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​Mecklenburg County Celebrates Black History Month

2/1/2018

Black HistoryFebruary is Black History Month and there are tons of ways you can explore this fascinating part of American history right here in Mecklenburg County. The stories of African-Americans’ struggles and triumphs should be shared with the world. This month, celebrate the rich history of African-Americans and their contributions to humanity.

Take time to learn of the historic figures who achieved greatness in the fields of education, business, medicine, science, government, sports and the arts. Though their journeys were difficult, these legends succeeded despite the odds.
 
Here are some events that are taking place this month in our community:

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Charlotte Cultural Guide

Charlotte Museum of History

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture

When February ends, continue to celebrate and discover the uniqueness of the African-American culture and how it is intricately woven into the fabric of our nation and beyond.

Did you know?

Mecklenburg County’s Romare Bearden Park was named in honor of artist, Romare Howard Bearden, a black Charlotte native whose work depicted the American South, African-American culture and unity. 

The Seal of Mecklenburg County was designed by Harvey Boyd, a black advertisement artist and native of Mecklenburg County. County commissioners adopted the seal in 1964. It features symbols of the County’s history, growth and future.

Fred Alexander Sr. was the first African American elected to public office in Mecklenburg County since Reconstruction. From 1965 to 1974, he served five terms on Charlotte City Council, including one term as the city’s first black mayor pro tempore. From 1974 to 1980 he served on the North Carolina Senate for the 22nd District.

Mecklenburg County native Eliza Ann Grier was the first African-American woman licensed to practice medicine in the state of Georgia.

The first public library for African Americans in North Carolina was the Brevard Street Library in Charlotte. It was in operation from 1905 to 1961. Allegra Westbrooks managed the branch, becoming the first black supervisor in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public Library System.