Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Black History Month in the U.S.

Flag by Rick Wyatt, 3 December 2001, originally uploaded by mightymerk.

Today was the first day of Black History Month.

Black History Month has been observed every February since 1976. Prior to this, Negro History Week was being observed the second week of February since 1926. Contrary to popular myth, the month of February was chosen not because it was the shortest month, but because it was the birth month of abolitionist Frederick Douglass and writer Langston Hughes. The NAACP was also founded in February. The founder of Negro History Week was Dr. Carter G. Woodson. Dr. Woodson’s ideas was that Negro History Week would be a source of pride for blacks, and an eventual sources of understanding and respect between the races.

Dr. Woodson said it best:

“Those who have no record of what their forebears have accomplished lose the inspiration which comes from teaching of biography and history.”

While I am many years beyond my formal educational days, what became clear to me year after year is that along with the continual struggle blacks had in America, they were no short of contributions. Not just to improving race relations, but America itself.

Posted by mightymerk, 6:22 PM


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