"Let me forever be discarded, nay condemned, if I do not put forth all my energies, all in my power to restore dignity to the African race," Edward Wilmot Blyden, 1859
Yesterday, February 7th marks the 110th anniversary of the death of Dr. Edward Wilmot Blyden in Freetown, Sierra Leone in 1912.
An erudite West African of Igbo origin, ordained Presbyterian pastor, linguist, scholar, writer, diplomat and explorer, Blyden who was born in the Danish West Indies in 1832, devoted over sixty years of his life, advocating for racial equality; recognition of the importance of the African race in world human development. He is the author of five influential books published in mid-nineteenth century, with such provocative titles as: Liberia’s Offering (1859), From West Africa to Palestine (1873), African Life and Customs (1908), and essays, West Africa before Europe, A Voice from Bleeding Africa» to name a few.
Blyden called for a Pan African return of Africans from their Caribbean and American Diaspora to Africa to contribute their acquired skills to its development. He promoted the idea that African lives matter as do their customs, historic evolution, as well as dynamic outcomes of their productivity not only in Africa, but also the world.
This year also marks the 190th anniversary of Edward Wilmot Blyden’s birth in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands, on August 3, 1832. Celebrations for this island’s extraordinary gift to West Africa, and the world, will take place on the island. Celebrations will also honour his 190th anniversary in Sierra Leone and Liberia where in both countries, he is a national hero. Dr. Blyden is buried at the Race Course Cemetery in Freetown, Sierra Leone. A drinking fountain with his bust is erected in his memory on Wallace Johnson Street in the city center.
For further information call:
Isa Blyden: (929)-240-9415 firstname.lastname@example.org