The Father of Black History

carter woodsonDr. Carter G. Woodson is considered to be the “Father of Black History.” Despite being the son of two former slaves, Dr. Woodson was able to receive an education, completing a four-year high school curriculum in two years. Dr. Woodson then went on to further his studies in higher education and eventually received his PhD from Harvard University. Woodson began to notice the lack of information on America’s black population in history books. To combat this, he founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History. In 1926, he developed Negro History Week.

The second week in February traditionally marked this occasion because it marks the birthdays of two men in history who influenced the Black population: Fredrick Douglass (February 14) and Abraham Lincoln (February 12). Fredrick Douglass was an influential abolitionist and civil rights leader, and Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States, signed the Emancipation Proclamation that abolished slavery in the United States.

By 1960, Negro Week had developed into Black History Month. President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized the month in 1976. Today, Black History Month is celebrated nationwide.

Black History Month Events Calendar

Love Connection:  What is Black Love?
Thursday, February 6th, 7 pm
Landes Auditorium
By the Black Student Association, Man-Up, and Woman to Woman

Cardinal Craze & Black History Month Mixer
Thursday, February 6th, 11:30 am—1 pm
Setzer Student Center Arbor
By LamarAlive! Student Activities Board

Movie Night: The Butler
Tuesday, February 11th
SSC Upstairs Lounge, 1 pm & SSC Ballroom, 7 pm
By LamarAlive! Student Activities Board

Conversations:  Remembering Our Past and Paying It Forward
Join the panel for an open discussion as we honor the past by preparing for the future. Guest speakers: Dr. Lula Henry, Daniella Medley, Dr. Richard Price, Art Simpson, and Vernon Durden. Moderated by Vernice Monroe.
Monday, February 24, 2 pm—4pm
Setzer Student Center Ballroom
By Student Development and Leadership Multicultural Programming

The Impact:  Hunger-Free Project
Tuesday, February 25th, 11 am—2 pm
Brooks-Shivers Dining Hall
By LamarAlive! Student Activities Board

Tribute to the Harlem Renaissance
Wednesday, February 26th, 6:30 pm—9:30 pm
Setzer Student Center Ballroom
By Black Student Association

Black History Fun Facts

madame c j walkerMadame C.J. Walker (1867-1919) became America’s first female self-made millionaire with her line of African American hair care products and cosmetics.

Robert Johnson founded Black Entertainment Television in 1979 and became the first black billionaire in 2001.

Marian Anderson was the first African American soloist to perform in the Metropolitan Opera in NYC on January 7th, 1955.

Phillis Wheatley became known as the first published African American poet on September 1, 1773.

Shirley Chisholm was the first African American woman elected to the U.S. Congress in 1968.

George Washington Carver created peanut butter.

George T. Sampson patented one of the first clothes dryers on June 7, 1892.

In the United Kingdom, Black History Month is celebrated in the month of October.