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10 Important Black History Month Figures EVERYONE Should Know

February 1st is day one of Black History month – an important look back at the black experience and the contributions,  historical actions and acts that have shaped our country and culture.

This month is a perfect time to remember those pivotal people who changed and are still changing history, not just for the black community but for everyone. Here are 10 important black history figures that everyone should know.

Barack Obama
Barack Obama isn’t just the 44th president of the United States but he also happens to be the first African-American to hold the job. He is a wonderful role model for all kids, of any color and he is still making history. Read more about Barack Obama here.

Jackie Robinson
Back in 1947 Jackie Robinson had the distinction of being the first African American to play in Major League Baseball. He was a Brooklyn Dodger and in paving the way for hundreds of players after him he endured mistreatment not just from his teammates but the fans. But he stood strong against the angst. Read more about Jackie Robinson here. 

Martin Luther King Jr.
In January we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. with his own day. But it’s never a bad thing to revisit this important orator, civil rights leader and icon. You can read more about Martin Luther King Jr. and his work right here.

Rosa Parks
Back in 1955 Rosa Parks performed a subtle and simple but historical significant act. She sat down on the bus. The seamstress didn’t give up her seat which was the policy at the time. She was tired and tired of “giving in.” This act helped start the civil rights movement. Read more about Rosa Parks here.

Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela has led a fascinating life. After protesting, fighting and tirelessly trying to get equality for his fellow South Africans he was jailed for 27 years. After much struggle, he was finally released and then went on to become president of the country! Read more about Nelson Mandela here.

Booker T. Washington
Booker T. Washington was a pivotal figure in education. After working hard to get his own schooling, he went on to teach, fight for education and work to change the way Americans, especially African American’s are taught. Find out more about Booker T. Washington here.

Frederick Douglass
Known for his autobiography the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass that was published 1845, the ex-slave became an important figure and was a consultant to President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War. Read more about Frederick Douglass here.

George Washington Carver
Born to slaves, George Washington Carver went on to revolutionize the farming industry. He made a great impact on the agriculture  industry in America. Read more about George Washington Carver here.

Harriet Tubman
Harriet Tubman was one of the great figures of the Underground Railroad. During her 20 trips, she reportedly freed approx. 300 slaves. You can read more about her here.

Sojourner Truth
Originally named  Isabella Baumfree, Sojourner Truth was born to slaves but after much turmoil she escaped. She got involved in the abolitionist movement and then the women’s suffrage movement. You can read more about Sojourner Truth here.

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