Black History Month

What is Black History Month?

On Black History Month, or National African American History Month, we celebrate the achievements of black Americans while remembering the important people and events that helped reshape American history and culture.

When did Black History Month originate?

The story of Black History Month begins with Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson and minister Jesse E. Moorland. In 1915, Woodson and Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). They were dedicated to promote the achievements of black Americans and other people of African descent. In 1926, they sponsored a national Negro History Week in 1926. They chose to celebrate in the second week of February as it coincided with Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass’ birthdays. In the years that followed, communities all over the United States started to recognize Negro History Week and it led to several local celebrations.

With the popularity of Negro History Month surging, cities all around the U.S. began recognizing the significance of making the event an annual celebration in their community. During the Civil Rights Movement in the late 1960s, American youth felt that people needed to do more to recognize the roles of black Americans in history and society. College students in the U.S. expanded the celebration from a week to a month, and they changed the name to Black History Month.

Who celebrates Black History Month?

In 1976, President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized Black History Month as a national celebration. Since then, every president has designated February as Black History Month. Also, Canada and the United Kingdom have also designated a month to celebrate black history every year.

Take part in Black History Month, and check out our selection celebrating black history here:

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