James T. Rapier biography
James T. Rapier was born on November 13th 1837 in Florence, Alabama. The son of a successful African-American barber, Rapier became a U.S. Representative from Alabama in 1872. One of only three black congressmen during Reconstruction, Rapier helped pass the Civil Rights Act of 1875. After his time in office, Rapier worked as a labor organizer and edited the Montgomery Sentinel. He died in 1883.