CLEMSON – February marks Black History Month across the nation. Several ongoing events on Clemson University’s campus provide local opportunities to celebrate Black History Month and encourage dialogue about campus diversity.

“Race and the University,” a year-long series to promote campus-wide dialogue about race and diversity at Clemson, will have a number of programs throughout the month.

The #IAMCLEMSON Project will present:

At Fort Hill, the historic home of the Calhouns and Clemsons, is highlighting the African-American Experience at Fort Hill this school year and has displays of documents and photographs of and information about some of the slaves and servants who lived on the property. Among the displays are reproductions of clothing from the era that were produced by a Creative Inquiry group of students.

Inside Clemson, the university’s faculty and staff e-newsletter will feature profiles of faculty and staff who are working toward a more diverse campus online at http://www.clemson.edu/faculty-staff/.

Black History Month was brought into being by Carter G. Woodson, who, despite being born to slave parents, earned his Ph.D. from Harvard. During his studies, Woodson noticed a trend of absence of black Americans in historical texts.

Woodson went on to found the Association for the Study of Negro Life in 1915 and the Journal of Negro Life one year later. In 1926, he began Negro History Week with hopes to increase the nation’s awareness of both the contributions and the struggles of black Americans. Woodson chose the second week of February because it held the birthdays of two people whom he believed to be important figures in black history, Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln.

In 1976, the nation’s bicentennial, and the week was expanded to a full month.

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