Starting in 1926 and expanded in 1976 to cover the whole month of February, time has been set aside to celebrate the lives and achievements of great African-Americans. Whether you want to educate children about important figures in the past or just learn a little more about a person whose life has inspired you, there are a number of great resources available to you on the Web. We’ve collected a few of them here to help you learn, celebrate and remember the contributions of African-Americans to our nation.
These sites address a wide range of historical topics and are a great place to start learning.
- Black History.com: This site provides visitors with an encyclopedia of important information as well as a growing social network.
- About.com African-American History: Learn some of the basics about African-American history from this About.com site.
- African American World: This PBS site contains historical information, profiles of important figures, art and culture photos and media and much more.
- American Legacy: Check out this magazine that’s dedicated to highlighting the achievements of African-Americans, both past and present.
- The History Channel: Black History: Here you’ll be able to watch videos and hear speeches about the civil rights movement, memorable events and important figures.
- CNN Black History Month: CNN provides this site on black history that contains a timeline, stories, important events and even a quiz to test your knowledge.
- Black Facts Online: Need to find out some facts about important historical events in black history? Then visit this fact-filled site.
- African American Odyssey: The Library of Congress has created this site to share some of it’s best resources on African-American history covering the history of slavery to the story of Jackie Robinson.
- African-Americans .org: has a list of all notable/famous African-Americans, information on African-Americans in the Revolutionary War, and more.
- Encyclopedia Britannica’s Guide to Black History: Give this site a read to find biographies, images, timelines and even important documents related to black history.
These bloggers can help you get informed about black history month and important days in black history year round.
- Black on Campus: Authored by Ajuan Mance from Oakland, CA, this blog focuses on African-Americans in higher education, both in their struggle for equal opportunities in the past and their successes today.
- Black Media Mine: Check out this blog for some great videos, music and photos covering the work of notable figures in the arts.
- Discover Black Heritage: If you’re thinking of learning more about black history by traveling to historical sites then this blog is your best bet for great information.
- This Day in Black History: Get a day-by-day guide to what happened in black history from this useful blog.
- Every Month is Black History Month: Teachers and students alike will appreciate this blog that contains a number of resources on social studies and black history.
- We Got Your Black: With sections on music, education and technology, this site can a a great resource for information about African-Americans today.
- Black Sound History: If music is how you prefer to explore the past then don’t miss out on the information provided by this blog.
- Jessica’s African-American History Blog: This blog contains profiles about some notable figures in African-American history.
- Black History 4 Schools: Teachers looking for suggestions and information on black history should give this blog a read.
- Black History Month Blog: Here you can find posts on important moments in black history.
For Teachers and Educators
Check out these sites for some great information and ideas on teaching lessons about black history.
- NYISE Black History: The New York Institute for Special Education maintains this site which contains biographies as well as information on the civil rights movement and the Harlem Renaissance.
- Patchwork of African-American Life: This AT&T site has collected information, lesson plans and technology to help you more effectively teach students about black history.
- African American History Challenge: Quiz your students and yourself about black history with the history challenge on this site.
- Black History Month Resources for Children: Check out this family friendly site for some great links to black history resources for your kids.
- The Black History Calendar: Celebrate black history year round with this calendar.
- Federal Resources for Educational Excellence: Black History: Put those tax dollars to good use by taking advantage of the educational resources offered by this government site.
- Culture and Change: Black History in America: Scholastic has put together this great site on black history that can be a big help to teachers.
- The Black Collegian: Teachers of upper-level students can use the articles on this site to help inform students about important figures in African-American history.
- Education World: Black History: Here you can find activities like matching games, quizzes and some great source materials for teaching students.
- Teaching Day-by-Day: Black History Month: Check out this site to find a guide to teaching black history throughout the whole month of February.
- New York Times Black History Month: Teachers can make great use of this site from the New York Times as it contains a large number of lesson plans on race issues, civil rights, slavery and the harlem renaissance as well as quizzes and games for students.
- Smithsonian Black History Teaching: Even if you can’t bring your class to the Smithsonian you can still make use of some of their resources with these great lesson ideas, calendars and encyclopedias.
Read about important African-Americans in these online biographies.
- Bio.com Black History: Here you’ll find a wide range of biographies for some important and well-known figures in black history.
- Notable African Americans: Learn more about people like inventor Elijah McCoy or educator May McCloud Bethune.
- The Life of Frederick Douglass: This site can help you follow along through the important events of Douglass’ life.
- Marcus Garvey Life and Lessons: Check out this biography to learn more about this important figure in Jamaican history.
- A Biographical Sketch of W.E.B DuBois: DuBois is remembered as one of the greatest figures in African American history and you can find out why from this biographical page.
- Time Heroes and Icons: Jackie Robinson: Read this profile about Jackie Robinson from Time Magazine to find out why they named him one of their top heroes and icons.
- Biography of Nelson Mandela: Find out about the impact Nelson Mandela has has on South Africa and the world on this site.
- Official Website of Malcolm X: Here you can read all about the life, work and beliefs of Malcolm X.
- Great African Americans You Should Know: Feel like you don’t know nearly enough about important African-Americans? This site can help fill in the gaps.
- Biographies of Great African Americans: Pay this educational site a visit to learn about the stories of notable African-Americans.
- Sojourner Truth: If you are familiar with her name but not what she did then read this biographical site.
- African American Biographical Database: Here you can find a large number o biographies that can help expand your knowledge of history.
If you’re seeking out information about a particular episode in black history, these sites can be a big help.
- The African-American Migration Experience: Learn about the spread of people from Africa through the slave trade and after from this informative online exhibit.
- Lynching and Race Riots in the United States: Check out this site from Yale to learn more about this sad chapter in American history.
- Underground Railroad: National Geographic has put together a great collection of information in this online exhibit to help visitors learn more about the dangers and successes of the Underground Railroad.
- MLK Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement: Here you can learn even more about the important contributions of MLK to the Civil Rights Movement.
- Nat Turner’s Confession: If you ever wanted to know more about Nat Turner you can find it on this helpful site.
- American Slave Narratives: Read the words of slaves themselves on this interesting and moving exhibit.
- Eyes on the Prize: The site for this PBS series provides a great collection of documents, videos, profiles and more about the Civil Rights Movement.
- History of Black Military Service: Learn about the contributions of African Americans to the military from the Civil War onward on this site.
- African-Americans in WWII: Find out what role African-Americans played in WWII here.
- Juneteenth Worldwide Celebration: If you’ve never heard of this celebration dedicated to the commemorating the end of slavery then check out this site.
- Exploring the Life and History of Buffalo Soldiers: The government archives are a great place to learn more about the contributions of the buffalo soldiers to the US military.
Online Exhibits and Museums
These museums provide access to a number of great exhibits and resources about black history.
- AFRO-America Online Museum: From resistance to slavery to the Million Man March, this site provides information, photos and more on a range of important events in African American history.
- The African-American Mosaic: This free resource guide from the Library of Congress is a great place to learn more and see photos of the history of blacks in America.
- National Civil Rights Museum: Explore the history of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States on this museum’s website.
- Touchstone: Explore the Civil Rights Memorial in Montgomery, Alabama through these photos provided by National Geographic.
- The Meredith Mississippi March: Here you can find photos that document the historic march from Memphis, Tennessee to Jackson, Mississippi.
- Powerful Days in Black and White: Browse through the work of photojournalist Charles Moore to see images of the Civil Rights Movement in stunning black and white.
- The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow: This PBS program’s site contains some great educational tools, maps, and stories to help you learn more about Jim Crow laws and their impact.
- Civil Rights Movement Veterans: Pay this site a visit to learn more about the individuals who made strides in the Civil Rights Movement.
- The African American Museum in Philadelphia: Check out some of the collections offered by this museum on this site or find out how to pay them a visit.
- The Acacia Collection: This great collection located in Georgia, a portion of which is right online for you to look at, helps document important objects that detail the history of African Americans.
- Association of African American Museums: Looking for a museum in your area that highlights African American history? Then check out this site to get more information.
- Tubman Museum: Visit this museum’s site to learn more about the life and work of Harriet Tubman.
- The Frederick Douglass Papers: This online exhibit provides access to some of Douglass’ personal writings and correspondence.
- The Black Inventor Online Museum: Here you can learn all about the wonderful and innovative things we use everyday that were invented by African Americans.
Literature and the Arts
Learn more about and see the work of some African-Americans who’ve made a big impact on the arts from these sites.
- Langston Hughes: Learn more about the life and work of this landmark poet from this Poets.org profile.
- Rita Dove: A Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner, Rita Dove’s biography and a number of her writings are documented on this site.
- Maya Angelou: Perhaps one of the most well-known poets of the 20th century, Maya Angelou has won numerous awards and critical acclaim for her work. Here you’ll be able to learn about the woman and her work.
- Etheridge Knight: A noted member of the Black Arts Movement, Knight is well-known for his poetry and you read about him and his writings on this site.
- Jacob Lawerence: This artist is exhibited in museums around the world and here you can not only learn a little more about him but also see the work that has made him so popular.
- National Gallery of Art: The National Gallery of Art has created a special online collection to honor the work of African American artists on this site.
- Traveling the Blues Highway: Following along in this picture essay that explores the history of the blues.
- A BrieF Guide to the Harlem Renaissance: Learn all about the literary revolution that took place in Harlem in the 1920’s.
- Jazz History: Find out more about the rich history of jazz music from this site.
- National Museum of African Art: Pay this museum’s site a visit to learn more about African heritage in both historical and present-day works.
Archives and Research Centers
If you want to do a little research or some in-depth learning, these sites are great assets.
- Amistad Research Center: This site is home to collections of art, historical records and loads of information that can help you if you’re researching or just learning for the fun of it.
- The Black Archives: Focusing on the Midwest, this collection of information chronicles the experience of African Americans in Missouri, Kansas, Iowa and Oklahoma.
- Princeton University Library: The Princeton University Library has a large collection of resources on African American history, and this site provides the information you’ll need to get in touch with librarians for research purposes.
- Duke University John Hope Franklin Collection: This division of the Duke Library in North Carolina is a “repository for African and African American studies documentation and an educational outreach” and is named after a noted African American historian.
- The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History: You’ll find a large amount of information and an online exhibit about slavery, abolition and Gilder Lehrman on this site.
- Harriet Jacobs Collection at Yale: Harriet Jacobs wrote the book Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Written by Herself. This site is home to a collection of her personal writings and correspondence.
- Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture: The New York Public Library is home to this collection, and provides a large number of digitized resources that anyone, not just NY residents, can use.
- Teenie Harris Archive Project: Teenie Harris, a noted photographer, is highlighted on this site. Here you can check out his photos documenting not only his talent but the history of the Depression and the Civil Rights Movement.
- Southern Labor Archives: From slavery to industrialization, this collection of documents is a great place to find information on work in the South.
- The Dorothy Porter Wesley Archives: A lover of books and a librarian herself, Dorothy Porter Wesley is commemorated in this archive collection of manuscripts, speeches, papers, art and more.
- Moorland-Spingarn Research Center: This research center is noted as being among the world’s “largest and most comprehensive repositories for the documentation of the history and culture of people of African descent in Africa, the Americas, and other parts of the world.”
- Freedom’s Journal: This newspaper was the first owned and operated by African Americans. Here you can read a copy of one and find out more about African Americans in printing.
- Archives of African American Music and Culture: Check out the wide range of information offered by this site that covers African American music and cultural phenomena post-WWII.
Institutes and Organizations
These sites provide a range of information, assistance and history to visitors.
- MLK Jr. Research and Education Institute: Stanford is home to this institute where you can read King’s papers and biography and listen to some of his inspirational speeches.
- NAACP: This organization has played an important role in the battle for equal rights in both the past and present. Learn more about them from this site.
- Association for the Study of African American Life and History: A list of resources about black history month wouldn’t be complete without a link to the organization that started it all. Read more about how the establishment of black history month came about and the work done by the group on the ASALH site.
- Civil Rights.org: Find out how civil rights is being taken into the 21st century from this organization’s site.
- W.E.B. DuBois Institute for African and African American Research: Check out this site to learn about the research being done by this Institute and how you may be able to get funding for your own work.
- The Carter G. Woodson Institute: Carter G. Woodson helped found black history month and you can read about his personal accomplishments as well as the work done at his institute on this site.
- Tolerance.org: This organization is all about teaching tolerance and acceptance to kids and adults alike so visit their site to take advantage of the resources they offer.
- Center for Black Music Research: If you’d like to learn more about the research that’s been done on black music then this site is a great place to start.