Mary Smith Kelsey Peake (1823–1862) taught many former slaves underneath Emancipation Oak. Sept 1861, she started a school near Fort Monroe, within present grounds of Hampton Univ. Supported herself as a dressmaker, & secretly taught from her home, instructing African Americans of all ages. Founded the Daughters of Zion to provide aid to the poor & the sick. In 1851 she married Thomas Peake, a former slave. Today, the city of Hampton honors Peake with a school, a street, & a park.
Barney Ford was born a slave in Virginia. At the age of twenty-fire, he escaped and began a successful career in a variety of entrepreneurial ventures.By 1860, he was living in Denver and became a prosperous tycoon in the hotel, restaurant, and barbershop businesses, earning the nickname the "Black Baron of Colorado." Throughout the Civil War, he gave financial assistance, food, and jobs to escaped and free African Americans.
Elizabeth "Bessie" Coleman (January 26, 1892 – April 30, 1926) was an American civil aviator. She was the first female pilot of African American descent and the first person of African American descent to hold an international pilot license
In 1917, Lucy Diggs Slowe became the first African-American to win a major sports title, American Tennis Association. She was one of the original founders of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority at Howard University. In 1922, she was appointed the first Dean of Women at Howard University.
Dr.Jane Cooke Wright, African American Cancer Research Living Legend and Pioneer. See more details about her life and work at: "Changing the Face of Medicine": http://www.nlm.nih.gov/changingthefaceofmedicine/physicians/biography_336.html
JUNETEENTH, JUNE 19, 1865 | came to mark a new beginning and a true independence day for African American Texans. The first official Texas Juneteenth celebration was organized by the Freedmen’s Bureau and it was held in Austin in 1867. For many years resolutions recognizing the historical significance of Juneteenth Independence Day have been introduced in Congress by a number of senators and the hope is that some day, the Juneteenth is recognized as a national holiday.