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Margaret Washington : "Lift Every Voice and Sing"
Maragret Washington It's almost like the Johnson brothers wrote this song, "Lift Every Voice And Sing" in 1900 to say to our race, in spite of the oppression, lift your voices and sing. And what is there to sing about? Sing about the past and sing about how far we have come. And to sing about our expectations for the future. So the hope in that song, "Lift every voice and sing, till earth and heaven ring. Ring with a harmony of liberty." It really represents a forward-looking people. And it's amazing that that song was composed, set to words and music in 1900.

It's amazing because of what African Americans had gone through and experienced, especially in terms of this being a period of so much oppression. But it represents this eternal hope that African Americans had for the future. And the sense that this is 1900, this is a new day and we are going to take advantage of the future. And that's what that song represents. That's why it has become the African American national anthem.

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