Black Print with a White Carnation: Mildred Brown and the Omaha Star Newspaper, 1938-1989

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U of Nebraska Press, Jan 1, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 304 pages

Mildred Dee Brown (1905_89) was the cofounder of Nebraskaęs Omaha Star, the longest running black newspaper founded by an African American woman in the United States. Known for her trademark white carnation corsage, Brown was the matriarch of Omahaęs Near North Sideăa historically black part of townăand an iconic city leader. Her remarkable life, a product of the Reconstruction era and Jim Crow, reflects a larger American history that includes the Great Migration, the Red Scare of the post_World War era, civil rights and black power movements, desegregation, and urban renewal.

Within the context of African American and womenęs history studies, Amy Helene Forssęs Black Print with a White Carnation examines the impact of the black press through the narrative of Brownęs life and work. Forss draws on more than 150 oral histories, numerous black newspapers, and government documents to illuminate African American history during the political and social upheaval of the twentieth century. During Brownęs fifty-one-year tenure, the Omaha Star became a channel of communication between black and white residents of the city, as well as an arena for positive weekly news in the black community. Brown and her newspaper led successful challenges to racial discrimination, unfair employment practices, restrictive housing covenants, and a segregated public school system, placing the woman with the white carnation at the center of Americaęs changing racial landscape.


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PART 1 Laying the Foundation
PART 2 Ensuring Her Success
PART 3 Transferring Ownership to the Community

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About the author (2014)

Amy Helene Forss has a PhD in African American history and teaches at Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, Nebraska. Her work has appeared in journals such as Nebraska History and Great Plains Quarterly.