A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to African American History Books
African American History Month, or Black History Month, as it is often referred to, is observed every February in the United States. We thought it might be interesting to take a look at the history behind this annual celebration. Negro History Week was first conceived in 1925 by Harvard educated historian, Carter G. Woodson, who founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). The event was first celebrated during a week in February in 1926 that included the birthdays of both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two great Americans who played a prominent role in shaping black history. The response was overwhelming, and by 1950, Negro History Week had become a central part of African American life. Progress had also been made in bringing more Americans to embrace the celebration. In 1976, our nation’s bicentennial, the celebration was expanded to a full month. President Gerald Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” That year, fifty years after the first celebration, ASNLH held the first African American History Month. Since 1976, each American president has issued African American History Month proclamations, and Woodson’s association – now the Association for the Study of African American Life and History – continues to promote the study of African American history all year. With February approaching, we thought it fitting to take a look at some noteworthy new books on the topic. And, as always, we’ve included a list of old favorites, too good to miss.

The Cart That Carried Martin by Eve Bunting, illus. by Don Tate

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