What Does Black History Month Remind You of?

Staff Writer: Isabella Boatwright 

What is Black History Month? 

Black History Month is an annual holiday in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and the Netherlands in February that remembers important people and events of African Americans. This month honors the African Americans who have changed the way we live and have achieved great accomplishments. The creator of Black History Month was a historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons. Gathered by Icsis Washington. Maya Angelou was a civil rights activist and poet. 

and History in 1926. They chose the second week of February to be “Negro History Week” because it matched up with Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on Feb. 12 and Frederick Douglass on Feb. 14.  In United Kingdom they started celebrating in 1987 with the help of leadership at the time Ghanaian and in Canada in 1995. 

Why was it created? 

The main reason for Black History Month is of course to celebrate what African Americans have achieved but another primary emphasis was to encourage teaching the history of African Americans in public schools. Gaining cooperation of all schools across America was easy enough because teaching the kids about history of African Americans was important because this race was able to survive within the society. This month increased the interest in learning and teaching this topic teachers,

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons. Gathered by Icsis Washington. Oprah Winfrey one of the most known African American women.

students and other whites.  

Some African Americans who are celebrated 

Martin Luther King Jr. 

During the time of segregation Martin Luther King Jr was known for being a spokesman and leader of the civil rights movement and the March on Washington where he presented his speech “I Have A Dream,” talking about how United States would be if we all united into one with no segregation. Also, he did this all with no violence and based it on his Christian beliefs. The main protest he led was organized by Southern Christian 

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons. Gathered by Icsis Washington. Part of Martin Luther King Jr.’s speeches.

Leadership Conference which was a group to conduct nonviolence protests. He led Montgomery bus boycott which was a protest to let blacks sit wherever on the bus. Also, Bloody Sunday where blacks marched from Selma, Alabama., to the state capital Montgomery for voting rights to all. Martin received many awards, including a Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality.  


Rosa Parks 

Rosa Parks was a female civil rights activist. She was named “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement.” Parks is most known for the Montgomery Bus Boycott and was a protest against segregation on the bus. African Americans were required to sit in the back of the bus, which separated the whites and colored. On December 1, 1955 Parks took action and refused to give up her seat to a white. She got death threats for years after and got fired from her job. But finally the boycott and protest ended in 1956 when the Supreme court announced that segregation on public busses was unconstitutional. 

Harriet Tubman 

Harriet Tubman was an African American abolitionist and a spy for the United States Army During the Civil War. She escaped from slavery with the Underground railroad to Philadelphia, which was a slave free state. Once she escaped she went back to Maryland

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons. Gathered by Icsis Washington. One of Tubman’s famous wanted pictures. 

to rescue her family and eventually started bringing her relatives and groups of slaves. Tubman escorted and saved around 300 slaves with all the routes she knew. She made 19 trips and never lost a single passenger. Tubman was the first woman to lead an armed expedition in war as a scout and spy.  

Barack Obama 

Barack Obama was the first African American president of the United States. As a president, Obama had man great accomplishments. In the United States, the unemployment rate was 10% and he brought it down to 4.7%. Also, he signed the Affordable Care Act which provided health insurance to over 20 million. Ended the war in Iraq and captured and killed Osama Bin Laden, the leader of ISIS. He helped pass the $787 billion America Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Obama won many awards including Nobel Peace Prize. 

Oprah Winfrey 

Oprah Winfrey is one of the most successful and richest African America woman in the United States. She is best known for her talk show The Oprah Winfrey Show. Her show focused on self-improvement for others, literature and spiritually. Even though she was criticized for sharing her opinions and giving advice, she overcame adversity and

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons. Gathered by Icsis Washington. Oprah being involved in a commericial. 

became very beneficial for others. As Winfrey made more opinions, “The Oprah Effect,” which was an effect that allowed people to speak their opinions with not having to worry how other look at them. Winfrey won many awards including things about her talk show, outstanding speaking, female awards, etc.. Her most recent award was the Golden Globe Award. 


“I think Black History Month is very important to United States because it reminds us of all the stuff African Americans had to go through to get the same freedom as everyone else.” – Addy Mccleary, Sophomore

“Black History Month reminds us that every African American civil rights activist made a difference to everyone.”- Kellie Passafiume, Sophomore

“This month reminds us that segregation was a thing and it would be a lot different if it was still here today.” – Emma Frazer, Sophomore

“It reminds me that all my friends now wouldn’t be together if people like Martin Luther King Jr. didn’t make such a big impact on the United States.” – Julia Hutton, Sophomore

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