in Ohio, home of one of the best black college football teams in the country. He also played basketball and baseball in college, but he was best known as a quarterback and punter.
At the time there was evidently a problem with what you might call “revolvers” in black college football, players who used up their eligibility at one school, then simply moved on to another one. Elwood Barker blew the whistle on this sort of activity in a 1933 article in the Chicago Defender, noting for example that “a few years ago” a number of players at “a certain school in Georgia” popped up two years later, en masse, at “another school in Tennessee and being called young blood” (Chicago Defender, September 9, 1933). Often the college teams claimed that new players were freshmen recruited out of high school, touting recommendations from their former high school coaches, when in reality the school had simply recruited them from a rival. The insinuation here is that the players were being paid under the table, and that at least the major colleges were effectively running professional or semi-professional football teams.
Halley Harding, wrote Barker, departed from the usual pattern, first by essentially doing his own PR work, developing a network of contacts among the sportswriters of the black weeklies; and second by advertising the fact that he was moving from college to college rather than trying to conceal it. His openness apparently didn’t hurt his college career; aside from Knox and Wilberforce, Harding also played for Wiley College in Texas and Fisk University, running up a total of at least seven (and possibly more) college football seasons from 1924 through 1931.
— Read on agatetype.typepad.com/agate_type/2013/02/halley-harding.html
The first recorded mention of all-Black hockey teams appears in 1895. Games between Black club teams were arranged by formal invitation. By 1900, The Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes had been created, headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Despite hardships and prejudice, the league would exist until the mid-1920s. Historically speaking, The Colored Hockey League was like no other hockey or sports league before or since. Primarily located in a province, reputed to be the birthplace of Canadian hockey, the league would in time produce a quality of player and athlete that would rival the best of White Canada. Such was the skill of the teams that they would be seen by as worthy candidates for local representation in the annual national quest for Canadian hockey’s ultimate prize – the Stanley Cup. Black Hockey Leadership -1895 They were more than educated Blacks, in fact they were the first generation of Black men who refused to answer the ageless question: “Whose Negro Are You?” The first of their race to demand what was rightfully theirs; the first generation to refuse to stand at the back of a line…Today there are no monuments to the Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes. There is no reference to the league in any but a few books on hockey. There is no reference to Henry Sylvester Williams, James Johnston, James Kinney or the scores of players who wore the Colored League uniforms. There is no reference in the Hockey Hall of Fame of the impact that Blacks had in the development of the modern game of hockey. No reference to the Black origin of the slap shot