February is National Black (Afro-American ) History Month. Black History Month was originally observed as “Negro History Week” starting in 1926. In 1975, President Gerald Ford issued the first Presidential Message observing Black History Week, calling it a time to “recognize the important contribution made to our nation’s life and culture by our black citizens.” February was designated as “National Black History (Afro-American) Month” by a Joint Resolution of Congress on February 11, 1986, calling it an opportunity “to gain a deeper understanding and knowledge of the many contributions of Black Americans to our country and the world.”

History of Black History Month

In celebration of Black History Month, the Library of Congress Law Library has prepared an informational research guide commemorating African American History Month. The guide includes a brief history of the origins of Black History Month, links to Legislative and Executive Branch Documents, and other Web Resources.

San Diego Black History Month Events and Resources

For a history of San Diego’s Black Legal Community from the San Diego Journal of History, see “Pioneers, Warriors, Advocates: San Diego’s Black Legal Community, 1890-2013.

The University of California San Diego has listed free virtual performances and seminars to celebrate the final week of Black History Month.

The San Diego State University Library has compiled a list of event, books written by black authors, and research resources on black history.

National Black History Month Events and Resources

The American Bar Association has created resources, webinars, and events to educate and celebrate Black History Month. The ABA has also created a 21-day Racial Equality Habit-Building Challenge. The Challenge invites participants to complete a syllabus of short assignments over 21 consecutive days, that include readings, videos or podcasts focuses on the Black American experience. This program seeks to expose participants to perspectives on elements of Black history, identity and culture, and to the Black community’s experience of racism in America. While this program cannot possibly highlight all of the diversity within the Black community itself, it is an introduction to what we hope will be a rewarding journey that extends far beyond the limits of this project and the month of February.

The National Archives, located in Washington, D.C., has a collection of online resources available for researching African American Heritage which includes links to public programs and exhibits.

From The Library at Washington and Lee School of Law: Online Resources for Researching Black History.