When Frank Scott, Jr. becomes mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas New Years Day 2019, he will become one of seven descendents of enslaved Africans currently leading a capital city of a state that fought to hold his ancestors in bondage. He joins Chokwe Antar Lumumba of Jackson, Mississippi; LaToya Cantrell of New Orleans, Louisiana; Randall Woodfin of Birmingham, Alabama; Keisha Lance Bottoms of Atlanta, Georgia; Andrew Gillum of Jacksonville, Florida; and Levar Stoney of Richmond, Virginia.
The children of the enslaved are now mayors of 7 of the 11 former Confederate capitals. None of the states have Black governors with Gillum of Jacksonville, Florida and Stacey Abrams of Georgia having lost their statewide elections this past November.
Richard Hatcher of Gary, Indiana and Carl Stokes of Cleveland, Ohio became the nation’s first elected big city Black mayors in 1968. Five years later, in 1973, Maynard Jackson of Atlanta, Georgia became the first Black elected mayor of a major city in the former Confederacy.