Why do we celebrate Black History Month?

The history

Black History Month initially started off as a week-long celebration in 1926, the second week of February and was known as, Negro History Week (NHW). The initial phase of this event was to implement the teaching of historical black Americans in school.

NHW was created by Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History. When this event was first introduced, it received a mediocre response. However, over the decades NHW grew to gain more enthusiastic responses. It gained so much popularity that mayors across the United States began endorsing it as a holiday.

Black History Month was first proposed in the United States in 1969 by black educators and the Black Unite Students organisation at Kent State University. The first Black History Month celebration took place at the university one year later.

Over the course of 6 years, Black History Month was being celebrated across the country.

Black History Month was first celebrated in the United Kingdom in 1987, it was organised by Ghanaian analyst, Akyaaba Addai-Sebo, who worked closely with the Greater London Council.

Black History Month

Today Black History Month is celebrated globally, the United States and Canada celebrate in February and the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Republic of Ireland celebrate in October.

During Black History Month, we celebrate historical black leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr, Malcolm X and Barack Obama and we celebrate black inspirational people within literature, entertainment, science and athletics.

Black History Month is a time for us to recognise achievements by African Americans and emphasis on the importance of black participation throughout history.

Stay tuned for an upcoming blog on 10 black historical poets, leaders and activists you should know about!

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