January 22, 1924 James Louis “J.J.” Johnson, jazz trombonist, composer and arranger, was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. At the age of nine he started studying the piano, but decided to play the trombone at the age of 14. In 1941, Johnson started his professional career. He played in Benny Carter’s orchestra from 1942 to 1945, […]
January 21, 1963 Hakeem Abdul Olajuwon, Hall of Fame basketball player, was born in Lagos, Nigeria. Olajuwon came to the United States to play basketball for the University of Houston where he had a standout career, including winning the 1983 NCAA Tournament Player of the Year Award.
January 20, 1947 Josh Gibson, Hall of Fame Negro League baseball player, died. Gibson was born December 21, 1911 in Buena Vista, Georgia. He made his professional debut with the Homestead Grays, the preeminent Negro League team of that time, in 1930.
January 19, 1993 Reginald F. Lewis, lawyer and entrepreneur, died. Lewis was born December 7, 1942 in Baltimore, Maryland. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Virginia State University in 1965 and his Bachelor of Law degree from Harvard Law School in 1968. Over the next 15 years, Lewis helped a large number of […]
January 18, 1967 Reece “Goose” Tatum, Hall of Fame basketball player, died. Tatum was born May 31, 1921 in El Dorado, Arkansas. In high school, he played baseball, football, and basketball. He played Negro league baseball from 1937 to 1949 and was a co-owner of the Detroit Clowns baseball team in the late 1950s.
January 17, 1964 Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama, the first African American First Lady of the United States, was born in Chicago, Illinois. Obama earned her Bachelor of Arts degree cum laude from Princeton University in 1985 and her Juris Doctorate degree from Harvard University Law School in 1988. While at Harvard, she participated in demonstrations […]
January 16, 1943 Marcelite Jordan Harris, the first African American female General in the United States Air Force, was born in Houston, Texas. Harris earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in speech and drama from Spelman College in 1964 and was commissioned through Officer Training School in 1965. She has held a variety of assignments, […]
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Previous Days in African American History
Other African American History Posts
- February 17th in African American History – Mary Frances Berry
- June 11th in African American History – Johnny D. Bright
- Clatonia Joaquin Dorticus – March 19th in African American History
- March 6th in African American History – Kirby Puckett
- John R. Thompson, Jr. – September 2nd in African American History