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Black History Month

Black History Month, or National African American History Month, is an annual celebration of achievements by Black Americans.

Black History Month originated half a century after the 13th Amendment abolished slavery in the United States. Carter G. Woodson and Jesse E. Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, a group that sponsored a National Negro History Week in 1926. This week was chosen in February to honor the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.

By the late 1960s, Negro History Week had evolved into Black History Month, and President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976. He called upon the public to "seize the opportunity to honor the too often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout history."

Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially recognized the month of February as Black History Month. Other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating black history.

This month, marks the third annual Black Futures Month, a visionary spin on Black History Month. Black Futures Month creates a space to both reflect on history, while equaling imagining building foundation of a society where the right to thrive is affirmed. Black Futures Month is a reminder to the rest of the world that black people have deep desires and aspirations to live beyond expectations.

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Feature Stories

Black Imagination, A Vital Way Forward
Huffington Post, Feb. 1, 2017
We need everyone to vision a future in which all Black Lives Matter.

Things to know about Black History Month 
The Seattle Times, Feb. 2, 2017

Law Review Elects First Black Woman President
The Harvard Crimson, Jan. 31, 2017

Black by Unpopular Demand
Eugene Weekly, Feb. 2, 2017
The insidious function of covert racism in Eugene's liberal white utopia.


Seattle Art Museum: "Jacob Lawrence: The Migration Series"
This series chronicles in words and pictures the exodus of African Americans from the rural South to the industrial North in the decades after the First World War. On display through April 23. 

Shoreline City Hall: "Aftermash"
Celebrate Black History Month with this art display containing a variety of mediums exploring the black experience. Opening with a special reception at 6:45 p.m. Feb. 9, then on view from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays through April 21.

Step Afrika!
Evening of dance, body percussion, and spoken word combined with projections of Jacob Lawrence's "The Migration Series." Performances as 8 p.m. Feb. 16-18, Meany Center for Performing Arts.

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WSB Foundation