2024 Black History Month Resource Recap

All this month we were celebrating Black History Month. Below we recap the Black history resources that we highlighted.

Black History Month

This year’s theme for Black History Month is “African Americans and the Arts”. According to the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, “African American artists have used art to preserve history and community memory as well as for empowerment.”

White House Proclamation on National Black History Month

Public Law 99-244 (designating February 1986 as “National Black (Afro-American) History Month”)

Law Library Display

2024 Black History Month Display Robert S. Marx Law Library

2024 Black History Month Display curated by Rhonda Wiseman

Explore some of the College of Law’s notable African American alumni as well as a few of history’s most impactful African American Lawyers and Legislators. Be sure to check out one (or two) of our display books!

Selected Resources about Black History and the Legal Profession

ABA, Black Lawyers in America Toolkit

The Black Lawyers in America Toolkit was created as a follow up to the original Black Lawyers in America Webinar Series, co-sponsored by the American Bar Association and hosted by Duane Morris. The toolkit includes facilitation guidelines, discussion questions, and continuing resources to engage in the work of uplifting Black lawyers’ experiences in the workplace and ending practices of implicit bias and anti-Black racism in the legal profession and educational pipeline. It also provides resources and tips for Black lawyers.

ABA-Wide 21-Day Racial Equity Habit-Building Challenge

The 21-Day Challenge concept was conceived several years ago by diversity expert Eddie Moore, Jr. to advance deeper understandings of the intersections of race, power, privilege, supremacy and oppression. The goal of the Challenge is to assist each of us to become more aware, compassionate, constructive, engaged people in the quest for racial equity. It transcends our roles as lawyers. Non-lawyers are also welcome to participate.

ABA, Celebrating Black Trailblazers 2023 (PDF)

This year, the ABA is celebrating Black Legal Trailblazers, from the 1800s to the present. The individuals have not only been powerful examples of leadership in the legal profession, but have brought about historic change and progress to make the legal field more inclusive today, and more representative of our population as a whole.

ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice, CRSJ Celebrates Black History Month: The Challenges that African Americans Face in the 21st Century

In this compelling series of webinars, we take a close look at the civil rights and social justice issues that African Americans are still facing 53 years after the peak of the Civil Rights Movement. The impressive panels and experts will examine a range of issues from environmental justice to economic equity, COVID-19 testing and vaccine distribution to racial disparities and criminal justice.

Joan C. Williams et al., ABA Commission on Women in the Profession & the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, You Can’t Change What You Can’t See Executive Summary (2018)

This report is the first of its kind to provide a comprehensive picture of how implicit gender and racial bias—documented in social science for decades—plays out in everyday interactions in legal workplaces and affects basic workplace processes such as hiring and compensation.

Selected Museum, Library of Congress & Media Resources to Learn More About Black History

African American Newspapers: 19th century, Parts 1-5

This collection of African-american Newspapers contains information about the cultural life and history during the 1800s, and is rich with first-hand reports of the major events and issues of the day including the Mexican War, Presidential and congressional addresses, Congressional abstracts, business and commodity markets, the humanities, world travel, and religion. They also contain large numbers of early biographies, vital statistics, essays and editorials, poetry and prose, and advertisements all of which embody the African-American experience.
Coverage: 1827 – 1876

African American Newspapers¸ 1827-1998 (Readex)

African American Newspapers¸ 1827-1998 provides online access to approximately 270 U.S. newspapers chronicling a century and a half of the African American experience. This unique collection features papers from more than 35 states including many rare and historically significant 19th century titles. Newly digitized¸ these newspapers published by or for African Americans can now be browsed and searched as never before. Supported by the Charles Phelps Taft Research Center.
Coverage: 1827-1998

AFRO American Newspaper Archives (Google Partnership Project)

The AFRO American Newspapers, in cooperation with Google, provide an extensive collection of digitally archived issues spanning over 100 years of history. The AFRO Archives feature various AFRO editions covering an impressive span of change, division and progress in African American History.

Library of Congress, African American Newspapers Digitized

Access the digitized African American Newspapers that are part of the Chronicling America project from the Library of Congress.

Library of Congress, African American History Online: A Resource Guide

A large number of primary source collection materials related to African American history are digitized and available online via the Library of Congress’s website, including manuscripts, newspaper articles, images, and rare books. In addition, the Library also provides digital content on African American history through their exhibition program, “Today in History” essays, and online research guides.

Library of Congress: The African-American Mosaic: A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History and Culture

The exhibit covers four areas –Colonization, Abolition, Migrations, and the WPA– of the many covered by the Mosaic. These topics were selected not only because they illustrate well the depth, breadth, and richness of the Library’s black history collections, but also because of the significant and interesting interplay among them. For example, the “back-to-Africa” movement represented by the American Colonization Society is vigorously opposed by abolitionists, and the movement of blacks to the North is documented by the writers and artists who participated in federal projects of the 1930s.

National Archives African American Heritage

The Archives holds a wealth of material documenting the Black experience. This page highlights these resources online, in programs, and through traditional and social media.

National Museum of African American History & Culture, Make Good the Promises: Reconstruction and Its Legacies

Reconstruction—the period following the Civil War—was a revolutionary moment in the nation’s history. For the first time, African Americans were recognized by the U.S. government as equal citizens. But due to white resistance, Reconstruction’s promise of racial equality was not fulfilled. Instead of full citizenship rights, African Americans experienced decades of discrimination, segregation, and terrorism. Learn more about Reconstruction through this online exhibit.

PBS, What to Watch this Black History Month

Celebrate Black History Month this year with a closer look at the lives of various Black Americans who have made indelible marks on history with their artistry, professional achievements, and community activism. We’ve compiled a list of films premiering this month, as well as programs available to stream in February.

ProQuest Historical Newspapers

Selected Databases to Learn More About Black History

HeinOnline’s Civil Rights & Social Justice

A person’s civil rights ensure protection from discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation, national origin or ethnicity, religion, age, and disability. While often confused, civil liberties, on the other hand, are basic freedoms outlined in the Bill of Rights and Constitution. Examples of civil liberties include the right to free speech, to privacy, to remain silent during police interrogation, and the right to have a fair trial. The lifeblood of civil rights protection in the United States is the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment (“No state shall make or enforce any law which shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”). Click through the pages in this database to learn how far our nation has come in fulfilling its promise of “all men are created equal” and how much further it still can go.

HeinOnline’s Slavery in America and the World: History, Culture & Law

This HeinOnline collection brings together a multitude of essential legal materials on slavery in the United States and the English-speaking world. It includes every statute passed by every colony and state on slavery, every federal statute dealing with slavery, and all reported state and federal cases on slavery.

Oxford African American Studies Center

A comprehensive collection of scholarship focused on the lives and events which have shaped African American and African history and culture, coupled with precise search and browse capabilities. Features over 7,500 articles from Oxford’s reference works, approximately 100 primary sources with specially written commentaries, over 1,000 images, over 100 maps, over 200 charts and tables¸ timelines to guide researchers through the history of African Americans and over 6¸000 biographies. The core content includes: Africana, which presents an account of the African and African American experience in five volumes; the Encyclopedia of African American history; Black women in America 2nd ed; and the African American national biography.

ProQuest’s Black Freedom Struggle in the United States: Challenges and Triumphs in the Pursuit of Equality

ProQuest’s Black Freedom Struggle in the United States features 2,000 expertly selected primary source documents – historical newspaper articles, pamphlets, diaries, correspondence and more – from pivotal eras in African American history. Documents are focused on six different phases of Black Freedom: 1. Slavery and the Abolitionist Movement (1790-1860) — 2. The Civil War and the Reconstruction Era (1861-1877) — 3. Jim Crow Era from 1878 to the Great Depression (1878-1932) — 4. The New Deal and World War II (1933-1945) — 5. The Civil Rights and Black Power Movements (1946-1975) — 6. The Contemporary Era (1976-2000). The documents presented here represent a selection of primary sources available in several ProQuest databases.

ProQuest Black Studies Center

The Black Studies Center consists of scholarly journals, commissioned overview essays by top scholars in Black Studies, historic indexes, and The Chicago Defender newspaper from 1910-1975. At the heart of Black Studies Center is Schomburg Studies on the Black Experience, consisting of essays that provide an introduction to major topics in Black Studies. Explore interdisciplinary topics through in-depth essays; read the seminal research and timelines that accompany each topic; and search for images and film clips to provide another dimension to your research.

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