Do you know who Thomas Fortune was?

Thomas Fortune


      Today starts the first of many African American figures I’ll be educating you on for Black History Month.  Timothy Thomas Fortune was an influential journalist who constantly fought for the fullest execution of the 14th and 15th amendments. Don’t know what the 14th and 15th amendments are? That’s fine because we’re here to learn. The 14th amendment made all people born in the United States a citizen no matter what. Giving them the right and privileges of citizenship and guaranteeing all American citizens equal protection under the law. The 15th amendment allowed citizens to vote regardless of their race and whether they had been a slave previously or not. This applied to the African American men I may add though. Not the Women. He was born in 1856 in Marianna, Florida. This was around the time African Americans were strongly advocating for the rights they were PROMISED! After the civil war. But because of his father’s Political Influence, their family was made a target for white southerners. This caused them to have to move to Jacksonville to avoid violent Ku Klux Klan threats. In 1884, Fortune then bought his own newspaper, the New York Freeman, which became the New York Age in 1887. In that year also, his Black and White: Land, Labor, and Politics in the South were published. It was a journal dedicated to Fortune’s true Passion: the unification of Black and white forces for the civil rights (the right to vote) of all Americans, mainly African Americans. His newspaper became a place for open discussion of ideals. Fortune remained a writer even after he sold his paper in 1907. From that point in time until 1919, he wrote for the Norfolk Journal and Guide, and in 1923, he became a controversial figure once again.