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Marcus Garvey

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Born in Jamaica this day in 1887, Marcus Garvey was a charismatic black leader who organized the first important American black nationalist movement (1919–26), based in New York City's Harlem. In August 1914 he and a group of friends in Jamaica founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), which sought, among other things, to build in Africa a black-governed nation. Failing to attract a following in Jamaica, Garvey went to the United States (1916) and soon established branches of the UNIA in Harlem and the other principal ghettos of the North.