Carter Woodson: Black historian had key role in Black History Month






"Those who have no record of what their forebears have accomplished lose the inspiration which comes from the teaching of biography and history." - Carter Godwin Woodson, Ph.D. (1875-1950)

Black History Month was founded to celebrate the culture and accomplishments of African-Americans.

Carter Godwin Woodson, the distinguished author, editor, publisher and historian, is known as the father of black history. In addition to writing many scholarly books and articles on the positive contributions of blacks, Woodson also established the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in 1915 and the Journal of Negro History in 1916.

He also founded the Associated Publishers and the Negro History Bulletin.

One of Woodson's most famous books, and one of my personal favorites, is "The Mis-Education of the Negro" - a must-read for anyone interested in black history.
Woodson was educated at Berea College in Kentucky and went on to earn a doctorate from Harvard - the second African-American to do so, following W.E.B. DuBois.

The story of Black History Month begins in 1920 in Nashville, Tenn., at the ninth annual convention of Omega Psi Phi, a historically black fraternity founded at Howard University in 1911.

Fraternity brothers Woodson, Col. Charles Young and Garnet C. Wilkinson were discussing the need for black people to recognize and celebrate the contributions of our culture.
All three men enjoyed literature, music and history, so the discussion was quite lively and thought provoking.
Upon further discussion, they agreed that if blacks were informed of their past achievements and accomplishments, they would feel more pride and confidence. Woodson suggested the brotherhood of Omega Psi Phi should do something about this issue.

Woodson volunteered to address the National Convention and explain to the body why he felt the brotherhood should formally celebrate Black history. During his address, he urged the brothers of Omega Psi Phi to devote more time to the study of Negro life and history....



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