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Friday, February 3, 2012

Reference Question of the Month

Posted by Judy T.

Black History Month, which is celebrated every February, owes its origin to Dr. Carter G. Woodson.  Carter was born in Virginia in 1975, the son of former slaves.  He obtained a Master’s degree from the University of Chicago in 1907 and then earned a Ph. D. from Harvard University in 1912. Dr. Woodson was concerned that history books largely ignored the black population.  To help remedy this, he established the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in 1915 and also founded the respected Journal of Negro History.  In 1926 Dr. Woodson initiated Negro History Week.  He wrote “We should emphasize not Negro History, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice.”  It is believed that he chose the second week in February because it marks the birthdays of two men who greatly influenced the black population of the United States—Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.  In 1976, Negro History Week expanded into Black History of Month. 

Try this quiz to see how much you know about the role of African-Americans in our country’s history.

1.  Who was the first African-American Nobel Peace Prize winner?

2.  A Montgomery, Alabama seamstress refused to give up her seat on a bus in 1955.  What is the name of this woman who changed the course of history?

3.  Who was the first African- American to serve on the United States Supreme Court?

4.  For what life-saving work is Dr. Charles R. Drew best known?

5.  In 1957 this group of students integrated Central High School in a southern city with the assistance of President Eisenhower and federal troops.  What was the name given to this group?

6.  This East St. Louis native won a total of 6 Olympic medals, three of them gold, between 1984 and 1996. Who is she?

1. Ralph Bunche won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950 for his work mediating a series of armistice agreements between Israel, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan.

2. Rosa Parks

3. Thurgood Marshall

4. Dr. Drew’s research into the storage and shipment of blood plasma revolutionized medicine. He established the American Red Cross blood bank, and he organized “Blood for Britain” during World War II, which was the world’s first blood bank drive.

5. The Little Rock Nine 6. Jackie Joyner-Kersee Source:

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