Black History – Who Am I?

Each Sunday, throughout the month of February, at least two members will present a ‘Who Am I?’  Visit this post each week to find the next Sunday’s clues. You will also find Black History Facts, as well as Arkansas Black History Facts.

February 27

Clue #1: First African-American to earn a Ph.D. from Harvard.

Clue #2: I invented the gas mask.

Clue #3: The first African-American whose signature was represented on U.S. paper currency.

Arkansas Black History Fact: Ernest Joshua – Born in Jacksonville, Arkansas, Joshua started in the health and beauty products business about in Chicago, working first for Johnson Products Co., founded by another Arkansas business success, John Harold Johnson, founder of the Johnson Publishing Company, an international media and cosmetics empire headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Joshua struck out on his own, moving to Los Angeles Angeles in the early 1970s and eventually starting J.M. Products with a hair tonic, called Isoplus. After hard times in Los Angeles, during which he underwent cancer surgery and found himself going broke, Joshua moved his operation home to Arkansas in 1977, where his business flourished. J.M. products was one of the largest manufactures of ethnic hair care products in the country, and the largest black owned company. The Media Library

February 20:

Clue #1: First African-American in Space. Answer: Gion Blufford Jr.

Clue #2: My idea for blood plasma preservation saved many lives. Answer: Charles Drew.

Black History Fact: Jean Baptist Point Du Sable, was an African-American poineer who found the city of Chicago, and became wealthy by treading with native americans.

Arkansas Black History Fact: On January 17, 1995, Andree Layton Roaf became the first African-American woman and only the second woman to ever serve on the Arkansas Supreme Court when she was appointed by then-Governor Jim Guy Tucker.


February 13:

Clue #1 : I want to entice and encourage trade relations with Israel. Answer: Queen of Sheba

Black History Fact: History has credited Thomas Edison with the invention of the light bulb, but fewer people know about Lewis Latimer‘s innovations toward its development. Until Latimer’s process for making carbon filament, Edison’s light bulbs would only burn for a few minutes. Latimer’s filament burned for several hours. Celebrate Black History 366

Arkansas Black History Fact: Arkansas Artist Geleve Grice, is one of the prominent Arkansas photographers of the 20th century. His work was an important contribution to Arkansas black history. Grice was born in Tamo in 1922, but his interest in photography dates from his teenage years in Little Rock. He graduated from Dunbar High School, and afterwards attend Arkansas AM&N in Pine Bluff, his work for the student yearbook was impressive enough to get him hired by Art Department Chair John Howard as the school’s staff photographer. Read more about Grice, and learn how you can view his work online.


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