Black History Month, which was originally Black History Week, was created by Carter G. Woodson in 1926. Woodson created an organization called the Association for the Study of African American Life to promote studying of black history and the accomplishments that the African Americans made. He specifically chose the second week of February because Frederick Douglass, famous African American writer, speaker, and anti-slavery activist, birthday is on Feb. 14. Another important date for him was Abraham Lincoln’s birthday which is on Feb. 12. Lincoln created the Emancipation Proclamation which freed America’s slaves. Both of these men were important in the regards of fighting slavery.
Black History Month was not established as a full month until many decades later. In the mid-1960s colleges and universities transformed just a simple week into a full Black History Month in order to spread more knowledge. Ever since 1976, every president of the United States has declared February the month for black history to be shared. The United States is not alone; Canada and the United Kingdom even celebrate Black History Month.
Robert Morris had a mobile museum Feb. 14 in John Jay Gym that highlighted all the achievements and the horrors of the African Americans’ history in the United States. Students were able to walk through and read the history behind the artifacts that laid before them on the tables. Some of the items presented were magazines with many famous African Americans gracing the covers, a newspaper article with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s funeral on the front cover and his eulogy. They also acquired children books geared towards African American children and toys.
WATCH: RMU Hosts a Mobile Museum
The mobile museum is just one of the many activities that you can participate in this month. Coming up on Feb. 17 there is going to be a diversity speaker coming in at the Sewall Center at 4:30 p.m. On Feb. 23 at 6:00 p.m. at Joe Walton Stadium in room 230 is Guy Talk with the topic being relationships. On Feb. 29 is the Black Student Union Black Business Fair at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Nicholson Rotunda. To see the full Black History Month schedule please go to rmu.edu.