This Day in History: 1898-04-09
Paul Leroy Robeson is born. An American bass baritone concert artist and stage and film actor, Robeson became famous both for his cultural accomplishments and for his political activism. Educated at Rutgers College and Columbia University, he was a star athlete in his youth. Robeson also studied Swahili and phonetics at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London in 1934. His political activities began with his involvement with unemployed workers and anti-imperialist students whom he met in Britain and continued with support for the Republican cause in the Spanish Civil War and his opposition to fascism. In the United States he became active in the Civil Rights Movement and other social justice campaigns. Learn more.