1919

Ella Gordon opens the Gordon School of Dance NYC

Ella Gordon began to expose the Harlem community to ballet early in the 20th century, teaching ballet and tap in the Lafayette Building in New York City.

Gordon’s School of Dance (Harlem, New York) trained individuals who would continue the tradition of training dancers in ballet and other genres. Her student Ruth Williams stated that Gordon believed mastery of ballet technique was important to dance training; she considered it to be basic. Notable students include Ruth Williams (Dance Theatre of Harlem) and Henry Letang (Tap Dance Hall of Fame). 

Sources:

Dr. Joselli Audain Deans
A Legacy of Dance in Harlem Over 50 Yrs., Teacher Hasn’t Missed a Step, New York Daily News

Other Happenings in 1919

Dance History

The Ballets Russes premieres two ballets: La Boutique Fantasque and Le Tricorne at the Alhambra Theatre, London.
May 18: Margot Fonteyn is born.

American History

Feb 14: The United Parcel Service forms.
June 4: Women’s rights—US Congress approves the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which would guarantee suffrage to women.
Oct 28: Congress enforces the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, also known as the Prohibition Act.

World History

Jan 5: The National Socialist Party (Nazi) forms as German Farmers’ Party.
Feb 23: The Fascist Party forms in Italy by Benito Mussolini.
Mar 25: Woodrow Wilson’s dream of a League of Nations becomes a reality after the League Covenant is adopted at the Paris Peace Conference.
Jun 28: The Treaty of Versailles cements the end of World War I.
Nov 28: US-born Lady Astor is elected first female member of the British House of Commons.

Arts & Sciences

May 29: Charles Strite files for patent for the pop-up toaster.
Jun 2: Pulitzer prize awarded to Carl Sandburg (Cornhuskers).
Aug 4: The Rodin Museum opens in Paris in The Hôtel Biron, containing works left to the state by sculptor Auguste Rodin.

Human & Civil Rights

Feb 19: Pan-African Congress is organized by W.E.B. Du Bois (Paris).
Mar 30: Gandhi announces resistance against Rowlatt Act.
May 10: Race riot occurs in Charleston SC, two Black people are killed.
Jul 24: Race riot occurs in Washington DC (six killed, 100 wounded).
Jul 27: Chicago race riot occurs (15 white & 23 Black people killed, 500 injured).

Sports

Oct 9: The Black Sox Baseball Scandal—The Cincinnati Reds defeat the Chicago White Sox, 10-5, after eight Black Sox were allegedly paid to throw the game.
Jul 4: Jack Dempsey KOs Jess Willard in Cuba for heavyweight championship.
Aug 11: Green Bay Packers football club is founded by George Calhoun and Curly Lambeau and is named after their sponsor the Indian Packing Company.

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