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In Honor of Black History Month... …. Famous African-Americans from Mississippi. There are many African-Americans throughout history that have contributed their lives to better our lives. Many of them are from our very on state.

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There are many African-Americans throughout history that have contributed their lives to better our lives. Many of them are from our very on state.

the following are just a few african americans from mississippi that have impacted the world
The following are just a few African-Americans from Mississippi that have impacted the world
bo diddley1
Bo Diddley
  • Famous Guitar Player
  • Born in McComb, MS
  • Was named Ellas Otha Bates
  • Raised by his mother’s cousin
  • Moved to Chicago at age 7
  • In the 1950s created his stage name “Bo Diddley”
bo diddley2
Bo Diddley
  • Known for his own style of music called the “Bo Diddley Beat”
  • Has a trademark rectangle guitar called “The Twang Machine”
  • Famous song “Hey Bo Diddley”

bo diddley s achievements
Bo Diddley’s Achievements
  • 1 of the founding fathers of Rock & Roll
  • 1987 inducted into Rock & Roll Hall of Fame
  • 1996 received Lifetime Achievement Award by Rhythm & Blues Foundation
  • 1998 Grammy’s Lifetime Achievement Award
james earl jones1
James Earl Jones
  • Born January 17, 1931 in Arkabutla
  • Raised by his grandparents
  • Pretended to be mute in school. Spoke only by writing
  • At the age of 5 his family moved to Michigan
james earl jones2
James Earl Jones
  • Famous for his deep, distinctive voice
  • Acted in many movies such as The Great White Hope, Coming to America and Roots II.
  • Was the voice of King Mufasa in The Lion King
  • Was the voice of Darth Vader in Star Wars
b b king1
B.B. King
  • World famous musician
  • Known for being one of the greatest blues guitarist of the 20th century
  • “The Thrill Is Gone”
  • Nicknamed the “King of the Blues”


b b king2
B.B. King
  • Born Riley B. King in 1925 in Itta Bena
  • Was sent to live with his grandmother in Kilmichael after his mother left his father.
  • Began playing music in his church
  • Moved to Memphis in 1946
  • Nicknamed his famous guitar Lucille
walter payton1
Walter Payton
  • Played in NFL from 1975-1987 for Chicago Bears
  • Career Stats: 110 TDs, 16,726 rushing yds
  • Position: halfback
  • 9 time Pro-Bowler
  • 2 time NFL Player of the Year
  • 1985 SuperBowl XX winners-the Bears
walter payton2
Walter Payton
  • Born July 25, 1954 in Columbia, MS
  • Died November 1, 1999
  • Raised in MS and attended Jackson State University
  • Heisman Nominee
  • 1st round draft, 4th pick
  • 1975 finihsed 2nd on Soul Train
  • Motto: “Never die easy”
charley pride1
Charley Pride
  • Born & raised on a farm in Sledge, MS
  • Taught himself to play guitar at the age of 14.
  • In the 1950s played baseball with Negro American League’s Memphis Red Sox
  • Today resides in Dallas, Texas and works out with the Texas Rangers
charley pride2
Charley Pride
  • Became a famous country music singer
  • “Kiss An Angel Good Morning”
  • RCA Record’s 2nd all time in sales; Elvis is 1st
  • CMA Entertainer of the Year 1971
  • Top Male Vocalist 1971 & 1972
  • 1st African-American to join the Grand Ole Opry
  • 1999 received start on Hollywood Walk of Fame
  • 2000 inducted into Country Music Hall of Fame Songs
jerry rice1
Jerry Rice
  • Born the son of a brick layer in Crawford MS
  • Learned to catch by his brother throwing him bricks while helping their father
  • Attended MS Valley State University
  • Was named All American and Ninth in Heisman Trophy ballots
jerry rice2
Jerry Rice
  • NFL Wide Receiver
  • San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle
  • 1985 Rookie of the Year
  • Regular Season Record: 1549 receptions, 22,895 receiving yds, 208 TDs
  • 13 Pro Bowls, 1995 Pro Bowl MVP
  • 1988 SuperBowl MVP
jerry rice3
Jerry Rice
  • Recently competed in Dancing With The Stars, finishing in 2nd place
  • Currently lives in San Francisco with his wife and children
oprah winfrey1
Oprah Winfrey
  • Born in Kosciusko, MS where she lived with her grandmother
  • Learned to read aloud and perform recitations at the age of 3
  • From ages 6-13 she lived with her mother in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • After being molested and abused, she was sent to a juvenile detention home. She was turned away because it was full.
oprah winfrey2
Oprah Winfrey
  • Moved with her father in Nashville at age 13. He made her read a book every week and do a report.
  • Attended Tennessee State University
  • 1984 selected to host “AM Chicago”
  • 1985 show’s name was changed to “Oprah Winfrey Show”
  • Nominated for an Oscar & Golden Globe for The Color Purple
  • Owns a production company- Harpo
  • Named 100 most influential people of the 20th Century by Time magazine
  • 1st African-American Woman to become a billionaire
morgan freeman
Morgan Freeman
  • Award-winning actor
  • Born June 1, 1937 in Memphis, TN
  • As an infant, moved to his grandmother’s in Charleston, MS
  • Later moved to Greenville, MS & Chicago, IL
  • Age 8 played lead role in school play; age 12 won statewide drama competition
  • 1955-Joined the Airforce
morgan freeman1
Morgan Freeman
  • Moved to LA to pursue acting
  • In 1970’s performed on tv’s The Electric Company
  • Movies: Driving Miss Daisy, The Shawshank Redemption, Million Dollar Baby, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
  • Narrorated March of the Penguins
morgan freeman2
Morgan Freeman
  • Won Oscar for Best Supporting Actor, nominated for Oscar & Golden Globe
  • 2003 Received a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame
  • Hollywood Film Fest’s Oustanding Achievement in Acting
  • Currently lives in Charleston & co-ownes Madidi restaurant & GroundZero nightclub in Clarksdale