Saturday, May 9, 2015

A camera actress in the wilds of Togoland (1915)

; the adventures, observations & experiences of a cinematograph actress in West African forests whilst collecting films depicting native life and when posing as the white woman in Anglo-African cinematograph dramas.
by Gehrts, M

Published 1915
Topics Togo

The following excerpt should prove interesting, I suggest you take a quick look.

By the way I am frequently reminded here, as 
elsewhere, that I am the first white woman to in- 
trude her presence among these primitive people. 
The women shrink from me, or look askance, and 
the children run screaming in terror away from me. 
Once I got the interpreter to inquire of one sweet 
little lassie of about nine or ten why she had run 
from me. He brought the child before me, but for 
a long time she would not say a word. She just 
stood still, with eyes downcast, and trembling in 
every limb. 

At length she looked quickly up, and shot a 
hard, swift question at the interpreter. 

" No ! No ! No ! " was his reply. " Of course 
not. Stupid little one! Why do you think such 
things ? " 

I asked him what the child had said. He 
answered that she had asked whether, if she spoke 
the truth, I was going to flog her. 

" Tell her," I said, " that, on the contrary, I 
will make her a present." 

He translated my promise, whereupon the girl, 
after one quick half-inquiring, half-doubting glance 
at me, rapped out something that sounded short, 
solid, and authoritative, like the rat-a-tat-tat of a 

Then it was the interpreter's turn to take refuge 
in silence. He absolutely declined to translate 
what she had said, saying that it was too dreadful, 
was quite unfit for me to hear, &c. &c. 
" Very well," I said at last, " I will go and tell 
Major Schomburgk that you refuse to perform your 

Whereupon the poor man, driven into a corner, 
blurted out the message, running his words alto- 
gether in his confusion and excitement. " The 
impudent little wench says," he rapped out, " that 

I had to laugh. I simply could not help it. 
But my mirth had a slight— a very slight— tinge of 
bitterness in it. To be told to my face that I was 
ugly ! And by this naked little ebony imp. 

Well, men, I reflected, had not found me un- 
comely. And even from my own sex — supremest 
test of all — I had listened to words of appreciation, 
and even of admiration upon occasion. So I play- 
fully pinched the cheek of my little critic, and 
sent her away happy in the possession of a gaudy- 
coloured silk handkerchief. 

This incident broke the ice, so to speak, and soon 
I was on the best of terms with practically the 
entire juvenile population of Paratau. They dis- 
covered that I was not really an ogre, as they had 
imagined at first. But I could not prevail upon them 
to admit that I possessed any claim upon their 
admiration, whatever I might have upon their 
gratitude. " Am I really and truly ugly ? " I one 
day asked a little boy, a dear little chum of mine. 
" Really and truly you are, dear Puss," he replied, 
with childish frankness. " But," he added in ex- 
tenuation, and as a balm perhaps for my wounded 
feelings, " you cannot help that. The good God 
made you so, did he not ? We cannot all be black 
and beautiful." 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Cyberspace Sanctuary

This is one of my favourite podcastors, Junious Ricardo Stanton consistently presents guests that are contributing to the betterment of the African American community. I'll bet you'll want to listen to all of his programs and you can too. They are archived on iTunes under Rainbow Soul.

"Junious Ricardo Stanton speaks with author, entrepreneur, community broadcaster, life coach and educator Dr. Stanely El who shares details about his digital media program designed to teach young people audio, radio, television production, graphic arts, Social Media and marketing. The second guest is Clara Lyons-DeVaughn the president of the South Jersey Chapter of the National Associaton of Real Estate Brokers. She shares her goals and objectives as incoming president."

(for more Rainbow Soul Podcasts click here)

(also see more on Dr. Stanley El)

The American Dream A weekly program hosted by Stanley El, spotlighting South Jersey people, Wednesdays at 5:00 p.m.

Greek Gods Built Like Nubians

The Nubians of the Jardin d'Acclimatation

In this 1878 presentation to the Anthropology Society of Paris, Doctor Gustave Le Bon briefly describes photographs that he took of Nubians. After Le Bon's talk, Doctor Paul Broca, the Society's Secretary-General, discusses at length how sculptors of ancient Egypt must have used Negro slaves as their models in making statues. Broca notes that the classical era Greek sculptors, mistakenly believing "that people of all races possessed the same bodily dimensions," borrowed their statue-making rules from Egypt, producing as a result sculptures whose figures also possessed the bodily proportions of Negroes. Le Bon's Nubian photos, adds Broca, "provides additional confirmation of this point of mine."

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Michael Franti and Spearhead at Folsom Prison


Martin Robison Delany (May 6, 1812 – January 24, 1885)

Delany was an African-American abolitionist, journalist, physician, and writer, arguably the first proponent of black nationalism; Martin Delany is considered to be the grandfather of Black nationalism.[1] He was also one of the first three blacks people admitted to Harvard Medical School. Trained as an assistant and a physician, he treated patients during the cholera epidemics of 1833 and 1854 in Pittsburgh, when many doctors and residents fled the city. He worked alongside Frederick Douglass to publish the North Star. Active in recruiting blacks for the United States Colored Troops, he was commissioned as a major, the first African-American field officer in the United States Army during the American Civil War.

After the Civil War, he worked for the Freedmen's Bureau in the South, settling in South Carolina, where he became politically active. He ran unsuccessfully for Lieutenant Governor and was appointed a Trial Judge. Later he switched his party loyalty and worked for the campaign of Democrat Wade Hampton III, who won the 1876 election for governor.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

September 27, 1950 – Gwendolyn Brooks Wins Pulitzer Prize

  1. Gwendolyn Brooks
  2. Gwendolyn Elizabeth Brooks was an American poet and teacher. She was the first black person to win a Pulitzer prize when she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1950 for her second collection, Annie Allen. 
  3. BornJune 7, 1917, Topeka, Kansas, United States
  4. DiedDecember 3, 2000, South Side, Chicago
  5. ParentsKeziah Wims, David Anderson Brooks
  6. AwardsPulitzer Prize for Poetry, United States Poet Laureate, more
  7. ChildrenNora Blakely, Henry Lowington Blakely III