1744 Rhode Island (USA) abolished slavery.
1788 Georgia entered the Union. More than 28% of the population is black. Famous blacks Ray Charles (singer), Martin Luther King (black rights activist), Jackie Robinson (baseball player), Alice Walker (novelist), Andrew Young (politician), Louis Armstrong (singer)…
1788 Maryland became an official state in the Union of the United States. About 29% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Frederick Douglas (black rights activist), Toni Braxton (singer),Harriet Tubman (black rights activist).
1788 New York became an American state. More than 17% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Whoopi Goldberg (actress), Louis Gossett (actor), Vanessa Williams (actress), Colin Powell (politician)…
1788 South Carolina became a US state. Thirty percent of the population is black. Famous blacks:Mary McLeod Bethune (educator),Charles Bolden (astronaut), Viola davis (actress), Althea Gibson (tennis player), Jesse Jackson (black rights activist)…
1796 Tennessee entered the Union. More than 16% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Alex Haley (writer), Wilma Rudolph (Olympic champion), Aretha Franklin (music)…
1800-1804 A black revolution, led by Toussaint L’Ouverture -an ex slave-, transformed Haiti into world’s first black country. Haiti -Massachusetts-size nation on the island of Hispaniola- was a French colony for more than 100 years…
1815 William Wells Brown was born in Lexington (Kentucky). America’s Wells Brown made history when he was the first black to publish a novel- The President’s Daughter: A Narrative of Slave Life in the United States.
1817 Mississippi became an official state in the Union of the United States. About 37% of the population is black, the highest percentage of any state. Famous blacks: Oprah Winfrey (actress), Leontyne Price (singer), and Fannie Lou Townsend Hamer (black rights activist).
1818 Illinois became an American state. Fifty percent of the population is black. Famous blacks: Gary Coleman (actor), Quincy Jones (musician), Lou Rawls (singer).
1819 Alabama became a US state. About 27% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Rosa Parks (black rights activist), Nat King Cole (singer),Jesse Owens (Olympic champion), Coretta Scott King (black rights activist).
1822 American black freedmen founded the Republic of Liberia -it is nearly four times as large as Maryland and more than twice as large as Switzerland. The African republic was the second black country on the Planet.
1837 Michigan became an official state in the Union of the United States. More than 14% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Smokey Robinson (musician), Diana Ross (singer), Ralph Bunche (politician), Malcolm X (black rights activist).
1845 Texas became an American state. Nearly 14 percent of the population is African-American. Famous blacks: Harry Belafonte (musician), Barry White (singer), Debbie Allen (actress).
1850 California entered the Union. Only 8% of the population is black. Famous blacks: Tiger Woods (golf), Tyra Banks (fashion supermodel).
1876 Edward Bouchet became the first black to earn a PhD at a United States university, from Yale University.
1888 Brazil (South America) abolished slavery.
1912 South Africa. Blacks founded the African National Congress.
1917 Tom Bradley was born in Calvert (Texas). Bradley was the first black major of Los Angeles, California.
1940 Benjamin O. Davis became the first black General in United States Army.
1943 Naturalist George Washington Carver died. He has played a vital part in the economic life of the South.
1946-1949 William H. Hastie became the first governor of Virgin Islands (USA).
1948 When the National Party came to power in South Africa, Daniel Malan, Afrikaner leader, established apartheid (country’s policy of separation of races).The country saw the passage of increasingly oppressive laws. Under the system of racial segregation, South Africa was the most unpopular nation on the Planet. The white-ruled South Africa sentenced Nelson Mandela, leader of the African National congress (ANC), to life in prison. Mandela had been established the “Campaign for the defiance of Unjust Laws”.
1950 Ralph Bunche was the first African-American to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
1955 Rosa Parks refused to give her seat to a white man on a bus. Parks played an active role in the national black movement as a political moderate. In September 1996 the President of the United States, Bill Clinton, bestowed upon her the Presidential Medal of Freedom-one of the country’s highest honors.
1956 Sudan -three times the size of Texas- proclaimed its national independence.
1957 Ghana became the fifth black country on the Planet. Famous blacks: Alex Quaison-Sackey (politician), Kwame Nkrumah (African leader), Koffi Annan (Secretary General of the United Nations), Kenneth Dadzie (politician).
1958 Guinea became independent of France. Famous blacks: Ahmed Sékou Touré (leader), Camara Laye (writer).
1960 Sixty-nine black protesters against apartheid were killed by the South African police- it is known as the “Sharpville Massacre”.
1960 Dahomey -now Benin- is an independent nation on the African mainland. Famous blacks: Emile Zinson (Head of State), Mathieu Kérékou (Marxist leader), Paulin Joachin (novelist), Juan Pliya (writer), Olympe Bhely Quenun (writer)…
1960 Hugh Masekela, South Africa’s trumpeter, became well-known on the international music scene. During many years, he has played with superstars as Louis Armstrong, Harry Belafonte, Miriam Makeba and Paul Simon. He has been compared to Miles Davis.
1960 Nigeria declared its independence. Famous blacks: Sade (singer), Femi Kuti (musician), Wole Soyinka (writer), King Sunny Ade (musician), Chioma Ajunwa (athlete), Olusegun Obasanjo (politician)…
1961 Tanzania gained its independence. Famous blacks: Gertrude Mongella (feminist), Filbert Bayi (athlete), Julius Nyerere (African leader), Salim Ahmed Salim (politician)…
1962 More than 200,000 people, under Martin Luther King, demonstrated in Washington. It was a day when African-Americans demanding civil rights in America. Dr. Martin Luther King, a fighter for human rights, gave his famous speech “I have a dream”. During that time, blacks could not go to the same universities or eat in the same locals as whites.
1962 Jamaica declared its independence. Famous blacks: Marcus Garvey (black rights activist), Bob Marley (musician), Donovan Bailey (Olympic champion).
1965-1974 During the Vietnam War more than 270,000 blacks served in the United States armed forces.
1965-1980 Rhodesia was one of the nations in the Third World in which a racial minority controlled the state. During that time, black nationalists fought against the racist government of Ian Smith. The UN imposed international sanctions. When the negotiations end, Robert Gabriel Mugabe came to power.
1965 Malcolm X, a black nationalist leader, was assassinated on February 21.
1966- Botswana is one of the best democracies in the Third World-the elections were internationally recognized.
1967-1972 Carl Stokes was elected major of Cleveland, Ohio. He was the first black major of a major North American city.
1968 The United Kingdom gave Swaziland full independence. The small Kingdom of Swaziland is entirely surrounded by South Africa.
1968 Ecuatorial Guinea -the only Spanish-speaking country on the African mainland- was declared an independent state.
1972 America’s photojournalist Gordon Parks was awarded the Spingarn Medal by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. In the late 1970s, he published his book “To Smile”. Mel Watkins commented, “Gordon Parks emerges here as a Renaissance man who has resolutely pursued success in several fields. His memoir is sustained and enlivened by his urbanity and generosity”.
1973 The Bahamas formally declared its independence from the United Kingdom. Famous blacks: Sydney Poitier (actor) and Lynden Oscar Pindling (politician).
1974 Maynard Jackson was elected Major of Atlanta, Georgia. Maynard once said, “Atlanta is the best city in America for black people to live”.
1974-1976 Madame Elisabeth Domitien (Central African Republic) became the first black female to be elected Prime Minister on the African continent. She had undertaken diplomatic missions on behalf of her government. In 1975 she traveled to Taiwan for the inauguration of President Yen Chia-kan.
1976 South Africa under apartheid. Africans began protests against their exclusion from participation in society. Unfortunately 600 blacks were killed by government troops in Soweto. The International Community condemned the genocide.
1976 The white-ruled South Africa established a “puppet state” in Transkei. South Africa’s Prime Minister John Vorster said, “The Transkei is independent in the true sense of the word, as independent as Britain or France or Germany or Ghana, or any other country for that matter. So on what grounds you refuse to recognize the Transkei, I would not know. It would be sheer hypocrisy to refuse to recognize it and still recognize other countries that are far worse off from every angle that you look at it.”
1977 President Jimmy Carter appointed Andrew Young to service as US ambassador to the United Nations.
1978 President Jimmy Carter made a historic trip to Monrovia, the capital city of Liberia.
1980 John Paul II visited Upper Volta-today Burkina Faso.
1981 Ciskei became the fourth black homeland to be declared independent by South Africa. The International Community refused to recognize Ciskei.
1981 Antigua & Barbuda was declared an independent state in the Caribbean. Famous blacks: Viv Richards (cricket) and Jamaica Kincaid (writer)…
1982 South Africa’s campaigner Nelson Mandela won the Bruno Kreisky Prize for Human Rights…
1988 Suriname’s Anthony Conrad Nesty, who was born in Trinidad-Tobago, became the first black swimmer in history to win an Olympic gold medal.
1990 In February, Frederick Willem de Klerk, who came to power in 1989, released Nelson Mandela from prison. Mandela once wrote, “The policy of apartheid created a deep and lasting wound in my country and my people”.Four years on, South Africa became a nonracial democratic state when Nelson Mandela won the first multi-party election. Afterwards he toured in Europe and the United States, where he met with President George Bush and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. After the end of the apartheid, South Africa began to acquire a reputation as one of Africa’s best democracies.
1992 Caribbean’s writer Derek Walcott won worldwide recognition in1992 when he captured the Nobel Prize for Literature. Walcott was born in Castries, Saint Lucia, an English-speaking country on the Caribbean Sea.
1992 John Paul II went on a peace mission to Angola.
1994 Nelson Mandela -the Third World’s most respected elder statesman- published his autobiography “Long Walk to Freedom”.
1994-1997 Under the direction of Prime Minister Owen Arthur, Barbados, an English-speaking island in the Caribbean, had one of the highest life expectancy levels in the Third world. It ranked 24 of 173 countries on the United Nations Human Development Index. Barbados has been free of the coups and dictatorships.
1999 The House Freedom has cited Mali as one of the best democracies on the African continent…
2000-2001 California-born golfer Tiger Woods was number one in the world ranking…
2001 Colin Powell became prominent in national politics in 2001, when he was elected Secretary of State.
2002 Halle Berry won an Academy Award as Best Actress of the Year. She captured the hearts of critics and public alike…
2003 Sprinter Kim Collins, who studied in America, made history when he placed first in the 100m at the IAAF World Championships in Paris, France. He is the only individual world gold medallist ever for Saint Kitts, one of the world’s smallest nations.
2004 Kenya’s environmentalist Wangari Maathai, who founded the Green Belt Movement (GBM), became the first African women to receive the Nobel Peace Prize from the Norwegian Nobel Committee for her significant contributions to world peace. She has been especially involved in the emancipation of Kenyan women. Maathai once said, ” The typical African woman is supposed to be dependent, submissive, not better than her husband. Let me put it this way: education was so idolized that having a Ph.D was definitely a credit that should have gone to my husband rather than to myself. It was very difficult to see that the one who had the one credit that everyone wishes they had was the woman”.
2005 Condoleezza Rice took office on January 26, as United States Secretary of State in the cabinet of President George W. Bush, succeeding Colin Powell.
2005 On September 27, Michaelle Jean became the 27th Governor General of Canada. She was the first black to serve as personal representative of the British Crown in Canada. Michaelle Jean was born in Haiti.
2006 Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf was the second woman to become formal Head of State in Liberia. She became known as one of the most outspoken defenders of democracy in Africa.
2008 President George W. Bush visited Africa-Tanzania, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda and Ghana.
2008 Miriam Makeba, a world-famous singer, died. She had worked to strengthen the cultural life of South Africa and to improve the life of its countrymen.
2008-2009 Barack Obama became the first black in America history to be elected Head of State. In the world there are few leaders to rival the popularity of Barack Obama.
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Fisher, Allan C. “Rhodesia, a House Divided”, National Geographic, May 1975
Genovese, Eugene. Roll, Jordan, Roll: The World the salves Made, Random House Inc, 1976
Guevara Onofre, Alejandro. Enciclopedia Mundototal,1999
Grun, Bernard. The Timetables of History, Simon & Schuster, 1982
Judge, Joseph. “The Zulus: Black Nation in a Land of Apartheid”, December 1971
Shepperd, George & Nanda, Ved. Human Rights and Third World Development, Greenwood Press, 1985
The International Who’s Who 1996-97, Europa Publications Limited, 1996