Black by God l The West Virginian

Making History on Black Policy Day 2023

Black by God l The West Virginian

Making History on Black Policy Day 2023

Black Policy Day, Feb. 15

Scenes from Black Policy Day at the Capitol, from Twitter and Instagram

Black Policy Day Gathers Advocates and Lawmakers

The day-long event served as a chance to meet and uplift the needs of Black West Virginians and to convey those needs to state lawmakers.

“Say It Loud!”

“I’m Black and I’m proud!”

“Say It Loud!”

“I’m Black and I’m proud!”

It only took a quick round of call-and-response for Del. Danielle Walker, D-Monongalia, with a booming voice and a boot on her foot, to set the tone for an early morning crowd gathered at the Capitol for Black Policy Day.

Read the Mountain State Spotlight story by PR Lockhart

West Virginia’s Black Lawmakers

From the first Black legislator elected in 1896 to today’s three delegates, their history is overshadowed by white political power

Read the story by Myya Helm and BBG

Three to Read

Black History Month Exhibit Makes Its Way to Clarksburg History Museum

Authentic artifacts and personal recollections to commemorate Black History Month are on display at the Clarksburg History Museum downtown.

Read the WV News story by Jonathan Weaver

WLU Welcomes David Fryson

West Liberty University will welcome Attorney and Pastor David M. Fryson as its keynote speaker for the conclusion of Black History Month on Tuesday, Feb. 28.

The noon – 2 p.m. event is open to the public and will be held in College Hall.

Also appearing at the celebration will be the WLU Choir and the WLU African Drum and Dance Ensemble.

Read the story

West Virginia Lawmaker Introduces Bill to Ban ‘Diversity, Equity And Inclusion’ Policies on College Campuses

The West Virginia legislature introduced a bill Tuesday to ban several pillars of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion industry on college campuses.

House Bill 3503 was introduced by State Delegate Chris Pritt. The bill would abolish diversity statements and race-based preferential hiring practices, ban mandatory diversity training, and ban the state’s colleges and universities and other educational institutions from funding DEI activities. The new law follows similar moves in multiple Republican-led states.

Read the story by John Rigolizzo

Scouting in the Sixties

From @KanawhaLibrary:

A look at Scouting in 1961. We have the Senior Girl Scouts at Simpson Memorial led by Elizabeth Hardin Gilmore and the Cub Scouts. Photos from the James Randall Collection.

And speaking of Scouts…

Three on BBG

Yo! West Virginia Raps

From the Valley to the Mountaintop: Hip Hop in Appalachia

A took place on Thursday, Feb. 16, at Marshall University. A two-hour panel discussion examined hip hop music, Black culture, and Appalachian identity at Marshall University on Feb. 16.

The discussion featured scholars, educators, and hip hop artists.

Read the BBG story by Crystal Good

Basketball Big Time

West Virginian African-American Elite Women’s Basketball Players were Teammates at South Charleston High School

West Virginia is known for producing some of the best athletes in the country, including many talented women’s basketball players. Two of the most notable professional players from the state are Alexis Hornbuckle and Renee Montgomery.

Read the BBG story by Lekili Dean

The Night the Appalachian Queen of Café Society Fed MLK, Jr. in Rome

For one brief moment in time, two of history’s most fascinating royals met and ate together

The date was September-something, 1964. Influence met influence. A peace-seeker and a woman reputed to be a hellraiser met up in Rome for an exchange that involved food and fellowship. Bricktop, or Ada Beatrice Queen Victoria Louise Virginia Smith from Alderson, West Virginia (where Martha Stewart was imprisoned) made the acquaintance Martin Luther King, Jr., formerly known as Michael King from Atlanta.

Read the story by Fresh and Fried Hard on BBG

Note from the Publisher

Dear Readers,

I am thrilled to share the success of our participation in the 2023 Black Policy Day and the overwhelming support we’ve received for BBG and Folk Reporters. 

I am grateful for all those who joined us and contributed to the conversation. Our latest print and online publication is now available. Although we couldn’t offer a newspaper print this month, we’ve created a magazine-style publication that’s just as amazing! 

It’s full of stories that showcase the incredible people and experiences that make up the Black community in West Virginia.

We’re still working to find an affordable way to offer a newsprint version of our publication, but in the meantime, please read and share our newsletter and website.

Happy Black History Month!

I want to take this opportunity to introduce you to Mabel Hull, a remarkable Black woman who lived in Wheeling, W.Va., primarily during the 1940s to 1970s. Women — especially Black women — were underrepresented in the newspaper industry during the middle of the 20th century as they are now, so Mabel and her work caught my interest. I am committed to elevating unheard histories. 

The Mysteries of Mabel: Journalist, Working Woman, and Mother

As a journalist and writer, Mabel was committed to highlighting the stories and experiences of Black communities in Wheeling, particularly in the Jim Crow era in which she lived. Her work often explored Black Americans’ struggles and challenges during this time, and she was a strong advocate for social justice and equality.

Despite her challenges as a Black woman in the newspaper industry, Mabel’s work inspires and informs journalists and writers today. Her contributions to journalism and the representation of Black women’s experiences in history remain an important part of our collective cultural heritage.

BBG is making history by adding to the rich history of West Virginia’s Black newspaper history.

It is important to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions of Black Americans to our country, and Mabel Hull is one of many examples of remarkable individuals who have left an indelible mark on our society.

Thank you for your continued support of Black By God. Let’s continue to uplift and celebrate our community.

Crystal Good

P.S. Read my latest for the “When All Are Counted” Project.

Confronting Hypocrisy in Progressive Nonprofits: Sometimes, you have to call a thing what it is.

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