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Lena Horne was an amazing woman.

Looking back at the age of 80, Ms. Horne said: “My identity is very clear to me now. I am a Black woman. I’m free. I no longer have to be a ‘credit.’ I don’t have to be a symbol to anybody; I don’t have to be a first to anybody. I don’t have to be an imitation of a White woman that Hollywood sort of hoped I’d become. I’m me, and I’m like nobody else.”

Lena Horne was born in Brooklyn, New York, on June 30, 1917, and is known as one of the most popular entertainers of the twentieth century. A woman of great beauty and commanding stage presence, she performed in nightclubs, concert halls, movies, and on radio and television during a period in American history when little Black girls were not allowed to dream those dreams.