black history

10 Children's Books Honoring Juneteenth

Books to honor Juneteenth

Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. Also known as Emancipation Day, Freedom Day or Black Independence Day, it has been celebrated annually on June 19 since 1865 in various parts of the country. Juneteenth became an official federal holiday on June 17, 2021. If you’re attending your first Juneteenth jubilee or looking for ways to celebrate, check out this booklist!

Jacksonville's First Black Lawyer

Joseph E. Lee, Jacksonville's first black lawyer

Joseph E. Lee is a prominent figure in Jacksonville history. He holds the distinction of having been the City's first Black lawyer as well as having left a legacy of commitment to public service and community. Jacksonville Public Library was recently able to digitize an extensive collection of Joseph E. Lee's professional and personal correspondence, dating from 1877 – 1882. These papers help paint a clearer picture of the man and his accomplishments.

Black History Month 2022

Black History Month

Black History Month (or African American History Month) is celebrated annually in February. It was first created by historian Carter G. Woodson as a week-long event in 1926. Encompassing the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, it highlighted the many achievements that had been made by Black Americans since emancipation. Whether you’re looking for fictional characters or real-life heroes who look like you or you want to learn more about history, the Library has some great options!

Books to Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Books to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist minister and social activist who led the Civil Rights Movement from the mid-1950s until his death by assassination in 1968. His skillful rhetoric, iconic speeches, grassroots organizing and nonviolent approach to resistance were fundamental to that movement’s success in ending legal segregation in the United States. To learn more about the man and the federal holiday that honors his achievements, check out these biographies, speeches and documentaries.

Zora Neale Hurston's Birthday

Happy Birthday Zora Neale Hurston

Zora Neale Hurston was born on January 7, 1891. After her mother’s death in 1904, Hurston relocated from Central Florida to Jacksonville where she grew, lived, worked, played and loved in Florida’s largest city. A central figure in the Harlem Renaissance, her work celebrated African American culture in the rural South.

Rosa Parks Day

Rosa Parks Day 2021

Rosa Parks was arrested and charged with violating Montgomery’s segregation law on December 1, 1955, an act that would kick start the Montgomery bus boycott. "I had given up my seat before, but this day, I was especially tired. Tired from my work as a seamstress, and tired from the ache in my heart,” Parks would later say. If you have been inspired by Rosa Park’s story to take a stand in your own life or if you would like to learn more about her or other civil rights leaders like the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Library has a few suggested reads!

Books on Juneteenth, Freedom, and the Black Experience

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Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, commemorates date in 1865 – nearly two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation – when the last of the enslaved communities in Texas learned the Civil War had ended and that they were free. Celebrated on June 19, the term is a combination of June and nineteenth and has become a celebration of independence, the fight for equality, and Black culture.

Juneteenth: Freedom Deferred But Found

Juneteenth

Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, commemorates date in 1865 – nearly two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation – when the last of the enslaved communities in Texas learned the Civil War had ended and that they were free. Celebrated on June 19, the term is a combination of June and nineteenth and has become a celebration of independence, the fight for equality, and Black culture.

11 Films to Watch for Black History Month (and After)

11 Films to Watch During Black History Month on Kanopy

For Black History Month 2021, Kanopy has featured "11 Films to Watch." These included important films like Oscar-winner Moonlight, The Last Black Man in San Francisco, Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise, and Oscar-nominated documentary I Am Not Your Negro. Black history shouldn't be confined to just one month. So, even if you're starting late or you missed the celebration entirely, rest easy. There's really no deadline on this list. They are, however, a great addition to #theblackfriendchallenge and any other self-education you may be doing on anti-racism and social justice.

Recently Digitized: Local Black History Gem

Scrapbook page from the segregated Duval Recreation Program in the 1950s

In the 1950s, the Duval County Recreation Program ran in the segregated African-American schools, the Jefferson Street Swimming Pool, and the Brewster Hospital during summer break. Activities included playground, library, homemaking, arts and crafts, movies, and music. These photos were originally kept in very large wood bound scrapbooks but can now be accessed online thanks to a recent digitization project.

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