Happy birthday, Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington! Born here in Washington, D.C., the pianist, composer, and orchestra leader had a huge, international impact on jazz. This is a 1963 program for his performance in Damascus, Syria
March 9, 1913: Florence Hedges writes to her dad about her experiences marching in the 1913 Woman Suffrage parade in Washington, DC. On the day before the presidential inauguration, more than 5,000 women marched up Pennsylvania Avenue demanding the right to vote.
May 10, 1869: First transcontinental railroad completed, joining the east and west rails at Promontory, Utah. A national network of iron, steel, and steam, represented by the driving of the Golden Spike, became a unifying metaphor in the years after the Civil War. Traveling west with his mother in June 1869, eight-year-old Hart F. Farwell stopped at Promontory to cut a chip from a special railroad tie.
A sweetly likeable and very popular Jazz baby, Ivy Anderson was Duke Ellington's favorite Vocalist. Ivy was invited to be in films and was the first to sing the classic Jazz hit Stormy Weather in the movies. An entrepreneurial Jazz Baby,when illness forced her to stop singing,she opened a restaurant, Ivie's Chicken shack.
Can't tell your Dizzys from your Dukes? Whether you're new to jazz, or just looking for a quick and easy way to remember jazz history's names and faces, look no further than LeRoy Neiman's iconic painting, Big Band.