Picturing Black History

Photographs and stories that changed the world

A collaboration of     and    

Black Internationalism

Five of the 21 American soldiers who refused to return to America at the end of the Korean War. The sign on the truck reads: "We Stay for Peace." They moved to China; by the 1960s, all but two had returned home.

Black Soldiers After the Korean War

Some Black soldiers chose not to go home after the war, remaining in North Korea and China—behind the “bamboo curtain”—to escape racism in the United States.

Paul Robeson, singer, performer and civil rights activist, is welcomed in Russia, Moscow, Russia, January 19, 1935.

Paul Robeson in the Soviet Union

Between the 1930s and 1960s, the famous singer and actor made many visits to the world’s first socialist country, which made a lasting impression on his art and politics.

Plaque à l'entrée du siège du Black Panther Party en Algérie.

The Panthers and Palestine

The Black Panther Party—especially their International Section based in Algiers—embraced the Palestinian cause as part and parcel of their own struggle.

Workers from Barbados arriving at Cristobal Port, on th SS Ancon American steamship

Black Laborers on the Panama Canal

West Indian, especially Barbadian, migrant labor on the Panama Canal changed shipping routes, benefitted the U.S. economy, and affected immigration for decades afterward.

Picture of Bob Marley singing

A Lyrical Revolution

Four photographs capture how music embodies a long tradition of global Black engagement and the goal of justice for all Black people.