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- One of the first steps to combating racial injustice is learning and understanding Black history.
- We’re highlighting great US destinations to learn about the contributions of Black Americans.
- From museums and cultural sites to Black-owned hotels, here’s what to see and where to stay.
February is Black History Month in the United States, marking an annual celebration of the achievements and influences of African Americans on United States history and culture. It was officially designated in 1976 by President Gerald Ford, who hoped it would “honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
Black History Month evolved from Negro History Week, founded in 1926 by historian Carter G. Woodson and minister Jesse E. Moorland and their Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). They chose the second week of February as it coincided with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.
Black history in the United States is American history, so while February is Black History Month, think about it as a month that gives you an excuse and ample resources to dive deeper into American history.
Every year the ASALH chooses a theme. The theme for Black History Month 2021 is “Black Family: Representation, Identity and Diversity.” This explores the African diaspora and the spread of Black families throughout the United States from slavery to The Great Migration to present day.
With travelers looking for more local options within the United States, this creates a unique opportunity to support Black businesses and explore previously overlooked locales in the US that go beyond well-known Black-history rich destinations, such as D.C. or Atlanta.
As the country is still in the grips of COVID-19, be aware that there’s no guarantee when it comes to safety and travel right now. We always recommend following guidelines from the CDC, social distancing, wearing masks in public areas, and washing hands frequently.
That said, we hope you use this as inspiration to explore and to learn about the beautiful, and not-so-beautiful, history of our country. From colorful beach communities you didn’t know had a Black history to majority Black cities making a comeback as small businesses thrive, we’ve rounded up great destinations that highlight the historical and present-day contributions of African Americans in the US.
We’re rounding out our recommendations with Black-owned hotels, shops, and eateries not to miss.
Read on for 7 destinations in the US to learn about Black history.
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