This Day in Black History: Feb. 15, 1965

Nat King Cole dies.

Posted: 02/15/2012 07:00 AM EST
Nat King Cole

Celebrated pianist, singer and television host Nat King Cole dies from lung cancer at 45-years-old. Cole, who first rose to stardom as a jazz pianist, churned out numerous hits, including "Nature Boy," "Mona Lisa," and "Unforgettable.” King also became the first African-American to host a television show, The Nat "King" Cole Show in 1965.


Also, on this day in, in 1961, U.S. and African Nationalist stage a demonstration to protest the U.S. and Belgian government-sponsored assassination of the first democratically-elected prime minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Patrice Lumumba—a leader in the anti-apartheid movement—at the United Nations Security Council in New York City. Protests also occur in San Francisco at the Belgian consulate.


Also, on this Day in 1848, Sarah Roberts was barred from a white school in Boston. Her father, Benjamin Roberts, filed the first school integration suit on her behalf, Roberts v. Boston.


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(Photo: Evening Standard/Getty Images)