Cook, Mercer, 1903-1987
Mercer Cook, the son of Abbie Mitchell and Marion Cook (a mentor to Duke Ellington), was born in Washington, D.C. He began undergraduate studies at Amherst College and went on to earn a diploma from the University of Paris in 1926. He received his master's degree in 1931 and his Ph.D. in 1936, both from Brown University. As a professor at Atlanta University and at Howard University, Cook became a noted scholar and translator. He was appointed ambassador to the Republic of Niger by President Kennedy in 1961 and served until 1964, when he was appointed special envoy to Senegal and Gambia.
"A Skillful Ambassador, Mercer Cook." African American Registry. Reference Library of Black American. Ed. Mpho Mabunda. Vols.1-5. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 2005. http://www.aaregistry.com/african_american_history/781/A_skillful_ambassador_Mercer_Cook. 18 February, 2005.