Skip Global Navigation to Main Content
Skip Breadcrumb Navigation
Black History Month 2013

Each February, Black History Month honors the struggles and triumphs of millions of African Americans over slavery, prejudice, poverty as well as their contributions to the nation’s cultural and political life. Black History Month was the inspiration of historian Carter G. Woodson who instituted Negro History Week in 1926. He chose the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of President Abraham Lincoln and the abolitionist Frederick Douglass. In 1976 on the nation’s bicentennial, the celebration was officially expanded to last a month. President Gerald R. Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”


Presidential Proclamation: National African American History Month, 2013

In America, we share a dream that lies at the heart of our founding:  that no matter who you are, no matter what you look like, no matter how modest your beginnings or the circumstances of your birth, you can make it if you try.  Yet, for many and for much of our Nation's history, that dream has gone unfulfilled. For African Americans, it was a dream denied until 150 years ago, when a great emancipator called for the end of slavery. It was a dream deferred less than 50 years ago, when a preacher spoke of justice and brotherhood from Lincoln's memorial.  This dream of equality and fairness has never come easily -- but it has always been sustained by the belief that in America, change is possible.
Read More… 


100th Anniversary of the Birth of Rosa Parks

As we mark the 100th anniversary of Rosa Parks's birth, we celebrate the life of a genuine American hero and remind ourselves that although the principle of equality has always been self-evident, it has never been self-executing. It has taken acts of courage from generations of fearless and hopeful Americans to make our country more just. As heirs to the progress won by those who came before us, let us pledge not only to honor their legacy, but also to take up their cause of perfecting our Union.


Facts for Features: Black (African-American) History Month: February 2013
To commemorate and celebrate the contributions to our nation made by people of African descent, American historian Carter G. Woodson established Black History Week. The first celebration occurred on Feb. 12, 1926. For many years, the second week of February was set aside for this celebration to coincide with the birthdays of abolitionist/editor Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. In 1976, as part of the nation's bicentennial, the week was expanded into Black History Month. Each year, U.S. presidents proclaim February as National African-American History Month.
Read more... 


Making Their Mark: Black Women Leaders
eJournal USA

This issue of eJournal USA profiles African-American women of the 20th and 21st centuries who have made significant contributions to many spheres of American life. It also offers insights into how earlier generations of African-American women serve as touchstones for the present generation.
Read More…


Michelle Obama Presents Modern Image for Black Women
On January 29, President Barack Obama signed his first piece of legislation: the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009. The act is named for a woman who filed a pay discrimination claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after learning that her employer — Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company — had been paying her less than it paid male supervisors for years
Read more…


African American Members of the United States Congress: 1870-2012. 
Congressional Research Service, November 26, 2012
There are 43 African American Members serving in the 112th Congress, all in the House of

Representatives. There have been 133 African American Members of Congress: 127 have been

elected to the House; 5 have been elected to the Senate; and 1 has been appointed to the Senate.

There have been 104 Democrats, 101 in the House and 3 in the Senate; and 29 Republicans, 26 in

the House and 3 in the Senate.
Full report...
February, 2013 
The site contains several categories of resources:
The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society.
Read more...  


2013 National Black History Theme: At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality: The Emancipation Proclamation and the March on Washington
Association for the Study of African American Life and History


2013 National African American Read-In
National Council of Teachers of English. February 2013.

It is the Twenty-First National African American Read-In. Schools, churches, libraries, bookstores, community and professional organizations, and interested citizens are urged to make literacy a significant part of Black History Month by hosting and coordinating Read-Ins in their communities.


African American History Month
Law Library, Library of Congress. July 26, 2012.

National African American History Month in February celebrates the contributions that African Americans have made to American history in their struggles for freedom and equality and deepens our understanding of our Nation's history.


Black (African American) History Month
Smithsonian Education. February 2013

The Smithsonian Education site has many links to events, African American Virtual Tour and other resources. See resources here…
African American History Virtual Tour 


Celebrate Black History 

The Biography Channel. February 2013
The site includes interactive timeline, history, people, and others.

Events in African American History ,2000+ 

Black History Month Honors Legacy of Struggle and Triumph 

Beyond Dr. King: More Stories of African American Achievement  

Resources on Martin Luther King