As we begin to celebrate one of America’s greatest leaders, Martin Luther King Jr., it must be remembered that King, as a leader, meant that many others followed him often at great jeopardy to themselves.

The holiday should not be utilized as a time for shopping, playing games, or not otherwise understanding the seriousness of the man in his fight for equal rights.

The city of Concord, as a Southern city, agreed to use MLK Day to celebrate King and what his life means in black/American history. Coleman, another son of the South, was a leader in the area of entrepreneurship. King, on the other hand, fought for equal rights and equal treatment.

In this regard, my first book signing (previously postponed), along with other activities, will be held Jan. 20. My book, “Warren Clay Coleman: The Leader of the First Black Textile Mill in America,” is in hand and available for review and sale. The books cost $15 for one and $25 for two and the book has over 180 pages.

Another great American, Coleman was also a leader whom many professional men followed and made a difference for America. As a son of Concord and given our recognition (not celebration) of 400 years of African-American history, too many of the residents of Concord are unaware of the deeds of this native son.

I hope, as a historian, to give every resident and leader, through knowledge, a better sense of the role played by this former slave in America. Knowledge that can help us understand what is happening to our young people today.

The book signing will take place from 3-6 p.m. at Price Memorial AME Zion Church at 192 Spring St.

A brief lecture and signing will take place at 3 and 5 p.m.

Anyone in need of more information can call 704-787-8242 or email

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