The story of Black History Month begins in 1915, half a century after the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in the United States.

The event grew out of “Negro History Week,” the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. In the decades that followed, mayors of cities across the country began issuing yearly proclamations recognizing achievements by African Americans and the central role of blacks in U.S. history. 

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