February is Black History Month, and the Vise Library wants to celebrate influential African Americans this week. Each day, we're going to post about famous African Americans in different walks of life, such as politics, sports, and the arts. We'll also showcase some people that are not as well-known but still influential in their particular field. However, before we do those things, let's look at the history of Black History Month.
In 1925, Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson, who founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH), announced the creation of Negro History Week. This event was celebrated during a week in February 1926 that included both Abraham Lincoln's and Fredreck Douglass' birthdays. The response to this week was tremendous, and by the time Woodson died in 1950, Negro History Week had become an integral part of African American life. The ASNLH expanded the celebration to a month in 1976, and since then, each American president has issued African American History Month proclamations. The ASNLH is now known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History and continues to promote the study of black history all year.
To read more about Black History Month, including a more detailed look at its history, please visit http://www.africanamericanhistorymonth.gov/index.html.