January 8

On January 8, 1811, the largest slave revolt in U.S. history began on Louisiana’s German Coast sugar plantations on the east bank of the Mississippi River in what are now St. John the Baptist and St. Charles Parishes.  Armed primarily with hand tools, the men marched toward New Orleans, setting plantations and crops on fire and adding to their numbers as they went.  The uprising of an estimated 300-500 people lasted for two days before it was brutally suppressed by the military. About 95 marchers were killed during the revolt, and another 44 were later executed.


Eva Roberta Coles Boone (January 8, 1880 - December 8, 1902) was a graduate of Hartshorn Memorial College in Richmond, the first college for African American women. She married Clinton Boone, a graduate of Virginia Union University, and the couple went as Baptist missionaries to what was then the Congo Free State. She died of snakebite a year later but Rev, Boone stayed on many more years.

Noble Drew Ali (born Timothy Drew, January 8, 1886 - July 20, 1929) was the founder of the Moorish Science Temple of America, based on the belief that African Americans were descended from the Moors of North West Africa and thus were Moorish by nationality and Islamic by faith. He first founded the Temple in Newark, N.J., in 1923 and soon there were branches in Pittsburgh, Detroit, and other major industrial cities of the northeast, especially in neighborhoods that had attracted mass black migration from the South. Wallace Fard Muhammad was a member and later founded the Nation of Islam

Dame Shirley Veronica Bassey, DBE (born 8 January 1937) is a Welsh singer. She found fame in the mid-1950s and has been called "one of the most popular female vocalists in Britain during the last half of the 20th century". In the US, in particular, she is best known for recording the theme songs to the James Bond films Goldfinger (1964), Diamonds Are Forever (1971), and Moonraker (1979).

Lee Roy Young Jr. (born January, 1947) was the first African-American Texas ranger in the modern era. Before being accepted into the elite in 19888 he had served in several capacities including narcotics, kidnapping, forgery, and as a criminal intelligence investigator in San Antonio. After his retirement he opened an investigative business in the Dallas area. (Extensive interview here with him from the Ranger Hall of Fame.)


On January 8, 1912, the African National Congress (ANC) was founded to end apartheid and give voting rights to black and mixed race South Africans. In was banned in 1960 until F. W. de Klerk lifted the ban and freed Nelson Mandela in 1990. It has been the ruling party of post-apartheid South Africa on the national level, beginning with the election of Nelson Mandela in the 1994 election, the first election after the end of apartheid. (This quilt titled “Voices of Freedom” was made in 1992 by Deonna Green of Remus, Michigan and depicts important figures in African American history including Nelson Mandela, president of the ANC from 1991-97.)

On January 8, 1977, Pauli Murray was ordained by the Episcopal Church as the first African American woman to become a priest in the United States. She had previously been a noted civil rights attorney, law professor, and president of Benedict College before entering seminary after she was sixty years old.

Photo Gallery

The FROGS (Friendly Rivalry Often Generates Success) Dinner at the Loendi Club in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Hill District - January 8, 1913
January 8, 1971 300 UCSB Black students hold a protest in downtown Santa Barbara protesting police abuse of students Booker Banks and Phil Gardiner

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) is hugged by his wife Michelle Obama before his speech at a primary night rally in the gymnasium at the Nashua South High School on January 8, 2008 in Nashua, New Hampshire. Obama finished a projected 2nd place behind Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) in the nation's first democratic primaryPhoto Credit: Win McNamee, Getty Images via StyleLis

Actor Kel Mitchell and his bride Asia Lee on their wedding day, on January 8th, 2012


From the New York Times on January 8 1923. Rosewood Massacre

Brenda Dennis is One of the West Coast Newest Debs - Jet Magazine, January 8, 1959

Prophet Jones Throne - Jet Magazine, January 8, 1953

The African-American Century : How Black Americans Have Shaped Our Country by Henry Louis Jr. Gates. $13.84. Publication: January 8, 2002. Publisher: Free Press


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