This post was originally published on February 16, 2017.
Throughout the course of history, women from all generations have surpassed social norms with their revolutionary dreaming of a better tomorrow. From artistic melodies and creative inventions to humanitarian efforts and political activism, Black History Month reminds us of several women whose legacies impact our lives to this day.
Their timeless elegance and passionate rhetoric continue to resound as we take a moment to reflect upon their accomplishments.
1. Bessie Coleman
With determination and grace, Bessie achieved the title of first African American female pilot while completing her license first amongst all women in the world.
“I refused to take no for an answer.”
2. Coretta Scott King
As faithful wife of activist Martin Luther King, Jr., Coretta fought for civil rights in the midst of sociocultural adversity and eventually moved onto to equal rights involvement.
“Freedom and justice cannot be parceled out in pieces to suit political convenience. I don’t believe you can stand for freedom for one group of people and deny it to others.”
3. Diana Ross
Remarkable songwriter and performer Diana helped pave the way for young African American artists through her innovative music that united people of all colors and races.
“You can’t just sit there and wait for people to give you that golden dream. You’ve got to get out there and make it happen for yourself.”
4. Ida B. Wells
Passionate about defeating segregation, Ida utilized her editorial and journalistic career to empower others in their pursuit of the truth during a time when suffrage was disregarded.
“The people must know before they act, and there is no educator to compare with the press.”
5. Mary McLeod Bethune
Throughout her lifetime, Mary served as a prolific educator in the United States while also investing humanitarian efforts into her community during the Civil Rights movement.
“Invest in the human soul. Who knows, it might be a diamond in the rough.”
6. Maya Angelou
Maya brought the world together through her timeless poetry filled with deep emotion, soul and motivation for a unified America. As a Civil Rights activist, she also fought to end racial barriers.
“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences and penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.”
7. Michelle Obama
Former First Lady of the United States not only served as a support system to our former President, but Michelle also advocated for America’s youth through social campaigning for education and healthcare.
“You may not always have a comfortable life, and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once; but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious; and hope can take on a life of its own.”
8. Rosa Parks
Fundamental activist and leader, Rosa, marked history with her title as “the mother of the freedom movement.” Her efforts impacted the Civil Rights initiative by inspiring African Americans everywhere to fight for their human rights.
“I would like to be remembered as a person who wanted to be free…so other people would also be free.”
Featured Image by Wayne Miller, 1974