African American Firsts: 10 Facts About Black Senators

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While African Americans have had a good deal of success in politics and several mayors, governors and even the current president to show for it, there have only been six senators who were Black. Two came from reconstruction after slavery was abolished and only four have served since then.

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10. Mississippi bred.

The first Black senator, Hiram Rhodes Revels, was elected in 1870 in Mississippi after reconstruction, but only served two years.

9. Only Six

There have been only 6 senators in Congress who are African American.

8. Black Republican

Edward William Brooke III was elected senator of Massachusetts as a Republican in 1966. He was the first Black senator elected since reconstruction.

7. Illinois Pipeline

Of the six Black senators, three have been from Illinois.

6.Reconstruction Republicans

Most of the Black congressmen and senators elected during reconstruction were Republican.

5. The Replacement

Roland Burris, the most recent Black senator was a replacement for Barack Obama, the previous senator who had to leave due to running for presidential office.

4. None

There are currently no Black senators in congress.

3. A Senator With A “View”

Television personality Barbara Walters claimed to have an affair with Edward Brooke, the African American senator from Massachusetts.

2. Brains And Braun

Carol Mosley Braun is the first and only African American woman to serve in the Senate.

1. Beer For Senators

There is a beer in Kenya named after Barack Obama called “Obama” beer, but officially known as “Senator Keg” due to his time served in the U.S. Senate.

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