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9th Annual Black History Essay Contest

"A Narnia Studios Production"

....and the winners are:
(click on a name to see their essay)

Shanita Jackson ~ 3rd Grade
Eddie Keller ~ 3rd Grade
Ashley Page ~ 3rd Grade
Caleb Hughes ~ 7th Grade
Louise Lemkes ~ 7th Grade
Marissa McCall ~ 7th Grade

Harriet Tubman

     I love Harriet Tubman. She risked her LIFE just to save black slaves.

     So I’m going to tell you some facts about her. Harriet was born in Bucktown, Maryland in 1820 or 1821. When she was a little girl she got hit by a heavy metal weight and almost died! From then on she suffered severe headaches! When Harriet was a little older, she got married to John Tubman in 1844 who died in 1867.

     I picked this woman for three reasons, so here they are. The first reason is because she cares about other people and less about herself! The second reason is because she risked her life to save black slaves! The last reason is because she’s part of my black freedom, I mean if she wasn’t to do what she did, I bet slavery would still be going on and I would be a slave!What she did was important to me! She managed to lead people to the Underground Railroad. She ALWAYS found a way to do something. Plus, she pointed a gun to someone so they wouldn’t turn back!

     Harriet Tubman believed she could set people free in some kind of way! I know she’s going to Heaven knowing she did something to change MANY lives!

Shanita Jackson
3rd Grade
Fletcher Elementary School

Martin Luther King, Jr.


     Born in Atlanta, Georgia in 1929 on Auburn Avenue Martin Luther King, Jr. was a man whose dream was that segregation was going to end. 

     Martin Luther King, Jr. was a great man. His dream was for segregation to end (that means that white and black people are separated from each other). He became a pastor at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church. He married Coretta Scott on June 18, 1953.

     I picked Martin Luther king, Jr. for his courage. He was a great man and lived a great life. He helped put an end to segregation. He was a leader in the bus boycott.

     His life was good and hard. He won a Nobel Prize and also a Presidential Medal of Freedom. He made a famous speech called “I Have a Dream”. Martin Luther King, Jr. died April 4, 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee. He was shot by a rifle.

      Martin Luther king Jr. was a great man that helped end segregation. Now we celebrate him on Monday January 16.

Eddie Keller
3rd Grade
Fletcher Elementary School

Bill Cosby


     Bill Cosby lived where most people were poor. When Bill Cosby was young he told funnt stories that made people laugh. His mom loved to hear the funny stories. He liked playing sports too. Bill Cosby enjoyed the Navy and ran a nightclub when he was older. He wrote many children’s books. He also played on T.V. shows.

     I think Bill Cosby is a rich man who enjoys making people laugh. And he lets everyone know that we are all equal. My favorite show is Little Bill played by Bill Cosby


Ashley Page
3rd Grade
Bruce Drysdale Elementary School

Maya Angelou


     Maya Angelou was a peace leader just like Martin Luther King, Jr. but not as well known at the time. She believed in non-violent protests, boycotts and speeches just like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Ghandi. She knew Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King almost as good as a family member. She recently spoke at Coretta Scott King’s funeral. She is a poetess and novelist. Her most famous poem, “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”, makes a simile between a Black man’s life and a White man’s. The caged bird represents the Black man while the free bird represents the White. It tells about how the Black man longs for equality, how the caged bird longs to be outside riding the winds and eating the worms on the dawn-bright lawns. It tells how the Black man’s rights and life have limits while the White man is limitless. What Maya Angelou did and is doing still took outstanding courage and perseverance. She made a difference like loads of people: Martin Luther King, Jr., Coretta Scott King, Malcolm X, Tuskegee Airmen, Queen Philippa, The Black Prince, John James Audubon, Alice Coachman, Lillian Harding Armstrong, Phillip Reed, Joe Louis, Nina Mae McKinney and countless others changed the world.
      Since I read this poem and learned all about its author, I feel I understand and know Maya Angelou! Thank you!

Caleb Hughes
7th Grade
Hendersonville Middle School

Andre Massey

   My hero is not a celebrity or a historical figure, but a local community role model. The man I choose to write about is Andre Massey, an officer with the Police Department in Hendersonville. Mr. Massey has always been a caring and positive father to his sons, although there have been hard times in their family. When I was younger, I still remember him being polite and helpful when we carpooled, with his son, to kindergarten. For many years, he has been working with the Hendersonville Police Department. Sometimes I see him on his bike on Main Street patrolling downtown Hendersonville, or he waves to us while he is in his patrol car. During a recent ice storm, my mother got into a car accident on the bridge over Seventh Avenue. Mr. Massey came to help my mother after the accident. My family was extremely thankful that he helped my mother make the entire process easier. Andre Massey is a very kind man who loves watching over our community and keeping everyone safe.

Louise Lemkes
7th Grade
Hendersonville Christian School

Madam C. J. Walker

     Would you believe a woman became a millionaire because of a dream? Madam C. J. Walker did. She was asleep one night when a black man appeared to her in a dream with a cure for baldness.

      Madam C. J. Walker was born Sarah Breedlove on December 23, 1867 in Delta, Louisiana. She was born into a slave family. Walker worked as a washer woman until 1905.

      Madam Walker invented a hair system to help African-American women. She built her empire around these products. Through her courageous effort, she became the first African-American millionaire.

     Madam Walker toured the country promoting her hair care products. From 1908-1910, she ran a beauty training school, The Lelia College for Walker Hair Culturists. Mrs. Walker began to lecture to promote her business which helped other African-American women by giving them courage and advice to start their own businesses.  In 1993, Madam Walker was inducted into the national Women’s Hall of Fame.

     Madam Walker is an inspiration to all African-American women, and me, by helping us keep the bounce and shine in our hair we like and need. She will be forever remembered as the first African-American millionaire as well as the woman who invented African-American hair care products.

      Thank you, Madam Walker, my hair never looked better!


Marissa McCall
7th Grade
Balfour Education Center


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