The Student News Site of Freedom Area Middle School

Black History month: Notable African Americans

February is Black History month, and as the month rolls around, some of the world’s most famous black role models are recognized for their astonishing work that they have done for the country and even the world.  Do you ever wonder why this tradition was created and why it is such a crucial thing to the United States?

In 1915, half a century after slavery was abolished in the United States, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, an African American writer born in 1875 was frustrated of the fact that in school the teachers and school administrators were teaching American history and taught without cognizance of his presence in the classroom. In the early 20th century Dr. Carter earned his Ph.D from Harvard and his masters degree from the University of Chicago, both which were in history. Dr. Carter was disgusted with how the African Americans were barely presented in books and films.

In 1915, Dr. and Jesse E. Moorland discovered the Association for the study of Negro life and history now known as Association for the study of African American Life and History. The organization would boost studying black history as a way to celebrate all the great things African Americans have done for us.

Some very important African Americans include Rosa Parks, Maya Angelou, Martin Luther King Jr, Harriet Tubman, and even Michelle Obama. Rosa Parks, a civil rights activist, introduced the world to Martin Luther King Jr. after her bus incident which happened on Dec.1, 1955. Martin Luther King Jr. was a baptist minister and activist who became the most famous spokesperson in the civil rights from 1954 until his assassination in 1968. Martin Luther King Jr. is most famous for his “I Have a Dream” speech which occurred in 1963 in front of the Lincoln memorial in Washington D.C.

Maya Angelou,  an American poet born in 1928, is also another civil rights activist but she was also a singer and a memoirist. Maya Angelou gained her international fame when her book “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” was published in 1969. The book was an autobiography on Angelou’s life experiences until the age of 17.  Even though her one book made her a very recognized woman she made another six books to make a whole seven book series. The books were focused on her childhood and her early adult years. Angelou was also known for her many roles in films and television shows through a lifespan of 50 years.

Harriet Tubman, born in 1822, was born into slavery. After many years of abuse she finally escaped and made 13 expeditions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved African Americans. During the civil war, Harriet was a spy for the United States army.

Michelle Obama is an American writer, lawyer, and a university administrator. Obama is known for being the first ever African American first lady in American history. She is also known for speaking on behalf of military and working families.

Although those  are not all the famous African Americans, they should still be recognized for their astounding work that they have done for U.S history. Black History month is a month to celebrate the contributions of all African Americans in the United States, no matter how large or small. 

Dr. Carter G. Woodson
Maya Angelou
Harriet Tubman
Michelle Obama
Rosa Parks
Martin Luther King, Jr.

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