A picture is certainly worth a thousand words. What better way to celebrate Black History Month than by taking a moment to acknowledge the snapshots of time that represent the struggle and triumph of African-Americans through the years?
As part of our Black History Month coverage, we will be featuring one photo a day and 15 min show that honors years of groundbreaking achievements within the black community. These photos bring tears to our eyes, instill pride in our hearts and motivate us to carry on the legacy of strength and perseverance.
All the early Black congressmen (and senators) were members of the Republican party. This is because the Republicans, exemplified by President Abraham Lincoln, were the party in office during the Civil War and many abolitionists belonged to the Republican Party. The Democrats were opposed to all attempts to banish slavery.
Thirteen of the twenty-two Blacks elected to Congress during Reconstruction were ex-slaves and all were self-taught or family trained. There were seven lawyers, three ministers, one banker, one publisher, two school teachers, and three college presidents. Eight had experience in state assemblies and senates. There were problems, however, as five of the first twenty Blacks elected to the House were denied their seats and ten others had their terms interrupted or delayed. Claims of vote fraud were the most common ploy used by Whites to deny an elected Black person his seat.
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