Wells by Victoria Johnson “The way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them.” Ida B. Wells-Barnett was a fearless anti-lynching crusader, suffragist, women’s rights advocate, journalist, and speaker. Wells (1862-1931) was a newspaper editor and journalist who went on to lead the American anti-lynching crusade. Wells resisted this proposition. "[4], Ida Bell Wells was born on the Bolling Farm near Holly Springs, Mississippi,[5] July 16, 1862. [101] Wells, together with a delegation of members from Chicago, attended. Ida Wells. [60] Despite these attacks in the White press, Wells had nevertheless gained extensive recognition and credibility, and an international audience of White supporters of her cause. I'm Ida B. Ida B. Wells-Barnett (1862 - 1931) By The Gale Group. Ida Bell Wells (July 16, 1862 to March 25, 1931), better known as Ida B. Then she wrote and published the articles in a Tennessee newspaper that she co-owned. After moving to New York City and then Chicago, she continued to report about discrimination against Black people, and her articles were read by people across the country. Wells continued to be an activist throughout the remainder of her career. [116] In her hometown of Holly Springs, Mississippi, there is an Ida B. Wells-Barnett Museum in her honor that acts as a cultural center of African-American history. Wells was one of the eight children by her parents, and they lived in Bolling’s house now known as the Bolling-Gatewood House. She worked with national civil rights leaders to protest a major exhibition, she was active in the national women's club movement, and she ultimately ran for the Illinois State Senate. Wells Elementary is a neighborhood school that is committed to ensuring students receive high levels of instruction. Wells married attorney Ferdinand L. Barnett in 1895. This children's picture book describes the life of Ida B. Wells was 22, she was asked by a conductor of the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad Company to give up her seat on the train to a white man.She refused, and the conductor attempted to forcibly drag her out of her seat. And Ida B Wells had been investigating lynchings and writing news articles for more than a decade before the organization came to exist. [93] During her involvement, the NFL advocated for women's suffrage and supported the Republican Party in Illinois. "[24], Four days later, on May 25, The Daily Commercial published a threat: "The fact that a Black scoundrel [Ida B. Because of her parents’ early death, Ida had to drop out of school, and take up a job as a teacher. [130][131][132][133], In 2016 the Ida B. Mayo was a well-known writer and poet who wrote under the name of Edward Garrett. Ida B. She went to work and kept the rest of the family together with the help of her grandmother. Subjected to continued threats, Wells left Memphis for Chicago. Wells and Barnett had met in 1893, working together on a pamphlet protesting the lack of Black representation at the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. The three men were arrested and jailed pending trial.[19]. Wells Battled Jim Crow in Memphis", College of Fellows of the American Theatre, "8 – White Women and the Campaign Against Lynching: Frances Willard, Jane Addams, Jesse Daniel Ames", Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, The Reason Why the Colored American Is Not in the World's Columbian Exposition: The Afro-American Contribution to Columbian Literature, "Announcement of the 2020 Pulitzer Prize Winners – Special Citation: Ida B. [144], On May 4, 2020, she was posthumously awarded a Pulitzer Prize special citation, "[f]or her outstanding and courageous reporting on the horrific and vicious violence against African Americans during the era of lynching. [30] For the next three years, she resided in Harlem, initially as a guest at the home of Timothy Thomas Fortune (1856–1928) and wife, Carrie Fortune (née Caroline Charlotte Smiley; 1860–1940). [140], On February 12, 2019, a blue plaque, provided by the Nubian Jak Community Trust, was unveiled at the Edgbaston Community Centre, Birmingham, England, commemorating Wells' stay in a house on the exact site of 66 Gough Road where she stayed in 1893 during her speaking tour of the British Isles.[141][57]. As a result of her two lecture tours in Britain, she received significant coverage in the British and American press. "[26], Despite Douglass' praise, Wells was becoming a controversial figure among local and national women's clubs. When Ida B. Later, moving with some of her siblings to Memphis, Tennessee, she found better pay as a teacher. Her parents were slaves of an architect, Spires Bolling. [85], As a prominent Black suffragist, Wells held strong positions against racism, violence and lynching that brought her into conflict with leaders of largely White suffrage organizations. Wells, Second Edition (Negro American Biographies and Autobiographies) by Ida B. Nightingale and, although he'd sold his interest to Wells and Fleming in 1891,[27] assaulted him and forced him at gun point to sign a letter retracting the May 21 editorial. She focused her work on Black women's suffrage in the city following the enactment of a new state law enabling partial women's suffrage. You probably have not heard her described this way before. Ms. Wells was disappointed that not much information was written about her so she wrote two autobiographies before her death: The Crusade for Justice: The Autobiography of Ida B. Message from Ms. Silva: What are Anxiety and Depression? Wells", "Quakers Against Racism: Catherine Impey and the, "Re-Embodying Ida B. Her parents were slaves but they family achieved freedom in 1865. [120] Molefi Kete Asante included Wells on his list of 100 Greatest African Americans in 2002. Wells: Suffragist, Feminist, and Leader", "Ida B. Marching the day before the inauguration of Woodrow Wilson in 1913, suffragists from across the country gathered to demand universal suffrage. Du Bois, and more traditionally minded women activists, Wells often came to be seen as too radical. [28][29], Wells subsequently accepted a job with New York Age and continued her anti-lynching campaign from New York. Wells. Wells sits with her four children Charles, Herman, Ida, and Alfreda. "[4][145] The Pulitzer Prize board announced that it would donate at least $50,000 in support of Wells' mission to recipients who would be announced at a later date. To keep her younger siblings together as a family, she found work as a teacher in a Black elementary school in Holly Springs. It won four awards from the AUDELCO (Audience Development Committee Inc.), an organization that honors Black theater. Born a slave in 1862, she first became prominent in the 1890's because she brought international attention to the lynching of African Americans in the south. Ida B. Back to History for Kids Wells] is allowed to live and utter such loathsome and repulsive calumnies is a volume of evidence as to the wonderful patience of Southern Whites. Ida B. https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/explore/history/african-american-heroes/ida-b-wells.html. In the eyes of the FBI, this made her a “dangerous negro agitator.” In the annals of history, it makes her an icon. [74] Wells, Douglass, Irvine Garland Penn, and Wells' future husband, Ferdinand L. Barnett, wrote sections of the pamphlet The Reason Why: The Colored American Is Not in the World's Columbian Exposition, which detailed the progress of Blacks since their arrival in America and also exposed the basis of Southern lynchings. In 2020, she won a Pulitzer Prize. [33][34] Having examined many accounts of lynchings due to the alleged "rape of White women", she concluded that Southerners cried rape as an excuse to hide their real reasons for lynchings: Black economic progress, which threatened White Southerners with competition, and White ideas of enforcing Black second-class status in the society. [127], On February 12, 2012, Mary E. Flowers, a member of the Illinois House of Representatives, introduced House Resolution 770 during the 97th General Assembly, honoring Ida B. Wells, had to say about the joys and burdens of bearing a famous ancestor’s legacy. Wells' Birthday", "Ida B. Wells Ida B. If the Negroes themselves do not apply the remedy without delay it will be the duty of those whom he has attacked to tie the wretch who utters these calumnies to a stake at the intersection of Main and Madison Sts., brand him in the forehead with a hot iron and perform upon him a surgical operation with a pair of tailor's shears. Both women had read of the particularly gruesome lynching of Henry Smith in Texas and wanted to organize a speaking tour to call attention to American lynchings. Wells Ida B. [80], Wells received much support from other social activists and her fellow club women. The club advocated to have a housing project in Chicago named after the founder, Ida B. Ida B. Wells-Barnett (July 16, 1862–March 25, 1931), known for much of her public career as Ida B. Ida B. About this quiz: All the questions on this quiz are based on information that can be found at Biography - Ida B. [94], In the years following her dispute with Willard, Wells continued her anti-lynching campaign and organizing in Chicago. Her reaction to the higher court's decision revealed her strong convictions on civil rights and religious faith, as she responded: "I felt so disappointed because I had hoped such great things from my suit for my people. Her view of women's enfranchisement was pragmatic and political. [73], In 1893, the World's Columbian Exposition was held in Chicago. Wells was outspoken regarding her beliefs as a Black female activist and faced regular public disapproval, sometimes including from other leaders within the civil rights movement and the women's suffrage movement. The group of White men were met by a barrage of bullets from the People's Grocery, and Shelby County Sheriff Deputy Charley Cole was wounded, as well as civilian Bob Harold. Together with Frederick Douglass and other Black leaders, Wells organized a Black boycott of the fair, for its exclusion of African Americans from the exhibits. Awards have been established in her name by the National Association of Black Journalists,[110] the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University,[111] the Coordinating Council for Women in History,[112] the Type Investigations (formerly the Investigative Fund),[113] the University of Louisville,[114] and the New York County Lawyers' Association (awarded annually since 2003),[115] among many others. All rights reserved, How this journalist risked her life to report the truth. [32], On October 26, 1892, Wells began to publish her research on lynching in a pamphlet titled Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases. Ida Bell Wells was an African-American journalist and reformer. Wells had been invited for her first British speaking tour by Catherine Impey and Isabella Fyvie Mayo. [6] Before the Emancipation Proclamation was issued, Wells' parents were enslaved to Spires Boling, an architect, and the family lived in the structure now called Bolling–Gatewood House, which has become the Ida B. Wells-Barnett Museum. Ida B. Ida B. By Megan McKinney . Wells was the founder/co-founder of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, National Association of Colored Women's Clubs, Alpha Suffrage Club, National Afro-American Council Ida B. Like Wells, he spoke widely against lynchings and for the civil rights of African Americans. By portraying the horrors of lynching, she worked to show that racial and gender discrimination are linked, furthering the Black feminist cause. The chapter titled "Miss Willard's Attitude" condemned Willard for using rhetoric that promoted violence and other crimes against African Americans in America. Between their children they had a total of seven grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren. The New York Times, for example, called her "a slanderous and nasty-nasty-minded Mulatress". Wells and the pressure group she put together with Addams are credited with stopping the adoption of an officially segregated school system. Around 2:30 a.m. on the morning of March 9, 1892, 75 men wearing black masks took Moss, McDowell, and Stewart from their jail cells at the Shelby County Jail to a Chesapeake and Ohio rail yard one mile north of the city and shot them dead. In this period at the turn of the century, Southern states, starting with Mississippi in 1890, passed laws and/or new constitutions to disenfranchise most Black people and many poor White people through use of poll taxes, literacy tests and other devices. Wells, Who Took on Racism in the Deep South With Powerful Reporting on Lynchings", "Theater Review; A Pageant Based on History, With Songs That Yearn", "Ida B. A White mob destroyed her newspaper office and presses as her investigative reporting was carried nationally in Black-owned newspapers. Our only knowledge of it comes from reprinted articles in other archived newspapers. She was buried in Oak Woods Cemetery on Chicago's South Side. "[20], Wells' anti-lynching commentaries in the Free Speech had been building, particularly with respect to lynchings and imprisonment of Black men suspected of raping White women. An anti-lynching crusader, Ida B. Ida B. Wells travelled twice to Britain in her campaign against lynching, the first time in 1893 and the second in 1894. Wells: The 'Drive' in Her Name – A Long Wait for a Distinguished Lady", "Daughter of Slave Fights for Racial Justice", "National Association of Colored Women's Clubs", "Ida B. Ida B. [8] However, she lost the presidency of the National Association of Colored Women in 1924 to the more diplomatic Mary Bethune. Wells Keeps Her Legacy Alive", "Ida B. Wells? She was devastated but undaunted, and concentrated her energy on writing articles for The Living Way and the Free Speech and Headlight. Ida B. Wells-Barnett (1862 - 1931) By The Gale Group. Ida and Ferdinand were a activist team, standing against racial and gender discrimination. Wells. t is with no pleasure that I have dipped my hands in the corruption here exposed ... Somebody must show that the Afro-American race is more sinned against than sinning, and it seems to have fallen upon me to do so. But, given power relationships, it was much more common for White men to take sexual advantage of poor Black women. For webquest or practice, print a copy of this quiz at the Ida B. That dangerous experience didn't stop Wells from writing. Wells-Barnett said that during Reconstruction, most Americans outside the South did not realize the growing rate of violence against Black people in the South. If Ida B. With roots in the call for temperance and sobriety, the organization later became a powerful advocate of suffrage in the U.S. Wells", "How These Women Raised $42k in a Day for an Ida B. [104], During World War I, the U.S. government placed Wells under surveillance, labeling her a dangerous "race agitator". Ida B. Ida B. She helped in the founding of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). View a short video about her work to guarantee access to the vote. Ida B. Once slavery ended, Ida attended Shaw University (now Rust College) along with her mother who attended school long enough to learn how to read the Bible. Wells-Barnett recommended that Black people use arms to defend against lynching. [100], As Wells and Squire were organizing the Alpha Club, the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) was organizing a suffrage parade in Washington D.C. Wherever she saw injustice against African Americans, she worked to set it right. It concluded, "We think it is evident that the purpose of the defendant in error was to harass with a view to this suit, and that her persistence was not in good faith to obtain a comfortable seat for the short ride. Ida B. Susan B. Anthony said she seemed "distracted". Soon after moving to Memphis, Wells was hired in Woodstock by the Shelby County school system. Ida B. Wells-Barnett, an African American journalist, was an active crusader against lynching and a champion of social and political justice for African Americans. Frederick Douglass had written an article noting three eras of "Southern barbarism" and the excuses that Whites claimed in each period. 9. "[26] The Evening Scimitar (Memphis) copied the story that same day, but, more specifically raised the threat: "Patience under such circumstances is not a virtue. Wells Mural, attached and also available here • The Courageous Life of Ida B. McDowell wrestled the gun away and fired at Barrett – missing narrowly. Wells, published in 1970. In 1891, Wells was dismissed from her teaching post by the Memphis Board of Education due to her articles that criticized conditions in the Black schools of the region. Wells Elementary is a neighborhood school that is committed to ensuring students receive high levels of instruction. After hiring an influential Pittsburgh attorney, Thomas Harlan Baird Patterson (1844–1907), he prevailed and Offet was pardoned by the Ohio Governor. Contains correspondence, manuscript of Crusade for Justice: the Autobiography of Ida B. Both were journalists, and both were established activists with a shared commitment to civil rights. Wells, 1892–1920", Center for the Study of the American South, Black Woman Reformer: Ida B. Wells . Wells in Chicago Is Gaining Momentum, and Is 'Long Overdue, "Ida B Wells: The Unsung Heroine of the Civil Rights Movement", "Ida Wells Barnett Honored in Birmingham, England", "The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow" – "Jim Crow Stories": "Ida B. At the age of 16, she lost both her parents and her infant brother in the 1878 yellow fever epidemic. Ida Bell Wells-Barnett (July 16, 1862 – March 25, 1931) was an American investigative journalist, educator, and early leader in the civil rights movement. She found sympathetic audiences in Britain, already shocked by reports of lynching in America. The Red Record explored the alarmingly high rates of lynching in the United States (which was at a peak from 1880 to 1930). She continued to work after the birth of her first child, traveling and bringing the infant Charles with her. For webquest or practice, print a copy of this quiz at the Ida B. 1. She was instrumental in the foundation of the National Association of Coloured Women (1896), and the National Association for Advancement of Coloured People (1909). Ida B. The NFL also assisted with job leads and entrepreneurial opportunities for new arrivals in Chicago from Southern States, notably those of the Great Migration. Frederick Douglass praised her work: "You have done your people and mine a service ... What a revelation of existing conditions your writing has been for me. Ida B. Unsatisfied, she enlisted the social reformer Jane Addams in her cause. The basis of their dispute was Wells' public statements that Willard was silent on the issue of lynching. ", May 7, 1913: Senate Bill 63 – State Senator Hugh Stewart Magill, Jr. (1868–1958), from, June 11, 1913: The House posed a stiffer challenge, right up to the day of the vote. Her husband, Rev. Ida B Wells Wells married Chicago lawyer and newspaper editor Ferdinand Barnett and, uncommonly for the time, hyphenated her name rather than take his. [121] In 2011, Wells was inducted into the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame for her writings. Wells had been out of town, vacationing in New York; but never returned to Memphis. [20], The White grocer Barrett returned the following day, March 3, 1892, to the People's Grocery with a Shelby County Sheriff's Deputy, looking for William Stewart. Following the funerals of her parents and brother, friends and relatives decided that the five remaining Wells children should be separated and sent to various foster homes. Ida was one of the original founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Wells: An Intimate Portrait of the Activist as a Young Woman (which was actually later published and edited by her daughter). [134], In 2018, the National Memorial for Peace and Justice opened; it includes a reflection space dedicated to Wells, a selection of quotes by her, and a stone inscribed with her name. An anti-lynching crusader, Ida B. [31], According to Kenneth W. Goings, PhD, no copy of the Memphis Free Speech survives. Barnett was a widower with two children Ferdinand and Albert. She noted that White people assumed that any relationship between a White woman and a Black man was a result of rape. Wells was enslaved from her birth on July 16, 1862, in Holly Springs, Mississippi. This verdict supported railroad companies that chose to racially segregate their passengers. She is an American Hero. Wells was born into slavery on July 16, 1862 in Holly Springs, Mississippi as the oldest of eight children. [53], Wells toured England, Scotland and Wales for two months, addressing audiences of thousands,[54] and rallying a moral crusade among the British. On one fateful train ride from Memphis to Nashville, in May 1884, Wells reached a personal turning point. video providing an overview of her life), available here o Teachers will need a laptop with speakers & projector to play this for the class She might soon have her own statue there", "Here's Why Google Doodle Salutes Fearless, Peerless Word-Warrior Ida B. Wells, and succeeded, making history in 1939 as the first housing project named after a colored woman. [105][8], Wells-Barnett explained that the defense of White women's honor allowed Southern White men to get away with murder by projecting their own history of sexual violence onto Black men. Wherever she saw injustice against African Americans, she worked to set it right. Wells", "Ida B Wells, African American Activist, Honored by Google", "Ida B. Ida B. Wells, specifically highlighting why she became a journalist and African American civil rights activist. [122], On February 1, 1990, at the start of Black History Month in the U.S., the U.S. [109], Since Wells' death, with the rise of mid-20th-century civil rights activism, and the 1971 posthumous publication of her autobiography, interest in her life and legacy has grown. Then you think of her parents James and Elizabeth. As the Black youth Harris began to win the fight, the father of Cornelius Hurst intervened and began to "thrash" Harris. She lived in Chicago until 1986, when she moved to California. [128], In August 2014, Wells was the subject of an episode of the BBC Radio 4 programme Great Lives, in which her work was championed by Baroness Oona King. Wells committed herself to the needs of those who did not have power. 2). [56], On the last night of her second tour, the London Anti-Lynching Committee was established – reportedly the first anti-lynching organization in the world. [103], Instead of going to the back with other African Americans, however, Wells waited with spectators as the parade was underway, and stepped into the White Illinois delegation as they passed by. Her father, James, was a carpenter and her mother, Elizabeth, was a famous cook. Ida B. Wells Barnett Award Reception", UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media, "Playing the Transatlantic Card: The British Anti-Lynching Campaigns of Ida B. It took three men to eject her from her seat and one received a painful hand bite in the process. | May 13, 2020 4.8 out of 5 stars 98 Wells Club went on to do many things. Wells was born enslaved in Holly Springs, Mississippi in 1862. Ida B. Looking closely, it is also worn around the edges (Fig. [4], In June 2020, during the George Floyd protests in Tennessee, protesters occupied the area outside the Tennessee State Capitol, re-dubbing it "Ida B.