North America’s 1st Black President?

100 Amazing Facts About the Negro: He's sometimes called the "Abraham Lincoln" of his nation.

Vicente Guerrero (1850. Oil on canvas, by Anacleto Escutia. Museo Nacional de Historia, Castillo de Chapultepec, Mexico)

Though historian Joel A. Rogers, author of the 1934 book 100 Amazing Facts About the Negro With Complete Proof (and the inspiration for this current series), didn’t mention Guerrero, he did write about him in his two-volume series World’s Great Men of Color, in which he dubbed Guerrero “the George Washington and Abraham Lincoln combined of Mexico,” because “he freed his country and then freed its slaves” — an assessment that is quite on the mark.

Editor’s note: To correct an editing error, this article has been updated to reflect the fact that Guerrero was the first black president in North America.

As always, you can find more “Amazing Facts About the Negro” on The Root, and check back each week as we count to 100.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and the director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research at Harvard University. He is also the editor-in-chief of The Root.

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