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Re: [MGM-Mixed] The Long-Passed Days of "Passing" and 'Posing'

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  • quallagirl
    In a way it is good to be able to choose.  I guess people had to do what they had to do to get by.  I couldn t speak from a white looking person s
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 3, 2009
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      In a way it is good to be able to choose.  I guess people had to do what they had to do to get by.  I couldn't speak from a white looking person's standpoint, considering my so-called exotic features.
       
      It is also amazing at how many white people are clueless about their African ancestry.  I also think alot choose to deny that part to avoid being looked down on.  I notice that it is more accepting to claim Indian heritage.  I don't ever remember meeting a white person that admits to having black heritage. 
       
      Tonya

      --- On Sat, 10/3/09, AP Gifts <soaptalk@...> wrote:

      From: AP Gifts <soaptalk@...>
      Subject: [MGM-Mixed] The Long-Passed Days of "Passing" and 'Posing'
      To: MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Saturday, October 3, 2009, 3:00 PM

       


      Passing: how "posing" 
      became 
      a choice for 
      many Americans 


      (An article written by Monica L. Haynes for 
      the 'Post-Gazette' , Sunday, October 26, 2003

      ************ ********* ********* ********* ********* ********* ********* **

        

      Although Barbara Douglass never told anyone 
      she was `White'*, people see her porcelain 
      skin and her silky hair and assume she is. 

      But Douglass, who lives in Wilkinsburg, 
      is a 53-year-old 
      "black"^^ woman. 

      She could "pass" for 
      `White'* 
      but she has never tried, she said 


      "Growing up, I knew of people who did, 
      and I was even instructed not to say, 
      at that time, that they were 
      'Colored'**

      In order to get their jobs, they 
      had to say they were 
      `White'*"

      [[[

          Note: 

                     **The term 'Colored'** – as used here – is a reference to 
                     
      person who is of a `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race `lineage that 
                     also includes some part or amount of `Black / Negro' ancestry.

                     ^^The term "black"^^ or ""blacks"^^ – as used here – is 
                     a reference to those `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race' individuals 
                     who were both of part-`Black / Negro' ancestry --*and*-- who 
                     *also* came to be referred to / categorized by the term 
       "black"^^.

                               This categorization would have arisen either as a result of 
                               the racist `One-Drop Rule' and / or as a result of  taking 
                               on the socio-political `identification' that, since the late 
                               1960's, has come to be referred to by the term 
       "black"^^.

                               These terms  "black"^^ and / or "blacks"^^– when in reference 
                               to a socio-political "identification" -- were originally applied 
                               largely as a way of describing the new socio-political mindset 
                               that became popular in the late 1960s wherein many who 
                               were of at least some-part `Black / Negro' lineage chose to:

                               ------ openly support of the new 'pan-African,  
                               anti-colonialist movement' of the late 1960s; 

                               ------ refused to hold or see the their or another's 
                               `Black / Negro' ancestral lineage as being "shameful"; 

                               ------ and by providing support for the whole idea of making 
                               sure that equal rights would become granted to those 
                               people who suffered discrimination due to having 
                               `Black / Negro' ancestry in their familial, 
                               ethnic, racial or even cultural lineage.

                               As a result of the racist `One-Drop Rule' – the terms 
                               
      "black"^^ and "blacks"^^ were broad-brushed applied to 
                               entire people groupings (as a `political catch-phrase' ) 
                               as instructed by the western media and politicians.

                     The term `Black' – as used here – is in reference those who 
                     are of `Black / Negro' lineage and who also have very little 
                     to no* known or acknowledged non-`Black / Negro' ancestry.

                     
                               The  "Racial"-Term `Black' is *not* the same as 
                               the Socio-Political-`Identification' of  "black"^^.

                     *The term `White'* – as used here – is a reference to a person who 
                     has no known or acknowledged non-'White / Caucasian' ancestry.

                     The terms `Pass' and `Passing'
       – as used here – is 
                     reference to a person who hid, denied or pretended to 
                     have no known non-White (and particular `Black / Negro') 
                     ancestry
       and / or who would simply choose to 
      `remain 
                     silent' on the whole matter and let strangers `draw their 
                     own conclusions' based solely on their physical appearance.

      ]]]

      Thelma Marshall knows that routine. 

      During the 1950s and early '60s, she did 
      what her mother before her had done. 
      What her grandmother and aunts had done. 

      She "passed" for 
      `White'*

      "One time I told a woman I was  
       "black"^^'Colored'** in those days," 
      Marshall recalled. 

      "She said, 'You won't get the job 
      unless you "pass" for 
      `White'*."

      So that's what Marshall did. 
      "I "passed" for 
      `White'* on lots of jobs," 
      she said. 
      "I had to be 
      `White'* to get the jobs." 

      It's what many fair-skinned 
      "blacks"^^ did during those times.

      Marshall's remarks are without shame or remorse. 
      She felt she did what she had to do. 

      Still, it is a prickly subject, and the 76-year-old woman does not 
      want 'to offend' so she asked that her real name not be used. 

      [The act of] "passing" for 
      `White'* offered not only opportunities, 
      but also the opportunities [that only] 
      `White'* people received. 

      During [the] slavery [era], it could mean freedom. 
      There are many documented instances of fair-skinned 
      slaves who posed as [
      `White'* [in order] to escape. 

      In modern times, it meant being able to vote in the South. 
      It meant a job in the office rather than a job cleaning the office. 
      It meant schools with the latest equipment and books, 
      instead of dilapidated buildings and out-of-date texts. 
      It often meant better housing. 

      It meant being treated with respect, not disdain. 


      Barbara Douglass recalls the difference between 
      going out with her 
      `White'* college friends 
      vs. her 
       "black"^^ college friends. 

      "We went to a show, about 
      six of us [
      "black"^^ students]. 

      The manager came and sat behind us.
      I asked him 
      'Why are you sitting behind us?' 
      He said, 
      'I have to make sure you don't destroy anything.' " 

      Douglass said she told the manager that 
      he had never sat behind her before. 

      His response was, 
      "You never came with these people before." 

      Douglass, who the manager had assumed 
      was 
      `White'*, encouraged her friends to 
      leave the theater rather than be insulted …

      Because of her fair skin, Barbara Douglass 
      of Wilkinsburg often witnessed -- but never 
      tolerated -- racism directed at other people.

      When she was a young child, her parents 
      didn't emphasize racial differences. 
      "I just figured people came in 
      different shades," she said. 

      But when the subject came up in her 
      dance class, the 8-year-old Douglass 
      approached her mother, who explained 
      to her abou't"race" and 'racism.' 

      "We are `a child of God' first. 
      We are `human beings' first," 
      Douglass remembered her mother saying. 

      In fifth grade, she learned that the United States 
      is a melting pot, and she declared to her 
      mother that she would be a melting pot. 

      Her mother decided it was the perfect definition, 
      seeing as how her ancestors were Cherokee, 
      `Black', Dutch, German and Irish. 

      Maybe all 
       "blacks"^^ would have defined 
      themselves that way given the chance. 

      Since [the first, actual] `Black' people first came 
      to the New World in 1619, they've Mingled and 
      Mixed with every Race and Ethnic group here.

      It is not just the fair-skinned "blacks"^^ who 
      can lay claim to that melting pot definition. 

      Those 
      "blacks"^^ who have the mark of 
      Africa in their features and skin tone 
      also have multicultural ancestry.

      They just can't pass.

      Most 
      "blacks"^^ were never afforded 
      the luxury of defining themselves. 

                After the Civil War, Southern whites, not wanting this 
                swirling of races to get out of hand and seeking to 
                keep the [false notion of the] 
      `White'* "race" 
                as [being] pure, instituted a rule that 
                anyone with "one drop" of `Black 
                / Negro' blood was 
      `Black' [race].

                          That spurred even more fair-skinned 
      "blacks"^^ 
                          to cross over and escape Jim Crow laws that kept 

      (Message over 64 KB, truncated)

    • Stephanie Young
      I agree with you Tonya, White people here in the southeast always want to enthusiastically promote their Nation American heritage. I always here, my great
      Message 2 of 4 , Oct 5, 2009
      • 0 Attachment
        I agree with you Tonya, White people here in the southeast always want to enthusiastically promote their Nation American heritage. I always here, " my great grandmother was FULL Blooded Cherokee Indian." I wonder how true could that be that everyone has a great grandmother that was a "Full Blooded" Cherokee Indian. I have never heard, "My great grandma was a FULL BLOODED Negro." It seems weird to me. I have heard from one white lady that I worked with that her great grand mother was a mulatto. I have heard this from another white lady that said that her grandmother was a mulatto. I can say that as well 2 out of 4 of my great grandmothers were mullato. 1 out of 4 great grandfathers were white and 1 out of 4 great grandfathers were mullato.

        Stephanie D.



        --- On Sat, 10/3/09, quallagirl <latonyabeatty76@...> wrote:

        From: quallagirl <latonyabeatty76@...>
        Subject: Re: [MGM-Mixed] The Long-Passed Days of "Passing" and 'Posing'
        To: MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com, generation-mixed@yahoogroups.com
        Date: Saturday, October 3, 2009, 3:40 PM

         

        In a way it is good to be able to choose.  I guess people had to do what they had to do to get by.  I couldn't speak from a white looking person's standpoint, considering my so-called exotic features.
         
        It is also amazing at how many white people are clueless about their African ancestry.  I also think alot choose to deny that part to avoid being looked down on.  I notice that it is more accepting to claim Indian heritage.  I don't ever remember meeting a white person that admits to having black heritage. 
         
        Tonya

        --- On Sat, 10/3/09, AP Gifts <soaptalk@hotmail. com> wrote:

        From: AP Gifts <soaptalk@hotmail. com>
        Subject: [MGM-Mixed] The Long-Passed Days of "Passing" and 'Posing'
        To: MGM-Mixed@yahoogrou ps.com
        Date: Saturday, October 3, 2009, 3:00 PM

         


        Passing: how "posing" 
        became 
        a choice for 
        many Americans 


        (An article written by Monica L. Haynes for 
        the 'Post-Gazette' , Sunday, October 26, 2003

        ************ ********* ********* ********* ********* ********* ********* **

          

        Although Barbara Douglass never told anyone 
        she was `White'*, people see her porcelain 
        skin and her silky hair and assume she is. 

        But Douglass, who lives in Wilkinsburg, 
        is a 53-year-old 
        "black"^^ woman. 

        She could "pass" for 
        `White'* 
        but she has never tried, she said 


        "Growing up, I knew of people who did, 
        and I was even instructed not to say, 
        at that time, that they were 
        'Colored'**

        In order to get their jobs, they 
        had to say they were 
        `White'*"

        [[[

            Note: 

                       **The term 'Colored'** – as used here – is a reference to 
                       
        person who is of a `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race `lineage that 
                       also includes some part or amount of `Black / Negro' ancestry.

                       ^^The term "black"^^ or ""blacks"^^ – as used here – is 
                       a reference to those `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race' individuals 
                       who were both of part-`Black / Negro' ancestry --*and*-- who 
                       *also* came to be referred to / categorized by the term 
         "black"^^.

                                 This categorization would have arisen either as a result of 
                                 the racist `One-Drop Rule' and / or as a result of  taking 
                                 on the socio-political `identification' that, since the late 
                                 1960's, has come to be referred to by the term 
         "black"^^.

                                 These terms  "black"^^ and / or "blacks"^^– when in reference 
                                 to a socio-political "identification" -- were originally applied 
                                 largely as a way of describing the new socio-political mindset 
                                 that became popular in the late 1960s wherein many who 
                                 were of at least some-part `Black / Negro' lineage chose to:

                                 ------ openly support of the new 'pan-African,  
                                 anti-colonialist movement' of the late 1960s; 

                                 ------ refused to hold or see the their or another's 
                                 `Black / Negro' ancestral lineage as being "shameful"; 

                                 ------ and by providing support for the whole idea of making 
                                 sure that equal rights would become granted to those 
                                 people who suffered discrimination due to having 
                                 `Black / Negro' ancestry in their familial, 
                                 ethnic, racial or even cultural lineage.

                                 As a result of the racist `One-Drop Rule' – the terms 
                                 
        "black"^^ and "blacks"^^ were broad-brushed applied to 
                                 entire people groupings (as a `political catch-phrase' ) 
                                 as instructed by the western media and politicians.

                       The term `Black' – as used here – is in reference those who 
                       are of `Black / Negro' lineage and who also have very little 
                       to no* known or acknowledged non-`Black / Negro' ancestry.

                       
                                 The  "Racial"-Term `Black' is *not* the same as 
                                 the Socio-Political-`Identification' of  "black"^^.

                       *The term `White'* – as used here – is a reference to a person who 
                       has no known or acknowledged non-'White / Caucasian' ancestry.

                       The terms `Pass' and `Passing'
         – as used here – is 
                       reference to a person who hid, denied or pretended to 
                       have no known non-White (and particular `Black / Negro') 
                       ancestry
         and / or who would simply choose to 
        `remain 
                       silent' on the whole matter and let strangers `draw their 
                       own conclusions' based solely on their physical appearance.

        ]]]

        Thelma Marshall knows that routine. 

        During the 1950s and early '60s, she did 
        what her mother before her had done. 
        What her grandmother and aunts had done. 

        She "passed" for 
        `White'*

        "One time I told a woman I was  
         "black"^^'Colored'** in those days," 
        Marshall recalled. 

        "She said, 'You won't get the job 
        unless you "pass" for 
        `White'*."

        So that's what Marshall did. 
        "I "passed" for 
        `White'* on lots of jobs," 
        she said. 
        "I had to be 
        `White'* to get the jobs." 

        It's what many fair-skinned 
        "blacks"^^ did during those times.

        Marshall's remarks are without shame or remorse. 
        She felt she did what she had to do. 

        Still, it is a prickly subject, and the 76-year-old woman does not 
        want 'to offend' so she asked that her real name not be used. 

        [The act of] "passing" for 
        `White'* offered not only opportunities, 
        but also the opportunities [that only] 
        `White'* people received. 

        During [the] slavery [era], it could mean freedom. 
        There are many documented instances of fair-skinned 
        slaves who posed as [
        `White'* [in order] to escape. 

        In modern times, it meant being able to vote in the South. 
        It meant a job in the office rather than a job cleaning the office. 
        It meant schools with the latest equipment and books, 
        instead of dilapidated buildings and out-of-date texts. 
        It often meant better housing. 

        It meant being treated with respect, not disdain. 


        Barbara Douglass recalls the difference between 
        going out with her 
        `White'* college friends 
        vs. her 
         "black"^^ college friends. 

        "We went to a show, about 
        six of us [
        "black"^^ students]. 

        The manager came and sat behind us.
        I asked him 
        'Why are you sitting behind us?' 
        He said, 
        'I have to make sure you don't destroy anything.' " 

        Douglass said she told the manager that 
        he had never sat behind her before. 

        His response was, 
        "You never came with these people before." 

        Douglass, who the manager had assumed 
        was 
        `White'*, encouraged her friends to 
        leave the theater rather than be insulted …

        Because of her fair skin, Barbara Douglass 
        of Wilkinsburg often witnessed -- but never 
        tolerated -- racism directed at other people.

        When she was a young child, her parents 
        didn't emphasize racial differences. 
        "I just figured people came in 
        different shades," she said. 

        But when the subject came up in her 
        dance class, the 8-year-old Douglass 
        approached her mother, who explained 
        to her abou't"race" and 'racism.' 

        "We are `a child of God' first. 
        We are `human beings' first," 
        Douglass remembered her mother saying. 

        In fifth grade, she learned that the United States 
        is a melting pot, and she declared to her 
        mother that she would be a melting pot. 

        Her mother decided it was the perfect definition, 
        seeing as how her ancestors were Cherokee, 
        `Black', Dutch, German and Irish. 

        Maybe all 
         "blacks"^^ would have defined 
        themselves that way given the chance. 

        Since [the first, actual] `Black' people first came 
        to the New World in 1619, they've Mingled and 
        Mixed with every Race and Ethnic group here.

        It is not just the fair-skinned "blacks"^^ who 
        can lay claim to that melting pot definition. 

        Those 
        "blacks"^^ who have the mark of 
        Africa in their features and skin tone 
        also have multicultural ancestry.

        They just can't pass.

        Most 
        "blacks"^^ were never afforded 
        the luxury of defining themselves. 

                  After the Civil War, Southern whites, not wanting this 
                  swirling of races to get out of hand and seeking to 
                  keep the [false notion of the] 
        `White'* "race" 
                  as [being] pure, instituted a rule that 
                  anyone with "one drop" of `Black 
                  / Negro' blood was 

      • Kasturi
        HI, I really enjoyed this article, and I really related to Barbara s stories. I also just wrote to the list to share my website about my great-grandmother who
        Message 3 of 4 , Oct 7, 2009
        • 0 Attachment
          HI,

          I really enjoyed this article, and I really related to Barbara's stories. I also just wrote to the list to share my website about my great-grandmother who was a 'Delaware Moor.' To today's descendents that usually means part-native American, but it used to mean 'African-American whites' or something like that. Certainly, I'm about as sure as I can be that that is what it meant to my mother. There probably was native american ancestry there too, but the african ancestry may have been seen as more problematic, and hence more 'hidden' and so in a way, more significant, too.

          My mother, born in the early 1900's, definitely felt she was 'passing' - whatever her personal self-identification may have been - yet she and her friends (cousins, etc) supported civil rights in the 50's and 60's, brought me up with a 'different shades of colors, all one human family,' kind of attitude (which put me at odds with almost everyone in our neighborhood made up of many 'white' people and european post ww2 immigrants, who definitely seemed to want to be classified as 'white'), and pushed me into the role of defender of 'the colored' without ever telling me 'why.' I just knew that our family had a 'different understanding' from what seemed to be current in the society at large.

          Considering all the research I've done into our family and its times, I'm now seeing all sorts of influences that made us the way we were. A lot of it is in the website text.

          As for why so many southerners want to say they are full-blooded Cherokee, I think a lot of that 'full-blooded' stuff comes from the US govt's requirement of blood quantums, etc to 'qualify' as a Native American. My great-grandmother wasn't a full-blooded anything, as far as I can tell, and she was listed as mulatto on the Delaware Census in her youth, which could have meant anything. But anyway, claiming 'full-blooded' whatever is just people trying to be accepted by other people. That's the whole problem. We all don't accept one another just as we are. We've always got to be 'qualifying.' To me, what's important is the truth, and I think a lot of southern people do have native american ancestry, and probably quite a few have african as well, or just the opposite.

          I speak on the website about my own mixed dna results. I scored very high on African ancestry - mostly North and East - which are typical for pirates out of places like Sallee, frankly - but also south and west african. I'm blonde and blue-eyed, myself, but as Mr. Hale said in the article, it's isn't really about color, it's about heritage. I grew up with a particular heritage that kind of defies definition, but that was at least partially African. I'm still trying to absorb and integrate within myself all the information and synthesis I've been able to process in the past three years behind all of this.

          My partner, also 'white,' is descended from a man who took for a middle name 'Jones' after Absolom Jones, so I guess the two of us are well-matched. He won't do the dna test, so I don't know what that would uncover. I keep thinking there must be plenty of 'white' people who share in African heritage, as well as native american. America really is a melting pot if you let it be.

          Well, I've said enough - probably too much :-) ~ so I'll say good-night. Hope you'll go take a look at my "Great-Grandmother's Blog" - I invite all to share about their own.

          http://knitandcontemplation.typepad.com/great_grandmothers_blog/

          ~ Kasturi (this is my adopted name, not my birth name)





          In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
          Stephanie Young <syoung4576@...> wrote:




          I agree with you Tonya, White people here in the southeast always want to enthusiastically promote their Nation American heritage. I always here, " my great grandmother was FULL Blooded Cherokee Indian." I wonder how true could that be that everyone has a great grandmother that was a "Full Blooded" Cherokee Indian. I have never heard, "My great grandma was a FULL BLOODED Negro." It seems weird to me. I have heard from one white lady that I worked with that her great grand mother was a mulatto. I have heard this from another white lady that said that her grandmother was a mulatto. I can say that as well 2 out of 4 of my great grandmothers were mullato. 1 out of 4 great grandfathers were white and 1 out of 4 great grandfathers were mullato.

          Stephanie D.




          In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
          quallagirl <latonyabeatty76@...> wrote:




          In a way it is good to be able to choose. I guess people had to do what they had to do to get by. I couldn't speak from a white looking person's standpoint, considering my so-called exotic features.

          It is also amazing at how many white people are clueless about their African ancestry. I also think alot choose to deny that part to avoid being looked down on. I notice that it is more accepting to claim Indian heritage. I don't ever remember meeting a white person that admits to having black heritage.

          Tonya




          In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
          AP Gifts <soaptalk@hotmail. com> wrote:




          Passing: how "posing" became a choice for many Americans



          (An article written by Monica L. Haynes for
          the 'Post-Gazette' , Sunday, October 26, 2003


          ************ ********* ********* ********* ********* *********


          Although Barbara Douglass never told anyone
          she was `White'*, people see her porcelain
          skin and her silky hair and assume she is.

          But Douglass, who lives in Wilkinsburg,
          is a 53-year-old "black"^^ woman.

          She could "pass" for `White'*
          but she has never tried, she said

          "Growing up, I knew of people who did,
          and I was even instructed not to say,
          at that time, that they were 'Colored'**.

          In order to get their jobs, they
          had to say they were `White'*"

          [[[

          Note:

          **The term 'Colored'** – as used here – is a reference to
          a person who is of a `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race `lineage that
          also includes some part or amount of `Black / Negro' ancestry.

          ^^The term "black"^^ or ""blacks"^^ – as used here – is
          a reference to those `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race' individuals
          who were both of part-`Black / Negro' ancestry --*and*-- who
          *also* came to be referred to / categorized by the term "black"^^.

          This categorization would have arisen either as a result of
          the racist `One-Drop Rule' and / or as a result of taking
          on the socio-political `identification' that, since the late
          1960's, has come to be referred to by the term "black"^^.

          These terms "black"^^ and / or "blacks"^^– when in reference
          to a socio-political "identification" -- were originally applied
          largely as a way of describing the new socio-political mindset
          that became popular in the late 1960s wherein many who
          were of at least some-part `Black / Negro' lineage chose to:

          ------ openly support of the new 'pan-African,
          anti-colonialist movement' of the late 1960s;

          ------ refused to hold or see the their or another's
          `Black / Negro' ancestral lineage as being "shameful";

          ------ and by providing support for the whole idea of making
          sure that equal rights would become granted to those
          people who suffered discrimination due to having
          `Black / Negro' ancestry in their familial,
          ethnic, racial or even cultural lineage.

          As a result of the racist `One-Drop Rule' – the terms
          "black"^^ and "blacks"^^ were broad-brushed applied to
          entire people groupings (as a `political catch-phrase' )
          as instructed by the western media and politicians.

          The term `Black' – as used here – is in reference those who
          are of `Black / Negro' lineage and who also have very little
          to no* known or acknowledged non-`Black / Negro' ancestry.

          The "Racial"-Term `Black' is *not* the same as
          the Socio-Political-`Identification' of "black"^^.

          *The term `White'* – as used here – is a reference to a person
          who has no known or acknowledged non-'White / Caucasian' ancestry.

          The terms `Pass' and `Passing' – as used here – is
          reference to a person who hid, denied or pretended to
          have no known non-White (and particular `Black / Negro')
          ancestry and / or who would simply choose to `remain
          silent' on the whole matter and let strangers `draw their
          own conclusions' based solely on their physical appearance.

          ]]]

          Thelma Marshall knows that routine.

          During the 1950s and early '60s, she did
          what her mother before her had done.
          What her grandmother and aunts had done.

          She "passed" for `White'*

          "One time I told a woman I was
          "black"^^, 'Colored'** in those days,"
          Marshall recalled.

          "She said, 'You won't get the job
          unless you "pass" for `White'*."

          So that's what Marshall did.
          "I "passed" for `White'* on lots of jobs,"
          she said.
          "I had to be `White'* to get the jobs."

          It's what many fair-skinned "blacks"^^ did during those times.

          Marshall's remarks are without shame or remorse.
          She felt she did what she had to do.

          Still, it is a prickly subject, and the 76-year-old woman does not
          want 'to offend' so she asked that her real name not be used.

          [The act of] "passing" for `White'* offered not only opportunities,
          but also the opportunities [that only] `White'* people received.

          During [the] slavery [era], it could mean freedom.
          There are many documented instances of fair-skinned
          slaves who posed as [`White'* [in order] to escape.

          In modern times, it meant being able to vote in the South.
          It meant a job in the office rather than a job cleaning the office.
          It meant schools with the latest equipment and books,
          instead of dilapidated buildings and out-of-date texts.
          It often meant better housing.

          It meant being treated with respect, not disdain.

          Barbara Douglass recalls the difference between
          going out with her `White'* college friends
          vs. her "black"^^ college friends.

          "We went to a show, about
          six of us ["black"^^ students].

          The manager came and sat behind us.
          I asked him
          'Why are you sitting behind us?'
          He said,
          'I have to make sure you don't destroy anything.' "

          Douglass said she told the manager that
          he had never sat behind her before.

          His response was,
          "You never came with these people before."

          Douglass, who the manager had assumed
          was `White'*, encouraged her friends to
          leave the theater rather than be insulted …

          Because of her fair skin, Barbara Douglass
          of Wilkinsburg often witnessed -- but never
          tolerated -- racism directed at other people.

          When she was a young child, her parents
          didn't emphasize racial differences.
          "I just figured people came in
          different shades," she said.

          But when the subject came up in her
          dance class, the 8-year-old Douglass
          approached her mother, who explained
          to her abou't"race" and 'racism.'

          "We are `a child of God' first.
          We are `human beings' first,"
          Douglass remembered her mother saying.

          In fifth grade, she learned that the United States
          is a melting pot, and she declared to her
          mother that she would be a melting pot.

          Her mother decided it was the perfect definition,
          seeing as how her ancestors were Cherokee,
          `Black', Dutch, German and Irish.

          Maybe all "blacks"^^ would have defined
          themselves that way given the chance.

          Since [the first, actual] `Black' people first came
          to the New World in 1619, they've Mingled and
          Mixed with every Race and Ethnic group here.

          It is not just the fair-skinned "blacks"^^ who
          can lay claim to that melting pot definition.

          Those "blacks"^^ who have the mark of
          Africa in their features and skin tone
          also have multicultural ancestry.

          They just can't pass.

          Most "blacks"^^ were never afforded
          the luxury of defining themselves.

          After the Civil War, Southern whites, not wanting this
          swirling of races to get out of hand and seeking to
          keep the [false notion of the] `White'* "race"
          as [being] pure, instituted a rule that
          anyone with "one drop" of `Black
          / Negro' blood was `Black' [race].

          That spurred even more fair-skinned "blacks"^^
          to cross over and escape Jim Crow laws that kept
          "blacks"^^ in the shackles of second-class citizenship.

          Interestingly, many ``White'*, if they traced
          their blood line or had their DNA tested,
          would find they have "black"^^ ancestors.

          In a 1999 piece for Slate, writer Brent Staples cites
          a 1940s study by Robert Stuckert, a sociologist
          and anthropologist from Ohio State University.

          The study, titled "African Ancestry of the White American
          Population", indicates that during the 1940s, approximately
          15,550 fair-skinned "black"^^ per year "crossed the color line".

          The study estimated that by 1950, about 21 percent or 28
          million of the 135 million categorized as `White'* had
          "black"^^ ancestry within the past four generations.

          Stuckert predicted that the numbers
          would grow in subsequent decades.

          Marshall never thought to "pass" permanently,
          although she had family members who did.

          Some fair-skinned "black"^^ with "good hair"
          and "keen features" did not "pass" but …
          [simply married] others with fair skin ...

          "For generations, my mother's side and my
          father's side married fair -- so they could get jobs,"
          Marshall said.

          "My great-grandfather had a barbershop,
          and he "passed" for `White'*, and he had
          only ``White'* customers in his shop." ...

          State decides for you

          Sometimes "blacks"^^ used their fair
          complexion -- not for personal gain but
          -- to circumvent discriminatory practices.

          For example, in the 1940s, "blacks"^^ who looked `White'*
          helped integrate Lewis Place, a neighborhood in St. Louis, Mo.

          Like many cities during this time, Lewis Place
          had covenants that prevented "blacks"^^ from
          buying homes in certain neighborhoods.

          But in the '40s, fair-skinned "blacks"^^ would purchase
          homes on Lewis Street and then transfer deeds to [the]
          darker-skinned "black"^^ people who had actually bought them.

          Famed NAACP chief executive Walter White's light skin
          allowed him to investigate lynchings and race riots in the 1920s.

          White, who was raised in Atlanta, under Jim Crow,
          remained an NAACP officer until he died in 1955.

          For nearly a century, just who was [defined or
          categorized as being either] `White'* or "black"^^
          depended upon what state that person was in.

          Between the 1890s and 1950s, the peak
          period for "black"^^ "passing" as `White'*,
          every state had its own racial designation,
          said Wendy Ann Gaudin, a history
          instructor at Xavier University in Louisiana.

          Gaudin has interviewed Mixed-Race people
          in Louisiana who "passed" for `White'* as
          part of study she conducted on that subject.

          A person could be born white in one state
          and be designated "black"^^ in another
          depending upon the `racial laws' in that state,
          said Gaudin, who also is a Ph.D.
          candidate at New York University.

          ----- During the antebellum period, enslaved `Black'
          [race] people were referred to as [being] Negroes.

          ----- Then there were `Free People of Color' [and others],
          … who generally had [a] Mixed "racial" heritage ...

          ----- [The free] people-of-color could be 'brown
          with European features', 'light with African
          features' and everything in between.

          "They were not looked upon as so-called Negroes and
          of course they weren't equated with `White'*, either,"
          Gaudin explained.
          "Society had `a place' for them."

          Some were slave owners,
          others staunch abolitionists. ..

          However, after the "one drop"
          rule was instituted and Jim Crow
          [`Segregation] became the law of
          the land in the South, things changed.

          Often, they would move and cut ties
          with family members, especially
          the ones who could not "pass".

          The law aimed at these "White-Negroes",
          as they were sometimes called, actually forced
          more of the very racial mingling it sought to counter.

          "Once these laws were [enacted], "passing" made
          more sense, and it became more necessary,"
          Gaudin said. Some who passed

          In her 2002 memoir, "Just Lucky, I Guess," Broadway legend
          Carol Channing revealed that her father, George Channing, was
          a light-skinned "black"^^ man who "passed" [as being `White'*] ...

          When she was 16 and about to go off to
          college, her mother told her about her father.

          "My mother announced to me I was part-Negro," Channing writes.
          "I'm only telling you this because `the Darwinian law'
          shows that you could easily have a "black"^^ baby."

          A noted case of passing in recent history is that of Anatole
          Broyard, longtime literary critic for The New York Times.

          Born "black"^^ and raised in "black"^^ neighborhoods in
          New Orleans and Brooklyn, he "passed" for `White'*
          for decades because he did not want to be labeled
          as a 'Negro' writer, he had said, but simply a Writer.

          Henry Louis Gates Jr., chairman of the Afro-American
          history department at Harvard, chronicled Broyard's
          brilliant career and secret in a New Yorker
          essay that was included in his 1997 book,
          "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a "Black Man."

          For years, Broyard side-stepped 'rumors' of his
          ancestry and would credit his skin-tone to a
          very distant relative who "may" have been "black"^^.

          Even in the waning days of his life, his body
          withered by cancer, he denied his wife's
          request to tell his children of their 'true' heritage.

          They met Broyard's darker-skinned sister, Shirley,
          for the first time at his memorial service in 1990.

          No identity crisis

          Unlike Broyard, Shadyside's Dr. Edward J. Hale
          never sought the advantages of `White'*
          his complexion could have provided him.

          He's a retired staff member of Western
          Pennsylvania Hospital, served as
          chief of medical services and acting
          director of professional services at
          the Veterans Affairs Department Medical
          Center on Highland Drive, and he has
          taught at the University of Illinois, Howard
          University, the University of Pittsburgh
          and Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

          Hale, 80, said he followed the example of his
          father, William J. Hale, founding president of
          Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State
          College, now known as Tennessee State University.

          Hale had come from a family
          that had accomplished much
          by living as "black"^^ people.

          His goal was to do the same.

          "I've always been fond of my dad, loved and
          adored and respected my father," Hale said.
          "He chose to remain "black"^^.

          He got to be a college president."
          His mother, a graduate of Fisk
          University, headed up the business
          department at Tennessee State.
          She, too, was fair enough to
          "pass", as were Hale's siblings.

          Dr. Edward J. Hale chose to follow
          the example of his parents,
          accomplished educators
          Harriet and William J. Hale….

          The proud son says, "He chose
          to remain "black"^^ [identified] .

          His sister, who earned a master's in
          French from Columbia University, married
          a man who could not "pass", Hale said.

          "But they had a very positive marriage as
          "black"^^ and they lived happily," he added.

          His brother "used to float back and forth
          between being 'White'** and being "black"^^,
          he said.
          "He did that for work."

          Why didn't Hale?

          "I chose "black"^^ because
          I have a "black"^^ identity...

          "We had a heritage, and it
          was something important."

          His parents emphasized being proud of
          who he was, excelling at something,
          making a contribution to society.

          After getting his bachelor's degree at Tennessee
          State, he entered Meharry Medical College in
          Nashville, graduating third in his class in 1945.

          Two years later, he earned a master's in
          physiology from the University of Illinois.

          "As a fair-skinned "black"^^, I could "pass" for `White'*,
          but … if you got to be too outstanding, people would
          look into your background," Hale said.

          When he came to Pittsburgh in 1955 to serve
          as chief of medicine for the VA Hospital, he
          knew people would assume he was `White'*.

          They soon learned differently through his stand
          on issues and his friendships with other "black"^^.

          Hale and several other "black"^^ doctors
          formed the Gateway Medical Group,
          now called Gateway Medical Society.

          He was active in the National Medical Association
          and helped bring their convention to Pittsburgh.

          "I had to make an "identity" for myself, to
          let people know who I was," Hale said.

          Gaudin said it was easy for well-educated
          light-skinned people to take what is considered
          the high road by maintaining their "black"^^ identity.

          Poor, uneducated folks with the same
          complexion faced a different reality.

          "These were people who used their
          physical appearances because, in
          many cases, that's all they had,"
          Gaudin said.

          "They weren't wealthy.

          In many cases, they felt this was
          their greatest, most valuable resource."


          Unbreakable family ties


          Attorney Wendell Freeland remembers a decade or so ago
          when he and his wife were reading in the newspaper
          about the fast rise of a young man who was `White'*.

          In the ensuing conversation, Freeland's wife noted that her
          husband was smarter and much more on the ball than the
          young man and should have reached the same career peak.

          Freeland recalls his daughter saying to him,
          "You've got nothing to complain about;
          you could have [lived as] `White'*".

          Theoretically, yes.

          Freeland says he can fool even those "black"^^ people who
          swear they can detect another "black"^^, no matter how fair.

          Consciously, Freeland said he could no more
          "pass" than his brown-skinned brethren.

          "I never thought about it," said the 78-year-old attorney.
          "My family ties were so great."

          Freeland, who came to Pittsburgh in 1950, grew
          up in a segregated community in Baltimore…

          Wendell Freeland, a Squirrel Hill
          lawyer and civil rights activist,
          never considered "passing" as
          `White'^, although he witnessed
          others passing to get into
          barred theaters or stores.
          "That was just casual passing,"
          Freeland says.
          "I knew people who crossed over."

          As a college student, he encountered "black"^^ from the British
          West Indies and other places who "passed" to go to the movies
          or to shop in places where "black"^^ were not welcome.

          "That was just casual-"passing","
          Freeland said.
          "I knew people who crossed-over." …

          Freeland, who lives in Squirrel Hill, has spent a
          lifetime utilizing his considerable talents for
          numerous social and civil rights causes.

          He served as senior vice president of the National Urban
          League and was a member of the search committee that
          selected Vernon Jordan to lead that organization in the 1970s.

          He's been on any number of boards, including those of
          Westminster College, University of Pittsburgh and University
          of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and he had been chairman
          of the board of governors for the Joint Center for
          Political and Economic Studies in Washington, D.C.

          As obvious as the European portion of his ancestry is, Freeland
          said it was never a source of great pride or interest to him.

          "I'm more proud of my great-great-grandmother's
          manumission [emancipation] papers than
          any drop of `White'* blood," he said.

          "I have to tell you my complexion has certain advantages.
          I learn a lot about `White'* people … ,"
          Freeland said,

          … "It doesn't bother me if somebody "passed" and
          had a life that was more successful and happy.

          I'm successful and happy, too."

          SOURCE:

          hhttp://www.post-gazette.com/lifestyle/20031026stain1026fnp2.asp


          RELATED LINKS:

          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/3331

          http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=Al5eeK2CFwcv4rD5U5qzvEfty6IX?qid=20070527201834AAIhzhM&show=7#profile-info-CiC2JY9Maa

          http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AiebDu.tSshJzQ0wS5fMp7jty6IX?qid=20070623205206AANUzPN&show=7#profile-info-q1hdwifgaa

          http://boards.mulatto.org/post/show_single_post?pid=34070161&postcount;=13

          http://boards.mulatto.org/post/show_single_post?pid=34070414&postcount;=14.

          .
        • None
          Hello: I am a Delaware Moor by heritage. I am tri-racial (Native Aamerican; African American and European) on my mother s side. My Great Grandmother and
          Message 4 of 4 , Oct 28, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            Hello: I am a "Delaware Moor" by heritage. I am tri-racial (Native
            Aamerican; African American and European) on my mother's side. My
            Great Grandmother and Great Great Grandparents were classifed as "free
            persons of color" and "Mulatto" on The Census in the late 1850's. At
            that time slavers began kidnapping free persons of color and selling
            them into slavery in Delaware. The black codes had been passed in
            Delware & it was rough for free persons of color to maintain their
            freedom. My ancestors migrated to Michigan and passed as white on every
            Census after the Civil War. It was kept secret in my family. My Mom
            lived in fear of someone finding out, because up until 1968 interacial
            marriages were illegal. My dad was white and my mother was mixed. They
            both would have been jailed and my dad would have lost his job. Because
            I am a genealogist, I discovered who I really am after my mom and father
            died. I am now passing it down to my kids and grandkids. I am proud
            of my multi-racial background and I am here to tell you that I am a sum
            of all of my parts! I don't have to justify my whiteness (my phenotype
            or outer appearance) to anyone and I am very proud of my Native American
            and African American roots. My genetype (who I am inside) is white;
            black; and Native American. Multi-racial people are not one or the
            other they are all of their races/cultures/heritages. Acceptance of who
            we are is the key...Not how others want to describe us. I am very proud
            of my family and ancestors. When someone asks me what or who I am I
            tell them "I am other and I am all of the above!" I claim them all!
            The bottom line is you need to look further than what a person looks
            like on the outside. You need to accept them for what they are on the
            inside.



            In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
            Stephanie Young <syoung4576@...> wrote:


            I agree with you Tonya, White people here in the southeast always want to
            enthusiastically promote their Nation American heritage. I always here, " my
            great grandmother was FULL Blooded Cherokee Indian." I wonder how true could
            that be that everyone has a great grandmother that was a "Full Blooded" Cherokee
            Indian. I have never heard, "My great grandma was a FULL BLOODED Negro." It
            seems weird to me. I have heard from one white lady that I worked with that her
            great grand mother was a mulatto. I have heard this from another white lady that
            said that her grandmother was a mulatto. I can say that as well 2 out of 4 of my
            great grandmothers were mullato. 1 out of 4 great grandfathers were white and 1
            out of 4 great grandfathers were mullato.

            Stephanie D.




            In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
            quallagirl <latonyabeatty76@...> wrote:




            In a way it is good to be able to choose. I guess people had to do what they
            had to do to get by. I couldn't speak from a white looking person's standpoint,
            considering my so-called exotic features.

            It is also amazing at how many white people are clueless about their African
            ancestry. I also think alot choose to deny that part to avoid being looked down
            on. I notice that it is more accepting to claim Indian heritage. I don't ever
            remember meeting a white person that admits to having black heritage.

            Tonya




            In MGM-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
            AP Gifts <soaptalk@hotmail. com> wrote:




            Passing: how "posing" became a choice for many Americans



            (An article written by Monica L. Haynes for
            the 'Post-Gazette' , Sunday, October 26, 2003


            ************ ********* ********* ********* ********* *********


            Although Barbara Douglass never told anyone
            she was `White'*, people see her porcelain
            skin and her silky hair and assume she is.

            But Douglass, who lives in Wilkinsburg,
            is a 53-year-old "black"^^ woman.

            She could "pass" for `White'*
            but she has never tried, she said

            "Growing up, I knew of people who did,
            and I was even instructed not to say,
            at that time, that they were 'Colored'**.

            In order to get their jobs, they
            had to say they were `White'*"

            [[[

            Note:

            **The term 'Colored'** – as used here – is a reference to
            a person who is of a `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race `lineage that
            also includes some part or amount of `Black / Negro' ancestry.

            ^^The term "black"^^ or ""blacks"^^ – as used here – is
            a reference to those `Multiracial' / `Mixed-Race' individuals
            who were both of part-`Black / Negro' ancestry --*and*-- who
            *also* came to be referred to / categorized by the term "black"^^.

            This categorization would have arisen either as a result of
            the racist `One-Drop Rule' and / or as a result of taking
            on the socio-political `identification' that, since the late
            1960's, has come to be referred to by the term "black"^^.

            These terms "black"^^ and / or "blacks"^^– when in reference
            to a socio-political "identification" -- were originally applied
            largely as a way of describing the new socio-political mindset
            that became popular in the late 1960s wherein many who
            were of at least some-part `Black / Negro' lineage chose to:

            ------ openly support of the new 'pan-African,
            anti-colonialist movement' of the late 1960s;

            ------ refused to hold or see the their or another's
            `Black / Negro' ancestral lineage as being "shameful";

            ------ and by providing support for the whole idea of making
            sure that equal rights would become granted to those
            people who suffered discrimination due to having
            `Black / Negro' ancestry in their familial,
            ethnic, racial or even cultural lineage.

            As a result of the racist `One-Drop Rule' – the terms
            "black"^^ and "blacks"^^ were broad-brushed applied to
            entire people groupings (as a `political catch-phrase' )
            as instructed by the western media and politicians.

            The term `Black' – as used here – is in reference those who
            are of `Black / Negro' lineage and who also have very little
            to no* known or acknowledged non-`Black / Negro' ancestry.

            The "Racial"-Term `Black' is *not* the same as
            the Socio-Political-`Identification' of "black"^^.

            *The term `White'* – as used here – is a reference to a person
            who has no known or acknowledged non-'White / Caucasian' ancestry.

            The terms `Pass' and `Passing' – as used here – is
            reference to a person who hid, denied or pretended to
            have no known non-White (and particular `Black / Negro')
            ancestry and / or who would simply choose to `remain
            silent' on the whole matter and let strangers `draw their
            own conclusions' based solely on their physical appearance.

            ]]]

            Thelma Marshall knows that routine.

            During the 1950s and early '60s, she did
            what her mother before her had done.
            What her grandmother and aunts had done.

            She "passed" for `White'*

            "One time I told a woman I was
            "black"^^, 'Colored'** in those days,"
            Marshall recalled.

            "She said, 'You won't get the job
            unless you "pass" for `White'*."

            So that's what Marshall did.
            "I "passed" for `White'* on lots of jobs,"
            she said.
            "I had to be `White'* to get the jobs."

            It's what many fair-skinned "blacks"^^ did during those times.

            Marshall's remarks are without shame or remorse.
            She felt she did what she had to do.

            Still, it is a prickly subject, and the 76-year-old woman does not
            want 'to offend' so she asked that her real name not be used.

            [The act of] "passing" for `White'* offered not only opportunities,
            but also the opportunities [that only] `White'* people received.

            During [the] slavery [era], it could mean freedom.
            There are many documented instances of fair-skinned
            slaves who posed as [`White'* [in order] to escape.

            In modern times, it meant being able to vote in the South.
            It meant a job in the office rather than a job cleaning the office.
            It meant schools with the latest equipment and books,
            instead of dilapidated buildings and out-of-date texts.
            It often meant better housing.

            It meant being treated with respect, not disdain.

            Barbara Douglass recalls the difference between
            going out with her `White'* college friends
            vs. her "black"^^ college friends.

            "We went to a show, about
            six of us ["black"^^ students].

            The manager came and sat behind us.
            I asked him
            'Why are you sitting behind us?'
            He said,
            'I have to make sure you don't destroy anything.' "

            Douglass said she told the manager that
            he had never sat behind her before.

            His response was,
            "You never came with these people before."

            Douglass, who the manager had assumed
            was `White'*, encouraged her friends to
            leave the theater rather than be insulted …

            Because of her fair skin, Barbara Douglass
            of Wilkinsburg often witnessed -- but never
            tolerated -- racism directed at other people.

            When she was a young child, her parents
            didn't emphasize racial differences.
            "I just figured people came in
            different shades," she said.

            But when the subject came up in her
            dance class, the 8-year-old Douglass
            approached her mother, who explained
            to her abou't"race" and 'racism.'

            "We are `a child of God' first.
            We are `human beings' first,"
            Douglass remembered her mother saying.

            In fifth grade, she learned that the United States
            is a melting pot, and she declared to her
            mother that she would be a melting pot.

            Her mother decided it was the perfect definition,
            seeing as how her ancestors were Cherokee,
            `Black', Dutch, German and Irish.

            Maybe all "blacks"^^ would have defined
            themselves that way given the chance.

            Since [the first, actual] `Black' people first came
            to the New World in 1619, they've Mingled and
            Mixed with every Race and Ethnic group here.

            It is not just the fair-skinned "blacks"^^ who
            can lay claim to that melting pot definition.

            Those "blacks"^^ who have the mark of
            Africa in their features and skin tone
            also have multicultural ancestry.

            They just can't pass.

            Most "blacks"^^ were never afforded
            the luxury of defining themselves.

            After the Civil War, Southern whites, not wanting this
            swirling of races to get out of hand and seeking to
            keep the [false notion of the] `White'* "race"
            as [being] pure, instituted a rule that
            anyone with "one drop" of `Black
            / Negro' blood was `Black' [race].

            That spurred even more fair-skinned "blacks"^^
            to cross over and escape Jim Crow laws that kept
            "blacks"^^ in the shackles of second-class citizenship.

            Interestingly, many ``White'*, if they traced
            their blood line or had their DNA tested,
            would find they have "black"^^ ancestors.

            In a 1999 piece for Slate, writer Brent Staples cites
            a 1940s study by Robert Stuckert, a sociologist
            and anthropologist from Ohio State University.

            The study, titled "African Ancestry of the White American
            Population", indicates that during the 1940s, approximately
            15,550 fair-skinned "black"^^ per year "crossed the color line".

            The study estimated that by 1950, about 21 percent or 28
            million of the 135 million categorized as `White'* had
            "black"^^ ancestry within the past four generations.

            Stuckert predicted that the numbers
            would grow in subsequent decades.

            Marshall never thought to "pass" permanently,
            although she had family members who did.

            Some fair-skinned "black"^^ with "good hair"
            and "keen features" did not "pass" but …
            [simply married] others with fair skin ...

            "For generations, my mother's side and my
            father's side married fair -- so they could get jobs,"
            Marshall said.

            "My great-grandfather had a barbershop,
            and he "passed" for `White'*, and he had
            only ``White'* customers in his shop." ...

            State decides for you

            Sometimes "blacks"^^ used their fair
            complexion -- not for personal gain but
            -- to circumvent discriminatory practices.

            For example, in the 1940s, "blacks"^^ who looked `White'*
            helped integrate Lewis Place, a neighborhood in St. Louis, Mo.

            Like many cities during this time, Lewis Place
            had covenants that prevented "blacks"^^ from
            buying homes in certain neighborhoods.

            But in the '40s, fair-skinned "blacks"^^ would purchase
            homes on Lewis Street and then transfer deeds to [the]
            darker-skinned "black"^^ people who had actually bought them.

            Famed NAACP chief executive Walter White's light skin
            allowed him to investigate lynchings and race riots in the 1920s.

            White, who was raised in Atlanta, under Jim Crow,
            remained an NAACP officer until he died in 1955.

            For nearly a century, just who was [defined or
            categorized as being either] `White'* or "black"^^
            depended upon what state that person was in.

            Between the 1890s and 1950s, the peak
            period for "black"^^ "passing" as `White'*,
            every state had its own racial designation,
            said Wendy Ann Gaudin, a history
            instructor at Xavier University in Louisiana.

            Gaudin has interviewed Mixed-Race people
            in Louisiana who "passed" for `White'* as
            part of study she conducted on that subject.

            A person could be born white in one state
            and be designated "black"^^ in another
            depending upon the `racial laws' in that state,
            said Gaudin, who also is a Ph.D.
            candidate at New York University.

            ----- During the antebellum period, enslaved `Black'
            [race] people were referred to as [being] Negroes.

            ----- Then there were `Free People of Color' [and others],
            … who generally had [a] Mixed "racial" heritage ...

            ----- [The free] people-of-color could be 'brown
            with European features', 'light with African
            features' and everything in between.

            "They were not looked upon as so-called Negroes and
            of course they weren't equated with `White'*, either,"
            Gaudin explained.
            "Society had `a place' for them."

            Some were slave owners,
            others staunch abolitionists. ..

            However, after the "one drop"
            rule was instituted and Jim Crow
            [`Segregation] became the law of
            the land in the South, things changed.

            Often, they would move and cut ties
            with family members, especially
            the ones who could not "pass".

            The law aimed at these "White-Negroes",
            as they were sometimes called, actually forced
            more of the very racial mingling it sought to counter.

            "Once these laws were [enacted], "passing" made
            more sense, and it became more necessary,"
            Gaudin said. Some who passed

            In her 2002 memoir, "Just Lucky, I Guess," Broadway legend
            Carol Channing revealed that her father, George Channing, was
            a light-skinned "black"^^ man who "passed" [as being `White'*] ...

            When she was 16 and about to go off to
            college, her mother told her about her father.

            "My mother announced to me I was part-Negro," Channing writes.
            "I'm only telling you this because `the Darwinian law'
            shows that you could easily have a "black"^^ baby."

            A noted case of passing in recent history is that of Anatole
            Broyard, longtime literary critic for The New York Times.

            Born "black"^^ and raised in "black"^^ neighborhoods in
            New Orleans and Brooklyn, he "passed" for `White'*
            for decades because he did not want to be labeled
            as a 'Negro' writer, he had said, but simply a Writer.

            Henry Louis Gates Jr., chairman of the Afro-American
            history department at Harvard, chronicled Broyard's
            brilliant career and secret in a New Yorker
            essay that was included in his 1997 book,
            "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a "Black Man."

            For years, Broyard side-stepped 'rumors' of his
            ancestry and would credit his skin-tone to a
            very distant relative who "may" have been "black"^^.

            Even in the waning days of his life, his body
            withered by cancer, he denied his wife's
            request to tell his children of their 'true' heritage.

            They met Broyard's darker-skinned sister, Shirley,
            for the first time at his memorial service in 1990.

            No identity crisis

            Unlike Broyard, Shadyside's Dr. Edward J. Hale
            never sought the advantages of `White'*
            his complexion could have provided him.

            He's a retired staff member of Western
            Pennsylvania Hospital, served as
            chief of medical services and acting
            director of professional services at
            the Veterans Affairs Department Medical
            Center on Highland Drive, and he has
            taught at the University of Illinois, Howard
            University, the University of Pittsburgh
            and Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

            Hale, 80, said he followed the example of his
            father, William J. Hale, founding president of
            Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State
            College, now known as Tennessee State University.

            Hale had come from a family
            that had accomplished much
            by living as "black"^^ people.

            His goal was to do the same.

            "I've always been fond of my dad, loved and
            adored and respected my father," Hale said.
            "He chose to remain "black"^^.

            He got to be a college president."
            His mother, a graduate of Fisk
            University, headed up the business
            department at Tennessee State.
            She, too, was fair enough to
            "pass", as were Hale's siblings.

            Dr. Edward J. Hale chose to follow
            the example of his parents,
            accomplished educators
            Harriet and William J. Hale….

            The proud son says, "He chose
            to remain "black"^^ [identified] .

            His sister, who earned a master's in
            French from Columbia University, married
            a man who could not "pass", Hale said.

            "But they had a very positive marriage as
            "black"^^ and they lived happily," he added.

            His brother "used to float back and forth
            between being 'White'** and being "black"^^,
            he said.
            "He did that for work."

            Why didn't Hale?

            "I chose "black"^^ because
            I have a "black"^^ identity...

            "We had a heritage, and it
            was something important."

            His parents emphasized being proud of
            who he was, excelling at something,
            making a contribution to society.

            After getting his bachelor's degree at Tennessee
            State, he entered Meharry Medical College in
            Nashville, graduating third in his class in 1945.

            Two years later, he earned a master's in
            physiology from the University of Illinois.

            "As a fair-skinned "black"^^, I could "pass" for `White'*,
            but … if you got to be too outstanding, people would
            look into your background," Hale said.

            When he came to Pittsburgh in 1955 to serve
            as chief of medicine for the VA Hospital, he
            knew people would assume he was `White'*.

            They soon learned differently through his stand
            on issues and his friendships with other "black"^^.

            Hale and several other "black"^^ doctors
            formed the Gateway Medical Group,
            now called Gateway Medical Society.

            He was active in the National Medical Association
            and helped bring their convention to Pittsburgh.

            "I had to make an "identity" for myself, to
            let people know who I was," Hale said.

            Gaudin said it was easy for well-educated
            light-skinned people to take what is considered
            the high road by maintaining their "black"^^ identity.

            Poor, uneducated folks with the same
            complexion faced a different reality.

            "These were people who used their
            physical appearances because, in
            many cases, that's all they had,"
            Gaudin said.

            "They weren't wealthy.

            In many cases, they felt this was
            their greatest, most valuable resource."


            Unbreakable family ties


            Attorney Wendell Freeland remembers a decade or so ago
            when he and his wife were reading in the newspaper
            about the fast rise of a young man who was `White'*.

            In the ensuing conversation, Freeland's wife noted that her
            husband was smarter and much more on the ball than the
            young man and should have reached the same career peak.

            Freeland recalls his daughter saying to him,
            "You've got nothing to complain about;
            you could have [lived as] `White'*".

            Theoretically, yes.

            Freeland says he can fool even those "black"^^ people who
            swear they can detect another "black"^^, no matter how fair.

            Consciously, Freeland said he could no more
            "pass" than his brown-skinned brethren.

            "I never thought about it," said the 78-year-old attorney.
            "My family ties were so great."

            Freeland, who came to Pittsburgh in 1950, grew
            up in a segregated community in Baltimore…

            Wendell Freeland, a Squirrel Hill
            lawyer and civil rights activist,
            never considered "passing" as
            `White'^, although he witnessed
            others passing to get into
            barred theaters or stores.
            "That was just casual passing,"
            Freeland says.
            "I knew people who crossed over."

            As a college student, he encountered "black"^^ from the British
            West Indies and other places who "passed" to go to the movies
            or to shop in places where "black"^^ were not welcome.

            "That was just casual-"passing","
            Freeland said.
            "I knew people who crossed-over." …

            Freeland, who lives in Squirrel Hill, has spent a
            lifetime utilizing his considerable talents for
            numerous social and civil rights causes.

            He served as senior vice president of the National Urban
            League and was a member of the search committee that
            selected Vernon Jordan to lead that organization in the 1970s.

            He's been on any number of boards, including those of
            Westminster College, University of Pittsburgh and University
            of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and he had been chairman
            of the board of governors for the Joint Center for
            Political and Economic Studies in Washington, D.C.

            As obvious as the European portion of his ancestry is, Freeland
            said it was never a source of great pride or interest to him.

            "I'm more proud of my great-great-grandmother's
            manumission [emancipation] papers than
            any drop of `White'* blood," he said.

            "I have to tell you my complexion has certain advantages.
            I learn a lot about `White'* people … ,"
            Freeland said,

            … "It doesn't bother me if somebody "passed" and
            had a life that was more successful and happy.

            I'm successful and happy, too."

            SOURCE:

            hhttp://www.post-gazette.com/lifestyle/20031026stain1026fnp2.asp


            RELATED LINKS:

            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/3331

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            http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AiebDu.tSshJzQ0wS5fMp7jty6IX?qid=20\
            070623205206AANUzPN&show=7#profile-info-q1hdwifgaa

            http://boards.mulatto.org/post/show_single_post?pid=34070161&postcount;=13

            http://boards.mulatto.org/post/show_single_post?pid=34070414&postcount;=14.

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