BLACK HISTORY: Huey P. Newton


On this day, Huey P Newton was born in Monroe, La. in 1942. Growing up in Oakland, he met Bobby Seale while they were student activists at Merritt Junior College during the early 1960s. He and Seale co-founded the Black Panther Party, with Seale as chairman and Newton as Minister of Defense.

Newton was sent to prison in 1967 for manslaughter after a confrontation with Oakland police left one cop dead. In response, the Panthers initiated a nationwide "Free Huey" campaign, which galvanized Black and white radicals during the late 1960s. The California Court of Appeals reversed his conviction in 1971. He later fled to Cuba, returning in the late 1970s to face murder and assault charges stemming from an early 1970s incident. Newton earned a Ph.D from the University of California in 1980. He was fatally shot by a low-level drug dealer in 1989.


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