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March 4, 2008

On This Day in Our History March 4/08

The Weekly Advocate, the second major Black newspaper, changed its name to the Colored American on this date in 1837.

Josiah Thomas Walls, a winner in an at-large election, became the first Black Congressman to represent an entire state (Florida) on this date in 1871. Walls served in the 42nd Congress.

Bert Williams, famed entertainer, died in New York City on this date in 1922. It is believed that Williams along with George Walker were the first Black recording artists.

Miriam Zensi Makeba, internationally renowned singer was born near Johannesburg, South Africa, on this date in 1932. This "Empress of African Song" was very instrumental in the anti-apartheid struggle.

James Ernest Wilkins was named Undersecretary of Labor by President Eisenhower on this date in 1954.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. announced, on this date in 1968, that he would lead a massive civil disobedience campaign (the Poor People's Campaign) in the nation's capital to pressure the government to provide jobs and income for all Americans.

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