Pilot Light: Historian Had Links to Moore
Dr. John Hope Franklin, the distinguished scholar and writer who died Wednesday at age 94, was a former Pauley lecturer and was inducted into the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame at Weymouth Center in 1998.
An Oklahoma native, Franklin overcame numerous racial barriers to secure his education, including a master's degree and a doctorate from Harvard, and to achieve acceptance in the fields of higher education and historical research.
He taught at a number of colleges in North Carolina and eventually became the James B. Duke Professor of history, the highest professorship at Duke University.
His book, "From Slavery to Freedom," published in 1947, was a comprehensive history of the slavery movement toward emancipation and was the first major introduction to black studies. It sold 3.5 million copies. He is credited with much of the research needed in preparation for the landmark case Brown v. Board of Education before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1954.
"Dr. Franklin was a worldwide figure, a seminal author and a man of immeasurable insight," said state House Speaker Joe Hackney in a statement released Wednesday. "We were privileged in North Carolina for so long to have near immediate access to such a rich mind. We will all miss his lessons and we mourn for his loss."
Franklin died of congestive heart failure at Duke Hospital.
DROPS OUT -- One candidate for chairman of the state Republican party has dropped out of the race.
David Robinson, chairman of the Wake County Republican Party, announced his withdrawal through an e-mail message Wednesday.
He was among four of the five candidates who attended the Moore County Republican county convention on March 14. He was also among the speakers scheduled to address the Moore Republican Women at their April meeting.
His departure leaves Chad Adams, of Lee County; Marcus Kindley, of Guilford County; former Raleigh Mayor Tom Fetzer; and retired Navy veteran Bill Randle as candidates. Robinson did not endorse any of the other four and said all are qualified.
COBLE PRAISED -- Congressman Howard Coble was singled out for praise this week for his co-sponsorship of the Free Flow of Information Act, better known as the media shield bill.
Congressman Mike Pence, a Republican from Indiana who co-author of the act, praised the House Judiciary Committee for passing the federal media shield legislation and urged a vote before the full House.
"I have always contended that a free and unfettered media is healthy for a thriving democracy," Coble said. "The media needs to be able to fulfill their important role in our democratic society free of the threat of unfair coercion by the courts or government. I urge the House to pass this important bill quickly, and I hope the Senate will take up the bill this Congress."
Pence said that he believes there is sufficient bipartisan support for the bill in both chambers and added that President Obama has pledged support. The law provides "qualified privilege of confidentiality to journalists, enabling them to bring forward information to the public that might otherwise never see the light of day," Pence said.
Contact Florence Gilkeson at 947-4962 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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