To commemorate and celebrate the contributions to our nation made by people of African descent, American historian Carter G. Woodson established Black History Week. The first celebration occurred on Feb. 12, 1926. For many years, the second week of February was set aside for this celebration to coincide with the birthdays of abolitionist/editor Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. In 1976, as part of the nation’s bicentennial, the week was expanded to a month. Since then, U.S. presidents have proclaimed February as National African-American History Month.
Governor Roy Cooper has proclaimed February 2021 as Black History Month in North Carolina.
At UNC-Chapel Hill, numerous events are held across campus during Black History Month in recognition of the historical background that has shaped the contributions of African Americans to our country. These include panel discussions, lectures, performances and more.