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Anastasi, Anne (19 Dec. 1908–4 May 2001), psychologist, psychometrician, educator, and author, was born into a tight-knit Sicilian immigrant family in the Bronx, New York. She was the only child of Theresa (Gaudiosi) and Anthony Anastasi, a city employee who died when Anne was age one. Anastasi recalled being home-schooled until age nine by her colorful three-person household—her single mother Theresa (who also worked as an office manager at ...

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Anderson, John B. (15 Feb. 1922–3 Dec. 2017), U.S. congressman and independent presidential candidate, was born John Bayard Anderson to Swedish parents Ernest Albin Anderson, a grocery store owner, and Mabel Edna Ring Anderson in Rockford, Illinois. Anderson, the fifth of six children, was raised in a devoutly Christian home. He graduated class valedictorian in ...

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Portrait of John Anderson, 1980, by Warren K. Leffler

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA [LC-U9-39431-32]

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Lucy E. Anthony, no date, by Bain News Service

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 [LC-B2- 1387-10]

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Anthony, Lucy Elmina (24 Oct. 1859–4 July 1944), suffragist, was born in Fort Scott, Kansas, the oldest child of Jacob Merritt Anthony and Mary Almina Luther. Jacob, who eked out a living selling sewing machines, was the younger brother of Susan B. Anthony...

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Ashbery, John Lawrence (28 July 1927–3 Sept. 2017), poet, translator and art critic, was born in Rochester, New York the son of Chester Ashbery, a farmer, and Helen Lawrence, a biology teacher who was the daughter of a University of Rochester physics professor. Ashbery grew up on a fruit farm in Sodus, New York near Lake Ontario but often spent time with his maternal grandparents in their large Rochester home. He attended small rural schools until a friend of his mother’s put up the money for the fifteen-year-old to finish high school at Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts. Arriving in September ...

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Baraka, Amiri (7 Oct. 1934–9 Jan. 2014), poet, playwright, writer, and political activist, was born Everett Leroy Jones in the segregated Kenney Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey. He was the son of Coyt Leroy Jones, a postal supervisor who migrated from Hartsville, South Carolina, and Anna Lois Jones, a social worker who migrated from Alabama and was educated at Tuskegee Institute and Fisk University. Jones graduated from Barringer High School; he then attended Rutgers University and Howard University, but did not earn a degree. While at Howard he changed his name to LeRoi Jones....

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Chris Myers Asch and George Derek Musgrove

Barry, Marion S., Jr. (6 Mar. 1936–23 Nov. 2014), four-term mayor of Washington, D.C., was born in Itta Bena, Mississippi, the third of ten children to two sharecroppers, Mattie Carr and Marion Barry, Sr. His father left the family and his mother moved to Memphis, Tennessee, when Marion was five years old. She married a widowed butcher, Prince Jones, and the couple raised eight children. Entrepreneurial and driven, Marion excelled at Booker T. Washington High School, graduating in ...

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Mayor Marion Barry speaks at the opening of The Shops at National Place at 13th and F Streets, Washington, D.C., in the 1980s, created between 1980 and 2006, by Carol M. Highsmith

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 [LC-DIG-highsm-17311]

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Bayh, Birch (22 Jan. 1928–14 Mar. 2019), Indiana politician and United States Senator, was born Birch Evans Bayh, Jr. in Terre Haute, Indiana, the son of Birch Evans Bayh, Sr., a college athletic director/coach and school administrator, and Leah Ward Hollingsworth Bayh. Birch attended public schools in Terre Haute and then Washington, D.C., where his father directed physical education in the District’s school system. Following his mother’s death in ...

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Portrait of Bayh Birch, 1968 by Warren K. Leffler

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 [LC-U9-19719- 13]

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Bronson, Ruth Muskrat (3 Oct. 1897–12 June 1982), Cherokee activist, educator, and federal official, was born Ruth Muskrat, the fourth of seven children, on a small farm in the Delaware District of the Cherokee Nation near what is now Grove, Oklahoma. Her mother, Ida Lenora Kelly, was the child of English-Irish immigrants who entered the Cherokee Nation on work permits from Missouri. Her father, James Ezekiel Muskrat, was a descendant of both Old Settler Cherokees and those forcibly removed from their homes in Georgia two decades later during what has come to be known as the Trail of Tears. A language speaker and conservative traditionalist, James was a committed Cherokee nationalist in a time when Cherokee sovereignty was increasingly under assault by industrial interests, territorial advocates, and proponents of allotment, assimilation, and Oklahoma statehood. With the passage of the Curtis Act in ...

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Brown, Kay (7 Dec. 1902–18 Jan. 1995) talent scout, agent, story editor, and theater producer, was born Derek Granger Katharine Brown, in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, to Katharine Ross and Henry Collins Brown, the original founder of the Museum of the City of New York. She had one sister (Florence) and four brothers (Nelson, Ross, Crawford, and Harry). Her mother died when she was a teenager, and her father remarried. Brown attended Wellesley College, from ...

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Burden, Chris (11 Apr. 1946–10 May 2015), sculptor and pioneer of body and endurance art, was born Christopher Lee Burden in Boston, Massachusetts. His father, Robert P. Burden, was an engineer, and his mother, Rhoda Lee Davis Burden, was a biologist, aspiring artist, and an art restorer for the Fogg Museum. Burden was the oldest of three children....

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Burkhardt, Fredrick Henry (13 Sept. 1912–23 Sept. 2007), educational administrator and historian of science, was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Louis Burkhardt, a butcher and shopkeeper who had deserted from the German Navy, and Marie Neumeier. Burkhardt attended public schools in Queens, suffering anti-German prejudice during World War I. The family relocated to Staten Island after the war, but when his father’s grocery shop became a speakeasy during Prohibition, it was decided that Burkhardt should return to Queens to live with his grandparents. Against the advice of his family, who had secured him an appointment to the New York City Fire Department, Burkhardt began undergraduate study at Columbia University. Upon graduating with a B.A. in ...

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Cabeza De Baca, Fabiola (16 May 1894–Oct. 1991), educator, activist, and writer, was born in Las Vegas, New Mexico to Graciano Cabeza de Baca and Indalecia Delgado. The family traced their ancestry back to the Spanish conqueror Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Baca. Fabiola’s family on both maternal and paternal sides was prominent and elite in New Mexico. In ...

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Cahn, Jean Camper (26 May 1935–2 Jan. 1991), lawyer and advocate for the poor, was born Jean Beverly Camper in Baltimore, the daughter of physician John E. T. Camper, the founder of Baltimore’s first chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and hairdresser Florine Thompson....

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Campbell, David Scott (23 Sept. 1941–3 Sept. 2015), professor of media, communication, and technology, was born in Galion, Ohio, the first of two sons of Robert Tinlin and MaryJane Avery Campbell. His father worked as an engineer at the Northern Ohio Telephone Company. David was educated in the Galion School District, where he participated in musical and theatrical performances. All the while, he was interested in technology and enjoyed helping his father with household repair projects. He graduated from Galion High School in ...

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David Scott Campbell, 2000, by Gary Braman

Photo by Gary Braman

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Carnegie, Mary Elizabeth (19 Apr. 1916–20 Feb. 2008), nurse, activist, and educator was born Mary Elizabeth Lancaster in Baltimore, Maryland to John Oliver and Adeline Beatrice Lancaster. When she was two years old, her parents divorced, and Mary Lancaster went to live with her Aunt Rosa and Uncle Thomas Robinson in Washington, D.C. Lancaster juggled school and work to help supplement her family’s meager income during the Great Depression. In ...