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Inventions
Steal Away
W.C. Handy
War Work

How to listen

Freedom's People
(1941-42)

The first substantial program in mass media devoted exclusively to African-American life and history. Freedom's People was a 9-part series on NBC exploring black history and achievements in areas like music, science, industry and sports. Created by Ambrose Caliver, a black official in the Office of Education, Freedom's People earned critical acclaim. It features the contributions of leading black intellectuals, artists and activists.

Inventions: A dramatization of contributions by African American inventors, including a system to right derailed trains.

Steal Away: A sketch simulating the black capacity for turning hardship into beauty in the case of a venerable slave spiritual.

W.C. Handy: A creation story about the blues, in which the legendary musician encounters a tune that will later become the St. Louis Blues.

War Work: African American contributions to WWI and WWII are described.

Next: New World A'Coming