On this day in 1905, W.E.B. Du Bois founded the Niagara Movement

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Niagara movement: meeting in Fort Erie, Canada, 1905. Top row (left to right): H. A. Thompson, Alonzo F. Herndon, John Hope, James R. L. Diggs (?). Second row (left to right): Frederick McGhee, Norris B. Herndon (boy), J. Max Barber, W. E. B. Du Bois, Robert Bonner. Bottom row (left to right): Henry L. Bailey, Clement G. Morgan, W. H. H. Hart, B. S. Smith. [The portrait element of this image was taken in a studio and added to the scenery of Niagara Falls, N.Y., as evidenced by the sharp, angular lines left from the photographer cutting around the subjects.] See page for author, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
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On this day (July 11) in 1905, W.E.B. Du Bois founded the Niagara Movement to aggressively petition for civil rights for African-Americans. The Niagara Movement was founded in response to the frustration felt by some Black activists over what they viewed to be a policy of appeasement adopted by Tuskegee Institute founder Booker T. Washington.

Joined by journalist William Monroe Trotter, Du Bois gathered a group of more than 50 Black men on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, after which the movement was named. They were forced to cross the border after a white hotel refused them lodging.

Singer Paul Robeson, centre, introducing Peter Blackman, left, British West Indian delegate, to Dr. Walter Du Bois, leader of the American delegation, at the Congress of Partisans of Peace at the Salle Pleyel in Paris on April 20, 1949. (AP Photo/Levy)

The movement developed a Declaration of Principles that served as a manifesto for the rights of Black people. The group disbanded in 1911 because of limited resources and clashes over its agenda, leading Du Bois to later co-found the NAACP.


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