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African American Jubilee Day To Be Observed

WASHINGTON - Black Florida Congressman Alcee L. Hastings has introduced a resolution supporting the goals and ideals of Jubilee Day. Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee celebrates Jubilee Day annually on October 6.

“Fisk has educated countless intellectual, artistic, and civic leaders, and has played a pivotal role in the advancement of education for African-American students,” Hastings stated. “None of its accomplishments would have been possible without the talents and sacrifices of that first group of nine students who not only kept Fisk University from closing, but also introduced the world to the spirituals of enslaved Africans as a musical genre.”

 

Just after the end of the Civil War, the Fisk School was founded in Nashville, Tennessee as an educational institute that would be open to all, regardless of race or age. In 1871, a group of students formed a choral group, the Fisk Jubilee Singers, with the goal of raising money to fund the institution. That same year, the Fisk Jubilee Singers toured the United States and Europe and raised enough funds to not only preserve the university but to also pay for the construction of Jubilee Hall, the first permanent structure to be built for the education of African-American students in the South.

 

“As a proud alumnus of Fisk University, I am personally grateful for the contributions the original Jubilee Singers made to Fisk,” said Hastings. “The generations of Jubilee Singers who followed in their footsteps also should be recognized for their continual contributions to the community.”

 

October 6, 2010 marks the 139th Jubilee Day. This year, members of the Fisk community in Washington, DC will come together for an event at the Capitol to celebrate Jubilee Day along with the Fisk community in Nashville.

 

Joining Hastings as original co-sponsors of the resolution are Representatives Jim Cooper (D-TN), John Lewis (D-GA), Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Carolyn C. Kilpatrick (D-MI), Wm. Lacy Clay (D-MO), and Gwen Moore (D-WI).

 

Congressman Alcee L. Hastings is Vice Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, a senior member of the House Rules Committee, and Co-Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission.
 

SEE COPY OF RESOLUTION HERE




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