Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Carter G. Woodson, The Father of Black History

Carter Godwin Woodson Life Chronology

On December 19, 1875, Carter G. Woodson, known to many as The Father of Black History, was born in New Canton, Virginia. Had he not been sent to us, would we be recognizing the contributions African Americans have made to this country and to the world? We will never know. However, as insufficient as one month is, February, in celebrating the totality of Black contributions to society, we owe this formal time of reflection to God and Carter G. Woodson. As we celebrate our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, let us not forget our strong and noble heritage, and all that God has done through people of color like Carter G. Woodson.

In 2005, I was a recipient of the Simmons College of Kentucky Future African American Leaders Scholarship. The essay, The Courage of Our Past Gives Us Hope for the Future which recognized the accomplishments of Black intellectuals Frederick Douglass, Carter G. Woodson, and Langston Hughes was written initially to fulfill scholarship requirements. It was later published in the Spring 2006 edition of African American Journal.

Essay Excerpt:
Carter G. Woodson, the founder of Black History Week, which later became Black History Month, often called a man ahead of his time, is another African American intellectual who, through his classic literary works, courageously offered hope for the future.

In his works, The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861 published in 1915, and The Mis-Education of the Negro, published in 1933, Woodson gave diagnosis and prescription for that hope. Carter’s critique of white American institutions of higher learning as instruments of mis-education with regard to heritage and culture is powerful, and his 1933 remedies for correcting said educational injustices are relevant and worthy of 21st century consideration.

Throughout the book, The Mis-Education of the Negro, Woodson warned that African American attempts to imitate white American culture would harm them. Moreover, he emphasized that imitation would not only do harm, but ultimately lead to death.

Carter died in 1950, but left hope to present-day African Americans by encouraging them to learn their history, educate themselves through African American institutions of higher learning, own businesses, and give back to their communities.

Remember, it is not Mohammad, Buddha, Confucius, nor New Age that saves. Jesus saves!

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