Arthur Mitchell is elected to Congress and goes on to serve four terms.
1934 (Nov 7)
Democrat Arthur L. Mitchell defeated Republican Congressman Oscar De Priest of Chicago, becoming the pioneer Black member of his party in Congress. Mitchell, like his predecessor De Priest, was born in Alabama to former slaves. He received his education at Tuskegee Institute, where he was Booker T. Washington's office boy, and at Talladega College in Alabama. Mitchell taught in rural Alabama and served as an assistant law clerk in Washington D.C. When he moved to Chicago, he became involved in Republican ward politics but joined the Democrats with the shifting Black party preference in the Depression years. In Congress, Mitchell professed to be a moderate, thus drawing the ire of the Black press and the NAACP. He did, however, sponsor the long and costly suit that led to the end of Jim Crowism in Pullman railroad cars. Mitchell served four terms in Congress.