Black History Month
As a community dedicated to diversity, equity and inclusion, we are proud to celebrate Black History Month each year by fostering and sharing the history, achievements and contributions of African Americans in Fredericksburg and beyond.
We invite you to celebrate with us in our local Black history here in Fredericksburg. Share in our notable Black stories. Support our local Black-owned businesses. Find events and ways to get involved in celebrating online. And read about the importance of Black families and the rich resources available on the national websites also linked below.
About Black History Month
Black History Month, an annual month-long celebration, taking place each February is a time to recognize the central role of Blacks in U.S. history as well as achievements of African Americans and their contributions to America’s culture.
Also known as African American History Month, the event grew out of “Negro History Week” founded by Harvard- trained African American historian Carter G. Woodson. Formally recognized as a national celebration in 1976 by President Gerald Ford, every U.S. president since has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month.
Black History is American History.
It is an integral part of our collective past and present.
Fredericksburg has an important Black history, which may be explored through our many historic sites and stories captured through tours and educational experiences provided below. For 2021, the year’s theme for Black History Month is “Black Family: Representation, Identity and Diversity.” Presented by The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), we encourage you to learn more through provided literature, visual arts and film studies, sociology, anthropology, and social policy explored in the ASCLH’s writings. More information is provided below.
Engage and Learn
VisitFred.com/Black History Month - Events and Walking Tours
2021 Black History Month Theme
The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) provides a theme to focus the attention of the public. The 2021 theme is “The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity”
The Black family has been a topic of study in many disciplines—history, literature, the visual arts and film studies, sociology, anthropology, and social policy. Its representation, identity, and diversity have been reverenced, stereotyped, and vilified from the days of slavery to our own time. The Black family knows no single location, since family reunions and genetic-ancestry searches testify to the spread of family members across states, nations, and continents. Not only are individual Black families diasporic, but Africa and the diaspora itself have been long portrayed as the Black family at large. While the role of the Black family has been described by some as a microcosm of the entire race, its complexity as the “foundation” of African American life and history can be seen in numerous debates over how to represent its meaning and typicality from a historical perspective—as slave or free, as patriarchal or matriarchal/matrifocal, as single-headed or dual-headed household, as extended or nuclear, as fictive kin or blood lineage, as legal or common law, and as Black or interracial, etc. Variation appears, as well, in discussions on the nature and impact of parenting, childhood, marriage, gender norms, sexuality, and incarceration. The family offers a rich tapestry of images for exploring the African American past and present.
Information and Resources for Celebrating Safely During the Pandemic:
African American History Month - The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society. Online events and more are available on this website. Read More »
Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) - Black History Themes
History.com - Black History Month facts, origins, themes and more.