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Your Guide to Celebrating Black History Month in 2021

February is Black History Month, also called African American History Month.

It is a special opportunity to honor the achievements and recognize the important role of the African American community in the United States. Dr. Carter G. Woodson, known as the “Father of Black History Month,” first launched “Negro History Week” in 1926.

According to the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum, “It is said that he chose February for the observance because February 12th was Abraham Lincoln’s birthday and February 14th was the accepted birthday of Frederick Douglass.”

Later, in 1976, the week became the month-long celebration we observe now.

Black History in Arizona

Did you know that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke in front of the historic Tanner Chapel A.M.E. Church at 20 S 8th St in Phoenix?

Or that he also spoke at Arizona State University (ASU) in 1964?

Or about the importance of Sierra Vista’s Fort Huachuca to the Buffalo Soldiers?

Arizona holds other connections to Black history and heritage. Check the articles below to learn more.

How to Celebrate Black History Month in 2021

Celebrating starts with learning. Get started with the resources below. Then discuss what you learned with your family or friends.

Consider hosting a trivia night, posting quotes around your home, or dedicating each week this month to learning about a specific element of Black history.

Biography.com: Photos, videos, interactive maps, and stories

Includes “9 Key Figures of the Harlem Renaissance,” “How Carter G. Woodson’s Life’s Work Fueled the Creation of Black History Month,” “Harriet Tubman – Union Spy,” “Interactive Map: Birthplaces of 50 African American History Makers,” and more.

Collaboration among multiple governmental entities

From the website: “This Web portal is a collaborative project of the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.” Includes links to online exhibits, videos, Archives resources, and more.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute

From the website: “Building upon the achievements of Stanford University’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project, the King Institute supports a broad range of activities illuminating Dr. King’s life and the movements he inspired.” Includes lesson plans, Dr. King’s most significant documents, and many other resources.

National Museum of African American History and Culture

From the website: “The National Museum of African American History and Culture is the only national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of African American life, history, and culture. It was established by Act of Congress in 2003, following decades of efforts to promote and highlight the contributions of African Americans.”

PBS: 10 on-demand documentaries discussing a variety of notable figures and stories

Titles include “Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart,” “Forgotten Genius,” “Fannie Lou Hamer: Stand Up,” “Freedom Riders,” “Two Dollars and a Dream,” and additional programs premiering this month.

“I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn.” –Maya Angelou

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