Louis Armstrong Accomplishments

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Born in 1901, Louis Armstrong grew up in a fatherless, poverty stricken home in New Orleans, Louisiana. The conditions were objectionable, however, they did not prevent him from becoming the best-known Jazz musician in America. From the birthplace of Jazz, to the hustle and bustle of New York, and across the world, Armstrong is a talented musician and influential figure for racial equality in the United States. His impact on New Orleans Jazz in the 1920’s combined with his own political agenda, Armstrong helped mold America into the great nation it is today. One of the great American inventions is Jazz. By the 1920’s, Jazz was established and is gaining popularity for its ragged melodies, polyphonic textures, and collective improvisation.…show more content…
As the King of the Zulu Social Club, Armstrong wore black face, popularized by minstrel shows. With the white mouth and eyes against the black mask, Armstrong was once again rebuked for his actions. Armstrong managed to turn things around in 1956 by performing “Black and Blue” at a concert in recently independent Ghana. His performance managed to bring, “tears to the president, Kwame Nkrumah”. (Meckna, p. 38) Proving himself as a figure of the African-American community, the United States government was pleased with what they saw. After the success in Ghana, there were plans to send Armstrong on an official State Department trip through the Soviet Union and South America the following year. Armstrong abandoned these plans when hearing, “Governor Orval Faubus of Arkansas ordered units of the National Guard to surround Central High School in Little Rock and block the entry of any African-American students.” (Eschen, 63) After publicly speaking out against president Eisenhower, Armstrong received praise, while others called to boycott his shows and canceled them in the South. Armstrong’s actions where met by President Eisenhower taking stance and sending federal troops to Little Rock. Armstrong soon sent a telegram to the White House thanking and extending company to the president.

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