During the 1960's an important component of El Movimiento Chicano was the involvement of artists in this socio-political movement. As artists began to actively participate in the efforts to redress the plight of Mexicans in the United States, there emerged a new iconography and symbolic language which not only articulated the movement but became the core of a Chicano cultural renaissance.
John Charles Robinson, nicknamed the Brown Condor, was an African American aviator who fought with the Imperial Ethiopian Air Force against Benito Mussolini and Italy during the Second Italian-Ethiopian War, 1935–1936. He is also known as the Father of the Tuskegee Airmen for his contributions to the aviation programs he began at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama in the early 1940s.
In 1942 George Houser, James Farmer, Bayard Rustin, and Bernice Fisher established the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE). Members of CORE had been deeply influenced by the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and the nonviolent civil disobedience campaign that he used successfully against British rule in India. The students became convinced that the same methods could be employed by African Americans to obtain civil rights in America.
Born to a Danish seamstress and a black West Indian cook, Nella Larsen’s first story was published in 1926. Her first novel, Quicksand (1928), concerns a young, headstrong biracial woman who seeks love, acceptance, and a sense of purpose, only to be mired in an emotional morass of her own creation. Her second novel, Passing (1929), centers on two light-skinned women, one of whom, Irene, marries a black man and lives in Harlem, while the other, Clare, marries a white man but cannot reject her black cultural ties.
Dr. Enrique A. Marcatili, an Argentinian-American was not only a brilliant physicist but he was also a pioneer in optical fiber research. In 1975 he became a member of the National Academy of Engineering and was the recipient of the IEEE's Bakers Prize.
South Asian Indian immigrants initially entered the United States as laborers, following the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. Recruited initially by Canadian-Pacific railroad companies, a few thousand Sikh immigrants from the Punjabi region immigrated to Canada which, like India, was part of the British empire.
Abenaki is a Native American tribe whose Algonquian language can be translated as "those living at the sunrise", "people of the dawn land," or "easterners." The people classified under this name occupied ancestral territory in what now is the state of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts.
Pashupati Joseph Sarma was born on September 29, 1893, in Calcutta, British India. He arrived in the New York City on June 28, 1912, at age of 20 from Liverpool, England on the ship Mauretania. Sarma settled down in Chicago, Illinois where he becomes a general medical surgeon in the city.
Metacom was an influential Pokanoket-Wampanoag leader of the seventeenth century who played a critical role in mobilizing and maintaining a regional indigenous uprising against the New England colonies.
While teaching grammar school, Dolores Huerta noticed that many of her students showed up to class ill or malnourished. Her students’ strife inspired her to begin her lifelong crusade of correcting economic injustice.
Born by the name of George Speck in 1822 in Saratoga Lake, New York, Crum was the son of an African American father and Native American mother, a member of the Huron tribe. He professionally adopted the name "Crum," as it was the name his father used in his career as a jockey. As a young man, Crum worked as a guide in the Adirondack Mountains and as an Indian trader. Eventually, he came to realize that he possessed exceptional talent in the culinary arts.
The first Hispanic American to be elected to the United States Senate, Democrat Dennis Chavez had a long and distinguished career in government service, first as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and then as a senator from the state of New Mexico. Chavez was a strong supporter of education and civil rights.
Dr. Philip Jaisohn (a.k.a. SOH, Jae-Pil) arrived in the U.S. in 1885 as a political exile and became the first Korean to be naturalized as a U.S. citizen. He also became the first Korean American medical doctor as well as an influential political reformer in Korea when he returned home in 1896.
Dalip Singh Saund made history in 1956 when he became the first Asian elected to Congress. Born in India in 1899, Saund came to the United States in 1920 to study at the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned a doctorate degree in mathematics. Despite being highly educated, Saund discovered that his career options were limited due to anti-immigrant feelings in the U.S. As a result, he worked in farming for the next 20 years. At the same time, Saund began fighting discriminatory laws against Indians. In 1949, he and other Indians finally earned the right to become U.S. citizens. In 1956, Saund left the fields of California for the halls of Congress.
Charlotte Hawkins Brown was educated in Massachusetts before returning to the South to teach African-American children. In 1902, she opened the Palmer Memorial Institute, named after a benefactor; it went on to become a famed 200-acre prep school offering black students rich course offerings.
Sylvia Méndez was born in 1936 in Santa Ana, CA to a Puerto Rican mother and a Mexican father. As a young child, she attended a school for Hispanic children. When she was eight-years-old, her parents decided Sylvia, her brothers, and their cousins should attend a nearby Whites-only school with better resources. The school said Sylvia’s lighter-skinned cousins could attend, but she and her brothers could not.
Daisy Lee Gatson Bates was an activist, journalist, civil rights activist and publisher and former head of the NAACP (Little Rock, AR). Bates has a rich history of accomplishments but is well known for her involvement in the Little Rock Nine.