fbpx



Welcome to America Comes Alive!, a site I created to share little-known stories of America's past. These stories are about Americans - people just like you - who have made a difference and changed the course of history. Look around the site and find what inspires you. Kate Kelly

Sports, Cars & Other Pastimes

Black America: An 1895 Stage Extravaganza for the North

Black America was the brainchild of Nate Salsbury (1846-1902), the man who was also behind the very successful, long-running Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. In... continue »

Marshall Major Taylor: Champion Cyclist

Marshall “Major” Taylor (1878-1932) was a champion cyclist who set numerous world records and was the first African-American cyclist to become an international sports star.... continue »

Jay Silverheels, Played Tonto in The Lone Ranger

Jay Silverheels (1912-1980) is best-remembered for his role as Tonto in The Lone Ranger, an ABC television program that ran for 221 episodes (1949-1957). Silverheels... continue »

The Story of Cigar Store Indians

In the 19th century many people could not read, so store owners placed carvings of various symbols in front of their shops so passersby knew... continue »

Old Yeller Played by Spike, a Lab/Mastiff Mix

Old Yeller, or the dog that played Old Yeller, was a homeless dog found in a shelter in Van Nuys, California.  The dog’s real name... continue »

Sandy, the Canine Star of Broadway’s Little Orphan Annie

The story of how the first dog who played Sandy in Annie is as dramatic and heartwarming as the story of how little orphan Annie... continue »

Oscar Micheaux: Homesteader, Bestselling Author, Filmmaker

Oscar Micheaux (1884-1951) had no mentors and no background that prepared him for any of the challenges he undertook, but he successfully amassed land in... continue »

Jackie “Moms” Mabley (1894-1975): Trailblazing Comedian

Moms was a first; no previous stand-up female comedian preceded Mabley First woman comedian to be featured at the Apollo Theater (1930s); she went on... continue »

Alice Coachman (1923-2014): First African American Woman to Win an Olympic Gold Medal

World-class athlete specializing in the high jump First African American woman to win an Olympic gold medal (1948 in London); paved the way for other... continue »

Hattie McDaniel (1895-1952), First African-American to Win an Oscar

First African-American woman to sing on radio First African-American to win an Oscar (Best Supporting Actress for her role in Gone with the Wind); however,... continue »

Roy Campanella (1921-1993), Negro League Superstar Chosen to Move to Major Leagues

Top National League catcher of his day Second African-American player selected to play in the Major Leagues Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame 1969... continue »

Eddie Anderson (1905-1977): Created Role of Rochester

• First African American to have a regular role on a nationwide radio--and then television--program • Though the character of Rochester was a valet, Anderson,... continue »