Life & English: Black History Month and Postage Stamps

Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of blacks in U.S. history. The event grew out of “Black History Week,” the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month.

The precursor to Black History Month was created in 1926 in the United States. The month was chosen because it coincided with the birthday of Abraham Lincoln on February 12 and of Frederick Douglass on February 14, both of which dates black communities had celebrated together since the late 19th century. From the event's initial phase, primary emphasis was placed on encouraging the coordinated teaching of the history of American blacks in the nation's public schools. The first celebration of Black History Month took place at Kent State one year later, from Feb 1,1970 to Feb 28,1970. Six years later Black History Month was being celebrated all across the country in educational institutions, centers of Black culture and community centers, both great and small, when President Gerald Ford recognized Black History Month, during the celebration of the United States Bicentennial.

The postage stamps for Black History Month

In 1940, the first stamp issued in honor of black Americans was released. Since then, many black Americans' lives and contributions have been celebrated on stamps. In honor of Black History Month, the United States Postal Service is adding a new selection of postage stamps. Everyone can research the accomplishments of black American in the field of science or technology, then design a commemorative postage stamp in honor of the contributions of the black American and the important events associated with their history. February 2018, the United States Postal Service (USPS) is celebrating the life and legacy of Lena Horne. She has been chosen as the 41st honoree in the Black Heritage stamp series.The stamp is available in post offices across the country and online in time for February, Black History Month.

In schools, students research famous black Americans for Black History Month. For this lesson, students research on internet to explore the various achievements of black Americans throughout history. Students design postage stamps, creating symbols to represent the contributions made by the famous black American they researched. Design Postage Stamps for Black History Month is a way to commemorate. Before beginning the design work, students need to gather information about black Americans and events that are important in their history. Creating commemorative stamp designs is good way for students to celebrate Black History Month.

At first, Black History Month, also known as African-American History Month in the US; then other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating black history. Now, it is known as Black Achievement Month. It is an annual observance in the United States (since 1970), the United Kingdom (since 1987), Canada (since 1995), and the Netherlands (since 2016).

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