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Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)  whose original profession and calling was as a Unitarian minister, left the ministry to pursue a career in writing and public speaking. Emerson became one of America's best known and best loved 19th century figures. (41)

Jim Crow  Thomas Dartmouth "Daddy" Rice popularized the black-faced minstrel on the American stage with his 1828 caricature of a crippled plantation slave, dancing and singing the words:
    "Weel about and turn about and do jus' so,
    Eb'ry time I weel about, I jump Jim Crow." (155)

Peter Wheatstraw (1902-1941) emphasized a relationship with the Prince of Darkness as a means to attract an audience. An enormously popular musician during the 1930s, he often publicized himself as the "The Devil's Son-In-Law" or the "High Sheriff of Hell."  Eventually, like Robert Johnson before him, if he had indeed sold his soul, his time came due, leaving this world at a much too early age and at the height of his career. (176)

Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Born a slave and deprived of any early education, Booker Taliaferro Washington went on to become America's foremost black educator of the early 20th Century. He was the first principal at the Tuskegee Institute, where he championed vocational training as a means for black self-reliance. A well-known orator, Washington also wrote a best-selling autobiography and advised Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William Taft on race relations. His rather flaccid nickname of "The Great Accomodator" provides a clue as to why he was later criticized by W. E. B. Du Bois and the N.A.A.C.P. (305)

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) Biographer James Parton said Thomas Jefferson could "calculate an eclipse, survey an estate, tie an artery, plan an edifice, try a cause, break a horse, dance a minuet, and play the violin." Not to mention serving as U.S. president (1801-1809), vice-president, secretary of state, minister to France, congressman, governor of Virginia, founder of the University of Virginia, and president of the American Philosophical Society. For all that, Jefferson is best remembered as a champion of human rights and the lead draftsman of the Declaration of Independence. (307)

Andrew Jackson (1767-1845)  More nearly than any of his predecessors, Andrew Jackson was elected by popular vote; as President he sought to act as the direct representative of the common man.

The Indian Removal Act, 1830:  Passed into law during Jackson's second year as President, this Act set the tone for his administration's handling of all Indian affairs.  Nearly all relocation was carried out under duress, whether by military escort, or when no other option remained after tribal decimation by broken treaties, fraudulent land deals and the wars these often caused. (307)

Casimir Pulaski (1747-1779) belongs to that select group of heroes, including the Marquis de Lafayefte, Thomas Paine, Giuseppe Garibaldi, and Pulaski's fellow countryman, Thaddeus Kosciuszko, who opposed tyranny not only in their homelands, but wherever they found it. We especially honor Pulaski because he paid the ultimate price, having sustained a mortal wound while fighting for American independence at the battle of Savannah in 1779. Today he remains a symbol of the ideal of valiant resistance to oppression everywhere in the world. (307)

Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882) was an Italian patriot and military leader who helped free the Italians from foreign rule and unify the country. He was a master of guerrilla warfare and raised volunteers beginning in 1848 to conduct daring military campaigns to overcome the rule of Austria. (307)

Sun Yat-Sen (1866- 1925) was a Chinese Revolutionary leader who fought to establish the republic of china. Generally he is call "The Father Of The Revolution. "Sun was too idealistic to be an effective political leader. Sun Yat-Sen's three principles--nationalism, democracy, and socialism--were established in 1912. (307)

Daniel O'Connell (1775-1847) The name of every other Irish orator—perhaps that of any orator of whatever people or age—pales before that of Daniel O’Connell ["the Liberator"]. There is little if any exaggeration in this statement, albeit exaggeration was his element.

The British Government feared a rising and granted Catholic emancipation in April 1829. O’Connell now decided to concentrate on winning repeal of the act of union and getting an Irish parliament for the Irish people. British political leaders feared repeal as they did not fear emancipation. They saw repeal of the Act of Union as the first step in the break-up of the act of union, as the spirit of the repeal movement was revived when the young Ireland writers wrote about it in the Nation. (307)

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) The stories really are true: Abe Lincoln grew up on the American frontier, educated himself by reading borrowed books, and worked as a general store clerk long before he became the 16th president of the United States. His claims to fame are too numerous to list here; he is most often remembered for leading the Union through the Civil War and freeing Confederate slaves with the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation; for delivering the Gettysburg Address, the most famous oration in American history; and for his tragic assassination by John Wilkes Booth. (307)

Marcus Garvey (1887-1940) Born and raised in Jamaica, Marcus Garvey travelled in Central and South America, then moved to England to continue his education. In 1914 he started the Universal Negro Improvement Association and advocated worldwide black unity and an end to colonialism. In 1916 he moved to the United States and started a steamship company, the Black Star Line, a business venture as well as part of his "back to Africa" plan for Americans of African descent. Through his skill as an orator and his newspaper Negro World, Garvey became the most influential black leader of his time. (367)