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NBK HISTORY BROTHERS (Blog): IDA BELL WELLS-BARNETT (841 hits)

Ida Bell Wells-Barnett

Was an African-American journalist, newspaper editor, suffragist, sociologist, feminist Georgist, and an early leader in the Civil Rights Movement. She was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909.

Born into slavery in Holly Springs, Mississippi, Wells lost her parents and a sibling in the 1878 yellow fever epidemic at a young age. She went to work and, with her grandmother, kept the rest of the family intact. She moved with some of her siblings to Memphis, Tennessee, finding pay better for teachers.

Later as an activist, Wells documented lynching in the United States in the 1890s, showing that it was often used in the South as a way to control or punish Black people who competed with whites, rather than being based on criminal acts by black people, as was usually claimed by whites. She was active in women's rights and the women's suffrage movement, establishing several notable women's organizations. Wells was a skilled and persuasive rhetorician and traveled internationally on lecture tours.

Ida B. Wells-Barnett House is a Chicago landmark and National Historic Landmark.
Since Wells' death and with the rise of the mid-century civil rights activism, interest in her life and legacy has grown.

In 1941, the Public Works Administration (PWA) built a Chicago Housing Authority public housing project in the Bronzeville neighborhood on the south side in Chicago; it was named the Ida B. Wells Homes in her honor. The buildings were demolished in August 2011 due to changing demographics and ideas about such housing.

On February 1, 1990, the United States Postal Service issued a 25-cent postage stamp in her honor.

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Posted By: NEW BLACK KNOWLEDGE
Monday, April 9th 2018 at 10:35AM
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