African American History Trivia: Ultimate Quiz

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African American History Trivia: Ultimate Quiz - Quiz


Step into the rich tapestry of African American history with our "African American History Trivia: Ultimate Quiz." This quiz is a captivating exploration of the pivotal moments, influential figures, and remarkable achievements that have shaped the African American experience throughout history. From the struggles against systemic racism to the triumphs of trailblazers in various fields, this quiz invites you on a journey through the profound and inspiring contributions of African Americans. Whether you're a history buff, an avid learner, or someone eager to delve into the often-overlooked aspects of our shared past, this quiz promises an enlightening and engaging Read moreexperience.

African-Americans' ancestry came from African, and most of them resulted from enslaved black people to America. The city with the most African-Americans is Detroit. Did you know that the first African-American to graduate from Harvard College was Richard Theodore Greener? Do take up the quiz and get to see how well you know some African-Americans and their achievements over the years. Challenge yourself, celebrate diversity, and embrace the opportunity to broaden your historical awareness. Share this quiz with friends and family to foster conversations about the remarkable journey of African Americans and the ongoing pursuit of equality.


African American History Questions and Answers

  • 1. 

    Who was the first African American to win a Nobel Peace Prize?

    • A.

      Ralph Bunche

    • B.

      Thurgood Marshall

    • C.

      Martin Luther King, Jr.

    • D.

      Charles Drew

    Correct Answer
    A. Ralph Bunche
    Explanation
    Ralph Bunche was the first African American to win a Nobel Peace Prize. He was awarded the prize in 1950 for his efforts in negotiating a ceasefire between Israel and Arab states during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Bunche's diplomatic skills and dedication to peace were recognized internationally, making him a deserving recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.

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  • 2. 

    Who was the most famous conductor of the Underground Railroad?

    • A.

      Harriet Beecher Stowe

    • B.

      Sojourner Truth

    • C.

      Harriet Tubman

    • D.

      Maria Stewart

    Correct Answer
    C. Harriet Tubman
    Explanation
    Harriet Tubman is the correct answer because she is widely recognized as the most famous conductor of the Underground Railroad. Tubman was an African American abolitionist and political activist who helped lead enslaved people to freedom in the North during the 19th century. She made numerous dangerous trips back to the South to rescue enslaved individuals, earning her the nickname "Moses" for her leadership and bravery. Tubman's efforts and dedication to the abolitionist cause have made her an iconic figure in American history.

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  • 3. 

    What was the name of the organization founded by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.?

    • A.

      National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)

    • B.

      Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)

    • C.

      Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)

    • D.

      Core of Racial Equality (CORE)

    Correct Answer
    B. Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)
    Explanation
    The correct answer is Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). The SCLC was founded by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1957. It was a civil rights organization that aimed to advance the rights and equality of African Americans through nonviolent protests and civil disobedience. The SCLC played a significant role in the American civil rights movement and organized several important campaigns, including the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the March on Washington. Dr. King served as the president of the SCLC until his assassination in 1968.

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  • 4. 

    Who won four gold medals int the 1936 Olympics held in Berlin, Germany?

    • A.

      Jesse Owens

    • B.

      Carl Lewis

    • C.

      Jackie Joyner Kersee

    • D.

      Wilma Rudolph

    Correct Answer
    A. Jesse Owens
    Explanation
    Jesse Owens is the correct answer because he won four gold medals in the 1936 Olympics held in Berlin, Germany. Owens, an African-American athlete, achieved this remarkable feat by winning gold in the 100 meters, 200 meters, long jump, and 4x100 meters relay events. His victories challenged Adolf Hitler's notion of Aryan supremacy and became a symbol of triumph over racism and discrimination. Owens' exceptional performance in those Olympics solidified his legacy as one of the greatest athletes in history.

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  • 5. 

    What boxer's birth name is Cassius Clay?

    • A.

      George Foreman

    • B.

      Mike Tyson

    • C.

      Sugar Ray Robinson

    • D.

      Muhammad Ali

    Correct Answer
    D. Muhammad Ali
    Explanation
    Muhammad Ali's birth name is Cassius Clay. In 1964, after defeating Sonny Liston to become the heavyweight champion of the world, Cassius Clay publicly announced his conversion to Islam and embraced the teachings of the Nation of Islam. As a result, he changed his name to Muhammad Ali, stating that Cassius Clay was his "slave name" and that he preferred a name given to him by the Nation of Islam's leader, Elijah Muhammad.

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  • 6. 

    Formally abolishing slavery in the United States, the 13th Amendment was passed by Congress on January 31, 1865, and ratified by the states on December 6, 1865.

    • A.

      True

    • B.

      False

    Correct Answer
    A. True
    Explanation
    The statement is true because the 13th Amendment was indeed passed by Congress on January 31, 1865, and ratified by the states on December 6, 1865. This amendment abolished slavery in the United States, making it illegal and granting freedom to all slaves.

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  • 7. 

    What former slave published the newspaper, "The North Star"?

    • A.

      David Walker

    • B.

      William Wells Brown

    • C.

      Frederick Douglass

    • D.

      William Lloyd Garrison

    Correct Answer
    C. Frederick Douglass
    Explanation
    Frederick Douglass, a former slave, published the newspaper "The North Star." Douglass was an influential abolitionist and social reformer who used his newspaper as a platform to advocate for the rights of African Americans and to expose the horrors of slavery. Through "The North Star," Douglass played a crucial role in spreading awareness about the injustices of slavery and promoting the cause of emancipation. His powerful writings and speeches continue to inspire and educate people about the fight for equality and justice.

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  • 8. 

    Whose autobiography is entitled, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings?"

    • A.

      Nikki Giovanni

    • B.

      Toni Morrison

    • C.

      Alice Walker

    • D.

      Maya Angelou

    Correct Answer
    D. Maya Angelou
    Explanation
    Maya Angelou is the correct answer because she is the author of the autobiography "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings." This book is a memoir that explores Angelou's experiences growing up as an African American in the segregated South of the United States. It is a powerful and influential work that has become a classic in American literature, addressing themes of race, identity, and resilience. Maya Angelou's writing style and use of vivid imagery make this autobiography a compelling and important read.

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  • 9. 

    Who founded the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama?

    • A.

      William Wells Brown

    • B.

      W.E.B. DuBois

    • C.

      Booker T. Washington

    • D.

      Marcus Garvey

    Correct Answer
    C. Booker T. Washington
    Explanation
    Booker T. Washington founded the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. He was a prominent African-American educator, author, and leader in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Washington believed in vocational education and economic self-reliance as means for African Americans to gain equality and improve their lives. He established the Tuskegee Institute in 1881, which focused on providing practical education and skills training to African Americans. Washington's efforts at the Tuskegee Institute had a significant impact on African-American education and empowerment during a time of racial segregation and discrimination.

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  • 10. 

    Who organized the Million Man March in Washington DC held on October 16, 1995?

    • A.

      Louis Farrakhan

    • B.

      El-Hajj Malik al-Shabazz

    • C.

      Elijah Muhammad

    • D.

      Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Correct Answer
    A. Louis Farrakhan
    Explanation
    Louis Farrakhan organized the Million Man March in Washington DC held on October 16, 1995.

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  • 11. 

    In 1965 this actor became the first African American to win an Oscar for a starring role in the film "Lilies of the Field".

    • A.

      Paul Robeson

    • B.

      Noble Sissal

    • C.

      Sidney Poitier

    • D.

      William Warfield

    Correct Answer
    C. Sidney Poitier
    Explanation
    Sidney Poitier is the correct answer because in 1965, he became the first African American to win an Oscar for a leading role in the film "Lilies of the Field." This historical achievement broke barriers and paved the way for more opportunities for African American actors in the film industry.

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  • 12. 

    Jazz singers Sarah Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald were discovered at the Apollo Theater in Harlem.

    • A.

      True

    • B.

      False

    Correct Answer
    A. True
    Explanation
    Sarah Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald, two renowned jazz singers, were indeed discovered at the Apollo Theater in Harlem. This iconic theater in New York City played a significant role in launching the careers of many African American artists during the early to mid-20th century. Both Vaughan and Fitzgerald showcased their incredible vocal talents at the Apollo, which led to their discovery by influential figures in the music industry. Their subsequent success and lasting impact on jazz music further validate the truthfulness of this statement.

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  • 13. 

    Major Gordon Granger came to this Texas city on June 19, 1865, to announce that slavery had ended. He made the announcement eighteen months after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued by Abraham Lincoln. What was the name of the city?

    • A.

      Austin

    • B.

      Houston

    • C.

      Lubbock

    • D.

      Galveston

    Correct Answer
    D. Galveston
    Explanation
    Major Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865, to deliver the news that slavery had ended. This event is now known as Juneteenth, a holiday commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans. Granger's announcement came 18 months after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared that all slaves in Confederate territory were to be set free. Therefore, the correct answer is Galveston.

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  • 14. 

    In 1993 she became the first black woman to win a Nobel Prize for Literature.

    • A.

      Nikki Giovanni

    • B.

      Toni Morrison

    • C.

      Maya Angelou

    • D.

      J. California Cooper

    Correct Answer
    B. Toni Morrison
    Explanation
    Toni Morrison is the correct answer because she became the first black woman to win a Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. This recognition highlights her immense talent and contributions to the literary world.

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  • 15. 

    She was the first black woman to seek a major political party nomination for President of the United States. 

    • A.

      Barbara Jordan

    • B.

      Shirley Chisholm

    • C.

      Patricia Roberts Harris

    • D.

      Eleanor Holmes Norton

    Correct Answer
    B. Shirley Chisholm
    Explanation
    Shirley Chisholm is the correct answer because she was indeed the first black woman to seek a major political party nomination for President of the United States. Chisholm, an American politician and educator, ran for the Democratic Party nomination in 1972. She broke barriers as an African American and a woman in the predominantly white and male-dominated political landscape. Chisholm's historic campaign paved the way for future black women to run for high political office and brought attention to issues of race and gender in American politics.

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  • 16. 

    In February 1990, he was elected the first black president of Harvard Law Review. The job is considered the highest student position at Harvard Law School.

    • A.

      Clarence Thomas

    • B.

      Thurgood Marshall

    • C.

      Barack Obama

    • D.

      Morris Overstreet

    Correct Answer
    C. Barack Obama
    Explanation
    Barack Obama was elected as the first black president of Harvard Law Review in February 1990. This position is highly regarded and considered the highest student position at Harvard Law School. This achievement highlights Obama's exceptional academic and leadership skills, as well as his groundbreaking role as an African American student in a prestigious institution.

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  • 17. 

    This black female politician was the first African American elected to the Texas Senate after Reconstruction,  and the first southern black female elected to the United States House of Representatives.  She held the LBJ Centennial Chair in National Policy at the University of Texas at Austin.

    • A.

      Carol Mosley Braun

    • B.

      Shirley Chisholm

    • C.

      Barbara Jordan

    • D.

      Constance Motley Brown

    Correct Answer
    C. Barbara Jordan
    Explanation
    Barbara Jordan was the correct answer because she was the first African American elected to the Texas Senate after Reconstruction, as well as the first southern black female elected to the United States House of Representatives. Additionally, she held the LBJ Centennial Chair in National Policy at the University of Texas at Austin.

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  • 18. 

    She witnessed the East St. Louis riots in 1917 and immigrated to France just six years later. She was a singer, dancer, nightclub owner, and a member of the French resistance during World War II. 

    • A.

      Bessie Smith

    • B.

      Josephine Baker

    • C.

      Lena Horne

    • D.

      Aretha Franklin

    Correct Answer
    B. Josephine Baker
    Explanation
    Josephine Baker is the correct answer because she fits the description given in the question. She witnessed the East St. Louis riots in 1917 and immigrated to France just six years later. She was known for her singing and dancing skills, and she also owned nightclubs. During World War II, she was a member of the French resistance, showing her involvement in the war effort.

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  • 19. 

    Whose refusal to give up her seat on a public bus sparked a boycott of the Montgomery, Alabama bus system from 1955-1956.

    • A.

      Mary McLeod Bethune

    • B.

      Coretta Scott King

    • C.

      Rosa Parks

    • D.

      Sojourner Truth

    Correct Answer
    C. Rosa Parks
    Explanation
    Rosa Parks' refusal to give up her seat on a public bus in Montgomery, Alabama sparked a boycott of the bus system from 1955-1956. This act of civil disobedience by Parks, an African American woman, was a pivotal moment in the Civil Rights Movement. Her defiance against racial segregation on public transportation inspired and mobilized the African American community, leading to the Montgomery Bus Boycott. The boycott, organized by civil rights leaders including Martin Luther King Jr., was a significant event in the fight against racial discrimination and ultimately led to a Supreme Court ruling that declared segregated buses unconstitutional.

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  • 20. 

    A system of “stations” which aided runaway slaves to escape north to freedom was called the Underground Railroad.  

    • A.

      True

    • B.

      False

    Correct Answer
    A. True
    Explanation
    The Underground Railroad was a network of secret routes and safe houses used by enslaved African Americans to escape to free states and Canada. It was called a "railroad" because it operated in a similar way, with "stations" where fugitive slaves could rest and receive assistance before continuing their journey. The system was operated by abolitionists and other sympathetic individuals who were committed to helping slaves escape to freedom. Therefore, the statement that a system of "stations" aiding runaway slaves to escape north to freedom was called the Underground Railroad is true.

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