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Kate Kelly
Kate Kelly is author of Election Day: An American Holiday, an American History as well as a six-volume history of medicine. On her website, America Comes Alive!, she chronicles stories of America's past that are relevant to life today. Kate frequently addresses civic groups, and she has been quoted in publications such as Time and The Wall Street Journal and has appeared on World News Tonight, Good Morning America, The View, and The CBS Early Show.

Entries by Kate Kelly

Miss Black America: The Pageant Changed History

(0) Comments | Posted April 5, 2016 | 6:09 PM

Vanessa Williams originally became famous as the first African American Miss America (1984).

Almost 20 years prior to Vanessa Williams being named Miss America, the civil rights movement was making it abundantly clear that the Miss America pageant was unfairly restricted to white women. In 1950 the pageant had...

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Memorials to Shattered Myths, New Book Examines Monument-Building

(0) Comments | Posted February 23, 2016 | 1:09 PM

As a nation, what do we commemorate, and how do we commemorate it?

This is the thoughtful question posed by Harriet F. Senie in her new book, Memorials to Shattered Myths: Vietnam to 9/11. Her book introduces readers to the paths we have traveled in establishing monuments...

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Spirit of Eddie Anderson Lives on in LA -- Played Role of Jack Benny's Sidekick Rochester

(0) Comments | Posted February 17, 2016 | 3:27 PM

Eddie Anderson, a notable acting and musical talent who became famous as Jack Benny's sidekick Rochester, died in 1977. He specified that upon his death, his home--a spacious mansion built in the West Adams district of Los Angeles---should become a rehabilitation center for at-risk and homeless substance abusers....

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Daddy King's Story Told in New Documentary

(0) Comments | Posted January 17, 2016 | 7:54 PM

Daddy King, as Martin Luther King Jr.'s father was known, is the compelling subject of Bayer Mack's latest documentary, In the Hour of Chaos. The story sheds light on MLK Jr. but as Mack wrote in an email: "The story gives an extraordinary view of American history."

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New Graphic Novel Tells Capture and Survival Story of Pacific Northwest

(0) Comments | Posted October 6, 2015 | 11:12 AM

Captive of Friendly Cove tells the true story of young British metalworker, John Rodgers Jewitt, who accepts a job on the American trading ship, Boston, in 1802. What follows is an exciting adventure story about exploration, indigenous people and the clash between white traders and the local people.


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Amelia Earhart's Last Photo Shoot: New Book and Newly Revealed Film Clip

(0) Comments | Posted May 6, 2015 | 12:07 AM

In Amelia Earhart's Last Photo Shoot by Nicole Swinford (published by the Paragon Agency), Swinford points to some possible answers as to why Earhart and Noonan lost communication and disappeared on their round-the-world flight in 1937.

Swinford bases her book on a never-before-seen-by-the-public film clip of Albert Bresnik, Earhart's...

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Gamble and Huff: Music Producers Who Created the Sound of Philadelphia

(0) Comments | Posted April 20, 2015 | 2:16 PM

During the 1960s, two American cities were bursting with new sounds from black artists. Detroit had Motown, started in 1959 by Berry Gordy (1929- ), and Philadelphia had Leon Huff (1942- ) and Kenneth Gamble (1943- ), two young men who met in 1962 and began what is now a...

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Sylvia Robinson: Pioneering Record Producer, Ushered in Era of Rap

(0) Comments | Posted March 18, 2015 | 12:26 PM

Sylvia Robinson (1936-2011) was a singer, composer, and record producer who brought rap music out of the New York City clubs and popularized what was a new genre of music by forming the Sugarhill Gang.

"Rapper's Delight" was the group's first recording, and the record sold more than eight...

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Alpha Kappa Alpha, First Greek-Letter Sorority for African-American Women, Celebrates 107 Years and Still Counting

(0) Comments | Posted January 16, 2015 | 11:29 AM

A human need shared by all is "to belong."

Whether it was gathering for a quilting bee, meeting at a local tavern, going to religious services regularly, or in more modern day, joining clubs like Rotary or Kiwanis, these gatherings offer opportunities for people with like minds to get...

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12 Pets of Christmas: Those Who Need Homes

(0) Comments | Posted December 22, 2014 | 10:21 AM

Michelson Found Animals in Los Angeles has dedicated Christmas 2014 to honoring the "underdogs" and cats that are often overlooked in the adoption process.

According to Found Animals, the pets that are particularly hard to place include all-black animals, adult cats, senior animals, those in need of...

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Black Film Trailblazer's Story from 1920s Told in New Film

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2014 | 1:19 PM

When he found the story of a little-known but highly successful black filmmaker from the 1920s, music producer Bayer Mack knew he had to correct history. Oscar Micheaux: The Czar of Black Hollywood is the result of Mack's work. The film tells an important story and places race relations and...

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Pearl Harbor Remembered in Scrapbook Form

(0) Comments | Posted December 4, 2014 | 1:54 PM

The attack on Pearl Harbor occurred just before 8 a.m. on December 7, 1941 -- a Sunday morning. Hundreds of Japanese fighter planes attacked the American naval base at Pearl Harbor near Honolulu, Hawaii.

The onslaught lasted just two hours, but it was devastating: The Japanese managed to destroy...

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New Stonewall Jackson Biography by Award-Winning Author S.C. Gwynne

(6) Comments | Posted October 16, 2014 | 8:51 AM

"Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy" were the words that drove Stonewall Jackson, one of the most famous generals in the Civil War's Confederate Army. S.C. Gwynne's new book, Rebel Yell: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson, tells Jackson's story in an engaging narrative with a pace...

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Louisa May Alcott's House: Telling the Story

(2) Comments | Posted October 7, 2014 | 4:24 PM

Orchard House -- as Louisa May Alcott's home in Concord, Massachusetts is known -- is remarkable for many reasons. Most notably it is a historic site dedicated to a woman who is not only beloved today but who was famous in her own day.

While there are a good...

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Bestselling Author Jesmyn Ward and NYT Columnist Charles M. Blow Talk Writing at L.A. Library

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2014 | 1:10 PM

"Through Trying Times: Stories of Loss and Redemption in the American South," featuring bestselling author Jesmyn Ward and New York Times columnist Charles Blow was part of the Los Angeles Public Library [ALOUD] program. The event was held last week and was sponsored by the Library Foundation of L.A.

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Outdoor Cat Population in L.A. Is the Focus of an Awareness Program

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2014 | 1:58 PM

Over 1 million outdoor cats roam Los Angeles -- a statistic not known to most people because feral or stray cats are good at finding places to tuck themselves away so the public never senses the magnitude of the problem.

In New York, one woman has been running a...

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Royalties, New Novel by Andy Marx

(0) Comments | Posted August 11, 2014 | 12:50 PM

Andy Marx's new book, Royalties, makes for a fun summer reading experience. The book is historic fiction but the term feels like a bit of a misnomer as the historic period is not all that far in the past. The era and subjects covered begin in the early...

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Service Dogs in the Workplace: How to Make It Work

(0) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 4:02 PM

Employers often don't have the necessary information on how to deal with employees who require assistance dogs. In addition to needing to understand how to integrate the dog into a work setting, employers have concerns about how other employees will react. What if someone is allergic? Fearful of dogs? What...

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New L.A. Museum Draws Attention to Animal Rights

(0) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 5:01 PM

The National Museum of Animals & Society, a new museum in Los Angeles, has been featuring an active roster of exhibits and events focused on representing the animal protection movement.

"Other social movements---women's suffrage, civil rights, various labor movements--have museums, or sections of museums, dedicated to their...

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New Documentary About Black Filmmaker Oscar Micheaux

(0) Comments | Posted June 4, 2014 | 8:50 PM

Oscar Micheaux (1884-1951), the son of former slaves, lived a remarkable life. He was a homesteader in South Dakota, a bestselling author of seven novels, and a filmmaker who went on to make 44 "race films," the term used for a genre of films made for black audiences with all-black...

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