John Hope Franklin -- a leading historian during the last century and a pioneer in African-American studies -- died Wednesday at the age of 94. Franklin was the James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of History at Duke University, and earlier in his career he taught at historically black colleges such as Fisk and Howard Universities. He also taught at institutions such as Brooklyn College and the University of Chicago, in an era when black professors were rare outside of black colleges. Franklin was not only a scholar of African-American history, but someone who shaped it -- helping to draft key arguments in Brown v. Board of Education, and marching with Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. As a scholar, he wrote numerous books, the most famous of which is From Slavery to Freedom: A History of African Americans (originally published in 1947). Duke University has created a special Web site with detailed biographical information, a photo gallery, and a form to send condolences to Franklin's family.
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