Archive for December, 2013


Posted in Articles, Arts, Black British Literature, Black History, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Music, News, Newsletter, Publications, Reggae, Short Story, Television, Theatre, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by






You can also view PANTHER NEWSLETTER @






normski 22958

On the 31st December 2012, the day of Kuumba (Creativity) of the Kwanzaa season; I promised myself that I was going to write and self-publish three projects I had rolling around in my head for years. On the 1st January 2013, the day of Imani (Faith), I began my journey.

BRITANNIA’S CHILDREN was published 5th February 2013. I give thanks to Kim Pearson and Naiobi James for bigging it up on the other side of the pond in the USA and Canada respectively. FREEDOM STREET followed 7 months later 4th September 2013; and just over a month after that, in celebration of its 30th Anniversary, the BAD FRIDAY (Third Edition) was published 29th October 2013. A big shout goes out to Courttia Newland (Author/Screenwriter/Playwright) for writing in the preface his thoughts about what BAD FRIDAY meant and did for him 17 years ago when he was about to write his first novel.

To my family in Canada, Jamaica, South Africa, the UK and USA; a BIG “Thank you.” Your eternal encouragement and support is priceless “Love unnu bad.”

To you readers who have bought and read the books, thank you for your support. For those of you who don’t know where the books are, visit here…

For each and everyone, hold dis…


…and there’s more to come in 2014; stay tuned.

‘Everyting  Bless…’


In this end of year issue we have: THE HEART OF OUR COMMUNITY, the FEATURED STORY (A TRIBUTE)THE MUSICAL COA-COA BASKET, the FEATURED ARTICLE and last but by no means least, we have everybody’s favourite, THE CULTURE CORNER. So kick, relax and enjoy the return of PANTHER NEWSLETTER.




Two Found Guilty of Lee Rigby Murder

Two men have been found guilty of murdering soldier Lee Rigby outside Woolwich barracks in south-east London in May. Michael Adebolajo, 29, and Michael Adebowale, 22, struck Fusilier Rigby with a car before hacking him to death; more…

From the Mail Online: Come on the British Government and Security Authorities, wake up and smell the coffee…What are you going to do to make sure this never happens again; visit here…

Jealous Husband Gets Life For Horrific Murder Of Wife

A JEALOUS husband has been locked up for life for murdering his wife in a jealous rage while their baby slept in the same room; visit here…


Food Bank Founders Launch Appeal To Help Manchester’s Hungry

THE FOUNDERS of a food bank in Moss Side, Manchester have launched a petition to put an end to benefit sanctions, after the number of people needing emergency food parcels spiked; more…


Birmingham Woman Becomes Queen’s Local Representative

COMMUNITY STALWART Beverley Lindsay has been appointed as a deputy lieutenant for the West Midlands, becoming the first African Caribbean woman to take up the role; visit here…


Mark Duggan Inquest Adjourned Until Next Year

THE INQUEST into the death of Tottenham resident Mark Duggan has been adjourned until next year as the jury completed their sixth day of deliberations; more…


Obama’s Brother Is Self-Publishing An Autobiography.

Mark Obama Ndesandjo, President Obama’s half-brother, will address supposed inaccuracies in the president’s own memoir; visit here…


India Billboard Mistakes Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela

The embarrassing gaffe in the southern city of Coimbatore displayed the actor’s face instead of the late South African president. Read more… 


Mourn Mandela the Man Not His Politics

Did a focus on forgiveness come at the expense of black advancement? Marc Wadsworth, founder of the Anti-Racist Alliance, examines the debate; visit here…


Junior Murvin, Reggae Great, Dies at Home in Jamaica

Reggae great Junior Murvin died at his home in the Portland Parish, Jamaica earlier this month; read more…



Posted in Articles, Arts, Black British Literature, Black History, Books, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Fiction, Music, News, Newsletter, Poem, Publications, Reggae, Short Story, Theatre, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by




She's Royal


My special guest in the Summer of 2011 Caroline Bell Foster ‘THE CARIBBEAN’S LEADING LADY OF LOVE’ has recently published her new book CALL ME ROYAL on kindle format. You can find out what Caroline and her new book is about by logging on to her recent interview here… 

Become of fan of Caroline’s on facebook here…

Get your copy of CALL ME ROYAL here…




Past studies have suggested that offenders desist from crime due to a range of factors, such as familial pressures, faith based interventions or financial incentives. To date, little has been written about the relationship between desistance and racialisation…

My special guest in the Spring of 2011 Martin Glynn has penned this book BLACK MEN, INVISIBILITY AND CRIME, which will be of interest both to criminologists and sociologists engaged with race, racialisation, ethnicity, and criminal justice. Check it out here…

 Real Talk

Also by Martin Glynn

REAL TALK (Shadow People Speak Out) Download your copy here…




CELEBRATE WHA? is a book of many voices. It is a book of questions and answers. It is an anthology of poems about identity and race, curry goat n rice. Dreadlock Alien, Sue Brown, Marcia Calame, Evoke, Martin Glynn, Michelle Hubbard, Kokumo, Roy McFarlane, Chester Morrison and Moqapi Selassie explore what it means to be black and British and from the West Midlands.

Get your copy of CELEBRATE WHA? here…




WHAT GOES AROUND tells the story of Frank who returns to Jamaica for Poppa  Ben’s funeral,  he discovers that life isn’t like his accounting books – he can’t start a  new page because he’s made a  mess of the last one. People keep coming back… 

 For lovers of Caribbean literature, a humorous, character-packed account of a man’s return  to  Jamaica with his teenage daughter. Maeve Clarke was born in Birmingham to Jamaican parents. A  graduate of Manchester University’s MA in novel writing, her ‘potent and supple’  short story  ‘Letters A Yard’ is featured in the prize-winning anthology WHISPERS IN THE  WALLS. WHAT  GOES AROUND is her first novel.

  Get your copy of WHAT GOES AROUND here…




My first ever PANTHER NEWSLETTER guest interview was with Birmingham author Jasmine Johnson. Born in Jamaica, she came to Britain when she was a teenager. A Media and Communication Studies graduate from the University of Wolverhampton, Jasmine has come a long way since her first novel MR SOON COME hit the literary scene in 2001. MR SOON COME follows the fortunes of Conteh Gonzalez who professes his love to his beautiful wife Simone. He isn’t lying, however, ‘forsaking all others’ and clinging only to her is proving an arduous task. Set against the backdrop of Birmingham’s Reggae dancehalls and the Pentecostal church, this gripping novel takes you on a journey that touches all your emotions. Get your copy of MR SOON COME here…

Other books written and self-published by Jasmine Johnson: THE DEVIL I KNOW and THE DAY HELL BROKE LOOSE.




ONCE UPON A LIE by Ava Ming is about young college lecturer Renford Shang. He is seen by his family and community as a man who has everything going for him. A prestigious job, a lovely new wife and home. But when it’s discovered that he’s having an affair, his “good life” is slowly exposed to being nothing but a sham.

Ava Ming was born in Birmingham of Jamaican parents. She is a classically trained musician, experienced radio presenter – the Ava Ming Show ran on the local BBC radio for six years and for three years on New Style Radio. Get your copy of ONCE UPON A LIE here…

More writings by Ava Ming here…


Unrealistic Expectations & other POEMS


This is Birmingham born Leeanne Stoddart’s first poetry collection. She hates writing bios about herself and prefers to write poems about people she loves, fantasies she has, her hair and trees. She is a Facebook addict and a collector of useless trivia and corny jokes.





Bad Friday (Front Cover) 2

Delroy Bell is about to leave school. The prospects for him and his friends look grim. Will he be able to make it as a professional basketball player or will he end up hustling and gambling on the streets like his cousin Peter says? – Set in mid 1970s Small Heath, Birmingham against the back-drop of an economic recession, record unemployment and mass union strikes, BAD FRIDAY follows the fortunes of Delroy and his friends. It portrays their search for a future, an identity and the respect they feel was denied their parents. Get your copy of BAD FRIDAY here…


        Britannia's Children (Cover Design)BRITANNIA’S CHILDREN: Get your copy here…

Freedom Street (Front Cover)FREEDOM STREET: Get your copy here…




Mama Afrika Kulcha Shap: Kwanzaa – Workshop and Market Place London UK


Afrikan Designer Wears, Shoes & Accessories

– Books & DVDs
– Natural Health & Whole Food products
– Hair Care & Natural Beauty
– Paintings, Prints & Posters
– Greeting Cards & Gift bags
– Jewellery
– Dolls
– Home Furnishing
– Carvings & Artifacts


1st Prize: All inclusive Holiday for 2 to ST. LUCIA

2nd Prize: Samsung Galaxy 2 Tablet

3rd Prize: Kindle Fire HD

Book Signings & Workshops TO BE ANNOUNCED

Dates: Sun 22nd December 2013

Venue: @ Mama Afrika Kulcha Shap
282 Leyton High Road, London, E10 5PW

Time: 12pm-6pm

There are limited stall spaces available….

If you would like to book a stall(s) please contact Mama Afrika Kulcha Shap on 0208 539 2154 (business hours).

Sis Kai: 07908 814 152

or email your interest stating what you will be selling, amount of stall(s) and contact details to



For all things dance hall over the festive season visit here…




“If we had a woman of her strength today, we’d have a woman and a half.” Jamaica’s only female heroine Nanny/@nannythe movie is to have a documentary made about her called ‘Queen Nanny.’ Watch the film’s maker Roy T. Anderson pitch for funding to help get the film made.

Queen Nanny Indiegogo Pitch Video with Roy T Anderson

visit the youtube clip here…

Read TBBL’s feature by Lee Pinkerton; ‘Black Women, Shadism and the Entertainment Industry.’ – visit here…




Check out this documentary about the black citizens of France and their battle for social justice.

Black France: The Immigration Problem – visit here…

Black France: The Battle for Social Justice – visit here…





I love watching the super-heroes block buster movies such as The Hulk, Superman, Spiderman, Batman, Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and The Green Lantern. But I think its time Hollywood gave room to highlight my favorite of them all; The Black Panther. So as a festive treat, here’s six episodes of the man himself; enjoy!!

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 1 visit here…

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 2 – visit here…

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 3 visit here…

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 4 – visit here…

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 5 – visit here.

The BLACK PANTHER – PART 6 – visit here…



Posted in Articles, Arts, Black British Literature, Black History, Books, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Fiction, Literature, News, Newsletter, Publications, Short Story, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by



by his son Kieran Connell


John Dalton

JOHN DALTON 1948 – 2013


My father, John Dalton, died of lung cancer in March 2013 aged 64. He published two novels, The City Trap (2002) and The Concrete Sea (2005), which were set in Birmingham where he lived for most of his life. In the Guardian Newspaper in 2005, Maxim Jakubowski wrote that his descriptions of Birmingham “begged worthy comparisons to Ian Rankin’s Edinburgh” and described the novels – much to John’s amusement – as “British dirty realism at its strongest“.

Born in Nuneaton, West Midlands, the youngest of three children, John moved to Birmingham to go to university. He stayed there for the rest of his life and in the late 1970s began working at Trinity Arts Association in Small Heath, a diverse inner-city area of the city which had a strong West Indian community. He was the head of their Literature Department and mainly through his inspiration and enthusiasm, he founded The Small Heath Writers Workshop. In between 1978 to 1982, he had established a reputation for uncovering and encouraging writers in the Small Heath area. John was committed to the ethos of the community arts movement, which aimed to ensure that ordinary people were able to access the arts. While he was at Trinity he played a pivotal role in the publication in 1982 of BAD FRIDAY, a novel by the pioneering black British novelist Norman Samuda Smith.

Exhausted from his time at Trinity Arts, John stopped working. He devoted much of his time to his children, me and my brother Laurence and focused on his writing. Later in his life, John became an adult education tutor. Although he hated the bureaucracies of the job, he enjoyed teaching and was always warmly thanked by his students, often with gifts of samosas or curries.

After a few years apart, my parents eventually re-established their relationship, partly as a result of a shared enjoyment of country walks. Twelve months ago, before John was diagnosed with lung cancer, they bought a house together. John continued to write right up until the sudden deterioration in his health. He recently completed an “urban nature notebook”. His last work was about a man who discovers a rare bird in his garden but decides not to tell anyone, preferring instead to enjoy it as a secret pleasure.

John is survived by my mother Myra, me and Laurence, and his older siblings Moyra and Dave.



Norman & John

Norman & John at the Bad Friday Book Launch

New Beacon Books, London 1985


In this issue of PANTHER NEWSLETTER it is with great pleasure that the FEATURED STORY is one of my favourites written by the late John Dalton; my first editor and mentor, but most of all a good friend. The man who introduced my novel Bad Friday to the world in 1982. We were recently working together, re-visiting the Bad Friday manuscript and preparing it for its re-publication. Rest In Peace my friend. It is truly a fine place you have flown to.




© 1984 John Dalton


I used to hate them, I used to think they were a right menace. Sundays were the worst. You’d begin to hear them from miles away; they would gradually wend their way closer until the blaring jingles were echoing in your street, were blasting through your open windows. I really used to hate ice cream vans. And even when their excruciating music had stopped, you had to put up with the loud droning engine which caused interference on the TV. Then they would rev up and drive off again and give you a further salvo of their rotten tune. They were far worse than the Salvation Army band that used to come round of a Sunday morning and wake me up. That was “Onward Christian Soldiers” at 10.00 am after a night on booze. I ended up throwing a bucket of water on them. But ice cream vans were far worse and you couldn’t do anything to stop them. On a summer Sunday you could have two or three coming round every hour. All you could do was try and ignore them but that strategy never really worked, they still got to you and some mornings I’d wake up and find myself humming one of their stupid tunes. Well, this is what I used to think about them, but then something strange happened. It all started with Surinder, the little girl in the downstairs flat, it was she who introduced me to it. Suddenly for me and many others in our street, Sundays were never the same again…


Continue reading ICE CREAM SUNDAYS here…



Posted in Articles, Arts, Black British Literature, Black History, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Music, News, Newsletter, Publications, Reggae, Television, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by


“One good thing about music, when it hits, you feel no pain.”

Bob Marley (1945 – 1981)

Music has always played an important role in all our lives, especially Reggae, the music genre first developed in Jamaica, strongly influenced by traditional African, American jazz and old-time rhythm and blues. Reggae owes its direct origins to the progressive development of Ska and Rocksteady in 1960s Jamaica. Right here, THE MUSICAL COA-COA BASKET will salute the legendary artists and recording studios from out of Jamaica that have placed reggae on the musical global map.




Big Youth


He was (and still is) one of my favourite reggae Deejay ‘toasters’. During my teenage years and sound system days his music was the most popular at Blues Dances, parties and in all the dance halls. To me, he was a man with a message, one of the true foundation deejays; a reggae sensation of 1970s Jamaica and one of the first Rasta superstars, even before Bob Marley.

Born Manley Augustus Buchanan April 19, 1949 in Kingston, Jamaica, Big Youth‘s formative years were spent growing up in and around Princess Street, the central downtown area of the city. He was given the name Big Youth from the early days of his childhood because he was the tallest among his friends, and by his co-workers at the Kingston Sheraton hotel, where he was employed as a mechanic.

Big Youth joined the ‘Back-A-Wall’ Rasta community, grew his dreadlocks and learnt about the teachings of His Imperial Majesty. Originally, he toasted to himself (the Deejaying equivalent of the air guitar), and eventually he took the chance of picking up the microphone at a few parties. The enthusiastic response he received urged him to perform at dances, and by the late 1960s, he had a small, but keen following. This fan base quickly grew and as a new decade arrived, Big Youth was Deejaying regularly with Lord Tippertone’s sound system, quickly becoming the top DJ for the outfit.

Big Youth arrived on the music scene in the wake of U-Roy, Dennis Alcapone and I-Roy. He quickly established his own style, and threatened to outshine them all. His main influence was obviously the ‘God Father’, ‘Daddy’ U Roy, whose fame grew in a period in which the ‘deejay style’ conquered reggae music and the dance hall. U Roy took sound system deejaying to another level and developed the authentic, creative, improvised free-style verses, riding the rhythm that had the people in the dance halls rocking. Within U Roy’s musical psalms, Rastafari eventually became the main source of his inspiration, with some excerpts of U.S. ‘black culture’ he chanted powerful rhymes to enlighten and empower the thoughts, topics and opinions of the Jamaican ghetto people as well as the Afro-British youth of 1970s Britain.

Big Youth’s first important musical education in this area however, was through Lord Tippertone Hi Fi Sound System where he began as a professional live deejay, alongside Jah Stitch and with people like Wong Chu and Jah Wise as selectors. As his skills grew he created his unique way of chatting about Rasta consciousness and by putting into his lyrics the contents of the socially committed tunes of people like James Brown and Curtis Mayfield. A great experience in those early years was when he met other fellow musicians and singers in Orange Street, the musical avenue of downtown Kingston in which Big Youth met people like Dennis Brown, Gregory Isaacs and The Heptones. A great moment in Big Youth’s growing career was the night in which Tippertone Sound beat King Tubby’s Hi Fi Sound in a sound competition with I Roy on the microphone alongside Tubby, (resident deejay U Roy was at that time not in Jamaica).

1972 was a key year for the young Big Youth: Gregory Isaacs released ‘Movie man’, his very first single and among his first single tracks, Jimmy Radway produced ‘The best Big Youth’, Lee Perry’s ‘Moving Version’ (over the Wailers’ ‘Keep On Moving’ version), ‘Tell it black’ and ‘Phil Pratt thing’ with Phil Pratt, ‘Tippertone Rocking’ and ‘The Killer’ for the young producer Gussie Clarke.

With U Roy spending time abroad, Big Youth was the main deejay force around and he scored his first Number 1 hit with the brilliant ‘S 90 Skank’ done with Keith Hudson. Other 1972 highlights were ‘Chi Chi Run’ (produced by Prince Buster), ‘Come into My Parlour’ and ‘Opportunity Rock’ (produced by Glen Brown).

1973 was another crucial year for Big Youth: he scored again with ‘A So We Stay’ (over Dennis Brown’s ‘Money In My Pocket’ riddim), and ‘Cool Breeze’, produced by Derrick Harriott over Keith & Tex’s ‘Stop That Train’ version.

In those years every singer’s tune had his/her deejay-style counterpart and this was often preferred by the audience instead of the original tune. In 1973 other producers released their first albums: Gussie Clarke sold to Trojan Records ‘Screaming Target’ and Prince Buster released in Jamaica ‘Chi Chi Run’, an instrumental album with three Big Youth tunes.

Big youth was the number one artist in Jamaica but he remained poor and was still living in a shack in the ghetto side of town, this was the reason why he began to work as a freelance artist founding his Negusa Negast and Augustus Buchanan record labels, and began controlling his own work but kept a good relationship with many producers.

Augustus Buchanan


His popularity was getting bigger and bigger in Jamaica: he was the first artist to introduce Rasta terminology in his tunes and he sang about Natty Dreads long before Bob Marley, creating a brand new style. He was also one of the very first dreadlocked artists in Jamaica and his visual impact was even more surprising after a having a dentist implant in his three front teeth, three coloured stones to get a very distinct red gold & green flag.

In 1974 he released on his Negusa Negast imprint his third album ‘Reggae Phenomenon’, followed in 1975 by the excellent ‘Dreadlocks Dread’, an album that had and iconic standing with Burning Spear’s ‘Marcus Garvey’ and Bob Marley’s ‘Natty Dread’ an example of him co-dominating roots rock reggae.

Other great Big Youth albums from the seventies were ‘Natty Cultural Dread’, ‘Hit the Road Jack’ and one of my all-time favourites ‘Isaiah First Prophet of Old’. During the continuous stream of his creativity of those years, Big Youth tried to raise his popularity as a singer, voicing versions of U.S. classics from Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye and even Burt Bacharach, but his singing didn’t surpass his deejay ability.


When the 1980s came, Big Youth was an international reggae icon but his productivity decreased. In 1983 he released a live album recorded at Reggae Sunsplash and some fine works for the U.S. Heartbeat label. In the nineties he kept recording music, one of which was an album with Junior Reid entitled ‘Higher Ground’, and ‘Save the Children’ produced by Trevor Leggo Douglas, which was released in France by Declic Records and collaborating with Style Scott’s Dub Syndicate.

In 2001, the specialist Blood & Fire label dedicated to Big Youth the monumental three-CD set ‘Natty Universal Dread 1973-1978’ and that was without doubt a tribute to some of Big Youth’s best works. To this day he continues to have an impact on both his own nation and beyond.

Jah Yout’ we salute you!

Big Youth 3






Screaming Target



Natty Cultural Dread








big youth Hit The Road Jack  lp.....
































Posted in Articles, Arts, Black History, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Literature, Music, News, Newsletter, Publications, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by



(The Photographic Historian of Birmingham, England)


Ernest Dyche (Photo Studio)


Ernest Dyche, (1887-1973) was a self-taught photographer who opened his first premises, The Palace Studio, at 32 Coventry Road, Bordesley Green around 1910. The studio was situated close to the Bordesley Palace Theatre, and Dyche developed a specialised trade in theatrical portraiture, producing photographs of the music hall and variety acts that performed on the Birmingham stage. He also produced individual, group, family and wedding portraits for those attending his studio.


Dyche opened a second studio on the Moseley Road, Balsall Heath a few years later. For a short while he took sittings at both sites, before concentrating on his newer premises, which had previously been used as a photographic studio in the early 1890s. Dyche trained his son, Malcolm (1921-1990), in the art of photographic portraiture, and for many years he worked alongside his father. In an effort to increase their trade, Malcolm photographed guests at dinners and social events in Birmingham, and together father and son promoted themselves as ‘Club land and Theatrical Photographers.’

They continued taking ‘Club land and Theatrical’ portraits up until the mid-1950s, when the rise of cinema and television led to a decline in theatre attendance, and music halls and variety theatres began to close. The influx of cameras from Europe after the war also encouraged more people to take their own pictures, and together these two factors led to a decline in Dyche’s business.

This change occurred around the same time that the first wave of migrants arrived in Birmingham from Africa, the Caribbean and Indian sub-continent, many of whom visited Dyche’s studio to have portraits made for their friends and relatives back home. Over the next twenty-five years, the bulk of the studio’s clientele was drawn from Birmingham and Balsall Heath’s Asian and African-Caribbean communities. By the time it ceased operating in the mid-1980s; the studio had inadvertently documented the development of both the first and second generations of this initial wave of immigration, and helped to record an important phase in Birmingham’s history.

View more of his collection; here…


Posted in Articles, Arts, Black British Literature, Black History, Books, Community, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Literature, Music, News, Newsletter, Poem, Poems, Publications, Reggae, Short Story, Television, Theatre, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 21, 2013 by


“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture, is like a tree without roots.”

 Marcus Mosiah Garvey (1887-1940)

Every year in October we celebrate BLACK HISTORY MONTH. Black history is with us every second, minute, hour, week, month and year. PANTHER NEWSLETTERS CULTURE CORNER will attempt to enlighten you with what they never told you in your history class. Our story will be told right here – So enjoy the journey of clarification.





As the Festive season draws nearer to us, whether you celebrate Christmas or Kwanzaa, the debate about who Santa Claus/St. Nicholas really was, pops up every year. Two recent articles have appeared and were quite interesting reads.

Aisha Harris recently wrote: “Santa Claus should not be white anymore. It’s time to give St. Nik his long overdue makeover…”: to read the full article; visit here…and watch the Fox News guests debate on Megyn Kelly’s Show about what they thought about Aisha’s article.

In another article, Melissa Harris-Perry had some tough questions for Santa. She asks: “I know it’s a busy time of year, but we need to settle a little debate that’s emerged in American media asking, ‘Are you white? Are you black? When you come in from the North Pole, do you have a legal visa or are you undocumented?’ “: read the full article here…

Well here he is. Know your history. The original Saint Nicholas was a Moore (A Black Man). He was known for his generosity. He was born in the 3rd Century in the village of Patara, in what is now known as the southern coast of Turkey. He was a very wealthy Israelite of the ancient Roman Empire, possibly the northen tribe of Israel.

St.NicholasRead more about the original St. Nicholas the Israelite here…




Born Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The son of an escaped slave and oyster salesman, Chester’s childhood was relatively secure and very progressive. A man famous for his bravery serving as the first black war correspondent for a major newspaper during the civil war. He risked not only death but enslavement upon possible capture. Also, he would become England’s first black lawyer. Read more about him: visit here…

Get the book: Thomas Morris Chester; The Black Civil War Correspondent here…



Mary Ellen Pleasant – (1814 – 1904) – Born around 1814, on a plantation near Augusta, Georgia. There are a few facts and stories about Pleasant’s life that are still up in the air, but the major events of her life are generally agreed upon. She came from humble beginnings being born into slavery, but would be later freed and work as an indentured servant. Through this period, she helped with the abolitionist movement in the northeast through contacts at the store she worked at. Being of mixed heritage, she was often able to pass as White; read more visit here…

Nancy Green “Aunt Jemima”  (1834 – 1923) – The original Aunt Jemima Nancy Green was born into slavery on a plantation in 1834. She was discovered at age 59 in 1893. She was “the real  Aunt Jemima” until her death in 1923 when she was struck and killed by a car in downtwon Chicago Illonois; read more about her here…

Alice Coachman – (1923 – ) – Alice Coachman specialised in the high jump. An African/American, she became the first black woman to win an Olympic gold medal in the 1948 London games. “Winning that gold medal meant everything to me. I didn’t get to celebrate much after, because it was so crowded and everyone wanted to see me. But the one thing I did ask my coach for was a beer. I’d been with her for three years, so she knew that I didn’t drink or smoke. ‘You, a beer?’ she asked laughing. I think I only drank about half…”; read more about her visit here…

Nichelle Nichols – (1932 – ) – Nichelle Nichols played Uhura on the original Star Trek. She was one of the first black women on a major television show who was not playing a servant. Martin Luther King Jr actually persuaded her to stay on the show when she was thinking of quitting to pursue a Broadway career; read more about her here…

Bill Russell – (1934 – ) One of the most decorated sports legends in American history, he has quite a list of accomplishments; this includes winning 11 NBA Championships, a recorda for the most Championships won by an athlete in a North American sports league. He also broke barriers when he bcame coach of the Boston Celtics, being the first black coach in major U.S professional sports (and N.B.A). President Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011; Read more about him; visit here…

Henry Sampson – (1934 – ) – Born Jackson, Mississippi, he was the first Afrcan/American to earn a PH.D. for nuclear engineering in the U.S. He was behind a few notable breakthroughs, this included inventing the “Gamma-Electrical Cell”, which makes it possible to wirelessly receive and send audio signals through radio waves; this was a vital  contribution to the future of the cellphone industry; read more here…

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela – (1918 – 5 December 2013) – Born 1918, Mvezo, Cape Province, South Africa, a worldwide icon and inspiration to all (no matter what race you are). He is most famous as a South African Anti-Aparthied revolutionary and activist that became South Africa’s first black President in 1994 after serving 27 years of wrongful imprisonment. Achieving what some considered impossible at the time, his administration successfully tackled the challenge of dismantling the institutionalised racism and class inequality from the many years of aparthied; read more about him visit here…


Here ends your history lesson for this issue

I trust each and every one of you will enjoy your festive holidays, wherever you are. For those of you celebrating Kwanzaa; Happy Kwanzaa and I pray your affirmations, the Nguzo Saba, guides you to a happy and prosperous New Year…

…And as it’s the season of Peace, Love and Goodwill to one and all, here’s a proper little Kwanzaa message to you the massives; visit here…


Log on for more CULTURE CORNER in the next issue and remember…


Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela

Sunrise: July 18 1918  Sunset: December 5 2013


Til the next issue – Everyting  –  Bless.


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