- Ronald P. Dufour
Henderson, Fletcher (18 December 1897–29 December 1952), musician, was born Fletcher Hamilton Henderson, Jr. in Cuthbert, Georgia, the son of Fletcher Hamilton Henderson, Sr., a Latin and mathematics teacher, and Ozie Lena Chapman, a pianist. His middle-class family disapproved of jazz and blues, and Henderson studied piano with his classically trained mother. He graduated from Atlanta University in 1920 with a chemistry degree and then moved to New York City to pursue postgraduate studies. For a short time he was a laboratory assistant in a chemical firm, but with few opportunities for black chemists he became a part-time song demonstrator for the Pace-Handy Music Company. He subsequently worked as house pianist and recording manager for Black Swan Records, where his duties included accompanying ...