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Carter G. Woodson, pioneering Black historian


Carter Godwin Woodson was born on this date in 1875.

He was an African American writer, educator and historian.



Born into poverty in Buckingham County, Virginia, Woodson supported himself by working in the coal mines of Kentucky as a teenager and was, as a consequence, unable to enroll in high school until he was 20. After graduating in less than two years, he taught high school, wrote articles, studied at home and abroad, and received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1912. Woodson also studied at Berea College and the University of Chicago.


He was dean of the School of Liberal Arts at Howard University from 1919 to 1920 and at what is now West Virginia State College from 1920 to 1922.


Woodson devoted his life to making "the world see the Negro as a participant rather than as a lay figure in history." To this end he established the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History; founded and edited the Journal of Negro History; organized the first annual Negro History Week, which became Black History Month.


Woodson also founded the Negro History Bulletin newspaper. Among his many published books are "The Mis-Education of the Negro Prior to 1861," "History of the Negro Church," and "The Rural Negro."

Woodson's life's work is the personal inspiration of Benjamin Mchie the founder of African American Registry. Carter G. Woodson died April 3,1950,


Reference: Black Heroes of The Twentieth Century Edited by Jessie Carney Smith Copyright 1998 Visible Ink Press, Detroit, MI ISBN 1-57859-021-3

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