The Marcus Garvey founded Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) meets at Madison Square Garden in New York City. About 25,000 Blacks attend.
1920 (Aug 1-2)
The national convention of the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) met in New York City. Marcus Garvey, the founder, spoke to about 25,000 Blacks during the rally at Madison Square Garden. Garvey-type Black nationalism was reaching its zenith at the time. Garvey had begun his organization in his native Jamaica in 1914. In 1916 he arrived in the United States to organize a New York chapter of UNIA. By the middle of 1919 thirty branches existed in the United States, principally in the northern ghettoes. Garvey founded the newspaper "Negro World" to disseminate his ideas of race pride and to promote his back-to-Africa stance. His other organizations included the Universal Black Cross Nurses, the Universal African Motor Corps, the Black Star Steamship Line, and the Black Eagle Flying Corps. In 1921 Garvey formally organized the Empire of Africa and appointed himself provisional president. He appealed, unsuccessfully, to the League of Nations for permission to settle a colony in Africa and negotiated towards that end with Liberia. After these failures, he began planning a military expedition to drive the white imperialists out of Africa. This campaign, however, was never launched. In 1923 Garvey was arrested for mail fraud in his attempts to raise money for his steamship line.