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Black History Month

Supports the celebration of Black History Month each February.

Digital Collections and Related Research Starters

Below are links to digital collections related to Black History Month:

The History of Black History Month

Black History was first celebrated in the United States as "Negro History Week," on February 12, 1926. Carter G. Woodson, a pre-eminent historian and the founder of the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History created the week out of concern that the contributions and history of African Americans were being overlooked in the study of American history. February was selected because it included the birthdays of both Abraham Lincoln (February 12) and Frederick Douglas (February 14), both of whom had significant impacts on the lives of Black men and women in the United States. In 1976, the week became a month long celebration.


The theme selected for the 2023 African American History Month is "Black Resistance." The Association for the Study of African American Life and History explains that this year's theme is an important one. The ASALH states that "Black resistance strategies have served as a model for every other social movement in the country, thus, the legacy and importance of these actions cannot be understated." The theme was chosen given the importance of what is happening in the country and that "this is a call to everyone, inside and outside the academy, to study the history of Black Americans’ responses to establish safe spaces, where Black life can be sustained, fortified, and respected."

Resources for Mental and Physical Health