19: Black History Buff Blitz: Stage Coach Mary
To tide you over while Im researching and writing longer episodes I've created a new segment called Black History blitz. Short, bite sized and fun, like any good snack its best when shared with friends, so tell your friends about it.
Today's Black history Blitz is about the hard-drinking, shotgun carrying wild west legend known as Stagecoach Mary. The first African American Woman to Join the US mail.
Mary Fields, later to be known as Stage Coach Mary was born in Hickman County Tennessee at around 1832
Liberated from enslavement at the end of the American Civil war, Fields headed North working on Riverboats till she eventually found permanent work in an Ohio convent.
Her gruff style and constant cursing raised eyebrows in the quiet convent, and though she faithfully served the nuns, news of her habitual drinking, smoking, shooting guns and wearing men’s clothing. Caused upheaval.
Things came to a head when Fields and the convent’s male janitor drew guns on each other during a heated argument, it was the final straw and she was fired.
Fields love of hard drinking and gunfights eventually paid off when in 1895 she won a contract from the postal service to become a Star route carrier making her the first African American woman to do so
Cathy Williams, we salute you!
To learn more about black history please check out the black history buff
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