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Harold Bailey

Nonprofit executive Harold Bailey was born on October 15, 1946 in McKinney, Texas to Dorothy L. and John Curtis Bailey, Sr., and was raised by his mother and Ray E. Landrum. In 1948, he moved with his family to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he attended Lowell Elementary School, John Marshall Elementary School, and Lincoln Junior High School, before graduating from “the old” Albuquerque High School in 1964. He received a track scholarship to attend the University of New Mexico, where he received his B.S. degree in health and physical education in 1969. Bailey went on to receive his M.A. degree in special education in 1971, and his Ph.D. degree in American studies in 1975, both from the University of New Mexico.

In 1972, Bailey served as director of the Institute for Social Research and Development’s Child Development Program at the University of New Mexico. The same year, he joined the University’s Afro-American Studies Program as the assistant director. From 1975 to 1980, Bailey served as director of the Afro-American Studies Program. In 1976, he was appointed chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee at the University of New Mexico. Bailey later served as a homebound teacher, a special education teacher, a community liaison, and a certified diversity trainer in Albuquerque Public Schools. From 2000 to 2004, he served as president of the Albuquerque branch of the NAACP. In 2003, Bailey was appointed executive director of the New Mexico Office of African American Affairs. He held the position until 2012, when he was once again elected president of the Albuquerque branch of the NAACP.

Bailey has served as a national executive board member of the National Council for Black Studies, state chairman of the New Mexico Black Studies Consortium, state education chairman of the New Mexico Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights, and state chairman of the New Mexico Dr. Martin Luther King Federal Holiday Commission. He was a member of the School Restructuring Council at Lavaland Elementary School and Hayes Middle School, and is a certified diversity trainer.

Bailey has received many awards for his commitment to education and community service. In 2007, he received the Grant Chapel AME Community Service Award. In 2008, he received both the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Legacy of Service Award and the AKA Albuquerque Legacy of Leaders Community Affairs Award. Bailey also received the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award in 2013.

Harold Bailey was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on July 24, 2019.

Accession Number

A2019.055

Sex

Male

Interview Date

7/24/2019

Last Name

Bailey

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Occupation
Schools

Lowell Elementary School

John Marshall Elementary School

Lincoln Junior High School

Albuquerque High School

University of New Mexico

First Name

Harold

Birth City, State, Country

McKinney

HM ID

BAI11

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Texas

Favorite Vacation Destination

New Mexico

Favorite Quote

We weren't put here to stay.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New Mexico

Birth Date

10/15/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Albuquerque

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Chicken

Short Description

Nonprofit executive Harold Bailey (1946- ) served as executive director of the New Mexico Office of African American Affairs and president of the Albuquerque branch of the NAACP.

Employment

Old Town Elementary School

University of New Mexico Institute for Social Research and Development

University of New Mexico Afro-American Studies Program

University of New Mexico

Hayes Middle School

United States Department of Agriculture

University of New Mexico, African American Peer Study Group/Tutorial Program

Albuquerque Public Schools

New Mexico Office of African American Affairs

Favorite Color

Brown

Delores P. Aldridge

Grace Towns Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Emory University, Delores Patricia Aldridge was born on June 8, 1941, in Tampa, Florida, to Mary Ellen Bennett Aldridge and Willie Lee Aldridge. She had private schooling at Allen Temple A.M.E. Church. She then attended Meacham Elementary School; and Booker T. Washington Junior High School; and was valedictorian of Middleton High School in 1959. At Atlanta’s Clark College, Aldridge received her B.S. degree in sociology and Spanish. Aldridge earned her M.A. degree in social work from Atlanta University in 1966. In 1967, she obtained her certificate in child psychology from University College Dublin. In 1968, she studied family treatment techniques at the University of Montreal. Aldridge earned her Ph.D. in sociology from Purdue University in 1971. She went on to study African art and politics at the University of Ghana at Legon in 1972 and completed postgraduate study at Georgetown University in 1979.

In 1971, Aldridge became the first African American woman faculty member of Emory University and founding director of the first African American and African Studies degree-granting program in the South, which she administered until 1990. In 1988 and 1992, she studied gender and race issues in the Soviet Union and Brazil. Aldridge served as national president of four separate national organizations including an unprecedented two terms as president of the National Council for Black Studies. She has been chairman of the board of a number of organizations including the International Black Women’s Congress (IBWC). As chair of the IBWC, she organized international conferences on issues related to the health of Africana women. Aldridge also published Toward Integrating Africana Women into Africana Studies in 1992 and co-edited River of Tears: The Politics of Black Women’s Health in 1993. She is popularly known for her 1994 work, Focusing: Black Male Female Relationships.

Aldridge is the recipient of over one hundred awards and was consultant for over ninety foreign governments. She is the author and editor of over one hundred sixty commentaries, articles, and monographs on race, gender, politics, family diversity, multiculturalism and cultural democracy. Aldridge’s latest work is The Invisible Pioneers: Black Women Sociologists, and she is working on a partnership with the Georgia State Legislature and Georgia Coalition of Black Women to develop an encyclopedic volume, The Social and Economic Contributions of Georgia Women.

Accession Number

A2006.111

Sex

Female

Interview Date

10/10/2006

Last Name

Aldridge

Maker Category
Middle Name

P.

Schools

Clark Atlanta University

Meacham Alternative School

George S. Middleton High School

Purdue University

First Name

Delores

Birth City, State, Country

Tampa

HM ID

ALD01

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

State

Florida

Favorite Vacation Destination

Ghana; Barbados

Favorite Quote

Others May Have Done More. Others May Have Done Less, But I've Done My Very Best And Now I Have No Regrets.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

6/8/1941

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Gari

Short Description

African american studies professor Delores P. Aldridge (1941 - ) authored Focusing: Black Male Female Relationships. The Grace Towns Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Emory University, she founded the first African American and African Studies degree-granting program in the South, twice served as president of the National Council for Black Studies, and chaired the International Black Women’s Congress.

Employment

Emory University

Favorite Color

Brown

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Delores P. Aldridge's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Delores P. Aldridge lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her mother's side of the family

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her mother's upbringing

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her father's background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Delores P. Aldridge remembers her maternal great grandmother

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Delores Aldridge describes her father's background

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her parents' personalities

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Delores P. Aldridge describes the smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Delores P. Aldridge describes Tampa, Florida's Cuban population

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Delores P. Aldridge remembers the impact of Major League Baseball

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Delores P. Aldridge remembers her family's housing in Tampa, Florida

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her schooling at Tampa's Allen Temple A.M.E. Church

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her time at Tampa's Meacham Elementary School

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her time at Tampa's Booker T. Washington Junior High School

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her childhood activities

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her activities at Tampa's George S. Middleton High School

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her father's passion for civil rights

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls hearing Mary McLeod Bethune speak in Daytona Beach, Florida

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her English teacher at Tampa's George S. Middleton High School

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her maternal grandmother

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her decision to attend Atlanta's Clark College

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - Delores P. Aldridge describes Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 14 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her participation in the Civil Rights Movement in Atlanta

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her civil rights activism in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her parents' support for her civil rights activities

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls faculty support during the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls white people's reactions to sit-in demonstrations

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls Queen Mother Moore, Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her decision to attend the Atlanta University School of Social Work

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her memorable social science instructors

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her studies at the Atlanta University School of Social Work

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Delores P. Aldridge remembers attending the University of Ireland in Dublin

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Delores P. Aldridge describes Ireland's class stratification

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her decision to pursue a Ph.D. degree

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls her decision to attend Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her Ph.D. studies at Purdue University

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her social work in Indiana

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls becoming Emory University's African American studies coordinator

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Delores P. Aldridge recalls founding Emory University's African American studies department

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Delores P. Aldridge describes the development of Emory University's African American studies department

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Delores P. Aldridge reflects upon the black studies movement

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Delores P. Aldridge describes the importance of diversity in the social sciences

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Delores P. Aldridge reflects upon the development of black sociology

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her committee involvement

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Delores P. Aldridge talks about her publications

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her book, 'Out of the Revolution: The Development of Africana Studies'

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Delores P. Aldridge describes the field of Africana studies

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her foundation work in Ghana

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her work on black male-female relationships

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her future plans, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her future plans, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Delores P. Aldridge reflects upon her life and legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her family

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Delores P. Aldridge describes her life's defining moments

Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Delores P. Aldridge describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 14 - Delores P. Aldridge narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$4

DAStory

8$5

DATitle
Delores P. Aldridge describes her father's passion for civil rights
Delores P. Aldridge recalls founding Emory University's African American studies department
Transcript
Did your family discuss the Civil Rights Movement at home a lot 'cause a lot of that was in the news for the first time on a national level when you had like, Brown versus Board [Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 1954] (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Well, my daddy [Willie Lee Aldridge, Sr.] was very political. I mean, he loved to talk politics, and him and his friends would get together. You know, there was a local drugstore on Central Avenue [Tampa, Florida], and all the men almost stopped there on their way from work. And they would go there, and they'd brag about their kids, or how smart they were, or how they played basketball or football, or the like. And, of course, they talked about this, the whole social scene in terms of black-white relations and, and the like of, and they talked about that often. In my home, we certainly talked about the Brown versus the Board of Education decision 'cause I was sitting in my civics class when the decision was passed down. We had the radio on in the civics class. And after that, you know, we were definitely talking about that in '55 [1955] and Rosa Parks, and all of that. But you see, if you back-step, my dad was always one who, who was concerned about equity and equality because he, you know, his, his heroes, or his heroine, and his hero were Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, and Mary McLeod Bethune. I mean, he thought the sun rose and set in Ms. Bethune of, who founded Bethune-Cookman College [Daytona Literary and Industrial Training School for Negro Girls; Bethune-Cookman University, Daytona Beach, Florida]. And so, he put a great deal of value on both men and women and their part in changing social conditions.$Yeah, when you look at your history, of all the other, all the things that you had accomplished, and all the places that you've been--$$Um-hm, um-hm.$$--you know, before, and it would seem logical, but what--well, what happened here? Now, you were the founding coordinator (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Founding director--$$--of the black studies department.$$--yeah, the founding coordinator of black studies at Emory [Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia], which later became Africana, African American studies. And now, we have two separate constituencies, an African American, and an African studies. I came here in 1971, but I was also the first African American in the arts and sciences in the college [Emory College of Arts and Sciences, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia], and the first African American woman in the entire university. So, that was a challenge for a young African American woman to come to a school in the Deep South that had never had an African American woman, and had only white males in administrative positions in one of the most conservative regions of the country. And on top of that, to establish a program for which there were no models because black studies had only begun to come on the scene in a formal way in 1968. And this was only three years later. So, it was, it was a tremendous challenge and, and I think that's probably what, in the final analysis, brought me here because it was a challenge.$$Now, did you have any idea of how to model this pro-, I mean, was there a model for this pro-, this program that you were trying (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) There were no models--$$Yeah.$$--there were no model. But my idea, Emory offered me two thousand dollars for my, my budget. That was not my salary--my budget--and they told me I could sit in the center of the Candler [Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia] library building at a desk after I got here. Well, I said, "Why, I don't think so. I, I think that I'm going to have a suite of offices." And they did, we did get a suite of offices. And I took the money, and hired two people to teach two courses, rather than just simply having people to visit and give a lecture. Because the idea was, this will ride itself out, and these students are up in arms, but after a year or two, they'll go away or fade away. So, we'll give a little money here, and you can have a few lectures on campus to do this and the lec-, but I didn't have that image in my mind. See, my image was that, if you're going to a university, and you're going to start an academic unit, it's going to be like all other academic units. It's going to have faculty come in. It's going to have secretaries. It's going to have all of the support system. And you're going to model it that way. You're going to have courses through the curriculum that everybody's going to have to take, or can take. So, that's, that was my, my model, modelling it just like everything else was modelled that was in the institution. And it has finally become just like everything else is in the institution.$$Now did you have, was it, students or your allies in fighting for these things, or did you have to basically do it yourself, on, by yourself, or what?$$There were students. My, my students were my allies. And there were white students and black students. And, and the white students, of course, you, you have to understand that when I came here, there were only thirteen black students on the entire campus, which means that for my classes to, to go for you to have a program, you had to have majority white students. You had to have a bunch of them, 'cause I could walk across campus, and not even see a black student for days. So, the allies were students, but they, but they were not the only allies. There were some right-thinking white men here. And they stood by me in the very beginning years, in terms of getting supplies, getting resources, et cetera. And they, they are my friends until today. There're a number of them that are my friends. They came to my wedding, you know, I've gone to their kids' weddings, all that kind of thing. So, there were some that, that had been by my side in good times and in bad times.

Charles Henry

African American Studies professor Charles Patrick Henry III was born on August 17, 1947 in Newark, Ohio to Charles Patrick Henry, II and Ruth Holbert Henry. Henry attended Central School for elementary and junior high school. As a member of the National Junior Honor Society, he received honors for his studies in business. In 1965, Henry was accepted to Denison University in Granville, Ohio. As a student at Denison University, Henry co-founded the Black Student Union and the Experimental College. As a college student, he also participated in anti-war rallies and programs to improve race relations. After receiving his B.A. degree in political science in 1969, he attended graduate school at the University of Chicago.

As a graduate student, Henry was awarded an American Political Science Congressional Fellowship during which he worked for six months in the office of Hubert Humphrey, and then for six months with the Congressional Black Caucus. While Henry continued his studies, he obtained a teaching position in the political science department at Howard University. In 1974, Henry earned his Ph.D. degree in political science from the University of Chicago. He then left Howard University to teach Black Studies at his alma mater, Denison University. In 1979, Henry received a NEH post-doctoral Fellowship at Atlanta University where he began his research for the biography on Nobel laureate Ralph J. Bunche. After completing his fellowship in 1981, Henry taught at the University of California, Berkeley in the African American Studies department. Henry has since written over seventy articles, and authored six books including Ralph Bunche: Model Negro or American Other?.

From 1986 to 1988, Henry served as Chair of Amnesty International, U.S.A. Board of Directors. In 1994, Henry was appointed by President Bill Clinton for a six year term to the National Council on the Humanities. He also served as a Fulbright Chair in American History and Politics at the University of Bologna, Italy in 2003. Henry lives in Berkeley, California with his wife, Loretta, and their three children.

Charles Patrick Henry, III was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on April 5, 2006.

Accession Number

A2006.062

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/30/2005 |and| 4/5/2006

Last Name

Henry

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

P.

Schools

Central School

Newark High School

Denison University

University of Chicago

First Name

Charles

Birth City, State, Country

Newark

HM ID

HEN03

Favorite Season

October

State

Ohio

Favorite Vacation Destination

China

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

8/17/1947

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Bay Area/Oakland

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Lobster

Short Description

African american studies professor Charles Henry (1947 - ) is the author of the prolific biography Ralph J. Bunche: Model Negro or American Other?

Employment

Howard University

Denison University

University of California, Berkeley

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Charles Henry's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Charles Henry lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Charles Henry describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Charles Henry describes his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Charles Henry describes his father's side of the family, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Charles Henry describes his paternal grandfather's and great-uncles' Civil War service

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Charles Henry describes his father's side of the family, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Charles Henry describes his father's U.S. military service

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Charles Henry describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Charles Henry remembers his early family life

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Charles Henry describes his brother, Oren John Henry

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Charles Henry describes his neighborhood in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Charles Henry describes his father's Republican Party affiliation

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Charles Henry describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Charles Henry recalls his elementary years at Central School in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Charles Henry describes his experience of racial discrimination at Central School

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Charles Henry recalls his experiences of racial discrimination in Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Charles Henry describes a traumatic accident from his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Charles Henry recalls suing the companies responsible for his foot injury

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Charles Henry remembers his teachers at Central School in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Charles Henry describes his activities at Newark Senior High School in Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Charles Henry describes his childhood friends in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Charles Henry remembers applying to college

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Charles Henry describes the formation of his political science interest

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - Charles Henry describes his father's numbers business in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 14 - Charles Henry describes his family's religious background

Tape: 2 Story: 15 - Charles Henry remembers his mentor, HistoryMaker Julius Richardson

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Charles Henry remembers attending the A.M.E. church in Newark, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Charles Henry recalls those who influenced him as a high school student

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Charles Henry remembers joining Denison University's American Commons Club

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Charles Henry recalls being dissuaded from studying political science at Denison University

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Charles Henry describes his time at Denison University in Granville, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Charles Henry recalls race relations at Denison University in the 1960s

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Charles Henry reflects upon his time at Denison University in Granville, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Charles Henry describes his activism at Denison University in Granville, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Charles Henry recalls his decision to attend the University of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Charles Henry describes his political activities in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Charles Henry talks about John Hope Franklin

Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Charles Henry describes his African American cohort at the University of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 13 - Charles Henry recalls his American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Charles Henry recounts how he met his wife, Loretta Crenshaw Henry

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Charles Henry describes his work for Senator Herbert Humphrey

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Charles Henry recalls his work for the Congressional Black Caucus

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Charles Henry remembers teaching at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Charles Henry recalls directing Denison University's black studies program

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Charles Henry recalls his decision to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship at Atlanta University

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Charles Henry describes his time at Atlanta University

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Charles Henry describes University of California, Berkeley's Department of African American Studies

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Charles Henry recalls his committee involvement at University of California, Berkeley

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Charles Henry describes his involvement with Amnesty International

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Charles Henry describes the impact of involvement with Amnesty International

Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Charles Henry describes his involvement with the National Council for Black Studies

Tape: 4 Story: 13 - Charles Henry recalls his work in affirmative action at University of California, Berkeley

Tape: 4 Story: 14 - Charles Henry describes his paternal grandfather's connection to Ralph Bunche's father

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Charles Henry recalls his work for the U.S. Department of State

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Charles Henry talks about writing 'Ralphe Bunche: Model Negro or American Other?'

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Charles Henry describes how he selected his research topics

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Charles Henry describes his research on racial reparations

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Charles Henry describes his Fulbright awards

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Charles Henry recalls his appointment to the National Council on the Humanities

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Charles Henry recalls his time on the National Council on the Humanities

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Charles Henry reflects upon his life

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Charles Henry reflects upon the trajectory of African Americans in higher education

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Charles Henry describes values that he considers important

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Charles Henry talks about his future plans

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Charles Henry shares a message for his descendants

Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Charles Henry narrates his photographs

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Charles Henry describes University of California, Berkeley's Department of African American Studies
Charles Henry describes his involvement with Amnesty International
Transcript
Could you tell us a little bit about what's happened at Berkeley [University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, California], not that long--$$(Laughter).$$--a little bit (unclear) (laughter)?$$Over the last twenty-five years (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Yes, in twenty-five words or less (laughter).$$In twenty-five words, a word for each year. Yeah, well, being in black studies it was a really serendipitous move for me because I think if I had been in a political science department I would have been a much more narrow scholar, like working on [U.S.] Congress and some of the issues. My first paper was on the Congressional Black Caucus, and you could easily spend your whole career just working on Congress. But by it--being in a department with people like Barbara Christian and June Jordan and psychologists and, and people from all these disciplines, I needed to learn something and did learn something whether you wanted to or not from each of them because you have to review their work and et cetera in, in, in a small department. And so it was very good and broadening of my perspective and it actually led to, my, my second book, 'Culture and African American Politics' [Charles P. Henry], which used folklore, which used black sermons, which used folk tales to look at black political thought from a kind of folk level. I don't think it would have ever occurred to me to do a book like that if I had been in a political science department.$$Tell me a little bit about the black studies department [Department of African American Studies; Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies]? They had a very interesting beginning, had it settled down when you got there (laughter)?$$Yeah, well, Berkeley never quite settles down, but it certainly wasn't the activist bed that it was in the '60s [1960s]. But we were by then an established department. But I do remember Eldridge Cleaver dropping by my office one day, brought in by one of my sort of community scholars who used to sit in on my courses. He had struck up a friendship with Cleaver and brought him by to meet me and I tried to figure out what Cleaver was really dropping by for. It turns out he wanted to sell some of his Panther [Black Panther Party] papers so we had a discussion about that. And, and I introduced him to our African American studies librarian in the library. But apparently we weren't able to work out a deal, I think he eventually sold them at, at Stanford [Stanford University, Stanford, California]. And we have a lot of interesting people who will come by your office, if you're teaching politics, come by your office with all kinds of interesting ideas that they want to try out on you.$While you were here, you were involved in some other activities that had very little to do with school.$$Absolutely. I think it was probably when I was at Denison [Denison University, Granville, Ohio] in 1977, I, I heard of Amnesty International because they won the Nobel Peace Prize. And, you know, I, I teach politics and, and, we talk about horrible political situations and you can feel kind of frustrated about not being able to do anything. And Amnesty was doing things on the ground even if it was just writing letters, they, you know, at least you feel better if you've done something even if it doesn't change anything. But there were no Amnesty chapters at Denison or in, in the central Ohio area that I knew of. But immediately when I got to Berkeley [University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, California], I saw all these Amnesty posters and it turned out Berkeley had the oldest campus network and the largest at that time of all Amnesty's campus networks.$$What's their focus?$$Amnesty is the major human rights organization in the United States working for political prisoners and prisoners of conscience and against torture and against the death penalty. And obviously the politics of that appealed to me, the human rights aspects of it appealed to me. So I said, oh, they've got a Amnesty chapter, I'm gonna go. And so by the end of the first semester I had gone to their meeting. Well, they were thrilled to see a faculty member there. And so they took me under their wing, particularly Liola Herinaka [ph.], who was a staff person at Berkeley who had kind of been the chapter mother of these students for several years. And she, so she was very pleased to have a faculty member, she was an expert in sort of Japanese studies herself. And, and also a nun, which was quite interesting, she loved to dance and smoke cigarettes and was not your typical nun and, and very much an involved activist. And so by the summer, the annual national meeting of Amnesty was in Seattle [Washington]. So Liola and others said, well why don't we drive up for the annual meeting, you'll meet a lot of other people and the secretary general is coming from London [England] and so we all drove up to Seattle. And in Seattle I met Bill Watanabe, who was an Asian American member of the board of directors. And he said, "I'm trying to encourage Asians to participate in Amnesty, I need your help in encouraging African Americans, you're in black studies, you must know how to do this." And I said, "I'd be happy to do what I can." They invited me to several meetings with the staff in New York [New York] and with the board. I think within six months they said, "Why don't you run for the board of directors in Amnesty?" And I said, "I just joined the organization a year ago," you know, "won't people resent it?" And he said, "Well if they resent it, they won't vote for you for the board." So I said, "Well, that's democracy," so I ran for the board, I was elected. And in 1983 joined the board of directors of Amnesty. After three years I was voted chair of the board of directors of Amnesty. And so in 1986 I became chair that was also the year that we began rock concerts across the United States. And then two, three years later we did a global rock concert [A Conspiracy of Hope] involving U2 and Sting and Peter Gabriel and Tracy Chapman. So I got to know the rock music business. I got to know the direct mail business because we got into direct mail, so Amnesty's membership increased by threefold--its, its, contributions increased by threefold. You know, I became, it became like another full-time job at, at, at that level. And I also met my, my, I guess, it would be my second or third great mentor, Ginetta Sagan, who had founded Amnesty in the West. Joan Baez had helped her in that. She was Amnesty's major fundraiser. She had been worked in the opposition to the war, and to the Nazis in Italy in World War II [WWII] and been imprisoned and tortured by the Nazis and had escaped jail. So she had firsthand experience of human rights. And she was a, a great person, a humanitarian and an activist, who had a sense of humor and wanted to have a good time. And Amnesty people generally don't have great senses of humor and don't wanna have a good time so she, (laughter) she was a great person to be around. And so Amnesty turned out to be a great experience for me and, and remains an important part of my life today.