By the time Chester Franklin arrived in Kansas City in 1913, he was well experienced in the newspaper business.
The son of former slaves, Samuel W. Bacote in 1895 became pastor of Second Baptist Church, one of Kansas City’s oldest and largest African American congregations.
Richard Thomas Coles was an educator who focused on teaching manual arts — practical, job-related skills — to his students. He was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1859 to parents who instilled the value of education.
For more than two decades in the Missouri State Legislature as a Democratic representative, Mary Groves Bland was an advocate for the rights of minorities and a champion of equality and social justice.
Leona Pouncey Thurman was the first African American woman to practice law in Kansas City. Born in Russellville, Arkansas, Thurman became interested in the legal profession after moving to Kansas City in 1931 and working as secretary for attorney James D. Pouncey.
John F. Ramos set two important precedents in Kansas City — he was the first African American to become a board-certified radiologist (in 1950) and the first to take a seat on the Kansas City School Board (in 1964).
Peterson was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and as a child moved with his family to Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from Central High School in 1964 and attended Arkansas A&M College in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.