Oscar Devereaux Micheaux (January 2, 1884 – March 25, 1951) was an American author, film director and independent producer of more than 44 films. Although the short-lived Lincoln Motion Picture Company produced some films, he is regarded as the first major African-American feature filmmaker, the most successful African-American filmmaker of the first half of the twentieth century and the most prominent producer of race films. He produced both silent films and “talkies” after the industry changed to incorporate speaking actors.
Micheaux was born on a farm in Murphysboro, Illinois on January 2, 1884  He was the fifth child born to Calvin S. Michaux and Belle Michaux, who had a total of thirteen. In his later years, Micheaux added the “e” to his last name. Calvin Michaux was originally from Kentucky, and his father had been a slave. The family appeared to have been associated with French colonists because of its surname, possibly French Huguenots who had settled in Virginia in 1700, and whose descendants took slaves west migrated into Kentucky.