March 16 Marks Founding of Freedom’s Journal


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By Kalyn Womack, TheRoot

The Black-owned newspaper had run for two years, fighting for racial equality and sharing opportunities for newly freed Black people.

Screenshot: Library of Congress (Fair Use)

The Black-owned newspaper, Freedom’s Journal, was founded on this day in 1827. That same year, slavery was abolished. Then, the free Black men of New York City including executive editors Samuel E. Cornish and John B. Russwurm founded Freedom’s Journal to counter racist reports in the press and fight for Black liberation.

Records of the press from around the 1800s reflect what society was like at the time which was … well … racist. Even after all the things we achieved upon being freed from slavery like the chartering of our first HBCUs and the election of our first Black Senator, Hiram R. Revels, we were still labeled in headlines as criminal and unkempt.

The Journal did leave the door open for more Black writers to continue Black journalism, though. Frederick Douglass’ Paper, The Christian Recorder and Chicago Defender are a few of many examples as to how Black people continued to share the stories of our community and pair our journalism with the movement toward racial equality. Now, we have major bodies of journalistic work like The 1619 Project, Black women anchors on nearly every major news broadcasting station and hundreds of Black media outlets dedicated to telling our stories – including yours truly (Kalyn Womack).

Read the full story here.

Learn more about how the country felt to African American after slavery here.

More Breaking News here.

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