The Kansas City chapter of the Black United Front hosted a 16-mile motorcade celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Black Liberation Flag on Aug. 15.

More than 30 cars with the red, black and green Black Liberation Flags attached to both sides of their cars drove through the urban core, beginning at 18th and Vine to Troost Street, down to 75th Street and back up to 18th and Vine from Prospect.

The participants in the motorcade not only celebrated the creation of the flag, but they also commemorated the first International Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) convention held in August 1920. Approximately 2,000 delegates from 22 countries attended the month-long convention led by Marcus Garvey. The huge opening parade through Harlem was followed by a mass meeting held at Madison Square Garden with an estimated 25,000 in attendance.

It was at that conference that the Black Liberation Flag was first introduced, and is still celebrated today.

“A sense of pride is built when you have a flag that represents you,” said Ngozi Smith, member of the KC Black United Front.

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Jazzlyn Johnson

Jazzlyn "Jazzie” is the former senior reporter for our team, who joined the company in 2020 in the midst of the pandemic, through the Report for America service program. For the past two years, she covered...

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