In 1915, Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson co-founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASALH). ASALH committed itself to the research and promotion of Black American achievement, history and culture to the global community. If a race has no history, it has no worthwhile tradition ... and it stands in danger of being exterminated, Carter G. Woodson. In 1926, Woodson declared the second week of February, "Negro History Week.". The idea was a hit among teachers and its popularity grew. In 1969, Black educators and students at Kent State University were the first to propose a "Black History Month.". The following year, the university became the first to celebrate February as Black History Month. The annual celebration was first recognized by a U.S. President in 1976. President Gerald Ford called upon citizens to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans ...". Since then, February has been designated by every president as Black History Month.
Racial Justice & Equity
Sign up for Our Newsletter
Get updates about the policies and topics that matter the most to you. Progressive news directly to your email.