The sit-ins that changed America
The “sixties” were born on Feb. 1, 1960, 50 years ago this week, when four African American college students staged the first sit-in at a segregated lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C. Since then, the mythology of the ’60s has dominated the idea of youthful activism. Of the three big events of the early civil rights movement — the 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education decision, the 1955-56 Montgomery bus boycott and the sit-ins — the sit-ins have always been the least understood and, yet, the most important for today’s young activists. We forget how troubled the civil rights movement was in January 1960. It was six years after Brown, but fewer than 1 in 100 black students in the South attended an integrated school. And during the four years after the end of the bus boycott, Martin Luther King Jr. struggled to build on that victory. Many worried that the civil rights movement had ground to a halt. Then Greensboro changed everything. (Continue Reading…)

Black History Month turns to the future
Black History Month typically has been a time to reflect on the achievements of prominent African-Americans such as Jackie Robinson, Harriet Tubman, Thurgood Marshall and others. But for some people, like Robin Price, this year’s celebration represents an opportunity to look ahead. Prompted in part by a more forward-looking view of Black History Month, which begins Monday, Price has decided to spend the year mentoring a young student. “There are so many young girls that need guidance; their mothers need guidance,” said Price, 55, an event planner from Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. “Not to say I’m a guru, but I have a great base. I’m excited about the prospects. I’m ready to share what I know.” (Continue Reading…)

First Black hospital in Chicago is remembered
The history of Chicago’s first hospital operated by African Americans will be discussed at an event Monday honoring Black History Month. Doctors and nurses will discuss the original facility’s opening in 1891, its financial crisis, its closing in 1987 and its reincarnation as the current Provident Hospital of Cook County. A round-table discussion will follow. The original Provident Hospital and Training School, founded by Dr. Daniel Hale Williams, was Chicago’s first hospital owned and run by blacks. The three-story brick building on the corner of 29th and Dearborn had 12 beds. (Continue Reading…)

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