12/7/2018 Chicago's Very Own
Timuel D. Black @ 100 & Pearl Harbor @ 77
For this special issue, we are reflecting on the importance of December 7th, honoring Timuel D. Black who is celebrating his 100th birthday and remembering the 77th Anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor.
Timuel D. Black @ 100 Years Young!
On Saturday, December 8, 2018, Timuel D. Black will be honored at the University of Chicago, Logan Center in “The Life and Times of Timuel D. Black: A Centenary Symposium” featuring a panel of esteemed personnel from around the country, including; Lonnie Bunch , Founding Director, Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture;  Christopher Reed , Professor of History Emeritus, Roosevelt University;  Leon Dash , Professor of Journalism, African-American Studies and Law, University of Illinois at Champaign;  Adam Green , Associate Professor of History, University of Chicago;  James Grossman , Executive Director, American Historical Association;  John Bracey , Professor, W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst;  Barbara Ransby , Distinguished Professor of African American Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, and History, University of Illinois at Chicago;  Robert Starks , Associate Professor, Northeastern Illinois University;  Bart Schultz , Director of the Civic Knowledge Project and Senior Lecturer in the Humanities, University of Chicago; author  Susan Klonsky ; Moderators will be  Natalie Moore , Reporter, WBEZ; and  Elizabeth Todd-Breland , Assistant Professor of History, University of Illinois at Chicago. Author, Sociologist and Assistant Professor in the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration, Eve L. Ewing will serve as the evening’s emcee.

Serving as event Honorary Co-Chairs   are:  Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr ., Founder, Rainbow PUSH Coalition;  Reverend Father Michael Pfleger , Senior Pastor, St. Sabina;  James Montgomery , Attorney; and  U.S. Senator Richard Durbin  (D-IL) The Presenting Sponsors   are:  Bart Schultz , Senior Lecturer in Humanities and Director of the Civic Knowledge Project, University of Chicago;  Peggy Montes , Founder, Bronzeville Children’s Museum; the  Oppenheimer Family Foundation Tracye A. Matthews , Executive Director, Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture, University of Chicago; and  Robert J. Zimmer , President, University of Chicago.

The following evening, on Sunday December 9, 2018, the “Timuel D. Black 100 Years: Music & Memories – Gala Birthday Party” will take place at the historic South Shore Cultural Center in Chicago, Illinois, featuring jazz musician and composer Robert “Baabe” Irving III , who was commissioned to create a composition for the occasion. “Sound Pictures of a Century-The Living Legacy of Timuel D. Black” will be premiered by an eighteen-piece orchestra featuring Dee Alexander and Maggie Brown . NBC 5 Special Contributor Art Norman will serve as evening’s emcee.
12/7/2018 African Americans at Pearl Harbor @ 77
Doris "Dorie" Miller
Augustine Davis
Howard Armstrong
Maycie Herrington
Ronald H. Brewington
Today, also marks the 77 th anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor that took place on the morning of December 7, 1941, marking the end of isolationism from American political thought. In our modern context, it begs the question, have we reverted back to non-interventionist strategies under 45?

Long before the desegregation of the U.S. Armed Forces, African Americans served in the U.S. Navy and were present on that fateful day in 1941, which propelled the U.S. into WWII. Doris “Dorie” Miller was best known for his bravery aboard the U.S.S. West Virginia , and for his heroism that involved carrying the ship’s captain to shelter, who had been mortally wounded during the attack, and he also assisted in the ship’s defense with a .50 caliber anti-aircraft machine gun. For his efforts, he became the first African American awarded the Navy Cross.

Augustine Davis , served aboard the U.S.S. Breese and was present during the attack on Pearl Harbor. He recalled, “ That next morning, day was just breaking and those guys hit us… I was supposed to carry and started running up the ladder, top side, to join the fire and rescue party, and before I got up the ladder…they started screaming, crying over the PA system, ‘Man your battle station! Man your battle station! This is no drill! This is no drill! ’” He continued, “ And as soon as I got top side, one of those fighters was making a strafing run to come back. And he was flying that low, you could see the pilot in the plane. And still didn't know who it was, but then when I saw that rising sun on the fuselage, you know that big red ball, they called it the rising sun…when you saw that, we knew who it was. [Augustine Davis, THMDA, 1.3.2.].

Howard Armstrong , renowned blues musician, one of few African Americans living there at that time, had vivid recollections of the attack, “ Somebody told me...‘Hey, Armstrong, Uncle Sam got some new planes.’ And Japan was the last place in the world on my mind. And you could look out the door out there in Hickam field and see the little old kids bounce a ball, throw it up higher than the plane was flying. And these black planes had a big round, orange-colored ball on it. He said, ‘Look Uncle Sam using a new kind of plane.’ A guy said, ‘You think it's new, you better be getting you a hole to run in, see. Those are Japanese planes. ’" [Howard Armstrong, THMDA, 1.4.3.] .

On the homefront, Maycie Herrington , who was a member of the Red Cross, recalled her family’s reaction to the news, “ And when Pearl Harbor came along and my brother was there, oh, it was so hard on the family, because we had no idea what was happening over there…we just were praying that he was still living. [Maycie Herrington, THMDA, 1.2.6.] .

As the tragic events of Pearl Harbor are forever engrained into the American memory, so too are the valiant efforts of African Americans who served our country. Broadcast executive Ronald H. Brewington , spoke of his military service and the legacy of those before him; “ The twenty years that I served in the United States Navy, I can remember there were the Dorie Millers and people before me who came in the military and served and opened the door for me to be able to come through and do what I did .” He also noted, “ We as African Americans, we should never forget where we came from, never. We should remember our history.” [Ronald H. Brewington, THMDA, 1.1.3.] .

The HistoryMakers remembers Pearl Harbor and honors all of those who have served.
Willie L. Hill
Louis E. Wilson
Paula Giddings
This week, The HistoryMakers interview team is in Northampton, Massachusetts to capture the stories of three noted professors from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and Smith College.

On Wednesday, December 5, 2018, interviewer Larry Crowe and videographer Matthew Hickey , kicked off their four-day stint in the Northeast and sat down with Willie L. Hill , professor and director of the Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He is the author of The Instrumental History of Jazz, Approaching the Standards, and Jazz Pedagogy: The Jazz Educator's Handbook and Resource Guide . On Friday, December 7, 2018, Louis E. Wilson , professor of Africana Studies at Smith College and author of The Krobo People of Ghana to 1892 and co-author of The Americans: Reconstruction Through the 21st Century will sit for his interview, followed by Paula Giddings , author of the seminal work Ida: A Sword Among Lions, Ida B. Wells and the Campaign Against Lynching . Giddings also serves as the Elizabeth A. Woodson 1922 Professor of Africana Studies at Smith College. Her works include; When and Where I Enter  and  In Search of Sisterhood.
This week, Anchorage lost one of its heroes, just days before the massive earthquake struck the city. On Monday, December 3, 2018 state legislator Bettye Davis , passed away at the age of eighty years old. Davis was the first African American woman to be elected to the state House of Representatives in Alaska, and she was the first African American Alaskan elected to the state Senate. Davis also served three terms on the Anchorage School Board.

Thanks to Alaska Airlines and our host committee: former Alaska State Representative Walt Furnace , Former Commission, Administration for Alaska Eleanor Andrews, former Alaska Black Caucus President E. Louis Overstreet , Shiloh Community Development Director Celeste H. Growden , and Committeeman for the Alaska DNC Ed Wesley, and performing historian Cal Williams. In May 2018, The HistoryMakers traveled to Alaska for the first time to record Alaska's rich African American history. Had we not had the opportunity, we would have missed out on capturing Davis' story, which reminds us of the importance of archival preservation. She sat down with The HistoryMakers on May 22, 2018, when asked how she would like to be remembered she noted, “ I think my record is gonna speak for itself and I’ll be remembered by that…I’m just happy being here. It’s not too big, it’s not too small for me. This is just perfect, Anchorage. ” 
"War Is The Surgery Of Crime. Bad As It Is Within Itself, It Always Implies That Something Worse Has Gone Before."

- Edith Armstead Gray , educator
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