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“(I) did not seek a career of agitation” William Monroe Trotter, featured 8th from the right in the top row, at the 1907 Niagara Movement’s annual meeting in Boston

Civil rights activist and journalist William Monroe Trotter dedicated his life to the recognition of African American Achievement. The first African American to graduate magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard, Trotter established a successful real estate company and became a prominent member of Boston’s Business community. In 1901 he co-founded The Guardian, a newspaper dedicated to the cause of civil rights for African Americans. As editor and publisher, Trotter provided a strong and aggressive voice to address racial injustice. In 1905 he and other political thinkers formed the Niagara Movement, a forerunner to the NAACP. Trotter’s tactics of confrontational protest and picketing served as a model for the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s and the African American protest traditions of the twentieth century. He lived on Jones Hill.

Image courtesy of Special Collections and University Archives, W.E.B. Du Boise Library, UMass Amherst