NAACP'S NATIONAL ANTHEM James Weldon Johnson (1871 – 1938)
Every time the NAACP sings its national anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing, it honors a black Republican, James Weldon Johnson. This inspirational song, which was also adopted in the 1940's by millions of black Americans as the Negro National Anthem, was written in 1900 by Johnson in collaboration with his talented musician brother, John Rosamond Johnson, to commemorate President Abraham Lincoln's birthday.
The NAACP itself was founded on President Lincoln’s 100th birthday, February 12, 1909, by white Republicans who opposed the racist practices of the Democratic Party and the lynching of blacks by Democrats.
Johnson, who was born and educated in Jacksonville, Florida, served as field secretary for the NAACP in 1916 when he was offered the position by Joel E. Springham after attending the Armenia Conference on racial issues. In 1920, Johnson became the general secretary of the NAACP, the first black man to hold that office. He resigned from his position with the NAACP in 1930 after serving the organization for nearly 15 years.
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Gladys Knight & BeBe Winans "Lift Every Voice & Sing"