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By Jillian Young

Born June 30, 1917 in Brooklyn, N.Y. to Edwin "Teddy" Horne, her father, who worked in the gambling trade and Edna Horne her mother, who was an actress. Horne left school at 16 to help support her mother and became a dancer at the Cotton Club in Harlem, New York City. In the early 1940s she was hired to sing for Charlie Barnet's orchestra where she was discovered by producer John Hammond, and soon after she performed in a solo show at Carnegie Hall in New York City. was noted for her work with civil rights and political organizations; as an actress, she refused to play roles that stereotyped African American women.

Nelson Mandela was born in Transkei, South Africa on July 18, 1918. Mandela was educated at University College of Fort Hare and the University of Witwatersrand. He joined the African National Congress in 1944 and was engaged in resistance against the ruling National Party's apartheid policies after 1948. He went on trial for treason in 1956-1961 and was acquitted in 1961.After the banning of the ANC in 1960, Nelson Mandela argued for the setting up of a military wing within the ANC. Mandela was arrested in 1962 and sentenced to five years' imprisonment with hard labor. In 1963, when many fellow leaders of the ANC and the Umkhonto we Sizwe were arrested, Mandela was brought to stand trial with them for plotting to overthrow the government by violence. His statement from the dock received considerable international publicity. On June 12, 1964, eight of the accused, including Mandela, were sentenced to life imprisonment. From 1964 to 1982, he was incarcerated at Robben Island Prison, off Cape Town and later transfered to Pollsmoor

Born Michael Luther King , Jr., Martin Luther King Jr held a major role in the Civil Rights Movement. At the age of thirty-five, Martin Luther King , Jr., was the youngest man to have received the Nobel Peace Prize. When notified of his selection, he announced that he would turn over the prize money of $54,123 to the furtherance of the civil rights movement. On the evening of April 4, 1968, while standing on the balcony of his motel room in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was to lead a protest march in sympathy with striking garbage workers of that city, he was assassinated.

Singer, Billie Holiday born Eleanora Fagan on April 7, 1915, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Was one of the most influential jazz singers of all time. Billie Holiday had a thriving career for many years before her battles with substance abuse got the better of her. Holiday has been an influence on many other performers who have followed in her footsteps. Her autobiography was made into the 1972 film Lady Sings the Blues with famed singer Diana Ross playing thel lead role as Holiday, which helped renew interest in Holiday's recordings. In 2000, Billie Holiday was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Diana Ross handling the honors.

Black History  

Black history month book

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