Archive for the 'African-Americans' Category

Feb 17

Black History Month Spotlight: Civil War MOH Recipient Robert Blake

Thursday, February 17, 2011 9:01 AM

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Contraband Robert Blake (Photo#: NH 103762)   Robert Blake was born into slavery in Virginia. After escaping, he enlisted in the US Navy from Port Royal, Virginia and served on USS Marblehead during the Civil War. While off Legareville, Stono River, South Carolina, on 25 December 1863, Blake bravely served the rifle gun as Marblehead engaged Confederates on John’s Island. The enemy eventually abandoned its position leaving munitions behind. For his bravery in this action, Blake was awarded the Medal of Honor. USS Marblehead engages a Confederate Battery on John’s Island, Stono River, South Carolina, 25 December 1863 (Photo#: NH… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Oct 19

“They Would Be Amazed”

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 12:01 AM

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“Navy admits Negroes into the WAVES:” so read the headlines following the Navy Department’s October 19, 1944, press release announcing this change. This was indeed good news to the civic, religious, and civil rights organizations, the Afro-American sororities, Mary McLeod Bethune and others who had urged the Navy to have an integrated female reserve program since its inception. Captain Mildred McAfee, the director of the WAVES program, also advocated for their inclusion. The White House received petitions and numerous letters from whites and blacks a like arguing that not allowing blacks in the WAVES was discriminatory and inconsistent with America’s… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Oct 12

Breaking the Mold: The Ben Cloud Story

Tuesday, October 12, 2010 12:01 AM

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Flying over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War in an RF-8 Crusader, Ben Cloud never pondered his status as an officer of African American and Native American descent. His main concern was getting good photos of the Ho Chi Minh trail, and surviving the antiaircraft fire he received on every mission. Cloud came from a middle class family from San Diego, Calif., and entered the Naval Aviation Cadet program at the onset of the Korean War. He later was selected to fly one of the hottest planes of the period, the F9F Panther. By 1971 his career was on a… Read the rest of this entry »

 
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