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This Month In Black History: Important Things That Happened In July That You Never Learned

This Month In Black History: Important Things That Happened In July That You Never Learned

It’s about that time again!

July is a great month of firsts. There are so many gems of little known historical facts from birth and death dates and momentous occasions critical to the advancement of Black people. As we continue to shine a spotlight on Black history, we promote a reclamation of our cultural memory. Be sure to share these moments with those you hold dear and ensure that the knowledge continues. For this month in Black history, here are some important things that happened in July that you may have never learned, courtesy of


July 18, 1753 - Lemuel Haynes, first Black man to be ordained as a minister, is born


July 3, 1775 - Prince Hall founds first Black Lodge of FreeMasons in the U.S.


July 21, 1818 - The first Black college professor in the United States, Charles L. Reason, is born


July 4, 1844 - Sculptor Edmonia Lewis is born



July 1862 - Congress authorized the president to accept Blacks for military service. 


July 21, 1864 - The first daily Black newspaper, The New Orleans Tribune, is published in English


July 26, 1865 - Patrick Francis Healy becomes the first Black American ever to earn a PhD


July 1868 - Francis L. Cardozo becomes first Black cabinet officer at the state level


July 29, 1870 - George Dixon, the first Black to hold a WORLD title in any sport, is born.


July 23, 1872 - E. McCoy receives patent for steam engine lubricator


July 4, 1881 - Booker T. Washington opens Tuskegee Institute



July 14, 1885 - Sarah E. Goode made history as the first African American woman to receive a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (Patent #322,17) for inventing the cabinet bed.


July 1889 - Frederick Douglass accepts appointment as Minister to Haiti


July 1, 1893 - NAACP leader Walter Francis White is born


July 29, 1895 - The First National Convention of Black women held in Boston, MA


July 1, 1899 - Thomas Dorsey, The Father of Gospel Music, is born 



July 5, 1899 - Anna Arnold Hedgeman, first Black woman to hold a position in the NY Mayoral Cabinet, is born


July 18, 1899 - L.C. Bailey granted patent #620,286 for the folding bed


July 1905 - Niagara Movement was founded by W.E.B. Du Bois and William Monroe Trotter 



July 7, 1906 - Baseball star Leroy Robert “Satchel” Paige is born


July 2, 1908 - Thurgood Marshall, first Black Supreme Court Justice, is born


July 29, 1909 - Novelist Chester Himes is born


July 4, 1912 - First Black heavyweight champion Jack Johnson defeats Jim Flynn


July 8, 1914 - Jazz Singer Billy Eckstine is born


July 11, 1915 -Mifflin Wistar Gibbs, publisher of the first Black newspaper in California, passes away


July 28, 1917 - NAACP’s Silent Protest Parade on Fifth Avenue in New York City becomes one of the first major mass demonstrations by African Americans 



July 18, 1918 - Nelson Mandela, first Black president of South Africa, is born


July 2, 1925 - Civil rights activist Medgar Evers is born


July 2, 1925 - Patrice Lumumba, first prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, is born


July 11, 1925 - Legendary opera star, Mattiwilda Dobbs, is born


July 9, 1927 - William T. Francis, Minnesota's first African American diplomat, was named U.S. Minister and Consul to Liberia


July 10, 1927 - David Dinkins, the first black mayor of New York City, is born 



July 3, 1929 - David Lynch of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame group The Platters, is born


July 6 1931 - Entertainer Della Reese is born


July 16, 1934 - Donald Payne, first African American congressman from New Jersey, is born


July 2, 1935 - Edward Bullins, playwright and pioneer in Black Arts Movement, is born


July 12, 1936 - Actress and Founder of the Negros People Theater, Rose McClendon, dies.


July 3, 1940 - Singer/songwriter Fontella Bass is born


July 22, 1941 - One of the foremost innovators of funk music, George Clinton, is born



July 25, 1941 - Emmett Till is born


July 10, 1943 - First Black male to win Wimbledon, Arthur Ashe, is born.


July 22, 1946 - Actor Danny Glover is born


July 9, 1947 - Former NFL star O.J. Simpson is born


July 6, 1949 - Singer Phyllis Hyman is born


July 25, 1953 - NFL Hall of Famer Walter Payton is born


July 20, 1954 - Freeman Robertson Bosley, Jr., the first African American mayor of St. Louis, Missouri


July 3, 1956 - Talk show host Montel Williams is born


July 31, 1956 - Deval L. Patrick, the second African American elected as a state Governor, is born


July 17, 1959 - Singer Billie Holiday passes away


July 1, 1961 - Olympic track and field star Carl Lewis is born


July 15, 1961 - Forest Whitaker, African American actor, producer and director, is born.


July 30, 1961 - Award winning actor, Laurence Fishburne, is born


July 1, 1962 - Actor Andre Braugher is born


July 31, 1962 - Beloved actor Wesley Snipes is born


July 4, 1963 - Epsy Campbell Barr, Costa Rica’s first Black woman VP, is born



July 24, 1963 - Basketball player, Karl Malone, is born


July 27, 1963 - Inventor Garret Morgan passes away


July 24, 1964 - Baseball superstar Barry Bonds is born


July 3, 1966 - MLB star Moises Alou is born


July 15, 1970 - James H. McGhee was sworn in as Dayton's first Black mayor.


July 1, 1971 - Rap icon Missy Elliott is born



July 1, 1971 - Learie Constantine, international cricketer and first Black UK peer, passes away


July 6, 1971 - Louis Armstrong passes away


July 6, 1971 - Engineer Henry T. Sampson received patent for gamma-electric cell


July 7, 1972 - Basketball superstar Lisa Leslie is born


July 5, 1975 - Arthur Ashe becomes first Black man to win the men's single title at Wimbledon



July 1976 - Newark Mayor Kenneth Gibson makes history as first Black president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors


July 16, 1977 - Janelle “Penny” Commissiong crowned as the First Black Miss Universe.


July 31, 1981 - Attorney Arnette R. Hubbard was installed as the first woman president of the National Bar Association 


July 3, 1983 - Calvin Smith makes history as the fastest man alive


July 29, 1988 - Haben Girma, the first deaf and blind graduate of Harvard Law School, is born.




July 4, 1991 - The National Civil Rights Museum is dedicated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee


July 4, 2009 - Former NFL star Steve McNair passes away


July 8, 2010 - David Harold Blackwell, first African American elected to the National Academy 

of Sciences, passes away


July 27, 2011 - Charles Leroy, the first African American secret service agent, passes away

July 2, 2015 - Dexter Dillard Eure Sr., pioneering Boston Globe columnist, passes away

Cover photo: This month in Black History: Important things that happened in July that you never learned/Actress Della Reese/Photo Courtesy of Getty Images/Country Living Magazine