CuriShorts
CuriPow on 02/25/2020

The Native American Renaissance

Navarro Scott Mammedaty, a Kiowa Indian, was born in Lawton, Oklahoma and grew up in close contact with the Navajo and San Carlos Apache communities. He received his BA in political science in 1958 from the University of New Mexico. At Stanford University he received his MA and Ph.D. in English, in 1960 and 1963, respectively.

CuriPow on 02/24/2020

Black Edison

Born in Columbus, Ohio, Granville T. Woods received little schooling as a young man and, in his early teens, took up a variety of jobs, including as a railroad engineer in a railroad machine shop, as an engineer on a British ship, in a steel mill, and as a railroad worker. From 1876 to 1878, Woods lived in New York City, taking courses in engineering and electricity—a subject that he realized, early on, held the key to the future.

CuriPow on 02/23/2020

The WACs Of Puerto Rico

In 1944, the Army sent three WAC (Women Army Corps) recruiters to the island of Puerto Rico to organize a unit of 200 WACs. The young women of the island responded enthusiastically, and over 1,500 applications were submitted.

CuriPow on 02/22/2020

Carving A New Path

In 1943, Selma (Hortense) Burke became the first black sculptor to design a U.S. coin. She won a competition to design the portrait of President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the dime.

CuriPow on 02/21/2020

The Flying Ace

From September 1952 to May 1953, Captain Fernandez flew 124 combat missions in Korea. He was credited with downing 14.5 MiG 15 aircraft, becoming the number 2 ace of the Korean War.

CuriPow on 02/20/2020

Queen Of The Delawares

Queen Aliquippa was a leader of the Seneca tribe of Native Americans during the early part of the 18th century. Little is known about her early life. Her date of birth has been estimated anywhere from the early 1670s to the early 1700s, but historians have indicated that she was born in the 1680s, probably in upstate New York.

CuriPow on 02/19/2020

Angel Island

Angel Island Immigration Station, formally United States Immigration Station at Angel Island, the principal immigration facility on the West Coast of the United States from 1910 to 1940. It is located in the San Francisco Bay, near Alcatraz Island.

CuriPow on 02/18/2020

Taking To The Sky

In 1910, Fung Joe Guey, a young Chinese inventor, and aviator built a biplane that he kept aloft over Piedmont, CA for twenty minutes.

CuriPow on 02/17/2020

Turtle Island

North America (the United States and Canada) was originally known as Turtle Island. The name comes from the Aboriginal Creation story of the Anishinaabek and was renamed to the Americas after the Italian explorer, Amerigo Vespucci.

CuriPow on 02/16/2020

Escape artist

On May 7, 1878, the fire escape ladder was patented by Joseph Winters. Joseph Winters invented a wagon-mounted fire escape ladder for the city of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.

CuriPow on 02/15/2020

Between Two Worlds

A ceramist and author of two best-selling autobiogrophies---Fifth Chinese Daughter and No Chinese Stranger, Jade Snow Wong was among the first Chinese-American artist to have her work shown in major American museums, while her books pioneered the rich tradition of memoir writing among Chinese-American women.

CuriPow on 02/14/2020

Refining An Industry

Born to a French father and an African-American mother, Norbert Rillieux studied at Catholic schools in Louisiana before traveling to France to study at L'Ecole Centrale in Paris.

CuriPow on 02/13/2020

Sacheen Littlefeather

In 1973, Native American actress and activist Sacheen Littlefeather (also known as Marie Louise Cruz) refused Marlon Brando's Oscar in front of millions of viewers. On Brando's behalf, she used the opportunity to make a political statement decrying the stereotyping of Native Americans in movies and TV, and to support American Indian Movement activists at Wounded Knee, S.D. Some in the audience booed, but others found it inspiring even years after the event.

CuriPow on 02/12/2020

Portrait Perfect

Joshua Johnston was the first black portrait painter to win recognition in America. Born a slave, he lived and worked in Baltimore, Maryland.

CuriPow on 02/11/2020

A Legacy To Remember

María Irene Fornés is one of the most influential Latina playwrights in the United States. Her career spans over forty years of excellence as a playwright, director, and teacher from the 1960's to the early twenty-first century. She has written over forty plays and has received numerous awards.

CuriPow on 02/10/2020

Flying First Class

Ruth Carol Taylor was the first African-American airline flight attendant in America, She made the historic mark back on February 11, 1958.

CuriPow on 02/09/2020

Ignored For Twenty Years

Carlos Juan Finlay, a Cuban-American epidemiologist who discovered that yellow fever is transmitted from infected to healthy humans by a mosquito. Although he published experimental evidence of this discovery in 1886, his ideas were ignored for 20 years.

CuriPow on 02/08/2020

Chinatown

Because they were forbidden from owning land, intermarrying with Whites, owning homes, working in many occupations, getting an education, and living in certain parts of the city or entire cities, the Chinese basically had no other choice but to retreat into their own isolated communities as a matter of survival.

CuriPow on 02/07/2020

By Any Means

Cathay Williams was born to an enslaved mother and a free father in Independence, Missouri in 1844. During her adolescence, she worked as a house slave on the Johnson plantation on the outskirts of Jefferson City, Missouri. In 1861, Union forces occupied Jefferson City during the early stages of the Civil War. At this time, captured slaves were officially designated as contraband and were forced to serve in military support roles such as cooks, laundresses, or nurses. Before her voluntary enlistment, at just 17 years old, Williams served as an Army cook and a washerwoman. In this role, she accompanied the infantry all over the country. Williams served under the service of General Philip Sheridan and witnessed the Red River Campaign and the Battle of Pea Ridge.

CuriPow on 02/06/2020

Hole In One

Nancy Lopez was the most celebrated player in women's golf in the decade after her rookie year in 1978. She began playing golf as a young girl and was an accomplished amateur before starting her professional career while a sophomore at Tulsa University in Oklahoma. Lopez was named Player of the Year by the Ladies Professional Golf Association four times (1978-79, 1985 and 1988) and was inducted into the Hall of Fame when she was only 30 years old (1987). The greatest female golfer of her generation, she was also known for her cheerful persona on the course.

CuriPow on 02/05/2020

Black Seminole

Due to the continued mistreatment of the slave populations in the South and the 1807 act to prohibit the importation of slaves to the U.S., starting in the post-Revolutionary era, many slaves began to escape by running to Spanish Florida, near the colony of St. Augustine.

CuriPow on 02/04/2020

Before The Colonization Of The New World

A water feature found in the Maya city of Palenque, Mexico, is the earliest known example of engineered water pressure in the new world, according to a collaboration between two Penn State researchers, an archaeologist and a hydrologist.

CuriPow on 02/03/2020

First To Serve

Carmen Contreras-Bozak was the first Latina to serve in the U.S. Women's Army Corps (WAC) where she served as an interpreter and in numerous administrative positions.

CuriPow on 02/02/2020

From A Slave To A Philanthropist

Bridget "Biddy" Mason became one of the first prominent citizens and landowners in Los Angeles in the 1850s and 1860s.