Since 1976, every United States president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month.
The federally recognized celebration, as then-President Gerald Ford said in 1976, calls for all Americans to "seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history."
Here are eight quotes from some of our country’s most notable historical figures.
Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.
- Frederick Douglass
... history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.
- Michelle Obama
Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
- Harriet Tubman
I have learned over the years that when one's mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.
- Rosa Parks
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
The best way to make dreams come true is to wake up.
- Mae C. Jemison
Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.
- Malcolm X
Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.
- Maya Angelou