2020 ABWH Prizes

The Association of Black Women Historians (ABWH) is pleased to announce the 2020 Letitia Woods Brown prizes for the best book, anthology, and article in African American women’s history.  The Woods Brown prizes are awarded annually by ABWH. 2020 Letitia Woods Brown Book Prize for the best book or anthology in African American Women’s History The competition is open to all books, anthologies, and articles concerning African American women’s history published between June …

By Remembering Our Sisters, We Challenge Police Violence Against Black Women and Legacies that Eclipse these Injustices.

In the years since Aiyana’s untimely death, the number of black women and girls either killed by police or who have died in police custody has grown to include: Tanisha Anderson, Yvette Smith, Rekia Boyd, Natasha McKenna, Sandra Bland, Kindra Chapman, Kimberlee Randall-King, Joyce Curnell, Ralkina Jones, Raynette Turner, Kayla Moore, Gynnya McMillen, and Korryn Gaines.

ABWH-TV Discusses The Clark Sisters movie Thursday, 5/7 at 3 EST

Our thoughts are with those affected by COVID-19 in the U.S. and around the globe. We pray that this email finds you and your families safe. We would be honored if you would join us for another exciting premiere of ABWH-TV on Thursday, May 7 at 2 CST/3 EST. In Episode 3, we present our panel of experts discussing the Lifetime original movie The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel. …

Searching for Mildred Louise Johnson: Harlem’s First Private School Proprietor and Advocate of Progressive Education

New York City’s Ethical Culture Fieldston School used a photo of an African American woman instructing one of the school’s students during the early 1930s as part of a “centennial narrative on inclusion.” Use of the image, taken by photographer Lewis Hine, gave the impression that the school had an African American teacher on staff. The teacher, Mildred Louise Johnson, was a student in their Teacher Training Department (TTD). Prior …

Beth Howse: The Pricelessness of an Archivist

Behind every archival find is an archivist. Beth Howse was mine.  If, for more than four decades until her passing in September 2012, you were ever a researcher in the Special Collections and Archives at Fisk University’s John and Aurelia Hope Franklin Library in Nashville, Tennessee, the name Beth Madison Howse is no stranger to you.  A fourth-generation Fiskite, her maternal great-grandmother Ella Sheppard entered the Fisk Free Colored School …

The Haunting of the Archives

Toward the end of my undergraduate studies I stumbled (literally) into a sign that would drastically alter my destiny. As a night out with friends drew to a close, I walked into a historical sign marking the sight of where the former North Carolina Eugenics Board (NCEB) had held its bimonthly meetings. That sign haunted me in the days and week after. I wanted to uncover the story of the …

Unita Blackwell’s Afro-Asian Internationalism

Unita Blackwell first traveled to China in 1973 with Shirley MacLaine in a delegation of women to record the documentary The Other Half of the Sky. Based on a quote by Chairman Mao Zedong concerning gender equality in China, the film intended to understand and record the lives of women in Communist China. Born into a sharecropping family in rural Mississippi in 1933, by the time of this initial trip, …