Blyden believed that the underdevelopment of Africa in the ninetieth century was due to historical factors such as slavery and the slave trade rather than race. To Blyden, if equal opportunities were provided for both races, not even the average African could be outsmarted by the White man. Blyden gained prominence in Liberia where he married into a prominent family and had three children with his wife, Americo-Liberian Sarah Yates. They had three children together and he also had five children with Anna Erskine, an African-American woman from Louisiana whom he had a long-term relationship with while living in Freetown Sierra Leone. Before his death on 7 February 1912 in Freetown, Sierra Leone, where he was buried, Blyden had worked as a journalist, a professor, college president and diplomat serving as an ambassador for Liberia to Britain and France. Araba sam/Face2face Tributes 

Edward Wilmot Blyden: The African Personality

The phrase “African Personality” was first introduced by Edward Blyden in a lecture titled Study and Race, delivered in Sierra Leone, Freetown on 19th May 1893. African Personality was mainly informed by Blyden’s personal experiences of slavery and racism and also an attempt to challenge racist scientific theories. Edward Wilmot Blyden was born on 3rd August 1832 in the West Indies (St. Thomas of the Virgin Island) to free parents at a time when slavery had not been abolished. In a quest to gain higher education, Blyden attempted to enroll…

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News Society Arts & Leisure 

Appreciation: Edward Wilmont Blyden 1882-1912

    Edward Wilmot Blyden, widely known as the father of Pan-Africanism, was born on August 3, 1832 in Saint Thomas,… in what are now the U.S Virgin Islands. Blyden was the third of seven children and was born to Romeo and Judith Blyden, a tailor and schoolteacher, respectively. The family lived in a predominantly Jewish and English speaking community, and attended church at the integrated Dutch Reformed Church. Blyden’s parents were free and literate at a time when most blacks on the islands were enslaved and illiterate. In 1842,…

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Politics 

In Defense Of J. J. Roberts

By: Carl Patrick Burrowes, Ph. D. March 15th was the birthday of one of the greatest men that ever lived. As happens every year, the day went largely unnoticed by those who today feast on the fruits he planted.That man was Joseph Jenkins Roberts, who labored to lay deep the foundation of Liberia. Yes, he was the country’s first president, but that was only one among many significant achievements. Less known but equally noteworthy, he won quick recognition of Liberia’s independence from both Britain and France, the two superpowers at…

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Politics 

Dissecting The Politics Of Edward Wilmot Blyden

By Edward Carter Making remarks at the program marking his 70th natal day, the Orwellian political scientist, the unrelenting Dr. Amos Claudius Sawyer made a rather interesting disclosure: He stressed that he will avail himself in part to establish a “chair of public affairs” at the University of Liberia in honor of the late so-called Pan African Nationalist, Edward Wilmot Blyden. Dr. Sawyer’s disclosure has provided an opportunity to take a second look at Mr. Blyden from the prism of his so-called African nationalist inclinations for which he is to…

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