Cosmonauts | Day 21 | Mae Jemison

On September 12, 1992, Mae Jemison, became the first Black woman to fly into space. This Black woman genius, who can trace her family roots back to the plantations of Talladega County, Alabama, flew 190 hours, 30 minutes, 23 seconds, and orbited the earth 127 times. Listed among the items that she carried with her […]

Cosmonauts | Day 20 | Queen Nzinga

On the very spot where the transatlantic slave trade began, in modern-day Angola, the most epic fight for liberation in our history was waged between the entire Portuguese Empire and one Black woman. Standing toe-to-toe. Them and her. Queen Nzinga. Say her name. We are the #daughters of Queen Nzinga Mbande. Queen of the Ambundu […]

Cosmonauts | Day 19 | Annetta M. Lane & Harriet Taylor

Today we tell the story of The United Order of Tents. A secret society of Black women that has operated for more than 100 years, providing shelter and services to people who were unable to care for themselves. It’s the story of Black women’s survival and resilience throughout time. When we look back to our […]

Cosmonauts | Day 18 | Mahalia Jackson

In 1965, Harry Belafonte said that Mahalia Jackson was “the single most powerful Black woman in the United States.” She could channel God’s power, transform a room, soften the hardest hearts, move the masses, and light fire to the faithful. That’s power. We are the #daughtersof Mahalia Jackson …and her voice rang louder than bullets […]

Cosmonauts | Day 17 | Alice Walker

Alice Walker reached all the way back to bring forward the story that would forever change us in her seminal novel, The Color Purple. With her words, she gave voice and texture to the pain of Black women, tenderly explored the depths of it at every level, and then proudly walked us through a field […]

Cosmonauts | Day 16 | Katherine Dunham

Dunham. The single word conjures connection. Katherine Dunham revolutionized dance in America. Her life was an undulating umbilical cord back to our Motherland. With a Ph.D. in anthropology, she studied sacred traditional dance techniques and offered Black people a technical way to exercise the trauma of separation from our spiritual inheritance. She was ancient and […]

Cosmonauts | Day 15 | Diana Ross

When you’ve got it. You’ve got it. And Dianna Ross has always had it, has always known she’s had it and has always known how to use it. The literal definition of Icon.  A Black woman who has dared to ask the universe for what she wants and clearly stands in expectation of receiving it. […]

Cosmonauts | Day 14 | Mary Bowser

This is the greatest spy story never told. The story of Mary Bowser, a formerly enslaved woman turned Union spy, who helped take down the confederacy before teaching at a school for free Black children. Then she disappeared off into the sunset. James Bond who? While made-up stories of white male valor and heroism dominate […]

Cosmonauts | Day 13 | Lorraine Hansberry

“She made it rain on grassroots integrationists in the South while giving the Kennedy brothers a tongue-lashing for their failure to protect the region’s African-Americans. She inspired a Nina Simone song. She was clocked by the Feds. She wore pearl earrings. She gave a generation of Black actors the roles that would define their careers. […]

Cosmonauts | Day 12 | Moms Mabley

Moms Mabley was brilliant at disrupting the status quo with perfectly portioned bits of truth. It is the recipe of so many Black mothers, aunties, and grandmothers. Closeted geniuses, with disarming side glances, glints of spiritual insight, and easy laughs filled with ancient discernment. We have a wealth of funny in our families and Moms […]