John Henry Murphy, Sr., founder of Baltimore's first Black newspaper

Murphy Sr.
Fri, 1840-12-25

This date marks the birthday of John Henry Murphy Sr. He was a Black journalist, businessman and founder of the Black newspaper the Baltimore Afro-American.

John Henry Murphy, Sr., was born a slave on Christmas day 1840 in Baltimore, Maryland, and was freed by the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. He served as a sergeant in the infantry during the Civil War. After the war he worked as a white-washer and home decorator. Murphy founded the Afro-American newspaper in 1892, originally designed to serve a local church community.

With the assistance of his five sons and six daughters, he turned The Afro-American into one of the leading Black newspapers of the 20th century. John Henry Murphy, Sr., served as the paper's editor in chief until his death in 1922.

Black Leaders of the Nineteenth Century.
Edited by Leon Litwack and August Meier
Copyright 1998, University if Illinois Press
ISBN 0-252-06213-2

to be a Journalist or Reporter

Person / name: 

Murphy, Sr., John Henry