My name is Kayla White. I am 17 years of age and I’m a senior in high school. I am Selena’s oldest child :)……………and favorite, though she tries to deny it frequently. I’ve been home schooled for 10 years and will be graduating this June! My brothers and I will be filling in for my momma during her break and I look forward to sharing lots of information with the Joyfully Submitted readers during Black History Month! 🙂
Why black history month? The answer to that question seemed to be an obvious one to me. That answer being to give African Americans, as well as white people, information about black people that they wouldn’t normally get during any other time of the year. I then realized that though the answer I came up with was true, it wasn’t the whole reason. The history blacks were taught made us feel like we were good for nothing, that because our skin was of a darker shade that we were inferior. Black history month is there so that we can be taught the accurate history of our ancestors. That yes, we were once enslaved and oppressed but that is not where our history ends. We made great contribution to the world we see today. Black people invented, fought in wars for the same country that fought to keep them enslaved. We educated ourselves, graduating not only from high school but from college. We fought for the freedom that the Founding Fathers of the “land of the free” had put into place already. Freedom that was stolen from the people group known as Negroes. So you see, our history isn’t just about slave ships and chains, but about our participation in the shaping of America and freedom!
Carter G. Woodson, author of The Mis-Education of the Negro, saw the need for correct history of black people to be taught in America and that’s why in 1926, he came up with “Negro History Week”. That was to be celebrated during the second week of February. He chose that week specifically because the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass were in that same week. His hope with creating this holiday was for it to ultimately be done away with. He wanted the history of his people to be taught regularly, right along with the history of America, because black history was American history. Woodsons’ Negro History Week soon gained popularity and went from being celebrated in colleges and among different organizations, to eventually being recognized in 1976 by the U.S. government. By the time the government got involved, Negro History Week had been turned into Negro History Month!
Now thanks to Mr. Woodson and those who helped make his holiday popular, we have what we now call Black History Month. Let us not take for granted the opportunity we have to celebrate and remember those who came before us, black or white. I get soooooooooo excited when I learn about the history of black people!! I learn something new daily and that only makes me want to learn more! Like a few days ago I learned that a black man invented the ice cream scooper, something we all use! Little things like that make me happy and makes me realize that the contribution blacks had to America is real. I pray that after reading this, you too will desire to want to learn more about black history as well as YOUR OWN history, whatever that may be. Thank you so much for reading this! 🙂 I will be writing to you again soon, I’m sure of it.
Tomorrow you will be hearing from my youngest brother, Jordan, about George Washington Carver! Get your pen and paper ready to take notes…………………..he did more than invent peanut butter. WAY more.