Black History Month began in 1976, coinciding with the birth of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. The birth dates of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln represent different stages of the abolitionist’s life and the development of the civil rights movement. Today, February commemorates the accomplishments of black Americans and their influence on American culture. Here are some of their achievements. To understand the significance of February in black history, you need to understand why it falls in February.
The birthdates of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln coincide with the month of February, and they were both instrumental in the emancipation of slaves. Interestingly, Douglass’ birthdate is also a day associated with the ratification of the 13th Amendment, which ended slavery. The birthdates of these two men were chosen by Woodson as they played a pivotal role in the abolitionist movement.
While Black History Month began as a way to celebrate Black life and culture, it continues to educate the public about African American achievements. For example, if you’re studying African American history, you can purchase books from Black-owned bookstores like Penrice’s Black American History For Dummies or read An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States. Additionally, you can visit your local library to find a book about the history of your region. You can also share your research with your friends and family, and consider making a charitable donation to leading organizations in the field of Black history.
Negro History Week first began as a three-day event. In the early 1960s, Black power movements and school integration efforts gained momentum, and the week-long celebrations expanded into a full month. Woodson, a professor at Howard University, founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in 1915. Since then, every U.S. president has acknowledged this important week in Black history.