Contributor: William Katz

Paul Robeson, An American Trail Blazer (1898 – 1976)

“Paul Robeson at 100 years” Apr. 9, 1898 – Jan. 23, 1976 by William Loren Katz On April 9, 1898 Paul Robeson was born to a family steeped in resistance. His father had escaped from slavery. Young Robeson grew to be a majestic figure in the United States, beginning at Rutgers as an all-star athlete, then […]

James Beckwourth, A Mountain Man to Know

“James P. Beckwourth” Apr. 6, 1798 – Oct. 29, 1866 by William Loren Katz James “Jim” Beckwourth emerges from the fur trade’s early history as “the greatest Indian fighter of his generation.” This was an age when his competitors were Daniel Boone, Davy Crockett, Jim Bridger, and Kit Carson. In skill, accomplishment, and violence, he […]

Lucy Gonzales Parsons: A Woman For All Seasons (1853 – 1942)

Lucy Gonzales Parsons A woman for all seasons by William Loren Katz (c. 1853 – Mars 7, 1942) A dynamic, militant, self-educated public speaker and writer, she became the first American woman of color to carry her crusade for socialism across the country and overseas. Lucy Gonzales started life in Texas. She was of Mexican […]

George White, African Native American in Congress (1852 – 1918)

“GEORGE H. WHITE” by William Loren Katz The first Black Indian to serve in Congress. The United States among nations of the world can claim some kind of a prize for its ability to ignore some of its most daring and brave historical figures – if they are people of color. The first Black Indian […]

The Lowry Band Of North Carolina

by William Loren Katz Adapted from Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage © Atheneum, 2012 revised edition.  People of African and Native American descent have played a prominent part in North Carolina history since survivors of the Lost Colony of Roanoke in 1585 found a home among the nearby Lumbee Indians and then took in runaway slaves from […]

The First U.S. Foreign Ambassadors of Good Will

by William Loren Katz Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage In 1803 when President Thomas Jefferson purchased the Louisiana Territory from France, he doubled the size of the new United States of America It also gave two Americans — considered unneeded inferior or criminal — a unique opportunity to serve as US ambassadors of good will. Sacajawea, […]

An Ancient Seminole Christmas Gift: Freedom (1837)

by William Loren Katz adapted from Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage © Atheneum, 2012 revised edition  On Christmas day 1837, the Africans and Native Americans who formed Florida’s Seminole Nation defeated a vastly superior US invading army bent on cracking this early rainbow coalition and returning the Africans to slavery. The Seminole victory stands as a milestone […]
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