Panel on Race Defines Issues
Yvonne Guzman
The opinions were as varied as they were emphatic: There have been great opportunities lost in the area of civil rights. Poverty affects 43 per cent of all black children in the United States, the same proportion as it did the year Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. Still, African-American people are better off than ever before, and a recent poll showed that most are, in fact, content.
 
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Tuesdays in the Newsroom Visits Inkwell Beach and Oak Bluffs Summers
Sara Brown
Olive Tomlinson, Gretchen Tucker Underwood and Skip Finley shared memories of their Oak Bluffs childhoods, moving in the orbit of a tight-knit community of African American summer residents.
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Honoring Our African-American History
Elaine Cawley-Weintraub
The African American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard has united communities and augmented the rich fabric of the Island’s history.
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Recording Black History on Martha's Vineyard, Filling the Gaps
Louisa Hufstader
A groundbreaking project to record the oral histories of 5,000 African Americans has returned to the Vineyard, with more than three dozen videotaped interviews scheduled over two weeks.
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Revisiting Shearer Summer Theatre
Alex Elvin
In the 1940s, a small group of women started the Shearer Summer Theatre. Olive Tomlinson's mother Cutie Bowles was one of them.
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A New Day Dawns for the Bradley Memorial
Vineyard Gazette

The Bradley Memorial Baptist Church of Oak Bluffs is happy now to be in possession of a new church home where services have been held the past three Sundays. The structure which stands opposite the Oak Bluffs town hall on Pequot avenue, was built by the First Baptist Church and I used for many years until this congregation disbanded and sold the property to the Odd Fellows Fraternity.

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Black Whaling Captains Found Liberty at Sea
Louisa Hufstader
Of the 2,500 masters who captained whaling ships during three centuries of whaling, at least 63 were men of color, five with Martha’s Vineyard ties, Skip Finley told a rapt audience Wednesday night.
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Author Dorothy West Is Celebrated at 90
Yvonne Guzman
Dorothy West, the great African-American writer who turned 90 this summer, was the guest of honor at a spectacular birthday party Friday afternoon inside the Union Chapel. Well over 500 people gathered, including First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.
 
Miss West, a 50-year resident of Oak Bluffs, is the author of many short stories and two novels, and she is the sole remaining member of the Harlem Renaissance.
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Judge Tucker Brings New Dignity To Sessions of Island Court
Joseph B. White
A man and woman charges recently with sleeping in Ocean Park, a violation of Oak Bluffs law, came before the Dukes county district court judge Herbert E. Tucker, Jr. and were ordered to pay a $25 fine. The told Judge Tucker they needed until 1 p.m. that afternoon to pay.
 
At 1 p.m., the couple did not show appear. They had gone home to Fairhaven.
 
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Smithsonian Exhibit Gives Pride of Place to Oak Bluffs
Steve Myrick
The Smithsonian Institution's new National Museum of African American Culture and History documents the story of the African American community in Oak Bluffs.
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