Black History Month


Every year the theme for Black History Month is announced annually by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) in Washington DC, which also offers “theme kits” for every African American History year. Dr. Carter G. Woodson realized the importance of providing a theme that would focus the attention of the public when he established Negro History week in 1926.

2012’s theme focused on “Black Women in American Culture and History”. This year’s theme:  “At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality” addresses a complex topic of huge importance.

  • 2013 marks the 50th and 150th year anniversaries, respectively, of two parallel events, occurring in 1863 and 1963.
  • In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln’s deeply controversial Emancipation Proclamation was enacted, freeing all slaves in the United States.
  • A full century later, 1963, marked a tipping-point in the civil rights movement: the March on Washington, an event that is remains in living memory of many older Americans today.


Download The Meaning and Making of Emancipation, an e-book commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation featuring documents held in the National Archives.