Archive for 07.02.2013

Black History Month

February 2013

Black History Month is an opportunity to celebrate the achievements and contributions to U.S. society of African Americans.

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) has selected “At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality: The Emancipation Proclamation and the March on Washington” as the 2013 theme for Black History Month. 

The following is adapted from the description on ASALH.org:

On January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation set the United States on the path of ending slavery. A wartime measure issued by President Abraham Lincoln, the proclamation freed relatively few slaves, but it fueled the fire of the enslaved to strike for their freedom.

In 1963, a century later, America once again stood at the crossroads. Nine years earlier, the U.S. Supreme Court had outlawed racial segregation in public schools, but the nation had not yet committed itself to equality of citizenship. On August 28, 1963, hundreds of thousands of Americans marched to the memorial of Abraham Lincoln, the author of the Emancipation Proclamation, in the continuing pursuit of equality of citizenship and self-determination. It was on this occasion that Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his celebrated “I Have a Dream” speech. Just as the Emancipation Proclamation had recognized the coming end of slavery, the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom announced that the days of legal segregation in the United States were numbered.

Materials on U.S. Civil Rights and the March on Washington

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