President Gerald Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976, calling upon the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” Today, Black History Month is a time to honor the contributions and legacy of African Americans across U.S. history and society—from activists and civil rights pioneers, politics, science, culture and more.
Black History Month means to me
It's the freedom to revisit my ancestors and their great contributions, what they've done to the world. Not just America, but the world. It's a chance for me to be reminded of my history from where I came and to where I'm going, and the freedom to tell our stories.
What is Black history and why is it important?
Black History Month was created to focus attention on the contributions of African Americans to the United States. It honors all Black people from all periods of U.S. history, from the enslaved people first brought over from Africa in the early 17th century to African Americans living in the United States today.
Why is it important to learn about Black history?
Black history is world history. Black History Month represents Black influence around the world. Today, we not only celebrate the Black astronauts, scientists, inventors, artists, and activists of the past; we also celebrate the rise of Black business, arts, and literature that will influence the future.
Why is Black history important for kids?
Through Black History we learn so much about ourselves and our abilities to overcome challenges – big and small. We learn to reason and wonder about things morally. We also learn from the mistakes people made in the past and learn the importance of treating others with compassion. We learn to be givers and helpers.
Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing their central role in U.S. history. Also known as African American History Month, the event grew out of “Negro History Week,” the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month. Other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating Black history.