CuriShorts
CuriPow on 04/05/2021

The Haudenosaunee/Iroquois Confederacy

By the time Europeans made contact with the Haudenosaunee/Iroquois, their Confederacy was long established, sophisticated political and social system that united the territories of six nations in a symbolic longhouse that stretched across what is now the state of New York.

CuriPow on 04/04/2021

The Few, The Proud

In 1942 black Marines were first enlisted but were placed on inactive status until the Marines could build a training-size unit in segregated facilities at Montford Point (thus were called the Montford Pointers), a training reservation at Marine Barracks, New River, NC (later named Camp Lejune). When training began for the first black contingent, the 51st Defense Battalion, Howard P. Perry was the first person to report on that day.

CuriPow on 04/03/2021

From Samurai Chemist To Cherry Blossoms

Japanese-American biochemist, Jokichi Takamine, crystallized adrenalin, the first hormone to be isolated in the twentieth century, from the adrenal medulla, in the summer of 1900. This was the first pure hormone to be isolated from natural sources.

CuriPow on 04/02/2021

Lawyer, Educator, Politician, and Civil Rights Leader

Barbara Jordan spent a lifetime breaking racial and gender barriers. Most notably, she was the first African American US congresswoman to come from the deep South, the first female representative from Texas and the first African American woman elected to the Texas Senate. There had not been a black Texas state senator since 1883. A gifted orator, she famously delivered the keynote address at the 1976 Democratic National Convention -- the first black woman ever to do so.

CuriPow on 04/01/2021

Overcoming Obstacles Between Cultures

White employers benefited from racial tension, even creating conflicts between the Chinese and Mexicans workers. Disunity along racial lines made it more difficult for workers to organize, keeping the wages artificially low and rendering the workers powerless. When the government passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, the employers aggressively recruited Japanese workers to replace the dwindling Chinese workforce in hopes of maintaining schisms in the beet fields.

CuriPow on 03/31/2021

A Star That Shined Too Bright

Alice Augusta Ball was an African-American chemist who developed the first successful treatment for those suffering from Hansen’s disease (leprosy). Ball was also the very first African American and the very first woman to graduate with an M.S. degree in chemistry from the College of Hawaii (now known as the University of Hawaii). Tragically, Ball died at the young age of 24. During her brief lifetime, she did not get to see the full impact of her discovery. It was not until years after her death that Ball got the proper credit she deserved.

CuriPow on 03/30/2021

Spiritual Soldier

Dr. Bhagat Singh Thind was the first turbaned Sikh to serve in the U.S. military in 1917 during WWI. At the time of his enlistment, he was still an Indian citizen and was honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant.

CuriPow on 03/29/2021

Lone Survivor

Osborne Perry Anderson was one of the five African American men to accompany John Brown in the raid on the Federal Arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia) in October 1859. Anderson was a free-born black abolitionist, born in West Fallow Field, Pennsylvania on July 27, 1830. Along with John Anthony Copeland Jr., another member of the Brown raiding party, Anderson attended Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio. He later moved to Chatham, Canada, where he worked as a printer for Mary Ann Shadd‘s newspaper, the Provincial Freeman. In 1858 Anderson met John Brown and eventually became persuaded to join his band of men determined to attack Harpers Ferry.

CuriPow on 03/28/2021

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 03/27/2021

From Slave To Inventor

Born as a slave in 1849 on a plantation in Woodland, Alabama, Andrew Jackson Beard was a farmer, carpenter, blacksmith, railroad worker, businessman, and inventor. He was a self-educated farmer in Alabama when he thought up the idea of inventing the plow. In 1881, he patented one of his plows, which he sold for $4,000 three years later. In 1887, he invented another plow, sold it, and used the proceeds to finance a profitable real estate business and a taxi company. In 1892, he patented his rotary engine.

CuriPow on 03/26/2021

Following In His Footsteps

Dr. Arun Manilal Gandhi is an Indian-American socio-political activist and the fifth grandson of Mohandas Gandhi through his second son Manilal. Although he has followed in the footsteps of his grandfather as an activist, he has eschewed the ascetic lifestyle of his grandfather.

CuriPow on 03/24/2021

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 03/24/2021

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 03/23/2021

Change Maker

Prince Hall was born on September 12, 1748, in Bridgetown, Barbados. He was born to Thomas Prince Hall, an Englishmen, and a free black woman of French descent. In Barbados, the Hall family was a very well respected family and its members were known as “persons of excellent character.”

CuriPow on 03/22/2021

The Johnson-Reed Act

The Immigration Act of 1924 limited the number of immigrants allowed entry into the United States through a national origins quota. The quota provided immigration visas to two percent of the total number of people of each nationality in the United States as of the 1890 national census. It completely excluded immigrants from Asia.

CuriPow on 03/21/2021

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 03/20/2021

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 03/19/2021

Humble Genius

Mary Beatrice Davidson Kenner was an African-American inventor most noted for her development of the sanitary belt (now known as the Maxi-Pad) that changed women's feminine care forever.

CuriPow on 03/18/2021

Ahead of Her Time

Yuri Kochiyama was a tireless political activist who dedicated her life to contributing to social change through her participation in social justice and human rights movements.

CuriPow on 03/17/2021

Third World Liberation Front

In 1969, The Third World Liberation Front (TWLF), was a coalition formed with the Black Student Union, the Mexican American Student Committee, and the Native American Indian Association at UC Berkely. The TWLF lead a five-month strike on campus to demand a shift in admissions practices that mostly excluded nonwhite students and in the curriculum regarded as irrelevant to the lives of students of color.

CuriPow on 03/16/2021

Breaking Barriers

Jerimiah Haralson was born a slave near Columbus, Georgia, he was taken to Alabama and kept in bondage until 1865. After attaining his freedom, Haralson taught himself how to read and write. According to records he then became a farmer and a clergyman, a powerful orator and, debater. In 1870 he ran for Congress as an independent and defeated the Republican candidate.

CuriPow on 03/15/2021

A Fighter For Mexican-American Rights

George Isidore Sanchez was a pioneer in civil rights, fighting for the rights of Mexican-Americans in New Mexico, Texas and throughout the country. He served on the faculty of the University of New Mexico, held several concurrent teaching, chair, and dean positions at The University of Texas at Austin.

CuriPow on 03/14/2021

Owning The Music

In 1921 the first black record company was created, the Pace Phonograph Company which used the Black Swann Label. Henry Pace was the owner of a music publishing company and in 1921 they released their first hit with Ethel Waters, "Down Home Blues/Oh, Daddy". which sold more than a half million records in six months.