My Contribution: I was a female African American teacher and leader in Harrisburg schools. I travelled and read widely. I was mar- ried to two influential men of Harrisburg: publisher Layton Howard and Baseball Hall of Famer Oscar Charleston.
My Legacy: My legacy is all the young people whom I taught at the Downey and Wickersham schools. My work in city and state offices paved the way for more female African Americans to have high-qual- ity jobs in these offices. After 100 years of life, I was a cornerstone in my large family and was loved by many dear nieces and nephews.
About Me: “Janie was tough and ‘always had spunk. She’d set any- body straight.’ Being active and useful lay at the corner of Janie’s identity; she hated nothing more than idleness. Books were central to Janie’s self-improvement ethic.” — from remembrances of her great niece Elizabeth Overton in Oscar Charleston: The Life and Legend of Baseball’s Greatest Forgotten Player, by Jeremy Beer, 2019.
Full Name: Jane Grace Blalock; Jane (Blalock) Howard; Jane (Blalock) Charleston. Nickname: Janie
Birth Date: September 29, 1893
Death Date: October 27, 1993
Place of Birth: Russelville, Kentucky
Race: Black (1900, 1910, and 1920 Federal Censuses), “Negro” (1940 Federal Census)
Places of Residence: 213 King Street, York, Pennsylvania; 114 Liberty Street and 12 S. 16th Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Connection to the Old Eighth Ward: Connection to the Old Eighth Ward: Daughter of Martin Blalock, prominent pastor of Wesley Union A.M.E. Zion Church; school teacher in the com- munity and active in social organizations
Family Members: Grandmother: Marga- ret Williams. Father: Rev. Martin Luther Blalock. Mother: Betty E. (Scott) Blalock. Siblings: Margaret (Blalock) Marshall, Bessie Blalock, Martin Luther Blalock, Der- well Blalock, Rev. Charles Blalock, Mary Blalock. Husbands: M1: Layton Leroy How- ard (d. 1918), M2: Oscar Charleston
Education: Central High School, Harrisburg. Teacher Training School, Harrisburg (1915).
Occupations: Public school teacher and substitute teacher, Harrisburg School District. Transcriber, Recorder of Deeds office. Dauphin County Voter Registration Bureau
Church Membership: Wesley Union A.M.E. Zion Church
Activism: Wesley Union A.M.E. Zion Church Missionary Board; Leonidas Club; and Unity Social Club
Connections: Layton Howard (hus- band), James H. Howard and William E. “Bud” Marshall (relatives).