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Black History: Special Delivery!!

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discrimination

Estelle Massey Osborne: African American Nurse, Educator, and Trailblazer

Black History: Special Delivery!!

Estelle Osbourne
Estelle Massey Osborne (1901 – 1981)

Estelle Massey Osborne (1901 – 1981) was the eighth of eleven children. She was born in Palestine, Texas. Her parents were determined that all of their children would pursue higher education. All of her older sisters pursued careers in teaching. Osborne’s mother had two requirements for her daughters. They were required to complete high school. The other requirement was that they would never (as children) be employed by white people. She wanted her children to grow up confident in their identities; before they experienced ill treatment from whites.

After graduating from high school, Osborne followed her sisters in pursuing a career in teaching. Teaching was not a profession that suited her. She eventually went to live with her brother; hoping to pursue a career in dentistry. Already a dentist, her brother did not think the field suited her and encouraged her to pursue employment in nursing. Desperate for students, she was accepted on the spot when she applied. Osborne was particularly interested in obstetrics. In 1923, After completing the nursing program she achieved the highest score in the state on the nursing exam.

Osborne persevered in her new profession despite working in an environment where she was overlooked for positions for which she was more qualified than her white co-workers. Other staff also refused to consult with her even in her areas of expertise; preferring instead to speak with white nurses. Osborne would eventually go on to become president of the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses. One of her goals as a leader of this organization was to eliminate the need for separate organizations. She achieved her goal in 1946 when the American Nursing Association began to integrate its membership.

Osborne played a key role through her leadership in advocating to address the racism and discrimination faced by black nurses.

Osborne felt compelled to seek additional education and applied for a Rosenwald Fund Scholarship. At the time no African American nurse had ever received a nursing fellowship. Osborne chose to resign from her job even before hearing that she had received the fellowship. With funding from the fellowship, she was the first African American nurse to earn a Master’s Degree in nursing 1931.

After completing a nursing assignment for the Rosenwald Fellowship, she accepted the position of Director of Education for Freedman’s Hospital in Washington DC. She was the first African American woman to hold this position. Osborne would also take a leadership role with the National Nursing Council for War Service. In this role, she would be tasked with exploring how black nurses could be integrated into the armed services in anticipation of World War II.

Osborne worked diligently to get the armed forces to change their practices while also working with nursing schools to admit more students of color. Two years later the number of training schools went from 14 to 38 while the number of nurses of color in the Army doubled and the Navy finally began to admit black nurses as well, though at nowhere near the rate of the Army. Following World War II, Osborne joined the Board of Directors of the American Nursing Association from 1948-1952 (another first for an African American woman). She then served as the Assistant Director and then Director of the National League For Nursing (1954-1959).

Not much is known about the remaining years of this trailblazers life. She died in 1981.

Sources:

http://ojin.nursingworld.org/FunctionalMenuCategories/AboutANA/Honoring-Nurses/NationalAwardsProgram/HallofFame/19761984/osboem5559.html

https://www.encyclopedia.com/women/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/osborne-estelle-massey-1901-1981 https://www.questia.com/library/journal/1P3-219771671/great-black-nurses-series-estelle-massey-riddle-osborne

MLK Quote

Black History: Special Delivery!!

MLK made this statement in Memphis, TN in 1968. Sanitation Workers there sought his assistance in gaining better working conditions and pay for its black workers.

Bell Hooks Quote

Black History:  Special Delivery!!


“Usually when people talk about the strength of black women…. they ignore the reality that to be strong in the face of oppression is not the same as overcoming oppression, that endurance is not to be confused with transformation.”
-Bell Hooks


MLK QUOTE

Black History:  Special Delivery!!



“Some people are so worn down by the yoke of oppression that they give up…. The oppressed must never allow the conscience of the oppressor to slumber…. To accept injustice or segregation passively is to say to the oppressor that his actions are morally right. ” ~Martin Luther King, Jr.


Comparing Betsy Devos To Ruby Bridges? No Comparison At All!

Black History: Special Delivery!!

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 (Left) Norman Rockwell Painting “The Problem We All Live With”

(Right) Cartoon by Glenn McCoy depicting Betsy Devos

Conservative artist, Glenn McCoy published a cartoon, Monday, February 13, 2017 in which he  appears to compare, Education Secretary, Betsy Devos and civil rights activist, Ruby Bridges. The cartoon was published after protests at a Washington DC school made it difficult for Devos to enter the a main entrance.  She eventually was able to enter the school through a different entrance.

Continue reading “Comparing Betsy Devos To Ruby Bridges? No Comparison At All!”

Red Summer Race Riots of 1919

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red-summer-riots

James Weldon Johnson, was the first to call the race riots that occurred during the summer of 1919, “Red Summer”.  During this time, race riots broke out across the country due to the growing animosity and tension between blacks and whites.  Riots broke out in Arkansas, Texas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Washington, DC, Illinois, and Nebraska.  One of the most violent of these riots occurred in Chicago, IL.  Riots occurred in over three dozen cities.  The riot was started when a black teen, floated onto a white beach.  The teen was violently attacked.  From there, the beatings spilled over into white neighborhoods; with blacks passing through these neighborhoods being attacked.  Chicago police did not intervene to stop the attacks.  Blacks then responded by attacking whites that entered their neighborhoods.  It would eventually take a rain storm and the Illinois National Guard to regain order after 5 days.  It would be in Chicago, Washington, DC and Elaine, AK that the largest number of deaths occurred. Continue reading “Red Summer Race Riots of 1919”

An Untold Story: Slavery In Canada

Black History: Special Delivery!!

 canada

We are often told about the history of slavery in the United States. However, Canada also participated in the slave trade.  In comparison to the U.S., the number of people estimated to be enslaved in Canada was much lower.  Still those enslaved in Canada experienced the same mistreatment and abuse.  We often hear narratives of enslaved people escaping to freedom in Canada.  However there were also groups of slaves in Canada who escaped to freedom in the United States by crossing the border into to Detroit, MI.  The stories of those enslaved in Canada has often gone untold or been ignored.  Slavery was legal in Canada for 200 years.  Continue reading “An Untold Story: Slavery In Canada”

Desmond Tutu Quote

Black History:  Special Delivery!!

Desmond Tutu Quote

And There It Is!! President Obama Tells Us How/Why Donald Trump’s Bigotry Is Being Endorsed/Embraced

Black History:  Special Delivery!!

 

 Since the inception of his presidency, President Obama has been blamed for nearly everything that is wrong with the country. At a recent press conference, President Obama spoke candidly on this issue.  He also specifically addressed rhetoric being spread that it is he, (President Obama), who is responsible for Republicans embracing/endorsing the bigotry displayed by Donald Trump. 
Continue reading “And There It Is!! President Obama Tells Us How/Why Donald Trump’s Bigotry Is Being Endorsed/Embraced”

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