By Marc W. Polite
There are so many untold stories of those who have made contributions to the Black community. As we delve deeper into our history, we find out that many, unheralded people paved the way through their efforts.
In For The Strength of Harlem by Janell Pearson, we learn of one person who fought for Harlem in the 1950s and 1960s. Pleas Tusant Pearson was an entrepreneur, activist, originally from Alabama. As many did during the Great Migration, Pleas Pearson decided to make Harlem his home. A renown chef, Mr. Pearson secured work at restaurants in the neighborhood, and even started his own private car service.
Not relegating himself to entrepreneurial pursuits, Pleas was also active in tenant councils, and advocated for Black men to get some of the construction jobs with all of the development going on in Harlem.
For The Strength of Harlem gives great insight into the life of Pleas Tusant Pearson, and is a reminder of what community meant in that era. There’s so many lessons that today, we can learn from the hidden figures of our history.