Teaching the history of America’s Black press
From the abolition of slavery to the push against civil rights-era segregation, a Hussman School of Journalism and Media course explores the voice Black press gave to African Americans, whose stories were often excluded from mainstream media.
1827 — Freedom’s Journal, America’s first Black-owned and operated newspaper, began publication.
1852 — The African Methodist Episcopal Church established The Christian Recorder, the oldest continuously published Black newspaper in the United States.
1952 — Simeon Booker Jr. became the first Black reporter for The Washington Post, famously penning midcentury pieces on the nation’s civil rights movement.
Trevy McDonald — UNC Hussman’s Scheer Term Associate Professor — reels off these dates rapid-fire, from memory, as she details the timeline of a UNC Hussman course shining light on a critical aspect of Black history: the Black press.
McDonald, who also serves as and the school’s director of ABIDE (Access, Belonging, Inclusion, Diversity, & Equity), teaches “MEJO 342: The Black Press and United States History,” which examines the foundations of Black media from the 19th century through the civil rights movement.