Portal:African American

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African Americans, also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans, are citizens of the United States who have total or partial antebellum ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa.[1] Specifically, most African Americans are of West and Central African descent and are descendants of enslaved peoples within the boundaries of the present-day U.S.[1][2]

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Jonathan C. Gibbs

Many scholars have identified more than 1,500 African American officeholders during the Reconstruction period (1865-1876). All were Republicans. However, Canter Brown, Jr. makes the salient point that, in some states (such as Florida), the highest number of African Americans were elected or appointed to offices after 1876, after Reconstruction.

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4th United States Colored Infantry Regiment, c. 1864
Credit: Unknown photographer
"The men in this picture are from Company E, 4th United States Colored Infantry. Theirs was one of the detachments assigned to guard the nation's capital during the American Civil War", c. 1864


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We should emphasize not Negro History, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice.
Carter G. Woodson (1875–1950),
"The Celebration of Negro History Week", Journal of Negro History (April 1927)

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Booker T. Washington

Booker Taliaferro Washington (April 5, 1856 – November 14, 1915) was an American political leader, educator, orator and author. He was the dominant figure in the African American community in the United States from 1890 to 1915. Representing the last generation of black leaders born in slavery, and speaking for those blacks who had remained in the New South in an uneasy modus vivendi with the white Southerners, Washington was able throughout the final 25 years of his life to maintain his standing as the black leader because of the sponsorship of powerful whites, substantial support within the black community, his ability to raise educational funds from both groups and his skillful accommodation to the social realities of the age of segregation.

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  1. ^ a b Gomez, Michael Angelo (1998). Exchanging Our Country Marks : The Transformation of African Identities in the Colonial and Antebellum South: The Transformation of African Identities in the Colonial and Antebellum South. University of North Carolina Press. p. 12. ISBN 0807861715. 
  2. ^ Rucker, Walter C. (2006). The river flows on: Black resistance, culture, and identity formation in early America. LSU Press. p. 126. ISBN 0-8071-3109-1.