Black History 365 – First African American appointed to serve as U.S. Army Paymaster

1898 First African American appointed to serve as U.S. Army Paymaster: Richard R. Wright

First African American appointed to serve as U.S. Army Paymaster: Richard R. Wright

In 2016 for my Black History 365 series, I explore the obvious and not so obvious parts of American history that those called Black have taken part in. The things that we (Black people) have done other than be stolen from our homeland and made forced labor in a land foreign to us. I’m going to start this series by looking up the first time someone African-American did something and broke the color barrier in that activity or field. I’ll be starting with Wikipedia and working my way out:

I will be learning a lot of this as I go since I am a product of the standardized Euro/Anglo/Caucasian leaning public school system. I hope you enjoy learning with me. I’ll be going down the list chronologically as it appears in the Wikipedia article.

If you have any other sources or additional information for this topic, please share in the comments. I also welcome any and all comments and discussion. Thanks for reading!

From WIkipedia:

Richard Robert Wright, Sr. (May 16, 1855 – July 2, 1947) was an American military officer, educator and college president, politician, civil rights advocate and banking entrepreneur. Among his many accomplishments, he founded a high school, a college and a bank. He also founded the National Freedom Day Association.

(For more information, please read the full Wikipedia article)

Also from Wikipedia:

Suggested reading

  • Elmore, Charles J. (1996), Richard R. Wright, Sr., at GSIC, 1891-1921: A Protean Force for the Social Uplift and Higher Education of Black Americans, Savannah, Georgia: privately printed.
  • Hall, Clyde W. (1991), One Hundred Years of Educating at Savannah State College, 1890-1990, East Peoria, Ill.: Versa Press.
  • Patton, June O. (1996), “‘And the Truth Shall Make You Free’: Richard Robert Wright, Sr., Black Intellectual and Iconoclast, 1877-1897”, The Journal of Negro History, Vol. 81.


  1. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g “Pennsylvania: Life and Times of Major Richard Robert Wright, Sr. and the National Freedom Day Association”. Retrieved 2007-08-30.
  2. Jump up^ Kranz, Rachel (2004). African-American Business Leaders and Entrepreneurs. Infobase Publishing. p. 302.
  3. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g h i “Savannah State University”. New Georgia Encyclopedia. Retrieved 2007-08-30.
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b c “African American Firsts Highlight Rich Legacy”. University of Pennsylvania. Retrieved 2008-08-30.
  5. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f “125 Influential People and Ideas: Richard Robert Wright Sr.”.Wharton Alumni Magazine. Retrieved 2008-08-30.[dead link]
  6. Jump up^ “Documenting the American South”. Retrieved 2008-08-30.
  7. Jump up^ “National Freedom Day: A Local Legacy”. Retrieved 2007-08-30.

    a different version of the information can be found on via this link:


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