This Day In History: 2017-05-06
May 12, 1902 – “Joe Gans Becomes World’s First African-American Boxing Champion” Joe Gans defeated Frank Erne to become the world’s first African-American to win World Championship in any weight class. He became a world champion a full six years before famed boxer Jack Johnson. This is because Johnson’s attempts at challenging for the heavyweight title were thwarted as James J. Jeffries refused to face him. Gans and Johnson were two early champions in a sport dominated by African-Americans throughout the 20th century.
- 2017 September 12, 1992 - “Dr. Mae Jemison Goes to Space” "Dr. Mae Jemison, an engineer, physician and NASA astronaut, became the first African-American woman to travel in space when she went into orbit aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour. During her 8-day mission she worked with U.S. and Japanese researchers, and was a co-investigator on a bone cell experiment. Jemison originally practiced as a doctor, then served in the Peace Corps from 1985 to 1987. In 1987, she was selected to join the astronaut corps. She resigned from NASA in 1993 to found a company that researches the application of technology to daily life."