Origins of Black History Month
In 1926, Carter G. Woodson pioneered the celebration of "Black History Week", designated for the second week in February, to coincide with marking the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. It began as a way of remembering important people and events in the history of the African ancestry. It is celebrated in February in the United States and Canada, while in Ireland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom it is observed in October.
Carter G. Woodson, known as the Father of Black History, set for himself the goal of providing a scientific and historical account of people of African ancestry. Born to former slaves, he educated himself as a youth and went on to earn a PhD.
Black History is a time when African-Americans can take the time out and see what the people before them fought for. Black History is a time of rejoicing, celebrating and thanking those African-Americans for giving us hope or a life lesson that could be used.
President Gerald R. Ford
The celebration was expanded to a month in 1976. President Gerald R. Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” That year, fifty years after the first celebration, the association held the first African American History Month.
Did you know? The NAACP was founded on February 12, 1909, the centennial anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln.
Who Was Harriet Tubman?
Born into slavery in Maryland, Harriet Tubman escaped to freedom in the North in 1849 to become the most famous "conductor" on the Underground Railroad. Tubman risked her life to lead hundreds of family members and other slaves from the plantation system to freedom on this elaborate secret network of safe houses. A leading abolitionist before the American Civil War, Tubman also helped the Union Army during the war, working as a spy among other roles.
Who Was Frederick Douglass?
Frederick Douglass was an escaped slave who became a prominent activist, author and public speaker. He became a leader in the abolitionist movement, which sought to end the practice of slavery, before and during the Civil War.
An advocate for women’s rights, and specifically the right of women to vote, Douglass’ legacy as an author and leader lives on. His work served as an inspiration to the civil rights movement of the 1960s and beyond.
Frederick Douglass was born into slavery in Maryland in the 1800s, and went on to become the first African-American citizen to hold a high position within the U.S. Government. When Douglass was sold, the wife of his owner taught Douglass the alphabet, despite the ban on teaching slaves to read and write. Douglass’s ability to read refined his political views and human rights ideology, and gave him the motivation to do something about it.
Porterville College is committed to maintaining an equal learning and working environment for all. If you have experienced or witnessed acts of racism or discrimination, please report it. The below guide will help you find the appropriate office and contact information:
A complaint of alleged unlawful discrimination may be filed within one year of the alleged discrimination. For complaint forms or additional information, contact one of the following:
- Human Resources Manager - Human Resources
- Porterville College
- 100 E. College Ave. Porterville, CA 93257
Additional inquiries pertaining to federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws, and the governing board policies of Porterville College or Kern Community College District (KCCD Board Policy Section 11-D) may be directed to the following office:
- Vice-Chancellor Human Resources
- Kern Community College District
- 2100 Chester Ave. Bakersfield, CA 93301
Title IX and Sexual Misconduct:
Porterville College is committed to fostering a learning environment that is safe, conducive to academic success and supportive of healthy personal development for all members of the campus community. Everyone at Porterville College shares responsibility for maintaining this environment by following university policies and exemplifying respect for others.
- Title IX Coordinator
- 100 E. College Ave. Porterville, CA 93257
- Porterville College Safety & Security 559.791.2440
- Porterville Police Department 559.782.7400
- Tulare County Sheriff's Office 559.7829650
- Tulare County District Attorney 559.636.5494
- Behavioral Intervention Team
- Disability Resource Center: Right & Responsibilities
- PC Telehealth: Free Counseling and Medical Care for Enrolled Students