Monroe County Timeline

Most Significant Events in Topic "African Americans"

Monroe County slave emancipated in 1830
1830, Nov 2
Richard B. McCorkle, living in Monroe County, emancipates a slave named Michael, whom had been willed to McCorkle by his father, living in Tennessee at the time. Michael is 22 years old, and accompanies McCorkle to Illinois in 1831.
Source: Monroe County, IN, Monroe County Deed Book 'C' (Bloomington: Monroe County, IN, 1831), 179.
Breckenridge comes to Bloomington
1852
Former slave Edmund Breckenridge, a shoemaker, comes to Bloomington from Bedford. He is the father of Elizabeth Breckenridge, who begins working as a domestic servant for the Theophilus and Rebecca Wylie Family about 1856 when she is just 13 years old.
Source: Bridget Edwards, "From the Curator of Education: Elizabeth Breckenridge & The Wylies," Bringing History Home: Wylie House Museum, January 1, 2009.
Law bars funding for African Americans
1853, Mar
Indiana state government amends tax laws so that 'the property of negroes or mulattoes shall not be taxed for school purposes, nor shall [they] derive any of the benefits of the common schools of this State.'
Source: Laws of the State of Indiana 1853, 124.
John Freeman case
1853, Jun
A free slave from Georgia, by the name of John Freeman, moves to Indiana and ends up in jail when a man claims that Freeman is his runaway slave. The court case disproves this claim and creates a stir throughout the state against fugitive slave law.
Source: Nation, Richard F, and Stephen E. Towne. Indiana's War: The Civil War in Documents. Athens: Ohio University Press, 2009. Print.
Centre School Built
1854
Centre School locates at 6th and Washington for white primary students.
Source: Michael Schroeder, "All-Black School site to be marked," Herald Times, February 11, 2005, D, 5.
African-American Revolutionary War soldier dies
1856
Andrew Ferguson, a private in a Virginia Revolutionary War unit, dies of old age in Bloomington.
Source: C.H. Stone, "A Colored Patriot," Courier-Tribune, February 21, 1896.
Lot 187 sold to town trustees
1858, Apr 16
Martha Goodwin sells lot 187 to Bloomington city trustees for $221.50. This lot would become the location of the Colored School.
Source: Deed of sale, Center School file, Monroe County Historical Society
Slavery is a big Issue
1860, Feb 2
Bloomington adopts the "Border State Resolutions", which include a recommendation to repeal the Personal Liberty Bills, a request to prohibit the Constitution from interfering with slavery in the South, and an approval of the 36°30' line proposal.
Source: John Fancher, "Slavery Big Local Issue in 1860," Herald Telephone, September 29, 1975.
Mattie Fuller indentured
1868
12 year old Martha "Mattie" Susan Pierce becomes bound to Dr. John J. Durand, a physician, and his wife. Perry Township Trustee William H. Turner sets forth terms that Mattie is to be taught "to read, to do sums of math if possible, and to be provided with a home, food, and clothing." Mattie marries Mr. Jacobs when she is 14 years old. Later, she marries Mr. Fuller. Image courtesy of IU Mathers Museum Image ID 1988-12-0008.
Source: "Mattie Fuller Passes Away This Morning," Bloomington Telephone, August 23, 1940, 1.
Schools open to African-Americans
1869
The Indiana General Assembly passes into law a requirement that school authorities create public schools for African-Americans.
Source: Indiana History Bulletin: Centennial of Emancipation, 1863-1963 (Indianapolis: The Indiana Historical Bureau, 1963), 4.
Bethel AME Church organized
1870, Sep 27
Bethel A.M.E.(African Methodist Episcopal) Church purchases a church building on West 6th Street between Morton and College streets. The church had been occupied by a United Presbyterian congregation.
Source: "Bethel AME in 1870," Herald Telephone, September 24, 1968.
Second Baptist Church of Bloomington's formation
1872, Mar 2
A small band of settlers have unified by meeting in each others homes for worship and has begin to refer to themselves as the Second Baptist Church of Bloomington.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), 31.
Colored School holds exhibition
1873, Mar 13
The pupils of the colored school of Bloomington are posted to give an exhibition on the night of the 29th of March. It is said they have made rapid progress in their studies under the tuition of Mr. Hazen, the gentleman who is engaged as their teacher.
Source: Bloomington Progress, March 13, 1873, 3.
Central School opens
1873, Sep
Central School opens to white children, leaving Centre School to African-American students.
Source: A Brief History of Central School. Bloomington, IN: 1931.
Centre School Becomes "Colored School"
1874
1869 state law mandates separate schools for Negro children where the population is large enough. By 1874 the local school system establishes the Center School, at Sixth & Washington Streets, as the "Colored School" for African American elementary school students in Bloomington. (Image provided by the 1898 Sanborn Map.)
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), 23. map
W.F. Teister becomes teacher
1877, Aug 30
W.F. Teister works as a teacher at the Colored School.
Source: Bloomington Courier, August 30, 1877, 2.
W.F. Teister admitted to bar
1878, May 25
W.F. Teister, teacher at Colored School, admitted to bar of Monroe Circuit Court.
Source: Bloomington Courier, May 25, 1878, 3.
Cap Johnson arrives in Bloomington
1879
Anderson "Cap" Johnson, a black man born in Shelby County, Kentucky in 1856, moves to Bloomington and remains the rest of his life, providing political leadership. An influential worker with Showers Brothers for years, he was known as "generous, industrious, law-abiding, a true christian and loved his friends."
Source: ""Cap" Anderson Johnson," Shop Notes, June 18, 1921, 3. more...
Colored School in school census
1881
Colored school appears in school census with 30 male and 24 female pupils between the ages of 6 and 21 listed as enrolled.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, Indiana 1865-1965 (Bloomington, Indiana: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), 23.
Harvey Young stays with Wylies
1882
Harvey Young, the first African-American student at Indiana University, stays with the family of Theophilus Wylie at the Wylie House.
Source: Bonnie Williams, Elaine Herold, Affectionately Yours: The Andrew Wylie Family Letters: Vol. 2 1860-1918 (Bloomington: Wylie House Museum, 2002), vii.
W.F. Teister's salary posted
1882, Jul 12
W.F. Teister, teacher, earned a salary of $550 dollars per annum in 1882.
Source: Bloomington Republican Progress, July 12, 1882, 3.
Evans starts as barber
1884
Pleasant D. "Ples" Evans moves to Bloomington and begins his work as a barber for Benjamin (Doc) Bass on W. Kirkwood Ave. Later he works for Henry Imes and Bell Proffit before purchasing his own building from J. B. Bridwell. Image courtesy of IU Libraries Mathers Museum ID 1988-12-0251. Note name of customer in chair is Mr. Curry.
Source: "'Pleas' Evans, Oldest Barber, Dead at 92," Herald Telephone, June 15, 1955.
Colored School statistics published
1884, May
Annual Report of the Public Schools of Bloomington, Indiana states W.F. Tiester was principal, Mrs. Teister was other instructor. 32 boys and 24 girls attended. Frances Freeman made the honor roll for perfect attendance.
Source: Annual Report of the Public Schools of Bloomington, Indiana, for the School Year Ending May 29, 1884, with Announcements for 1884-85. Bloomington, IN: Spring, Emerson & Company, 1884.
Gordon runs for office
1884, Jul 30
Samuel Gordon, a long time Republican, announces his candidacy for representative. The "Republican Progress" reminds its readers that he claims to have been a conductor on the Underground Railroad, a secret network to help slaves escape.
Source: "Samuel Gordon, Past Underground Railroad Conductor, Now a Political Candidate," Republican Progress, July 30, 1884.
D.A. Graham becomes principal
1884, Sep 3
Reverend D.A. Graham takes charge of the Colored School, moving from Washington, Indiana.
Source: Bloomington Republican Progress, September 3, 1884, 2.
State legislature passes civil rights law
1885
The Indiana law prohibits discrimination based on race at inns, restaurants, barber shops, theaters, and other public places of business.
Source: Indiana History Bulletin: Centennial of Emancipation, 1863-1963 (Indianapolis: The Indiana Historical Bureau, 1963), 6.
Samuel Gordon dies
1887, Apr 5
Samuel Gordon, one time Republican candidate for representative, passes away from "lung fever." During the 1884 campaign he claimed to be a conductor on the Underground Railroad, which was a transportation network of secret "stations" that would protect slaves escaping.
Source: "Samuel Gordon," Bloomington Telephone, April 5, 1887.
Udorah Smith becomes assistant teacher
1891, Jul 29
Udorah Smith chosen as assistant teacher for the Colored School.
Source: Bloomington Republican Progress, July 29, 1891, 3.
Preston Eagleson's grades noted
1892, Mar 22
Preston Eagleson, son of prominent east side barber H.V. Eagleson, earns honors at close of the High School's second term, with grades between all his grades between 98 and 100.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, March 22, 1892, 1.
First intercollegiate African American athlete
1893
Preston Eagleson becomes the first African American athlete to be a member of an intercollegiate team at Indiana University. Eagleson is considered a prominent member of the African American community in Bloomington, and plays as a halfback during the years 1893-95.
Source: Thomas D. Clark, Indiana University: Midwestern Pioneer, Volume 1 Early Years (Bloomington & London: Indiana University Press, 1970), 321. more...
Buck Town raided
1893, Jan 28
In the pouring rain police officers Owen and Reeves corral more than a dozen of "giddy" people in Buck Town. It is reported that later, on Monday, the policemen hold a reception in the Mayor's office.
Source: Bloomington Progress, February 1, 1893.
First African American graduates from IU
1895, Jun 19
Marcellus Neal graduates with an AB degree in Mathematics.
Source: Indiana History Bulletin: Centennial of Emancipation, 1863-1963 (Indianapolis: The Indiana Historical Bureau, 1963), 6-7.
Preston Eagleson enters law school
1896
Preston Eagleson enters the Indiana University law school.
Source: Republican Progress, October 6, 1896, 1.
H.C. Williams is principal
1896, Sep 29
H.C. Williams is listed as principal of the Colored School, with Minnie McDuffey as Assistant Teacher.
Source: Bloomington Republican Progress, September 29, 1896, 1.
Buka begins working for Showers
1897
James "Jim" Buka begins working at Showers Brothers Company.
Source: Shop Notes, January 23, 1926, 10. more...
Minstrel show references Bucktown
1897, Dec 10
The Mechanics' Band annual minstrel show features imitations of "ebony 'coons'" at the opera house on Kirkwood Avenue. The band sings many popular songs, including a "negro ditty" titled "Every Nigger Had a Lady But Me." The "Bloomington World" claims these performers look more "natural" than those who actually live in Bucktown.
Source: "Mirth and Music: Pleasing Program Presented by Band Boys, Fine Audience Greeted the Minstrel Show," Bloomington World, December 11, 1897, 1.
First African American woman enrolls
1898, Sep
Carrie Parker becomes the first African American woman to enroll at Indiana University, 21 years prior to Frances Marshall's 1919 graduation as the first African American female to attain an IU degree.
Source: Marcela Creps, "Pioneer vs. prejudice," Herald Times, September 2, 2015, A, 1, 6. more...
Carnegie promises $15,000 for library
1901, Dec 27
After inquiries by Mrs. Charles L. Simmons and Mrs. Mary Brodix, Carnegie promises $15,000 for library if city will support it with $1,500 a year. This offer was not accepted.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, December 27, 1901, 4.
The Pour Pesser Le Temps Club annual dance
1902, May 4
The Pour Pesser Le Temps Club annual dance is held at the Bloomington City Hall. Attendees described it as one of the most brilliant affairs of the year.
Source: "Among Colored People," Bloomington Daily Telephone, May 5, 1902.
First African-American frat established
1903
The first fraternity for African-Americans, Alpha Kappa Nu, is established at Indiana University. It is the first fraternity specifically for African-Americans to come into existence on any college campus. It will last until 1905.
Source: "Colored Fraternities," Indiana Daily Student, January 28, 1905, 2, 1. more...
Mob overtakes residents
1903, Apr 26
A mob of about 30 men break into Sarah Stephen's home on East 8th Street and drag her daughters, Rebecca (18) and Ida (16), and Joseph Shively, an African American man living in the house, from the house and severely whip them. The whipping occurs under a dead walnut tree in Dunn lot. They are all whipped with pieces of barbed wire. Shively is punched and thrown against a bridge, injuring his arm. The mob informs the Stephen's and Shively that the reason they are being beaten is because they had previously given Shively 15 days to leave town after it was discovered he was living in the same house as the Stephen family.
Source: "Bloomington Disgraced By Lawless Men," Bloomington Courier, May 1, 1903, 1.
Preston Eagleson opens barber shop
1903, Jul
Preston Eagleson is to open a new barber shop in the Gentry block of town and will also be its manager.
Source: Bloomington Evening World, July 23, 1903, 4.
H.V. Eagleson proposes orphan's home
1905, Jan 10
H.V. Eagleson presents a bill for appropriation to build a colored orphan's home near Bloomington to the Indiana Legislature.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, January 10, 1905, 3. more...
A.J. King hazed at Medical College
1905, Feb 25
A.J. King, a former principal of the Colored School, is violently hazed by students and faculty while attending the medical college in Indianapolis.
Source: Bloomington Evening World, February 25, 1905, 1.
First African American to earn Master's
1906
Preston Eagelson, the first African American athlete at IU, returns to IU to further his education, becoming the first African American to earn a MA from Indiana University in 1906.
Source: Colin Bishop, "Eagelson first black IU athlete," Herald Times, February 7, 2008, A1. more...
All 8th graders but one passed exams
1906, Jun 5
All of the 8th grade students at the Colored School pass exams and plan to advance to high school. Mr. Summers is the principal.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, June 6, 1906.
First Aftrican American earning Masters
1906, Jun 18
Preston Eagelson, the first African American athlete at IU, returns to IU to further his education, becoming the first African American to earn a MA in Philosophy from Indiana University in 1906.
Source: Indiana University Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes June 19, 1906
Everett Simpson of Terre Haute is Principal
1906, Sep 4
Everett Simpson of Terre Haute became new principal, while Flora Harper taught lower grades in the colored school.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, September 4 and 26, 1906.
Mob threatends to lynch
1906, Oct 6
After a black bricklayer by the name of "Spunk" Jones shoots and kills a white lunch wagon man by the name of Al Stevens on W. Kirkwood Ave., a mob of 400 people storm to the jail demanding justice. Jones is rushed to safety in Martinsville by officials.
Source: Doug Wissing, "Black History in Indiana: A Different Perspective," Bloom Magazine, February 1, 2016, 118.
City council eyes Colored School
1906, Dec 18
The city council makes plans to vacate their current building and considers "erecting a fine building on the west corner of the Colored School grounds… for an engine house and council chamber."
Source: Bloomington Evening World, December 18, 1906, 1.
City girl leads in St. Louis
1908, Apr 10
Miss Sarah C. Young, a former Bloomington colored girl, is appointed assistant probation officer of the Juvenile Court in St. Louis. Young is the first woman ever appointed to an official position in the circuit court of St. Louis. Miss Young is known here as a sister of Miss Mayne Young of the colored schools and a niece of H.V. Eagleson, the well known barber.
Source: "Colored People News," Bloomington Telephone, April 10, 1908.
Civil War fighters reunite
1909, Aug 13
African Americans who fought in the Civil War and who now live in Indiana meet.
Source: "Civil War Colored Veterans Reunion," Bloomington Telephone
Taylor Chapel Methodist Episcopal organizes
1910
Taylor Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church becomes Bloomington's third African American congregation.
Source: Frances V. Halsell-Gilliam, "A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965," Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), January 1, 1985, D, 35.
Home for "colored" orphans opens
1910, Jun 5
H. V. Eagleson, a barber from Bloomington, opens Industrial City, a home for "colored" orphans in Unionville. Reverend A. G. Hall of Louisville presides and preaches during the opening.
Source: "Industrial City to Open Sunday," Bloomington Evening World, June 3, 1910, 1.
T.C. Johnson is principal
1910, Sep 9
T.C. Johnson is principal and Mary Todd is primary grades teacher at the Colored School.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, September 9, 1910, 4.
Elizabeth Breckenridge dies
1910, Sep 25
An African American woman who had been housekeeper with the Wylie Family on East Second Street for 55 years dies at the age of 67. She passes away in her home on South Washington Street.
Source: Daily Telephone, September 25, 1910, 4. more...
Kappa Alpha Psi founded
1911, Jan 5
Kappa Alpha Psi,a predominantly black fraternity, is founded at Indiana University by 10 African American students.
Source: Donyelle Davis, "Predominantly black fraternity's 1911 founding at IU to be celebrated this week," Herald Times Online, July 6, 2011, N/A. more...
Preston Eagleson dies
1911, Aug 11
Preston Eagleson, the first African-American athlete at Indiana University and son of Bloomington barber H. V. Eagleson, dies. Eagleson graduated from IU and taught in Bloomington, St. Louis, and Spencer.
Source: Ellettsville Farm, August 17, 1911, 1.
Johnson calls for school to stay
1912, Mar 12
Anderson Johnson defends the current location of the Colored School, asking officials that it not be moved.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, March 3, 1912.
Graduation program held
1912, May 28
The Colored School graduation is held at Bethel church. Vashon Eagleson is among the graduates.
Source: Bloomington Telephone, May 28, 1912.
Library board requests land
1913, Jan 23
The Building Committee of the Public Library Board requests to purchase the Colored School lot at a meeting of the City School Board. No decision is made.
Source: Bloomington School Board Minutes, January 23, 1912, held by Monroe County Historical Society.
Bruce pleads guilty
1913, Jan 29
African American Lewis Bruce pleads guilty to two charges of running a "blind tiger". For the first charge he is fined $50 and sent to jail for 30 days. For the second charge he is fined $100 and sent to jail for 90 days. His sentence is suspended on good behavior.
Source: "Ran Blind Tiger!," Bloomington Telephone, January 30, 1913, 1.
Mitten factory moves into old armory
1913, Jul 15
The Mitten factory moves into the old armory building at College Avenue and 3rd, pending completion of a new building to replace the factory destroyed in the fire. the Colored school pupils would later occupy the Armory while waiting for Banneker school to be completed.
Source: Bloomington Weekly Courier, July 15, 1913, 1.
William Johnson is janitor
1913, Aug 15
William Johnson listed as janitor of colored school, earns $10 a month, 9 months of the year.
Source: Bloomington School Board Minutes, August 15, 1913, held by Monroe County Historical Society.
Blacks attend Catholic school temporarily
1915
Children who attended the "Colored School" are placed with St. Charles Catholic School on Third Street until their new school, later named Banneker, opens in 1916.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), 24.
Colored school noted in Public School Survey
1915
A survey of Bloomington's public schools states that the "Colored Building" measured 40.5 x 26.5 feet. Toilets were outside of the building, and had not been replaced with indoor toilets because "plans are on foot to build a new building…"
Source: Henry Lester Smith, A Survey of a Public School System. New York: Teachers College, Columbia University, 1917, 292.
Site proposed for new colored school
1915, Mar 12
Site proposed for new colored school at corner of Fairview and 8th streets, in close proximity to Fairview Methodist Church.
Source: Bloomington Daily Telephone, March 13, 1915.
School building sold
1915, Apr 3
The African American school building at the corner of 6th and Washington streets is sold to the Monroe County Public Library board for $12,000. The building appraisal is $10,000 and there are no other bidders.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 2.
Objections made against Banneker School
1915, Apr 14
The "Daily Telephone" announces that the Fairview Methodist Church officers are making objections against the moving of the Banneker African American School to the lot across from the church at West 8th Street.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 2.
Fairview Methodist objects to proposed location of colored school
1915, Apr 14
Fairview Methodist officers object to proposed school location, "do not relish having a school house of any kind opposite the doors of the church."
Source: Bloomington Daily Telephone, April 15, 1915.
Banneker School location picked
1915, Apr 27
It is reported that the Banneker African American School will be located on West 7th Street and the corner of Elm Street. The price of the property is around $3,200 and is sold by Mrs. Stiver of Bedford and John W. Baxter. The cost of building a school building at this property is estimated at $8,500.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015.
Location selected for new colored school
1915, Apr 27
New colored school location selected -- at corner of Elm and West 7th Street. Decision made by school trustees and a "number of leading colored residents". Property purchased cost about $3200 dollars.
Source: Bloomington Daily Telephone, April 27, 1915.
Banneker architects chosen
1915, May 15
According to the journal "American Contractor", the architects for the new Banneker African American School are Edwin C. Doeppers and Company. The new school building of limestone will be located on West Seventh Street at 930 W. 7th.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 4.
Bids open for construction of new colored school
1915, Jun 22
Bids open for construction of new colored school, and three offers submitted from Walter Neeld, J.A. Pike and a Chicago firm. Some bids proposed stone and others brick.
Source: Bloomington Daily Telephone, June 22, 1915.
Construction bids announced
1915, Jun 22
The "Daily Telephone" announces that the general contracting bids received for the new Banneker African American School building are Walter Neeld for $9,186 for stone and $8,664 for brick, A. J. Pike for $9,833 for stone and $8,983 for brick, and an unnamed Chicago firm for a bid over $10,000. The school trustees announce that they are still considering whether to use stone or brick.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 5.
Contractor chosen for school
1915, Jun 23
The Banneker African American School trustees announce that they have chosen A. J. Pike as the contractor for the new school building to be located on West Seventh Street. Pike's bid was $9,145 for stone. Work on the building is scheduled to begin within ten days.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 6.
J.A. Pike to build school
1915, Jun 24
J.A. Pike selected as construction contractor, building new colored school at the price of $9,145 from stone. Building to be completed in three months.
Source: Bloomington Daily Telephone, June 24, 1915.
Library subscribes to "The Crisis"
1915, Jul 12
The newly forming library subscribes to "The Crisis", the official magazine of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), founded in 1910 by W. E. B. Du Bois.
Source: Library Board minutes, July 12, 1915.
Colored School demolished
1915, Aug 5
The Colored School is torn down to make way for new library building.
Source: Bloomington Evening World, August 8, 1915, p. 4.
"The Nigger" film criticized
1915, Aug 11
Many African-American citizens of Bloomington sign a petition to prohibit showing the film, "The Nigger", at the Princess Theatre. The film is shown nevertheless, with several newspaper accounts of pro and con views of the film regarding its effect on race.
Source: The Nigger is Protested!' Bloomington Telephone 11 Aug. 1915:1. Microform
School year begins, janitors preparing alternative quarters for students
1915, Sep 3
With their school under construction, African-American students would be quartered at the Old Methodist Church at the Corner of Third and College. "Janitors are placing all the buildings in good sanitary condition for the opening of school."
Source: Bloomington Telephone, September 3, 1915, 4.
Students attending school at old armory building
1915, Sep 13
According to the newspaper, African-American students were attending classes at the "old Armory Building at College Avenue and Third," while a new school was being built.
Source: Bloomington Evening World, September 13, 1915.
Carnegie grants Library $31,000
1915, Oct 11
Andrew Carnegie approves gift of $31,000 for construction of a new library in Bloomington, on the colored school site.
Source: Library Board Minutes, October 11, 1915.
Construction completed on new school
1915, Nov 19
Construction completed on new colored school, "built of stone and is a very substantial structure."
Source: Bloomington Weekly Courier, November 19, 1915, 1.
Petition to change name of new school
1915, Dec 2
Prominent African-American Bloomingtonians petition to change name of new school from Banneker to Booker T. Washington, without success.
Source: Bloomington Weekly Courier, Dec 3, 1915, p. 1
Benjamin Banneker School opens
1915, Dec 7
New segregated elementary school for African-American students opens with 93 students and 3 teachers.
Source: "New Elementary School for Black Students," Bloomington World, December 2, 1915, B060713.
New school opens to students
1915, Dec 10
African-American students marched from the old armory to their new build on West Seventh Street -- they "took possession of their seat of learning."
Source: Bloomington Weekly Courier, December 10, 1915, 1.
Banneker School opens
1915, Dec 17
Banneker School, a black elementary school located on W. Seventh St., opens on Dec 17, 1915. The school is named after Benjamin Banneker, a free black man born in 1731.
Source: Brian Seymour, "A Walk Through Black History," Herald Times, February 19, 2015, Front Page, 1.
Banneker School dedicated
1916, Jan 30
Banneker School dedication celebration takes place.
Source: Bloomington Evening World, January 30, 1916.
Johnson celebrates 27 years of service
1918
The employee newsletter for the Showers Brothers Company furniture factory profiles worker Lee "Deacon" Johnson. It is reported that Johnson, an African American, "landed at the Mecca of all colored Southerners, the packing room in Showers Brothers Company's plant." Since working at the plant, Johnson has become "a power among the better class of colored people" and is an Odd Fellow, a member of the A.M.E. Church, a property owner and landlord.
Source: "Our Old Friend Lee," Shop Notes, February 23, 1918. more...
Carnegie Library opens on old colored school site
1918, Feb 1
County's only Carnegie Library dedicated 1918 as Bloomington Public Library with 6,439 volumes; built with local support and $31,000 from Carnegie Corporation.
Source: Dedication Program, Bloomington Public Library, February 1, 1918.
First Aftrican American woman graduates
1919, Jun 11
Frances Elizabeth Marshall becomes the first African American woman to graduate from Indiana University, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. She later married Wilson Vashon Eagleson.
Source: Indiana University Bulletin Vol 16 No. 4 Apr 1918, 3.
Home hygiene class
1920, Aug 17
A successful home hygiene class for "colored people" is conducted. It includes a baby care demonstration given with a doll.
Source: Bennett P. Reed, "Sands Of Time," Daily Herald Telephone, August 17, 1964.
Bethel AME Church built
1922
The building of the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church of limestone at 203 North Rogers Street is led under the direction of Bloomington architect John Lincoln Nichols.
Source: Bill Coulter, "J. L. Nichols," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), February 2, 1922, 1.
Former slave writes to newspaper
1922, Mar 7
Resident Robert Anderson's letter to the editor is published in "The Bloomington Evening World" so that readers could learn about his youth as a slave in Kentucky. He is the grandfather of Wyatt A. Buka, 1221 W. 6th Street and Flora Buka, 1216 W. 12th Street.
Source: "1922 letter to the editor: Days of a slave recalled," Herald Telephone, November 12, 1983, 1.
Lumber yard stacks improved
1922, Apr
Yard workers John Meadows, "Bill" Taylor, Lewis Chandler, Ernest Bland, William Brown are praised by their employer, Showers Brothers, for greatly improving the conditions of their lumber yard.
Source: "Our Front Cover," Shop Notes, September 9, 1922, 8. more...
Eagleson kidnapped
1922, Nov 20
Shorty before the band is scheduled to leave for Lafayette to play for the Indiana-Purdue football game, 3 white students kidnap Halston Eagleson and take him to Spencer. In Spencer he is held captive long enough to prevent him from making it to Lafayette.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985)
Attorney hired for Eagleson case
1922, Nov 28
The "Bloomington Daily Telephone" announces that Attorney J. E. Henley is employed by the Eagleson family for the case of the kidnapping and false imprisonment of an African American Indiana University student, Halson Eagleson. It is likely that civil suits will be filed against three IU students being investigated for the kidnapping. They also announce that an Indianapolis lawyer may push charges to be made to Governor McCray, with a theory that officials may have been involved.
Source: "J. E. Henley In Eagleson Case," Bloomington Daily Telephone, November 28, 1922.
Buka dies
1926
James Buka, popular African American Showers Brothers employee, dies at his home. "Jim" is remembered as a staunch and generous member of the Baptist Church and one of the oldest employee of Showers Brother.
Source: "James Buka," Shop Notes, January 23, 1926, 10. more...
"Plantation Days" performed by students
1926, Feb 15
The annual senior minstrel, "Plantation Days," is performed by Bloomington High School students at the Harris Grand Theatre. "With the Charleston chorus of pickaninnies and the the circle of negroes before a background representing an old colonial mansion and grounds, the packed house enjoyed a musical and dance program as clever and as well-executed as the best of amateur performances." The show also runs on February 16th.
Source: The Gothic: Bloomington High School South yearbook (1926), 91. more...
Ecological survey published
1930
An ecological survey for Bloomington finds that the city has a population of 18,227 people, of which 96% are "native-born" White, 1% are "foreign-born" White, and 3% are "Negro."
Source: Report On Ecological Survey Of Crime And Delinquency In Bloomington, Indiana. (Bloomington: National Youth Administration Indiana University Institute of Criminal Law and Criminology, 1937), 3.
Possible conviction of gang reported
1930, May 5
It is reported that a confession by Carl Breedlove may lead to conviction of local gang.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Tools stolen from school
1930, Jul 3
It is discovered that tools are stolen from the Banneker school, an African American school.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Breedlove in critical condition
1930, Sep 2
18-year-old prize fighter Carl Breedlove is in critical condition after being shot by 18-year-old George Isaac Hays.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Breedlove fights against predictions
1930, Sep 3
Prize Fighter Carl Breedlove, victim of a gunshot wound, fights against predictions of doctors who say he won't survive. Breedlove tells police "They can't kill me, I'm not going to die."
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Mother and daughter convicted
1930, Sep 5
Mrs. Victoria Hays and her daughter Lillie Hays are convicted on a vice charge. They are sentenced to 90 days in the Women's State Prison. They are the mother and sister of George Isaac Hays, who shot and injured Carl Breedlove on September 2nd.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Two convicted for prostitution
1930, Sep 6
Victoria Hayes and her daughter, Lillie, are convicted for prostitution. They confessed to prostitution and admitted that George Hayes, their respective son and brother, would never have shot Carl Breedlove if not for them. They say that George was trying to get them to stop prostituting.
Source: "Mother and daughter convicted ," Evening World, September 6, 1930, 1.
Prize fighter dies
1930, Sep 12
Prize fighter Carl Breedlove dies from injuries sustained from a gunshot.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Hays releaved of judgement
1930, Sep 12
A Monroe County Grand Jury decides that George Isaac Hays, who confessed to killing Carl Breedlove after Breedlove attempted to break into Hays' house, will not be indicted.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Count on Me Reserves initiates
1930, Oct 20
A candle-lighting ceremony is held to initiate members of the newly formed Count on Me Reserves. This organization serves as an African American branch of the Blue Triangle club for girls at Bloomington High School.
Source: "New Girl Reserve Chapter Installed at High School," Bloomington Daily Telephone, October 23, 1930, 8.
"Count on Me Revue"
1931, May 15
The Count on Me Reserves hold a musical revue in the Bloomington High School auditorium. The revue is well-attended by the public and considered one of the most outstanding events in the African-American community.
Source: "Colored News," Evening World, May 18, 1931, 3.
Sinkhorn dies
1932, Nov 6
African American James L. Sinkhorn, a janitor at the Banneker school, dies suddenly.
Source: "World Reviews 10 Biggest News Stories of the Year," Evening World, January 2, 1933.
Motion to free Adams
1933, Feb 6
Q. Austin East files a motion to get rid of an indictment of second degree murder against Mrs. Bernice Adams, African American.
Source: "Chronology of High Spots in the Daily News of Community During 1933," Evening World
Adams pleads not guilty
1933, Feb 9
Mrs. Bernice Adams enters a plea of not guilty in circuit court. Adams is charged with fatally killing her common-law husband, Frank Hatfield.
Source: "Chronology of High Spots in the Daily News of Community During 1933," Evening World, January 1, 1934.
Adams found guilty of murder
1933, Mar 2
Mrs. Bernice Adams, African American, is found guilty of second degree murder in connection to the death of Frank Hartfield. They were common-law married.
Source: "Chronology of High Spots in the Daily News of Community During 1933," Evening World, January 1, 1934.
Professor W. Vashon Eagleson dies
1933, Mar 10
Professor W. Vashon Eagleson, son of Preston and Ollie Eagleson, dies in a car accident in West Virginia, where he taught chemistry at the West Virginia State College Institute. Eagleson started school in Bloomington and graduated from IU in 1920, and received a master's degree from IU in 1926. Eagleson worked on his Ph. D. at Columbia University. He is to be buried in Bloomington.
Source: "Prof. W. Vashon Eagleson Killed in West Virginia," Bloomington Telephone, March 11, 1933, 1.
Search for Longshaw
1933, Mar 25
Local police and sheriff's officers are searching for John Wesley Longshaw, African American. Longshaw shot and killed Wilbur Scott in Spencer.
Source: "Chronology of High Spots in the Daily News of Community During 1933," Evening World, January 1, 1934.
Perring killed in chase
1933, Jul 13
Otto Perring, African American, is shot dead around 3 a.m. during a police chase. The police chase began around 2:30 a.m. after Perring almost collided with a police car. Perring had to companions: Theodore Chandler and Mrs. Edna Silvers Parker. Parker maintains that she was forced to join Perring and Chandler.
Source: "Negro Slain Fleeing Police," Evening World, July 13, 1933.
Wiener arrives at Dolan CCC camp
1933, Dec 12
Captain S.B. Wiener and a company of 212 African Americans arrive to man the Dolan Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp that was recently constructed.
Source: "Chronology of High Spots in the Daily News of Community During 1933," Evening World, January 1, 1934.
Action planned under NHA
1934, Aug 23
Local action is planned under the National Housing Act (NHA). This legislation addresses interests in redlining or flagging neighborhoods for lending preferences or mortgage discrimination.
Source: "City News Events of 1934 on Parade," Bloomington Evening World, January 1, 1935, 3.
CCC truck overturns, 11 injured
1934, Sep 27
A Civilian Conservation Corporation (CCC) truck overturns on the first curve near Cascades Park, while heading back to their camp near Dolan. Eleven black workers are injured.
Source: "City News Events of 1934 on Parade," Bloomington Evening World, January 1, 1935, 3.
Hartfield Jr. moved to Bloomington
1934, Nov 2
African American Lon Hartfield Jr., age 15, will be tried in Bloomington for the murder of Charles Languell, a Gosport farmer. Judge Rogers grants this change of venue from Owen County Court.
Source: "City News Events of 1934 on Parade," Bloomington Evening World, November 2, 1935, 3.
Craig shoots Wilson
1934, Nov 17
41 year-old blacksmith Russel Craig shoots African American Louis Wilson, 48, and states that Wilson was attempting to break into the Craig home. Wilson was on parole from the Indiana State Prison.
Source: "City News Events of 1934 on Parade," Bloomington Evening World, January 1, 1935, 3.
Hartfield Jr. guilty of manslaughter
1934, Dec 31
A jury of the Monroe County circuit court finds African American Lon Hartfield Jr., 16, guilty of manslaughter in the killing of Charles Languell, a Gosport farmer.
Source: "City News Events of 1934 on Parade," Bloomington Evening World, January 1, 1935, 3.
Hartfield sentenced
1935, Jan 2
16-year-old Lon Hartfield Jr, an African American, is sentenced for manslaughter with 2 to 21 years for the manslaughter of Charles Languell, a farmer in Gosport. Hartfield will serve in the State Reformatory.
Source: "Hartfield Jr., Found Guilty of Manslaughter ," Evening World, January 1, 1935.
Petitions circulate regarding "colored" park
1935, Feb 12
Petitions against the establishment of a park for African Americans -- a "colored" park -- are circulated. The idea is for the park to be located on the end of West Third street.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1935," Evening World, January 1, 1936.
Hartfield found guilty
1935, Mar 18
Lon Hartfield, Sr., an African American, is found guilty of manslaughter in the death of Charles Languell. He will serve 2-21 years.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1935," Evening World, January 1, 1936.
Deming is convictedof manslaughter
1935, Mar 23
Franklin Deming, a white man, is sentenced to 2 to 21 years at the Indiana State Prison for the manslaughter of Charles Languell. Judge Rogers moved to dismiss murder charges against Frank Hill, an African American.
Source: "Deming to Prison; Hill Free," Evening World, March 23, 1935.
Minorities placed on jury pool
1936, Jan 27
For the first time in the history of Monroe County the names of two white women and a colored man are placed on the circuit court jury pool.
Source: "Daily Events of 1936 March in Review as Evening World Prints Annual News Feature," Evening World, January 1, 1937.
Preacher arrested
1936, Oct 17
W. H. Vincent, an African-American preacher, is arrested after threatening to kill a white homeless man at Salvation Army headquarters.
Source: "A Last Look at 1936 - In Pictures and in Paragraphs," Evening World, January 1, 1937, 7.
West End residents interviewed
1937
An ecological survey of crime and delinquency in Bloomington reports statistics and interviews about the "West End," which is considered the principal "Negro settlement" of Bloomington.
Source: Report On Ecological Survey Of Crime And Delinquency In Bloomington, Indiana. (Bloomington: National Youth Administration Indiana University Institute of Criminal Law and Criminology, 1937), 54-63.
Largest black area reviewed
1937
An ecological survey of juvenile delinquency in Bloomington states that between the years of 1925 and 1935 Area V (see map), in the west-central part of the city, has the highest "Negro" population with a district comprised of about 1/4 African American.
Source: Report On Ecological Survey Of Crime And Delinquency In Bloomington, Indiana. (Bloomington: National Youth Administration Indiana University Institute of Criminal Law and Criminology, 1937), 10.
Eulah Hartfield dies
1937, May 5
African American Eulah Hartfield, age 30, is killed by a Monon derby train when she walks on to the train tracks south of the city while picking greens.
Source: "Chronicle of Daily Events During 1937 in Bloomington and about Monroe County," Evening World, January 1, 1938, 6.
Council plans pool in Northwestern park
1937, May 18
The City Council approves an appropriation for the construction of a new swimming pool in the Northwestern "colored" park.
Source: "Chronicle of Daily Events During 1937 in Bloomington and about Monroe County," Evening World, January 1, 1938, 6.
William Smith arrested for murder
1937, Jul 28
William Smith, age 26, is arrested in connection with the murder of Dorris Jones and is sentenced to 25 years in the Indiana Reformatory for second degree burglary. Smith was an employee at the African American Resettlement camp formerly in Brown County. Jones was a member of the Resettlement camp.
Source: "Chronicle of Daily Events During 1937 in Bloomington and about Monroe County," Evening World, January 1, 1938, 7.
Dodson submits Slave Data report
1937, Sep 29
WPA worker Estella R. Dodson submits her Slave Data report to the Monroe County District #11 office. Her report focuses on Hattie Fuller (corrected to Martha "Mattie" Susan Pierce Jacobs Fuller). Fuller discusses with Dodson her early childhood as a slave, her visit with her former Mistress, and her current life in Bloomington.
Source: R.L. Baker, Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless: The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves Living in Indiana (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2000), 306.
Dodson reports to Joyce
1937, Sep 29
Following her interview with Mattie Fuller, WPA worker Estella R. Dodson reports to Doyle Joyce on the progress of her project. Dodson says that everyone in Bloomington knows of Mrs. Fuller, yet there are few records documenting her life, believed to be lost by the county. Dodson also plans to meet with a Bloomington Star reporter, Mr. Paul Feltus, to gain more insight on Mrs. Fuller.
Source: R.L. Baker, Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless: The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves Living in Indiana (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2000), 307.
Dodson submits more data
1937, Oct 6
WPA worker Estella R. Dodson submits further work on her Slave Data Report to the Monroe County District #11 office. In this interview, Dodson speaks with Pete Wilson, a former slave who was freed at age 12. They discuss his experiences as a slave, how he came to settle in Bloomington, and his surviving family.
Source: R.L. Baker, Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless: The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves Living in Indiana (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2000), 312.
Colored man Wilson dies
1937, Dec 2
Alfred "Pete" Wilson, a "colored" resident employed at the Shower Bros. factory, dies in his home of paralysis, which he has suffered from for 15 years due to an earlier stroke.
Source: "Colored Man Succumbs; Paralysis Fatal To Alfred Wilson, 88, This Morning," Bloomington Telephone, December 2, 1937.
Brutal stabbing
1938, Aug 7
Lawerence Bowman, a black man, is killed via knife by Calvin Summitt in front of his house.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938.
WPA set to place historical markers
1938, Sep 2
It is reported that the WPA is set to install 13 historical markers. The painted-metal signs will promote sites such as the location of the Seward Foundry and the home of Aunty Myrears, which was a stop for slaves on the Underground Railroad. Estella Dodson and Ross F. Lockridge, Indiana historian and former director for the WPA Federal Writer’s project, coordinate the project.
Source: "Historical Sites are Marked," Bloomington Daily Telephone, September 2, 1938, 1.
Historical sites marked by WPA
1938, Sep 2
It is reported that the WPA historical marker project is set to install 13 of 14 painted-metal signs to highlight historical places, incl. the Female Seminary and the home of Aunt Myrears, a stop on the Underground Railroad, which helped slaves escape. Coordinating the project are Estella Dodson and Ross F. Lockridge, Indiana historian and former state director of the WPA Federal Writer's project. Photo of Ross Lockridge, Sr. courtesy of IU Archives.
Source: "Historical Sites are Marked," Bloomington Telephone, September 2, 1938, 1. more...
Russell charged with murder
1938, Sep 12
The Monroe County Grand Jury returns an indictment against Arthur Russell for the first degree murder of African American, Lawrence Bowman.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938, 4.
Jury selected for Russell trial
1938, Sep 26
The jury is selected for the trial of Arthur Russell for the murder of 32-year-old African American, Lawrence Bowman.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938, 4.
Russel found guilty
1938, Sep 28
In circuit court, Arthur Russell is found guilty of involuntary manslaughter and is sentenced to 1 to 10 years in prison. He was charged with the first degree murder of African American Lawrence Bowman.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938, 4.
Duke Ellington entertains
1939, Dec 8
Duke Ellington and his orchestra come to Bloomington to perform at the Harris Grand Theater. This was the first of several appearances Ellington makes in Bloomington.
Source: Indiana Daily Student, December 8, 1939, 5. more...
City schools counted
1940
The city directory states that Bloomington has 1 junior and 1 senior high school. There are 6 elementary buildings, including 1 for "negro pupils." There is also 1 parochial school.
Source: National Directory Company, Bloomington Indiana City Directory 1940 (Parsons, KS: National Directory Company, 1940), IX. more...
Irving killed
1940, Jan 16
African American Lester Irving, age 47, is found dead of a shotgun wound in the neck in a patch of weeds near the Illinois Central railroad near the west end of Ninth Street. African Americans Sylvester Scott, age 41, and Catherine Graham, age 25, are arrested on suspicion of murder.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Scott admits killing Irving
1940, Jan 17
African American Sylvester Scott admits to shooting and killing African American Lester Irving and claims it was an accident.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Grand jury investigation ends
1940, Jan 30
Grand jury completes its investigation of the killing of African American Lester Irving and the investigation of the stabbing of 16 year old Floyd Staggs.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Armstrong kills Lee
1940, Apr 2
African American John Armstrong, age 24, shoots and kills African American Marvil Lee, age 45.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Armstrong not indicted
1940, Apr 9
The grand jury fails to indict African American John Armstrong for the murder of African American Marvin Lee.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Shortage of domestic workers reported
1940, May 8
Miss Dorothy Dugdale, interviewer in charge of the the Women's division of the Indiana State Employment Service reports an acute shortage of qualified person for certain types of domestic work as the households requesting housekeepers, maids, day workers, cooks, and laundresses far outnumber the number of women applying to fill these positions.
Source: "Shortage Of Domestic Workers Exists In City ," Bloomington Telephone, May 8, 1940.
Mattie Fuller dies
1940, Aug 23
Beautician Martha "Mattie" Susan Pierce Jacobs Fuller dies in her home at 906 W. Kirkwood. She is preceded in death by her former husbands, Henry Jacobs and Levi Fuller, as well as five children. Mattie was born in Kentucky to slaves and came to Indiana on a barge, crossing the Ohio river after the Civil War. She was a member of the AME Church who provided financially to the church by playing her little portable organ.
Source: "Mattie Fuller Passes Away This Morning," Bloomington Telephone, August 23, 1940.
Colored man Borland dies
1941, Feb 24
W.H. Borland (76), a prominent colored carpenter-contractor and farmer, dies in his home on Rural Route Six in the Harmony neighborhood due to a months long illness.
Source: "W.H. Borland Dies Monday," Bloomington Telephone, February 25, 1941.
Roland Hayes at IU Auditorium
1941, Jul 15
Roland Hayes, the renowned African-American tenor and composer, visits Indiana University and appears at the IU Auditorium.
Source: http://www.iuauditorium.com/events/archive
Marian Anderson visits IU
1942, Jan 15
Famous African-American contralto singer Marian Anderson gives a performance at the IU Auditorium.
Source: "Marian Anderson to Sing Here Thursday," Bloomington Telephone, January 10, 1942, Society, 2. more...
Wings Over Jordan performs
1942, Sep 28
The Wings Over Jordan Choral Ensemble, a prominent black choir, performs at the IU Auditorium on September 28th, 1942.
Source: http://www.iuauditorium.com/events/archive
Prospective jurors announced, Payne retried
1942, Nov
After several delays in the retrial of Caroline Payne in the murder of Charles O. Mattingly, court proceedings begin. Special Judge Charles B. Staff, presiding over the case, orders that 125 prospective jurors names be drawn including five women: Elizabeth Bridgwaters, Blanche Denny, Stella Young, Harriet Weaver, Bernice Hudson, and Bertha Beaumont. During the trail, Payne takes the stand in her own defense, showing an absence of tears. After deliberating for 6 hours and 5 minutes, the jury brings a verdict of guilty of voluntary manslaughter, a sentence of 2 to 21 years in prison.
Source: Rose Mcllveen, "Second jury finds Payne guilty in shooting death," Herald Times, November 1, 1993.
Marian Anderson returns to IU
1943, Jan 14
Marian Anderson, the famous African-American singer, visits Indiana University and gives another performance with Franz Rupp at the IU Auditorium almost exactly one year after her first visit.
Source: http://www.iuauditorium.com/events/archive
Taliaferro arrives at IU
1945, Jun 21
IU football player George Taliaferro arrives in Bloomington from Gary, Ind.; he gets off the bus at 10th and Walnut Streets, and heads to his off-campus boarding room at 8th and Dunn Streets, where black male IU students live. Later he becomes the first African-American to be drafted into the National Football League.
Source: Dawn Knight, Taliarferro: Breaking Barriers from the NFL Draft to the Ivory Tower (Bloomington (Ind.): Indiana University Press, 2007), 21. more... map
Taliaferro knows end of WWII
1945, Aug 15
IU Football player George Taliaferro sits on the steps of the boarding house for black students when he learns of the Japanese surrender. The house where he and other black males students live at this time is located at 418 E. 8th Street. The home, managed by John and Ruth Mayes, is pictured here from the GIS.
Source: Dawn Knight, Taliarferro: Breaking Barriers from the NFL Draft to the Ivory Tower (Bloomington (Ind.): Indiana University Press, 2007), 33.
Woolridge found, apprehended
1946, Mar 1
After police find the bodies of Russell Koontz (45) and Phyllis Coleman (32) at the abandoned Hunter Brothers Mill, they find a distinctive boot pattern in the mud. They speak to a witness who states that an African American man in rubber boots was seen walking through the neighborhood by a car accident. Police have records of Joseph Luther Woolridge, who is is a black man at the age of 29, from the car accident and they find the rubber boots matching the pattern at the crime scene in Woolridge's home. They apprehend him for murder.
Source: Clay W. Stuckey, An illustrated gazetteer of limestone mills: in Owen, Monroe, and Lawrence counties to 1950 (2016), 79.
Woolridge apprehended for murder
1946, Mar 1
Hours after the bodies of Russell Koontz (45) and Phyllis Coleman (32) are found at the abandoned Hunter Brothers Mill, African American Joseph Luther Woolridge (29) is apprehended by police. He confesses to the killings; he states that he had caught Koontz and Coleman in a "compromising position" and Koontz attacked Woolridge, causing Woolridge to defend himself by hitting Koontz over the head. He then panicked and strangled Coleman.
Source: Clay W. Stuckey, An illustrated gazetteer of limestone mills: in Owen, Monroe, and Lawrence counties to 1950 (2016), 79.
Count Basie and His Orchestra perform
1946, Mar 22
The famous Count Basie Orchestra performs at the IU Auditorium on March 22nd, 1946.
Source: http://www.iuauditorium.com/events/archive more...
Black Scout Troop created
1946, May 30
Bethel AME Church Brotherhood, led by President Maurice Evans, announces the establishment of the only Negro Boy Scout troop in the nine-county White River Council. WW II veteran Frank Henderson Jr. is the Scoutmaster.
Source: "Create Negro Scout Troop," The World Telephone, May 31, 1946, 1. more... map
Paul Robeson, William Schatzkamer, Lawrence Brown perform
1946, Nov 12
Paul Robeson, an African-American singer, actor, and civil rights activist; William Schatzkamer, a composer and pianist; and Lawrence Brown, an African-American jazz trombonist famous for being a member of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, perform at the IU Auditorium.
Source: http://www.iuauditorium.com/events/archive
The Gables restaurant integrates
1947
George Taliaferro, College Football Hall of Fame member, is influential in persuading the Gables Restaurant to become racially integrated.
Source: Brian Seymour, "A Walk Through Black History," Herald Telephone, February 19, 2015, Front Page, 1. more... map
IU gets first black basketball player
1947, Sep
Bill Garrett becomes the first African American to be recruited and play basketball at Indiana University, and the first African Americans to play in the Big Ten. (Indiana University Archives P0023606)
Source: Tom Graham, Rachel Graham Cody, Getting Open: The Unknown Story of Bill Garrett and the Integration of College Basketball (New York: Atria Books, 2006), 138-139. more...
Swimming pools integrated
1948
City swimming pools are integrated. According to Wilbert Miller, who worked for the city's parks and recreation department during this time, 1948 was a "big year" for local race relations.
Source: John Meekins, "Long history of blacks in Bloomington show archievement, some discrimination," Sunday Tribune & Star Courier, September 19, 1971. more...
City profiled as 98% Caucasian
1948
The city directory states that according to the 1940 U. S. Census, the Bloomington population is 20,870. These numbers are reported as 98% American-born.
Source: Polk's Bloomington City Directory 1948 (St. Louis, MO: R. L. Polk and Co., 1948)
Flash famine reported.
1950, May 14
The mass closing of local restaurants take Bloomington residents by surprise. The closing was explained by a spokesman who said, "Certain Bloomington restaurants have closed their places of business in interest of public safety for an indefinite period of time as the result of an organized effort on the part of a group of individuals to force their patronage on restaurants which are located in the business district of the city."
Source: "Explaining reason for closing of restaurants," Bloomington World-Telephone, May 15, 1950.
Banneker School is Closed
1951
This segregated school for black children was closed due to financial difficulties and not because of the court ruling Brown V. Board that wouldn't be decided for another 3 years.
Source: Laura Lane, Steve Hinnefeld, "Banneker project tells local segregation story," Hoosier Times, May 16, 2004.
Petition against Banneker School
1951, May 23
According to the "Daily Herald Telephone", Mrs. Leonard Rogers, Fairview School Parent-Teacher Association president, announces that fellow PTA members are circulating a petition around the city in order to stop the construction of a new Banneker African American School building at West Seventh Street. They claim that this petition against the new building "is not racial". They believe that if this new building is created, then Fairview school population will be decreased so much that the school may never receive the addition that has been long promised. According to Mrs. Rogers, the petition has approximately 500 signatures. School Superintendent H. E. Binford announces that they do not possess the budget to build this addition.
Source: Bill Coulter, "Banneker School, 930 W. Seventh St., Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana," State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD), January 24, 2015, 7-8.
Colored man Lewis dies
1951, Sep 19
Thomas Lewis, 99, a member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, dies at the Bloomington Hospital.
Source: "Thomas Lewis Dies Today," Daily Herald Telephone, September 19, 1951.
Reverend Porter dies
1952, Nov 22
Reverend Porter of the Second Baptist Church is pronounced dead after a long illness, resulting in the call for Reverend Marvin Chandler to replace him as minister.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985), 33.
Banneker becomes recreational center
1954
The Benjamin Banneker School becomes a full-time recreational center under the direction of Wilbert Miller.
Source: "Director Femal appraises West Side Center's woes," Indiana Daily Student, March 13, 1969, 12.
Pleasant D. Evans dies
1955, Jun 15
Pleasant D. "Ples" Evans dies at the age of 92 in the home of his son, Maurice Evans, located at 835 West 7th Street. Evans, originally from Paoli, IN, came to Bloomington in 1884. He was a barber who had been in business for 71 years in Bloomington. He was also a prominent member of the Bethel AME Church starting in 1885. He will be buried at Rose Hill Cemetery. Photo of home courtesy of Monroe County GIS.
Source: "'Ples' Evans, Oldest Barber Dead at 92," Daily Herald Telephone, June 15, 1955, 1. map
Chandler leaves for study
1959, Aug 18
Marvin Chandler, one of Bloomington's well known "colored" residents, is leaving for four years of study for the ministry at schools in Buffalo and Rochester.
Source: Bennett P. Reed, "Sands Of Time," Daily Herald Telephone, August 18, 1964.
State passes civil rights law
1961
The law replaces the previous legislation passed in 1885.
Source: Indiana History Bulletin: Centennial of Emancipation, 1863-1963 (Indianapolis: The Indiana Historical Bureau, 1963), 13-14.
Historian Woodburn gives speech
1961, Mar 2
Historian Walter Woodburn gives a speech about the Underground Railroad, an escape route for slaves, at the Binford Junior High School. The speech was given to an audience of 175 people. Most of the audience was made up of the members of the Monroe County Historical Society as well as members of the Monroe County Civil War Centennial Committee.
Source: Unknown, March 9, 1961.
Students' rights violated
1962, May 18
The Indiana Civil Rights Commission rules that the five IU students, ejected from a Bloomington skating rink on April 13th, were done so due to their race. The commission makes the finding and notifies the rink proprietor of its decision by letter this morning, after it completed its first public hearing yesterday. The proprietor has 15 days to file an objection to the finding with the commission.
Source: "Board Rules Students' Rights Were Violated," Daily Herald Telephone, May 18, 1962.
Bloomington gets top rating
1963, Apr 17
The Indiana Civil Rights Commission reports that Indianapolis, Bloomington, and Fort Wayne are the top three cities among 14 studied in Indiana in top percentage of places of public accommodations which are presently integrated.
Source: "Bloomington Gets Top Rating By Civil Rights Group," Daily Herald Telephone, April 18, 1963.
Meredith to speak at IU
1963, Aug 19
James H. Meredith, the first African American alumnus in the 115 year history of the University of Mississippi, arrives in Bloomington late Monday night to address delegates of the National Student Congress at IU on Tuesday.
Source: "Meredith and Hoadley to Speak At IU," Daily Herald Telephone, August 20, 1963.
Treasurer impounds property
1963, Aug 31
Monroe County Treasurer Thelma Axsom impounds personal property for non payment of taxes again; this time eight mobile homes. "We don't want to hurt anybody," Mrs. Axsom said, "but the law on mobile homes says that the taxes must be paid the same year they are assessed and those we posted yesterday and this morning have records of delinquent payment."
Source: "More Impounding Notices Posted In Tax Crackdown," Daily Herald Telephone, August 31, 1963.
Prosecutor investigates pinball machines
1963, Sep
Prosecutor Thomas Hoadley states that, after receiving complaints, he has investigated "the most profitable pinball machine operations in Monroe County" in recent weeks and that none of them is operating illegally.
Source: "Prosecutor Says He's Investigated Pinball Machines," Daily Herald Telephone, September 23, 1963.
Golfer sued by victim
1963, Sep 6
A Bloomington electrician, who was knocked to the ground by a stray golf ball near Cascades Park last December, files a $15,000 damage suit in Circuit Court against the golfer, charging him with careless and negligent play. Wilbur L. White files the suit against Charles Elinsky. White's suit is the first to be filed by a resident of the Fritz Terrace Addition, where complaints have been emanating for nearly a year over golfers stray shots endangering children in the area. The addition borders the golf course along three fairways.
Source: "Golfer Sued On Shot," Daily Herald Telephone, September 7, 1963.
Excise police order removal of machines
1963, Nov 14
State Excise Police, operating out of Terre Haute, order five Bloomington organizations to remove 'electronic machines' from the premises. Lt. Clarence McCullough, in charge of excise department operations in the Terre Haute District (including Monroe County) says the order resulted from routine periodic inspections. He states that these machines, which are generally considered gaming devices (specifically pinball machines), were found at the American Legion Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Eagles, Moose and Elk Lodges.
Source: "Excise Police Order Removal of Machines," Daily Herald Telephone, November 14, 1963.
First black city worker hired
1964
Mary Evelyn Terry Ice begins working as a parking meter technician for Bloomington. She becomes the first African-American employee for the city, working as Officer No. 302 for 27 years, which includes a time as supervisor for the division. H-T Reporter interviewed Mary in 1991. Photo 1943 Gothic Yearbook.
Source: "Mary Ice: Bloomington's first African-American employee," The Herald Times, February 3, 2011.
Ramming leads community center
1966, Oct 14
The West Side Center (later known as the Banneker Center) opens for its fall season with new director Burney Ramming.
Source: "Center Open On West Side," Daily Herald Telephone, October 14, 1966.
Racial tensions increase
1966, Nov 30
Reverend Ernest Butler, chairman of the Human Relations Commission, states that racial incidents may lead to the closing of the West Side Community Center. Butler states that racial tensions have increased since Wilbert Miller resigned as director of the Crestmont Homes public housing development.
Source: "Racial Trouble Threatens Community Center's Future," The Bloomington Tribune, November 30, 1966.
Thrasher says no discrimination
1967, Mar 1
Sheriff Clifford Thrasher says his office has no racially discriminatory rules on visiting privileges for prisoners at the Monroe County jail.
Source: "Bloomington's Year: A look at the major local news reported during 1967 in the H-T," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1967.
First Black Bloomington Police Officer
1967, Apr 1
Vietnam War veteran and Bloomington High School graduate Charles Brown becomes first African American police officer in Bloomington history.
Source: Colin Bishop, "Black History Month Profiles: Brown was city's first black police officer," Herald Times, February 18, 2008, N/A (clipping).
New West Side Center director
1967, Oct 7
Edward Williams, an Indiana University senior from East Chicago is named the new director of the West Side Community Center at 930 W 7th St. The center will open again on October 9th.
Source: "Westside Center Gets Director," Daily Herald Telephone, October 7, 1967. map
Westside appeals to board
1968, Jan 16
Around 12 teens and 20 adults active at the Westside Community Center appear before the Bloomington Park Board in an effort to ask for pool tables for the center and ask to be able to stay open on Saturdays. Their request for pool tables is granted.
Source: Curt Reeve, "Westside Center Group Protests," Daily Herald Telephone, January 16, 1968.
KKK plans march
1968, Mar 17
The Ku Klux Klan (KKK) says it will march in downtown Bloomington on March 30th. Approximately 50 Klansmen hand out literature in the business district.
Source: "Bloomington's Year: A Look at Major Local News Reported in the H-T in 1968," Herald Telephone, December 31, 1968.
Ku Klux Klan opposed
1968, Mar 25
The Ku Klux Klan's hopes to march in downtown Bloomington is met with opposition as 300 community members meet at the Second Baptist Church in an effort to stop them.
Source: "Bloomington's Year: A Look at Major Local News Reported in the H-T in 1968," Herald Telephone, December 31, 1968.
Restraining order issued against Ku Klux Klan
1968, Mar 27
The judge of the Monroe Circuit Court, Judge Nat U. Hill, issues a restraining order against the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) in order to prevent them from visiting Bloomington.
Source: "Bloomington's Year: A Look at Major Local News Reported in the H-T in 1968," Herald Telephone, December 31, 1968.
Community Center raises funds
1968, Apr 3
The Westside Community Center announces plans to hold a two-pronged fundraiser in order to send 45 members to Evanston, Illinois from April 26 to 28. The center has begun selling candy and bumper stickers, and will hold a barbecue supper on April 20. The goal is to raise $600.
Source: "Westside Center Launches Campaign," Bloomington Tribune, April 3, 1968.
Westside plans summer opening
1968, Apr 23
City Parks and Recreation Board members vote to keep the Westside Community Center open during the summer months. Figures show that it will cost around $2,000 per month.
Source: "Westside Center Stays," Bloomington Tribune, April 23, 1968, 7.
Westside director estimates costs
1968, Apr 23
Westside Community Center director Jerome Femal tells the Bloomington Parks and Recreation Board that the cost of operating the center during the five summer months will be about $10,000, with $9,000 going to personnel.
Source: Curt Reeve, "Westside Center Plans Set," Daily Herald Telephone, April 23, 1968.
Black students protest Little 500
1968, May 8
Fifty African American students armed with blankets and bologna sandwiches refuse to leave the Little 500 track for 38 hours to draw Indiana University attention to demands for more recruitment of "students of color" and a dedicated black studies program.
Source: Mickey Woods, "Mad As HELL," Indiana Daily Student, April 28, 2011, 1, 8.
Mayor announces Westside jobs
1968, May 27
Mayor John H. Hooker Jr. announces at the Citizens for Constructive Progress (CCP) meeting that the Westside Community Center has application blanks for teens seeking employment.
Source: "Mayor Hooker Tells Westside Center Group Of Jobs For Youth," Courier-Tribune, May 27, 1968.
West Side director resigns
1968, Aug 12
West Side Community Center director Ed Williams submits his resignation to the board of directors of the Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department, to be effective September 11.
Source: Jim Helm, "Williams Quits Post At Center," Daily Herald Telephone, August 13, 1968, 1-2.
West Side Center open house
1968, Aug 28
An open house is planned for the West Side Community Center in order to welcome the new director, Bruce Nielsen. The open house will begin at 4 pm on September 1. It is being organized by the West Side Women's Improvement Club. At 7 pm there will be a variety show staged by the youth of the neighborhood.
Source: "Open House Is Planned," Daily Herald-Telephone, August 28, 1968.
Nielson resigns from Center
1968, Sep 9
The "Bloomington Herald Telephone" reports that 23-year-old Bruce Nielsen has resigned as director of the West Side Community Center less than two weeks after he accepted the position. Park and Recreation officials were not available for comment.
Source: "Report Nielsen Quits," Herald Telephone, September 9, 1968.
West Side council created
1968, Sep 13
During a meeting between Park and Recreation Department officials and concerned citizens, a "management council" is created to assist the West Side Community Center. The committee will help design and form programs that meet the needs and interests of the community.
Source: "To Assist West Side Center Here," Daily Herald Telephone, September 14, 1968.
West Side Center creates rules
1968, Nov 19
The West Side Community Center executive council approves the formulation of rules and regulations for the operation of the center.
Source: "West Side Center Council Okays Establishing Rules," Daily Herald Telephone, November 20, 1968.
Men set market on fire
1968, Dec
Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members Carlisle Briscoe Jr. and Jackie Kinser toss a firebomb into The Black Market, an African-American-run store in downtown Bloomington. The store, located at the northeastern corner of Kirkwood Avenue and Dunn Street, was popular for selling African heritage merchandise, e.g. art and jazz albums. The property is later turned into People's Park.
Source: "How a firebombed store became a park," Herald-Times, July 19, 2013.
Black Market store firebombed
1968, Dec 26
Black Market, store catered to the needs of African Americans in Bloomington and located on the corner of Dunn and Kirkwood, is firebombed on the night of December 26th by a man in a grey trench coat and his getaway driver. The mostly wooden structure quickly burns down.
Source: Mickey Woods, "Mad As HELL," Indiana Daily Student, April 28, 2011, 1, 8. more...
Arson in downtown Bloomington
1968, Dec 26
A fire suspected of being intentionally set burns at the corner of 5th and Dunn Streets.
Source: Staff Writer, 'Black Market Gutted By Fire,' Daily Herald-Telephone, 27 December 1968
School board welcomes Bridgwaters
1969
Elizabeth Bridgwaters becomes the first African American, as well as one of the first women, elected to the Monroe County Community School Corporation (MCCSC) board.
Source: Mike Leonard, "Women Who Helped Shape Our Town," Bloom Magazine, February 1, 2015.
Protest on Kirkwood
1969, Jan 10
Two-Hundred black students fill the streets of Kirkwood to express their rage after the Black Market fire.
Source: Mickey Woods , "Mad As Hell," Indiana Daily Student, April 28, 2011.
West Side schedule set
1969, Jan 27
The West Side Community Center announces their weekly programs to the "Herald Telephone." The schedule is as follows: Monday evenings, pre-teen sewing class; Tuesday and Sunday afternoons, skating; Wednesday evenings, adult self-defense class and general crafts; Thursday evening, basket-ball league; Friday evening, The Little Miss Etiquette Hygiene Club and a teen girls experimental cooking class; and Saturday afternoons, pre-teen cooking class.
Source: "Westside Center To Offer More," Daily Herald Telephone, January 27, 1969.
Budget cut for West Side
1969, Mar 14
The Bloomington Park and Recreation Board cut $43,000 from the West Side Community Center budget with plans to determine if the Center will remain open during the summer at the April budget meeting. The center is located in the old Banneker School.
Source: Lee Jackson and Jim Wanko, "Center may be 'phased out'," Indiana Daily Student, March 14, 1969, 6.
West Side Center plans made
1969, Mar 17
At a monthly meeting of the Park Board, a tentative plan is discussed for the West Side Community Center. The center will operate a total of 14 hours per week and will be open Wednesday and Friday from 8 to 11 PM, and Sunday from 3 to 5 PM and 7 to 10 PM.
Source: Lee Jackson and Jim Wanko, "West Side Community Center policy to be submitted to Mayor Hooker," Indiana Daily Student, March 18, 1969.
Teen hold variety show
1969, Mar 22
The West Side Community Center Teen Club presents their annual Variety Show, entitled "Soul-in-All" at the center. They are directed by Betty Bridgwaters and Dick Wynn and the Indiana University "Soul Men" are special gifts. The Teen Club attempt to raise money to be used for recreational activities and trips.
Source: "Westset Teen Club gives annual show," Bloomington Courier-Tribune, March 24, 1969.
Center pland for "Group 69"
1969, May 7
Citizens of the West Side Community Center meet with Dean Rozelle Boyd and Mrs. LaVerta Terry of Indiana University's Junior Division to discuss plans for welcoming "Group 69" for the summer. "Group 69" is made up of about 200 freshman students who will arrive June 14th to be a part of the regular summer program.
Source: Linda Alis, "Advance plans for 'Group 69'," Bloomington Courier-Tribune, May 8, 1969.
West Side hires new director
1969, Jun 24
Dan Mills, 22-year-old Indiana University senior, is named director of the West Side Community Center after several months without a director.
Source: "New Director Is Named For Westside Center," Daily Herald Telephone, June 24, 1969.
Center holds trampoline night
1969, Aug 13
The West Side Community Center holds trampoline night in the Center gymnasium.
Source: Wing Barfoot, "Bouncing enthusiasm at Westside," Bloomington Courier-Tribune, August 13, 1969.
Klan members, Grand Dragon arrested
1969, Aug 21
William M. Chaney, Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) of Indiana, and two other Klan members are arrested in Ellettsville on charges of illegal possession of dynamite.
Source: "Bloomington's Year," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 31, 1969, 9.
West Side director named
1970, Feb
The West Side Community Center appoints George S. Kelly as the new director.
Source: "Kelly reprograms Center from scratch," Bloomington Courier-Tribune, February 27, 1970.
"Military Wife of the Year"
1970, Jun
Gussie Sanford, wife of Army Leitenant Colonel Albert Sanford, is selected "Military Wife of the Year." She is the first African American woman to be honored.
Source: "Highlights Of The Year," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 31, 1970, 4.
West Side gets new director
1971, May 16
Mitchell Adams, a 27-year-old graduate student and Air Force veteran, is named director of the West Side Community Center.
Source: Greg Dawson, "West Side Director Named," Daily Herald-Telephone, May 16, 1971.
KKK members aquitted
1971, Sep 1
Johnny Stancombe and William Chaney, officials of the Indiana Ku Klux Klan or KKK, are acquitted of charges stemming from a 1969 incident in Monroe County where they were arrested for illegal possession of explosives. Greene County Judge Edwin B. Long orders the jury to find them not guilty. Charges against two other Klan members are dropped by the Monroe County Circuit Court after the verdict is announced.
Source: "August-October: Budgets, Elections, Trials In Local News," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 30, 1971, 20.
Trustee Butler seeks advance, turned down
1971, Sep 7
Bloomington Township Trustee Reverend Ernest Butler seeks a $15,000 advance on December distribution from the Monroe County Commissioners. He is turned down.
Source: "August-October: Budgets, Elections, Trials In Local News," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 30, 1971, 20. more...
Adams changes center schedule
1971, Sep 10
West Side Community Center director Mitchell Adams announces that the center will begin its classes and activities next week. Throughout the week there will be self-defense classes, cooking classes, arts and crafts, Miss Etiquette Club, and Teen Club, as well as other sports programs to come.
Source: Rick Manning, "West Side Activities Will Begin Next Week," Daily Herald Telephone, September 10, 1971.
Coffee hour planned
1971, Oct 2
West Side Community Center Director Mitch Adams announces that they have begun developing a series of daytime programs for adults. The first program will be a weekly coffee hour from 9-10 AM beginning Wednesday morning. There will be a new topic of discussion every week with this weeks being "The Purpose of the West Side Community Center."
Source: "West Side 'Coffees' Planned," Daily Herald Telephone, October 2, 1971.
Second Baptist Church's celebration
1972, Mar
Second Baptist Church is celebrating its one hundredth year of community involvement in Bloomington.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985)
Board agrees to sell old library
1973, May 2
The Monroe County Public Library Board agrees to sell the old library at 6th and Washington Streets to the city.
Source: "An Eventful 12 Months in Bloomington," Daily Herald Telephone, December 29, 1973.
NAACP formed
1976, Feb 23
Citizens and students of Bloomington attempt to form a chapter of the National Association for Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). It takes 50 members to obtain a NAACP charter and currently the Bloomington group has 31 members.
Source: Joyce Buchanan, "NAACP unit formed here," Indiana Daily Student, February 23, 1976.
Second Baptist Church officially historic structure
1976, Dec 3
The Bloomington Planning Commission is now recognizing the agricultural uniqueness of the Second Baptist Church by declaring it a historical structure.
Source: Frances V. Halsell Gilliam, A Time To Speak: A Brief History of the Afro-Americans of Bloomington, IN 1865-1965 (Bloomington, IN: Pinus Strobus Press, 1985)
NAACP reinstated
1981, Oct 26
The Bloomington chapter of the NAACP is reestablished after dropping out of existence in the 1960s. The organization currently has 86 members with hopes to expand membership.
Source: Michael B Bunch, "NAACP chapter reinstated," Indiana Daily Student, February 3, 1982.
Youth NAACP founded
1984, Apr
The Bloomington youth chapter of National Association of Colored People (NAACP) is founded. Some future activities of the club include guest speakers, conferences with other youth NAACP members across the state, and participating in several workshops for the benefit of the community.
Source: Mary Wiggins, "Youth NAACP Founded," Herald Times, March 13, 1984.
Nurse employed at jail
1984, Jun 11
It is announced that Mary Krowdel, a licensed practical nurse, has been hired by the Monroe County Jail in place of the previous jailer.
Source: Bill Strother, "Licensed practical nurse added to staff at Monroe County Jail," Herald Telephone, June 11, 1984, 1.
Swain elected for City Council
1991, Nov 6
Democrat Paul Swain is elected for the At-Large seat for Bloomington City Council, becoming the first black elected officer of city government.
Source: Steve Hinnefeld, "Democrats top at-large races - Kiesling, Fernandez, Swain win," The Herald Times, November 6, 1991.
NAACP reaches out to Hispanics
1993, Apr 18
The National Association for Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is expanding it's membership to Hispanic or Latino demographics. The original purpose of the NAACP is to attain basic civil rights for black has now been expanded to the fight for racial equality.
Source: David Thompson, "NAACP expanding to include growing Hispanic population," Herald Times, April 18, 1993.
Taliaferro appointed to judicial position
1995
Viola "Vi" Taliaferro is appointed as a Monroe County Circuit Court Judge by Evan Bayh. She will serve for 9 years specializing in juvenile justice, advocating for the welfare of children in the Bloomington judicial system. The wife of George Taliafferro, she is the first black judge in Monroe County.
Source: Mike Leonard, "Women Who Helped Shape Our Town," Bloom Magazine, February 1, 2015, 102-113.
City hosts NAACP convention
1997, Oct 21
It is announced that the Indiana State Convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is set to take place at the Bloomington Holiday Inn over the Oct 25-26 weekend. This is Blooming ton's first time hosting the convention. 21 other Indiana branches of the NAACP will be in attendance.
Source: Sean O'Brien, "Bloomington to host NAACP convention," Herald Times, October 21, 1997.
Elizabeth Bridgwaters named Woman of the Century
1999
Elizabeth Bridgwaters is named Monroe County Woman of the 20th Century in a poll conducted by the Herald Times newspaper at the end of 1999 due to her numerous contributions to the city of Bloomington. She served through multiple organizations throughout her lifetime, including Monroe County's United Way Chapter, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Source: Mike Leonard, "Women Who Helped Shape Our Town," Bloom Magazine, February 15, 2015, 113. more...
NAACP allies with IU
1999, Oct 21
The local chapter of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) works with IU to better report and combat incidents of hatred.
Source: Jennifer Wagner, "Local NAACP allies with IU to fight hate," Indiana Daily Student, October 21, 1999.
Neal, Shalucha join Hall of Fame
2000, Jul 17
Marcellus Neal and Barbara Shalucha. Neal was the first Black student to graduate from IU in 1895 for Mathematics. Shalucha joined the Biology faculty of IU in 1947 and in 1948 she founded Hilltop Garden.
Source: Brian Werth, "Neal, Shalucha chosen to join county hall of fame," Herald Times, July 17, 2000. more...
Project honors civil right leader
2002, Jan
Habitat for Humanity project honors the slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. The project is also in response to the tragedies of 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Source: David Horn, "Habitat project honors civil rights leader," Herald Times, January 20, 2002.
Butler, Lockridge enter Hall of Fame
2003, Jan 14
Rev. Ernie Butler and Ross Lockridge Jr. enter the Monroe County Hall of Fame. Lockridge wrote the novel "Raintree County". Butler was a civil rights activist, a pastor for 28 years and a chairman on the Bloomington Public Housing Board for 22 years.
Source: Brian Hartz, "Butler, Lockridge join county Hall of Fame," Herald Times, January 14, 2003. more...
NAACP turns 25
2003, Oct
The Bloomington chapter of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is celebrating 25 years of fighting for civil rights at it's annual Freedom Fund banquet.
Source: Katy Murphy, "NAACP celebrating 25 years at banquet," Herald Times, October 7, 2003.
Vance leads NAACP
2005, Jan 5
It is reported that William Vance Jr. is elected president of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and replaces Clarence Gilliam, who served as president for 26 years. Vance has served as the NAACP secretary for the past 10 years.
Source: Andrew Graham, "Monroe's chapter of NAACP to ad-Vance," Herald Times, January 5, 2005.
Pizzo, Gilliam enter Hall of Fame
2005, Apr 29
Tony Pizzo and Clarence Gilliam enter the Monroe County Hall of Fame. Gilliam led the Monroe County chapter of the NAACP for 25 years and helped write the first fair housing ordinance in 1968. Pizzo was responsible for authoring ordinances that ban smoking in public restaurants and bars. Pizzo also capped his career in public health; 50 of those years were in the IU School of Medicine.
Source: James Boyd, "Pizzo, Gilliam Inducted into Monroe Hall of Fame," The Herald Times, April 29, 2005.
Banneker Center historical marker
2008, Feb 11
In honor of Black History month the Benjamin Banneker School, Bloomington's second African American School for more than 35 years, has received an official historical marker.
Source: Brady Gillihan, "Banneker Center gets historical marker," Herald Times, February 11, 2008.
Charles Brown passes away
2011, Sep 21
Charles Brown, the first black police officer in Bloomington history, passes away at the age of 69. Brown had attained the rank of Captain by his retirement in 1989, after 22 years of service in the Department.
Source: Abby Tonsing, "Charles Brown, city's first black police officer, dies," Herald Times, September 23, 2011, N/A (clipping).
Bolden becomes city clerk
2016, Jan 1
Nicole Bolden is sworn in as City Clerk in Bloomington, becoming the first African American woman to be elected to a citywide office.
Source: Megan Banta, "New city clerk says desire to serve fueled candidacy ," The Herald Times, January 23, 2016.

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