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Posted: February 3, 2010 12:30 a.m.

Library celebrates black history month

Brittany Thomas/

For more than three decades, Black History Month has been recognized in the United States, and throughout the month of February, the Newton County Library will display a timeline of history from the 1600s through today.

Originally celebrated as "Negro History Week" beginning in 1926, the recognition was the brainchild of Dr. Carter G. Woodson, a historian, journalist and author, as well as the founder of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History.

Known as the Father of Black History, Woodson chose to celebrate in February because both President Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass were born in the month and he considered both men to have greatly influenced the lives of black people. In 1976 the week was extended to Black History Month and has been celebrated as such ever since.

At the library, visitors are treated to a timeline, complete with pictures beginning with slavery in North America in 1619 to the election of President Barack Obama in 2009. Along with the timeline, there is a computer set up with history for visitors to read and snippets of music and speeches by black men and women throughout the years. Also in the library are paintings, dolls and wood carvings by local black artists.

All of this will be on display during library hours throughout the month of February. There is no charge to view any of the displays.

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