“Black History Month” has been celebrated and recognized since 1926, formerly known as the “Negro History Week”. Despite the fact that black-Americans have been around since the colonial times, it was not until the 20th century that they gained the respect in the history books.
Dr. Carter G. Woodson
Black History Month was founded by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the son of former slaves. Dr. Woodson spent most of his childhood working in Kentucky coal mines. He enrolled in high school at the age of 20, graduated two years later and went on to earn his Ph.D. from Harvard University. Dr. Woodson was very upset to learn that the history of black-Americans was largely ignored in history books. When blacks were noted in the books, it was generally in ways that reflected the inferior social position they were assigned at the time.
Woodson decided to take on the challenge of writing black history into the history books. He established the Association for The Study of Afro-American Life and History in 1915. In 1926, he launched the Negro History Week. Woodson chose the second week in February because it marked the birthdays of two great men, Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, who greatly influenced the black-American population.
There are many books and films that talk about black_American history. There are so many black-Americans who put forth every effort in fighting for their rights. Here are some black-American highlights in history.
Ruby Bridges, first black elementary school child to attend a white school in Louisiana
Shirley Chisholm, (1924-2005) politician, educator and author. first African-American United States congresswoman
Bessie Coleman, (1892-1926) first African-American woman to become an airplane pilot and the first African-American licensed pilot in the world
Shirley Franklin, first female mayor of Atlanta and first African-American woman elected mayor of any major Southern U.S. city
Jesse Jackson, (born 1941), civil rights activist and political leader
Maynard Jackson, (born 1938) first Black Mayor of a southern city
Coretta Scott King, (1927-2006), activist and widow of Martin Luther King Jr.
Rodney King, (born 1965), motorist beaten by police, videotaped by bystander
Ron Karenga, (born 1941), activist, founder of Kwanzaa
Oliver Law, (1899-1937), officer in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, first African American to command white soldiers
Ralph Aberbathy, civil rights leader
Daisy Bates, civil rights leader
Black Panthers, U.S. black militant party
Julian Bond, U.S. civil rights leader
Stokely Carmichael, radical civil rights leader
Kenneth B. Clark, civil rights leader
Medgar Evers, civil rights leader
Merlie Evers-Williams, civil rights leader
James Farmer, civil rights leader
Marcus Garvey, black nationalist leader
Benjamin Hooks, American black leader
Roy Inns, civil rights leader
James Weldon Johnson, civil rights leader
John Lewis, civil rights leader
Little Rock Nine, first black teenagers to attend all-white Central High School
Malcolm X, militant black leader
Thurgood Marshall, lawyer and Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court
James Meridith, civil-rights leader, author
Kweisi Mfume, U.S. Representative and NAACP CEO
Benjamin Franklin Muhammed, civil-rights and religious leader
Elijah Muhammed, black nationalist leader
Huey Newton, black activist
Rosa Parks, American civil rights activist
Bayard Rustin, civil rights activist
Bobby Seale, black activist
Fred Shuttlesworth, civil rights activist
Nina Simone, civil rights activist
C.K. (Charles Kenzie) Steele, civil rights activist
Moorefield Storey, civil rights leader
Mary Church Terrell, civil rights activist
Roy Wilkins, American social reformer and civil rights leader
Andrew Young, African American leader, clergyman, and public official
Black-History Month remains a holiday throughout the world and holds a big part in remembrance for those who sttod up for what they believe in. We could learn alot from history, not just black history but all history. History is a very big important part of this world and should be studied by everyone. You can learn a lot and get a bigger picture of who you are, where you come from, and the people around you. Allthough there are many outstanding names here, there are several others who have also put up the fight to maintain the freedom that blacks have today.