BEL AIR, Md., (Feb., 3, 2015) – Black History Month is observed annually in February in the United States and Canada. It is an expansion of Dr. Carter G. Woodson’s Negro History Week, celebrated the second week of February because it included the birthdays of President Abraham Lincoln (February 12) and Frederick Douglass (February 14). Extended to a month in 1976 by President Gerald R. Ford, Black History Month provides an opportunity to focus attention on the accomplishments of people of African descent in the areas of literature, research and inventions.
The theme for Black History Month 2015, “A Century of Black Life, History and Culture”, was selected by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, formerly the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History. This organization, founded in 1915 by Dr. Woodson, continues to promote, research, preserve, interpret and disseminate information about Black life, history and culture to the global community.
The Harford County Human Relations Commission acknowledges February as Black History Month and encourages Harford County residents to learn more by participating in local activities and events:
–Celebrate Black History at Harford County Public Library, throughout the month at the library branches, with a range of activities from quilting, to film series, to learning about inventors through hands-on activities. Experience the living history portrayal of Abraham Lincoln’s thoughts on the Civil War and the future of the nation. Meet Edgar Award winning author Dan Stashower, as he discusses his book, “The Hour of Peril: The Secret Plot to Murder Lincoln Before the Civil War”. Contact your local branch of the public library for specific offerings.
–Black History Month Celebration on Thursday, February 12, at 10:00 a.m., APG, Myer Auditorium, Building 6000. General Dennis Via, Army Material Command Commander, Huntsville AL, is the guest speaker. SFC Twana Burrow (email@example.com) is the point of contact.
–Soar 2 Success, a screening of the PBS series “Finding Your Roots”, Thursday, February 19 from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., HCC Student Center 243, Harford Community College, 401 Thomas Run Rd. in Bel Air, tracing the ancestry of actress Angela Bassett, Presidential Adviser Valerie Jarrett, and hip- hop artist, poet and “Metaphore Master” Nas. Local genealogist Reggie Bishop will also join the discussion.
–Black History Month Program, presented by Black Youth in Action Adults, on Sunday, February 15, at 4:00 p.m., Helping Hands Ministries, 3237 Level Road in Churchville. During the program this year’s Poster/Essay Contest will be announced. The contest is open to Harford and Cecil county students (elementary-high school). Entries for elementary students should be in poster form (8 x11 size paper); middle and high school participants are to submit an essay of at least 100 words. Entries must be submitted by mail to BYAA, P. O. Box 414, Aberdeen, MD 21001.
The Harford County Human Relations Commission is a 15-member volunteer advisory board appointed by the county executive with the approval of the County Council. For more information about the Commission, contact the Office of Human Relations (410-638-4739 or firstname.lastname@example.org).