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Washington the ‘Blackest’ Name in America

Posted by admin on Feb 22, 2011

On the eve of George Washington’s birthday, Associated Press writer Jesse Washington investigates why the founding father’s surname now belongs predominantly to African-Americans. The 2000 U.S. Census counted 163,036 people with the last name Washington, 90 percent of whom were black — a far higher percentage than any other name. Writes Washington: The story of how Washington became the “blackest name” begins with slavery and takes a sharp turn after the Civil War, when all blacks were allowed the dignity of a surname.

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