February 7, 2020
Happy Black History Month! Today’s book rec is 100 Amazing Facts About the Negro by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. This is a tribute to the pioneer of popularizing Black history, Joel A. Rogers, who wrote a book with the same title, plus many sequels, from his newspaper column. There’s a lot of interesting stuff in here, from the first Black person to set foot in the Americas (a conquistador), a Black Russian aristocrat, a Black family on the Titanic, art history, pirates, the Underground Railroad, jazz, music, businesspeople, soldiers, and a lot of familiar people from past book recs (Alex Dumas, Harriet Tubman, Malcolm X, Bayard Rustin, and Frederick Douglass are the ones I’ve previously discussed that I can remember off the top of my head). Some of the prose is kinda dry, but it’s a great resource for people who want a fairly in-depth and wide-ranging introduction to Black history.