Black History Month


Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, Founder of NCNW and Bethune Cookman University, gave unstintingly of her time and talent to many important causes.  One of those causes was ASALH, The Association for the Study of African American Life and History, out of which grew Black History Month.

Like Carter G. Woodson, Founder of ASALH (who is known as the “Father of Black History”), Dr. Bethune’s parents were enslaved.  They both understood how important gaining a proper education is when striving to make the most out of one’s divine right of freedom. From 1936 to 1951, Dr. Bethune served as the first woman president of ASALH.   She labored closely with Dr. Woodson to bring continuity and stability to ASALH.

Today, as we remember and pay tribute to Dr. Bethune, to Dr. Woodson and to ASALH for bequeathing us the legacy of Black History Month, Dr. Bethune’s words ring as profoundly today as they did in 1955, when she included them in her Last Will and Testament.

“I Leave you respect for the use of power – We live in a world that respects the use of power above all things. Power, intelligently directed, can lead to more freedom. Unwisely directed, it can be a dreadful destructive force. During my lifetime I have seen the power of the Negro grow enormously.  It has always been my first concern that this power should be placed on the side of human justice.”