University News
For Immediate Release: 
Feb 17 2000

Local Colleges Sponsor Events to Celebrate Black History Month

Athens, W.Va. - Concord College and Bluefield State College will be sponsoring the following Black History Programs at Bluefield State’s Student Union.

Saturday, February 19, 6:30 p.m., BSC Student Union

Bluefield Community Choir–Directors, Veron Walton & Larry Thompson

Spirits of Joy–Director, Barbara Johnson (from Pearisburg, Virginia)

Todd French, Guest Speaker

The Charlton Family Singers

Wednesday, February 23, 11:30 a.m., BSC Student Union

Regency, (from Baltimore, Maryland) will present a concert a cappella

Another event is being planned for March. Details will be announced at a later date.

BLACK HISTORY ACTIVITIES AT CONCORD COLLEGE

Saturday, February 19, 6:00 p.m., Wilson Hall Recreation Room

Fun, Food, Fellowship and Discussion–Pot-luck dinner.

Sunday, February 20, 10:00 a.m., Wilson Hall Parking Lot

Visit Redeeming Life Christian Center in Bluefield for Sunday worship.

Thursday, February 24, 8:00 p.m., North Towers Lobby

Beloved (starring Oprah Winfrey)

Tuesday, February 29th, 8:30 p.m., College Center Subway (Stage Area)

Readers' Play–COLORED MUSEUM

Dianne Grych, advisor for the Black Student Union stated that, "Black History Month is a time not only to celebrate our history but share our culture with others. A truly inclusive education is a tall order, but something we should strive for. In an ideal world, there wouldn’t be a need for Black History Month, because everyone’s contribution would be recognized."

For more information on activities at Bluefield State College, call 1-304-327-4187. For more information on activities at Concord College, call 1-304-384-6077.

-CC-

Concord College Notes: Americans have recognized black history annually since 1926, first as "Negro History Week" and later as "Black History Month." What you might not know is that black history had barely begun to be studied–or even documented–when the tradition originated. Although blacks have been in America at least as far back as colonial times, it was not until the 20th century that they gained a respectable presence in the history books. We owe the celebration of Black History Month, and more importantly, the study of black history, to Dr. Carter G. Woodson. Born to parents who were former slaves, he spent his childhood working in the Kentucky coal mines and enrolled in high school at age twenty. He graduated within two years and later went on to earn a Ph.D. from Harvard. The scholar was disturbed to find in his studies that history books largely ignored the black American population–and when blacks did figure into the picture, it was generally in ways that reflected the inferior social position they were assigned at the time. Woodson, always one to act on his ambitions, decided to take on the challenge of writing black Americans into the nation's history. He established the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (now called the Association for the Study of Afro-American Life and History) in 1915, and a year later founded the widely respected Journal of Negro History. In 1926, he launched Negro History Week as an initiative to bring national attention to the contributions of black people throughout American history. He was a Dean at West Virginia State College at Institute, West Virginia, when he instituted "Negro History Week."

PO BOX 1000, VERMILLION ST., ATHENS, WV 24712.