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March 25, 2024

    Black History Month: Fact of the Day


    Each year, February 1st starts a new month dedicated to black history called Black History Month. In particular, the month celebrates the lives and accomplishments of prominent African American figures. Each day of this month, I will share one fact about a historical detail or person to carry out the message of BHM.

    February 1st: Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass are the reason why Black History Month is in February. Because their birthdays are in February, it was decided that it should be this month to commemorate two of the most prominent figures in black history.

    February 2nd: In 1850, Lucy Stanton was the first black woman to earn a four-year college degree. Stanton earned her literary degree from Oberlin College.

    February 3rd: Famous singer Nat King Cole was the first Black American to host a television show. Cole hosted The Nat King Cole Show on NBC in 1956.

    February 4th: In the early 1770s, Quakers created the first public school for black children.

    February 5th: Thurgood Marshall was the first black justice on the Supreme Court. He was officially nominated in 1967 by President Lyndon B. Johnson.

    February 6th: Stevie Wonder was the first Black artist to win a Grammy Award for Album of the Year.

    February 7th: Bryant Gumbel was the first black person to host a morning show. The broadcast journalist joined the show in 1981.

    February 8th: John Taylor was the first Black athlete to win a gold medal at the Olympics. He won the 4 x 400 meter relay in 1908.

    February 9th: Madam C.J. Walker was the first Black female self-made millionaire. She was known as a prominent creator of a line of hair care products for Black women.

    February 10th: Althea Gibson was the first Black tennis player to win a Grand Slam. She won her first in 1956 and went on to win another 11 Grand Slam tournaments throughout her career.

    February 11th: George Washington Carver’s work led to more than 500 products created from peanuts and sweet potatoes. Throughout his career, he promoted alternative crops to cotton, and his research contributed greatly to the economic growth of the rural South.

    February 12th: Fritz Pollard and Bobby Marshall were the first Black athletes to play in the National Football League (NFL). The players joined in 1920.

    February 13th: Carter G. Woodson is the “Father of Black History.” He was the second Black student to graduate from Harvard University with a doctorate degree. It was his research that led to the establishment of Black History Month in 1926.

    February 14th: William Tucker was the first Black person born in the 13 colonies. He was born to indentured servants in Jamestown, Virginia in 1624.

    February 15th: The first novel published by a Black author was published in 1853. William Wells Brown wrote this groundbreaking novel called Clotel: or, The President’s Daughter.

    February 16th: Claudette Colvin was the first Black woman known to refuse to give up her seat on a bus. Although Rosa Parks is often given credit for this protest, Colvin was actually arrested nine months earlier for refusing to give up her seat for passengers.

    February 17th: Lucy Terry wrote the first known poem by a Black American. Terry wrote “Bars Fight” in 1746 after she was freed at the age of 26.

    February 18th: Phyllis Wheatley published the first book of poetry by a Black author in 1773. Wheatley was once a slave, but she released Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral upon her emancipation.

    February 19th: In 1940, Hattie McDaniel was the first person to win an Oscar. She took home the academy award for her supporting role in Gone with the Wind.

    February 20th: Barack Obama was the first Black president of the United States. The lawyer and former senator of Illinois first elected in 2008 and voted for re-election in 2012.

    February 21st: Kamala Harris is the first Black vice president of the United States. Her father immigrated from Jamaica and her mother immigrated from India.

    February 22nd: Robert Johnson was the first Black billionaire. He founded Black Entertainment Television (BET) and amassed a fortune when he sold it in 2001.

    February 23rd: Sheryl Swoopes was the first player to sign with the WNBA. The star athlete joined in 1996.

    February 24th: Gabby Douglass made history at the 2012 London Olympics. She became the first Black woman to win the Individual All-Around title.

    February 25th: Septima Poinsette Clark helped found nearly 1,000 citizenship schools. The efforts by the civil rights activist and campaigner helped Blacks register to vote.

    February 26th: Jack Johnson was the first African American man to hold the World Heavyweight Champion boxing title in 1908. He held on until 1915.

    February 27th: John Mercer Langston was the first Black man to become a lawyer when he passed the bar in Ohio in 1854. He also was one of the first African Americans ever elected to public office in America.

    February 28th: Hiram Rhodes Revels of Mississippi was the first African American member of the United States Senate. He took the oath of office on February 25th, 1870.

    February 29th: Shirley Chisholm was the first African American woman elected to the House of Representatives in 1968. She represented the state of New York and later became the first black major party candidate for president in in 1972.

    **All facts found on and

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    About the Contributor
    Cameron Mitchell
    Cameron Mitchell, Head Editor
    Hello, my name is Cameron Mitchell! I am currently a senior at Collierville High School and one of the Head Editors of the Dragon Spirit News! So excited to produce so many new articles this year!!

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