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When I enquired as to why I felt so odd, an "L8onian" told me that "we are not welcome in the city, that's why we have Toxteth".It soon become evident that many black Liverpudlians felt the same way; a seething anger that this town – one almost in denial that its wealth was directly founded on the accumulated profits of the transatlantic slave trade – had almost swept them under the carpet, far away from the eyes hearts and minds of the nation.One of the first activists to use the term "Black Power".George Washington Carver - Botanist, 1864-1943 Dubbed a " black Leonardo" by Time magazine, Carver – born into slavery himself – developed revolutionary farming techniques that helped former slaves in Alabama become self-sufficient.Shirley Bassey - Singer, born 1937 Arguably the greatest Welsh singer of all time, Bassey is the only artist to perform three James Bond themes.The Cardiff-born diva has recently made a popular revival (she was made a Dame in 2000) and can apparently count the Queen as a fan.But now, in Liverpool, for this and generations to come, there is an institution dedicated to scholarly research – and it's right on our doorsteps.
Well, it was the first city council to unreservedly apologise for the role the city played.Viv Anderson, the first black England international footballer – how many of us remember how huge that was?Benjamin Zephaniah, the wonderful poet, and a man of stature and integrity.As expected, Muhammad Ali, Sojourner Truth, Wole Soyinka, Olaudah Equiano, Derek Walcott and so on are all there – and some names I didn't know, such as Gaspar Yanga, the Afro-Mexican slave rebellion leader who established a Maroon colony that lasted 30 years in the 16th century.But what really caught my eye is the inclusion for the first time in my experience of so many black Britons – role models young people can still access, still converse with.
He focuses on the role of the immigrant in Britain, slavery, colonisation and his Guyanese and British heritage. Oscar D'Leon - Musician, born 1943 Performing and recording for 30 years, D'Leon is a superstar in the world of salsa.