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Oliver Wendell “Ollie” Harrington

Oliver Wendell “Ollie” Harrington – February 14th in African American History

February 14, 1912 Oliver Wendell “Ollie” Harrington, cartoonist and political satirist, was born in Valhalla, New York. Harrington started drawing cartoons at a young age and went to work for the Amsterdam News as a cartoonist and political satirist. In 1935, he created “Dark Laughter” a single panel cartoon which appeared in the African American […]

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Archibald John Motley, Jr.

Archibald John Motley, Jr. – January 16th in African American History

January 16, 1981 Archibald John Motley, Jr., African-American painter, ceramist, and sculptor, died. Motley was born October 7, 1891 in New Orleans, Louisiana. He studied painting at the School of Art Institute of Chicago and graduated in 1918. His painting “Mending Socks” was voted the most popular work in a 1927 exhibit of works by […]

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Jackie Ormes

December 26th in African American History – Jackie Ormes

December 26, 1985 Jackie Ormes, the first African American female cartoonist, died. Ormes was born Zelda Mavin Jackson on August 1, 1911 in Monongahela, Pennsylvania. Ormes started in journalism as a proofreader for the Pittsburgh Courier. In 1937, her one-panel comic strip “Torchy Brown in Dixie to Harlem” first appeared in the Courier. Ormes moved […]

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Jerry Pickney

December 22nd in African American History – Jerry Pickney

December 22, 1939 Jerry Pickney, award winning illustrator of children’s books, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Pickney began drawing at the age of four and earned a scholarship to the Philadelphia Museum College of Art. After graduation, he held a number of positions in the field of design and illustration. Eventually he opened the Jerry […]

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Ed Wilson

March 28th in African American History – Ed Wilson

March 28, 1925 Ed Wilson, sculptor, was born in Baltimore, Maryland.  After serving in the United States Army from 1943 to 1946, Wilson earned his Master of Arts degree from the University of Iowa in 1953. Wilson’s involvement in the Civil Rights Movement is apparent in such works as “Minority Man” (1957). In 1964, Wilson […]

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Dox Thrash

March 22nd in African American History – Dox Thrash

March 22, 1892 Dox Thrash, painter and printmaker, was born in Griffen, Georgia. In 1911, Thrash moved to Chicago, Illinois to study at the Art Institute of Chicago. In 1917, he joined the United States Army and 14 months later was gassed and wounded while serving in France. After being discharged, he returned to the […]

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Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller

March 18th in African American History – Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller

March 18, 1968 Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, painter and sculptor, died. Fuller was born June 8, 1877 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her career as an artist began when one of her high school projects was chosen to be included in the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. Based on that work, she won a scholarship to the Pennsylvania […]

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