DC’s Favorite Centenarian: A Tribute to Virginia McLaurin

“I thought I would never live to get in the White House” ~ Virginia McLaurin Barack Obama and Michelle Obama Participate in a Photo Line with 106-Year-Old Virginia McLaurin in the Blue Room (NAID 235144670) On November 14, 2022, community activist, volunteer, and supercentenarian, Virginia Lugenia McLaurin passed away at age of 113, in Olney, Maryland. She became … Continue reading DC’s Favorite Centenarian: A Tribute to Virginia McLaurin

Basketball Legend and Civil Rights Champion: A Tribute to Bill Russell

“Commitment separates those who live their dreams from those who live their lives regretting the opportunities they have squandered.” ~ Bill Russell President Obama getting a hug from Bill Russell. (NAID 222096181) On July 31, 2022, Civil Rights Activist and National Basketball Association (NBA) Hall of Famer William Felton Russell passed away at the age … Continue reading Basketball Legend and Civil Rights Champion: A Tribute to Bill Russell

“Wills on Duty:” The Guard that Discovered the Watergate Break-in

On the night of June 17, 1972, security guard Frank Wills was making his usual rounds when he noticed a piece of duct tape covering the lock of the back parking lot door to the Watergate Office Building in Washington, D.C. As noted in the Security Officer's Log (NAID 304970), he removed the tape, only … Continue reading “Wills on Duty:” The Guard that Discovered the Watergate Break-in

one person walking by a burned out 2 story bldg w/palm trees in the background

Frustration & Fire: The 1992 Los Angeles Uprising

On April 29, 1992, four Los Angeles police officers were acquitted of all charges, in an East Ventura County Courthouse in Simi Valley, for the brutal attack on an unarmed Black motorist. Rodney Glen King was pulled over on March 3, 1991, by two California Highway Patrol Officers, after a high speed chase from an … Continue reading Frustration & Fire: The 1992 Los Angeles Uprising

“Lift Every Voice”: A Tribute to Lani Guinier

“As a country, we are in a state of denial about issues of race and racism. And too many of our leaders have concluded that the way to remedy racism is to simply stop talking about race.” ~Lani Guinier Lani Guinier, 1993 (flickr) On January 7, 2022, attorney, law professor, and author Lani Guinier passed … Continue reading “Lift Every Voice”: A Tribute to Lani Guinier

“They Call Me Mister Tibbs!”: A Tribute to Sidney Poitier

“I always wanted to be someone better the next day than I was the day before.” ~Sidney Poitier On January 6, 2022, Oscar award winning actor, director, ambassador, and civil rights activist Sidney Poitier KBE passed away at the age of 94 in Los Angeles, California. His dignity, style, and grace made Poitier one of … Continue reading “They Call Me Mister Tibbs!”: A Tribute to Sidney Poitier

President Obama and Tutu embrace

No Future Without Forgiveness – A Tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu

"Do your little bit of good where you are; it is those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world." ~ Desmond Tutu On December 26, 2021, the Most Reverend Desmond Tutu, former Archbishop of Cape Town, passed away at the age of 90 in Cape Town, South Africa. Tutu led a life … Continue reading No Future Without Forgiveness – A Tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Baker speaking at a microphone

An American Original Inducted into the French Pantheon – Josephine Baker

Today's post was written by Netisha Currie, archives specialist at the National Archives at College Park. On November 30, 2021, Josephine Baker was bestowed the honor of Panthéonisation - being inducted into the national mausoleum of heroes at the French Pantheon. She is the first entertainer, Black woman, American, and only the sixth woman to … Continue reading An American Original Inducted into the French Pantheon – Josephine Baker

From the Battlefield to the World’s Stage: A Tribute to General Colin L. Powell

“If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude.” ~Colin Powell On October 18, 2021, four-star general, diplomat, and statesman Colin L. Powell passed away at the age of 84, at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center … Continue reading From the Battlefield to the World’s Stage: A Tribute to General Colin L. Powell

view of ballpark ca. 1938 w/marked segregated areas

The First Time Jackie Robinson Broke Baseball’s Color Barrier

Today's post was written by Bob Nowatzki, Archives Technician in Research Services at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland. For good reason, Jackie Robinson’s debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947 at Ebbets Field is seen by many as a major event in the history of U.S. civil rights as well as … Continue reading The First Time Jackie Robinson Broke Baseball’s Color Barrier