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Black History Month

Updated Winter 2022


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History of Black History Month

This is a tiny lecture from Stanford University's Michael Hines, an assistant professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Education. 

What is the Pan-Afro Flag?

The Pan-Afro Flag, sometimes called the UNIA, Afro-American, or Black Liberation Flag, was created in 1920 by Marcus Garvey, then president of the Universal Negro Improvement Association. The flag serves as a symbol of Unity, and was created by Garvey to represent the political power of Black Americans and their resilience against racism. The red of the flag stands for African blood spilt in the fight for liberation from slavery and oppression, the black represents Black Americans as one united community, and the Green symbolizes the growth and natural fertility of Africa. Often gold will be added to the flag as well to represent Africa's mineral wealth. The flag has served as a template for flags all over Africa as different countries gained independence. To find out more about it's history and symbolism, check out the link above. 

Anti-Racism Resource Guide

What is Black History Month?

Black History Month (aka African American History Month) is an annual observance that takes place in February in the United States and Canada.

The relevance of February goes back to 1926 when ASALH’s founder Dr. Carter G. Woodson first established “Negro History Week” during the second week of February, where it encompasses the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass—both men being great American symbols of freedom. (ASALH)

Black History Month was first proposed by Black educators and the Black United Students at Kent State University in 1969 (Kent State), and it was officially recognized by President Gerald Ford in February 1976 during the celebration of the United States Bicentennial.

Portrait of Carter G. Woodson by Sassa Wilkes 

Black History Month Presidential Proclamation


On February 10th, 1976, President Gerald Ford was the first U.S. President to declare February as Black History Month. Every year since, the President of the United States issues a proclamation of celebration for the month of February.

To read his proclamation, click HERE

2022 Black History Month Presidential Proclamation 

"NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim February 2022 as National Black History Month.  I call upon public officials, educators, librarians, and all the people of the United States to observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities."


To read the full Presidential Proclamation, click HERE

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