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Baker, Josephine

b. 1906 - d. 1975

Josephine Baker, born Freda Josephine McDonald, was a world famous entertainer, known mainly for her provocative dance and singing acts. She rose to international stardom when she moved to Paris in 1925 to perform at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées and later the Folies Bergères. At the height of her popularity, she starred in films, revival operas at the Champs-Élysées and recorded hit songs. In 1937, she renounced her American citizenship to become French. She was awarded the Croix de Guerre and Legion of Honor for her role in the French Resistance during World War II. Baker was a strong supporter of the American Civil Rights Movement. She refused to perform for segregated audiences, worked with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and spoke at the 1963 March on Washington alongside Dr. King.

Associated Archive Content : 4 results

Chicago Daily Defender: SCLC Aide Makes Spirited Capital March Call Here

The Chicago Daily Defender published this article about Rev. Ralph Abernathy's visit to Chicago to promote the Poor People's Campaign. According to Abernathy, "Come this summer, thousands of poor Americans are going to take their burdens to the White House and they'll leave them with LBJ."

Letter from Josephine Baker to MLK

Josephine Baker expresses her admiration for Dr. King as a great leader and articulates her commitment to the Civil Rights Movement.

Letter from Josephine Baker to MLK

Josephine Baker offers support and encouragement to Dr. King in the civil rights campaign and asserts "without unity there cannot be a solid victory."

Letter from Josephine Baker to MLK

Dancer, singer, and actress Josephine Baker writes Dr. King to share her views on the current political climate of the United States of America. Her belief is that the best chance of retaining and continuing the progress made by John F. Kennedy is to re-elect Lyndon B. Johnson for President and Robert Kennedy as a New York Senator.