Black History Month

BHDC Celebrates Black History Month

Each year, the BHDC celebrates Black History Month in a new and inspiring way.  In 2019, the BHDC hosted our first Black History Month celebration for the community.  We hope and expect to invite the community to gather in person again once it's safe.

History/Origins of Black History Month

African-American/Black History Month is an annual celebration which recognizes the significant contributions of African-Americans throughout our nation’s history, through their contributions in arts, entertainment, law, politics, sciences, sports and so much more.

The history of African-American/Black History Month traces back to 1915, when the “Father of Black History Month,” Dr. Carter G. Woodson, founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, which is currently known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). Through their diligence and commitment to African American citizens, Dr. Woodson and the ASALH introduced the first Negro History Week in February 1926.

 

In 1976, President Gerald Ford issued the first African-American History Month proclamation, calling upon the Americans to celebrate this observance each February. Since that time, U.S. presidents have issued proclamations to pay tribute to African Americans.

2021 Black History Month Celebrated Online

In 2021, the BHDC celebrates Black History Month online with a series of social media posts celebrating the significant contributions and important events in our nations history. 

Posts highlighted the following significant people and events in history:

  • Shirley Chisholm who was the first Black woman elected to Congress (1968)

  • Baseball legend Hank Aaron

  • Carter G. Woodson who is known as the "Father of Black History"

  • Jane Bolin who is most known for being the first Black woman judge in the country

  • The Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 & its impact on Black Wall Street

  • Recommendations - places to go & movies to watch

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1921 Tulsa Race Massacre & Black Wall Stret

Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 & Black Wall
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2019 Black History Month Community Event

The Berkeley Heights Diversity Council held its first ever Black History Month celebration for the community on at the Recreation Center. 

Toiya Facey welcomed the crowd that came to meet and mingle with their neighbors and listen to distinguished residents speak from their perspective of the reminders of racism they encountered while raising their families in Berkeley Heights.

As part of the event, the children enjoyed arts and crafts, trivia, and a slide show of modern day African American heroes. There was also a bake sale to raise money for the Diversity Council to support future events. 

What captivated the audience were the distinguished guests that were invited to share a half century of their history in raising their African American families in Berkeley Heights. Facey introduced these guests: Dr. Jean Marquis, Frank A. Bolden, Esq., Bill Ducksworth and the Brice's -- all long time residents of Berkeley Heights, who were described as active members of the community and "Berkeley Heights gems." 

The full story and a fun photo scrapbook of the event can be found on TAPinto Berkeley Heights.

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