Black History Month Proclamation
National Black History Month – February 2021
WHEREAS, During National Black History Month, we celebrate the vast contributions of Black and African Americans to our Nation’s history and identity; and
WHEREAS, Black is history is not only Black History but American History; and
WHEREAS, In 1926, Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of African American Life and History proposed a national “Negro History Week,” which was intended to showcase everything students learned about Black history throughout the school year; and
WHEREAS, Woodson, known as the “Father of Black History,” whose parents were enslaved, was an author, historian and the second African American to earn a Ph.D. at Harvard University; and
WHEREAS, Woodson chose the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of Frederick Douglass, a famed abolitionist who escaped from slavery, and President Abraham Lincoln, who formally abolished slavery; and
WHEREAS, February 1 is National Freedom Day, the anniversary of the approval of the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery in 1865; and
WHEREAS, In 1949, President Harry Truman recognized National Freedom Day and urged citizens to pause to contemplate its significance and in 1976, during the height of the civil rights movement, President Gerald Ford expanded the week into Black History Month; and
WHEREAS, The theme of Black History Month for 2021 is “The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity”; and
WHEREAS, The Town of Davidson is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. This stance includes the cultural and racial affirmation of our community members who identify as Black African American; and
WHEREAS, The Town of Davidson strives to close the equity and outcome gaps for Black African American through policies and practices that reflect the experiences of Black African Americans, ensure greater access and opportunity and honor history, heritage, and contributions.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Mayor Rusty Knox and the Board of Commissioners of the Town of Davidson, do hereby proclaim the Month of February 2021 as Black History Month in the Town of Davidson and encourage all residents to honor Black history and culture.
Proclaimed this 11th day of February 2021.
Rusty Knox Mayor
Following this proclamation, the Mayor and several board members spoke about the recent passing of Mr. Joseph G. McClain – a man who is a key figure in the history of our Town. Mr. McClain was the first African American member of the Davidson Town Board, he passed away on January 31. Please see the full story remembering and honoring Mr. McClain, as well as his obituary.