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WHY INVINCIBLE, FATHERS & MOTHERS OF BLACK AMERICA                      

 In Invincible, Fathers & Mothers of Black America, I wanted to share how Black pioneers built the institutions, organizations, schools, businesses, and communities that became Black America. Many of the names that I share are not so well known. Phillis Wheatley, Prince Hall, Richard Allen, James Forten, Jarena Lee, Samuel B. Cornish, James Russwurn and many others. They are just as important to Black America and America for that matter, as Washington, Jefferson, Hamilton, Adams.         

 

I share the names and importance of the organizations, institutions, businesses and communities they built that formed the infrastructure of Black America. I also spotlight how they forged a common, Black identity, initially recognizing their connection to the continent from which their ancestors had been captured and brought to what was then called the “New World.”  African was prominent in the names of those early organizations and institutions ... African Lodge Number 347, African Methodist Episcopal Church, African Grove Theatre, African Free School Number 1. This new identity helped to equip them to withstand and navigate a White racist system that sought to destroy them and mitigate their humanity.         

 

Why did these brave, invincible, Black men and women establish Black America? They had to do so because they were forbidden from participating in the political, economic and social structure and life of the rapidly growing new nation. Facing brutal racism and discrimination, they not only endured but built a Black America that paralleled “White America.” And, they helped to build America, too.  This story needed to be told, especially for young readers. To know this important part of Black history/American history is not only inspiring but helps to portray a more complete American story.  

 

From The Author’s Notes:         

I didn’t know the historical significance of Black America when I was growing up. Of course, I knew there was a Black community, I lived in one. I knew there was a Black America. I saw it on the pages of Black magazines and newspapers and in the lives of Black people I knew. But I didn’t know the history or the people who established it.                   So, I am honored to share a few of the Founding Fathers and Mothers of Black America in this picture book. Just as there would be no United States of America without the Founding Fathers, there would be no Black America without these Founding Fathers and Mothers

 

Invincible, Fathers & Mothers of Black America, by Wade Hudson, illustrated by  E.B . Lewis​​​

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