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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Whitesboro in Cape May County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

George Henry White

“American Phoenix” (1852-1918)

 
 
George Henry White Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 24, 2017
1. George Henry White Marker
Inscription.

Last African-American Congressman of the Reconstruction Era.
Only black member of the 55th Congress.
Attorney and founding member of Whitesboro, NJ.

Recognizing that economic power would be the path to equality for Black Americans, Republican Congressman George Henry White embarked upon an effort to create self-sufficiency and financial growth for his race. White believed that success was possible when all people were allowed “an even chance in the race of life.” But when his home state of North Carolina instituted literacy tests for black voters, White realized that people of color would not have an equal opportunity there. So, after leaving congress in 1901, he decided to start anew in the North.

From Washington, he moved to Philadelphia where he continued his law work, moving his family there in 1906. He now saw that economic empowerment of Black citizens would be the most urgent task, so he began creating institutions to help them attain success. In Philadelphia, White established the People’s Savings Bank in 1906, the City’s first black-owned commercial bank, which helped the black community start businesses, save for education, and finance land purchases. But that was only the start. His dream and vision of a model community where black families could
George Henry White Marker (<i>wide view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 24, 2017
2. George Henry White Marker (wide view)
own land, build businesses, be independent farmers, and educate their children was realized with the establishment of the town of Whitesboro, New Jersey. This town where we live within Middle Township, NJ is George White’s most enduring legacy.

During his post congressional career George Henry White served as honorary trustee for Howard University; was on the Board of Berean Manual Training Institute; and was also a trustee of North Carolina’s Biddle University. He also served on the Board of Directors of Frederick Douglas Hospital and as a Director of the Home for the Protection of Colored Women. An early leader in the NAACP, he stayed active in politics, and became Assistant City Solicitor for Philadelphia in 1917.

On December 28, 1918, George Henry White died in his sleep after a life of public service. He was interred in Philadelphia’s Eden Cemetery – joined later by George Jr., a Pittsburgh attorney, and daughter Mamie, Whitesboro’s first schoolteacher.
 
Erected 2013 by Middle Township and Concerned Citizens of Whitesboro, New Jersey.
 
Location. 39° 2.332′ N, 74° 51.396′ W. Marker is in Whitesboro, New Jersey, in Cape May County. Marker is at the intersection of Shore Road (U.S. 9) and East Main Street, on the right when traveling north on Shore Road. Touch for map. Marker is the focal point of a small garden at the northeast corner of the intersection. Marker is in this post office area: Cape May Court House NJ 08210, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. This is the Home of the Whitesboro Grammar School (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); 1883 Original Terminus Anglesea Railroad (approx. 3½ miles away); Cape May Revolutionary Patriot Memorial (approx. 3.6 miles away); County Seat (approx. 3.6 miles away); Historic Cape May County Court House (approx. 3.6 miles away); West Jersey and Seashore Railroad (approx. 3.9 miles away); All Shapes, Sizes and Materials (approx. 4.1 miles away); Hereford Inlet Lightouse (approx. 4.1 miles away).
 
Also see . . .
1. Township officially unveils marker honoring George Henry White.
This marker is the first of its kind in Middle Township and will serve as a template for other historical markers to be placed at strategic locations in the Township to educate residents and visitors about local history for generations to come. “Middle Township is honored to celebrate the life and legacy of George Henry White on his 161st birthday”, said Deputy Middle Township Mayor Tim Donohue. “Mr. White’s legacy lives forever in Middle Township and his extraordinary effort to create equality for all Americans is still felt throughout our country today”. (Submitted on March 3, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. George Henry White (December 18, 1852 – December 28, 1918).
In North Carolina, "fusion politics" between the Populist and Republican parties led to a brief period of renewed Republican and African-American political success in elections from 1894 to 1900, when White was elected to Congress for two terms after serving in the state legislature. After the Democratic-dominated state legislature passed a suffrage amendment that disenfranchised blacks in the state, White did not seek a third term. (Submitted on March 3, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

3. Who was George Henry White?.
From the backwoods of North Carolina, George White rose to graduate from Howard University in 1877, becoming first an educator and then a lawyer. From 1897 to 1901, his was the sole voice in Congress for some 10 million African Americans, including as author of a bill to outlaw lynching, and standing strong against the erosion of political rights for all. When the right to vote was denied to North Carolina's black citizens in 1900, White left politics... (Submitted on March 3, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. African AmericansCivil RightsNotable PersonsPolitics
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 31, 2018. This page originally submitted on March 3, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 52 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on March 3, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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