Hugh Baird College

Black History Month 2019

Posted 4th October 2019.

October is Black History Month in the UK and it’s been celebrated nationwide every year for nearly 40 years.

This month was originally founded to recognise the contributions that people of African and Caribbean backgrounds have made to this country over many generations.

Now, Black History Month has expanded to include the history of not just Afro- Caribbean black people but all black people in general.

Why is Black History Month important?

Black history month was first launched in London in the 1980s, where the aim was for the local community to challenge racism and educate themselves and others about the British history that was not taught in schools.

Black people have been in Britain for a lot longer than previously thought – One of the oldest skeletons ever found was that of the Cheddar Man who had dark skin.

Archaeologist, the people who study human history through digging up sites, looking at bones and ancient objects, think that he was alive during the stone age.

Throughout history black people have always been present in the UK but there has been a lack of representation in the history books.

In paintings of Henry the Eighth you can see black people in the background. Queen Victoria even had a black goddaughter who’s mother was a Nigerian Princess called Omoba, she was given to the queen when her parents died after being captured by slave traders, her name was changed to Sarah Forbes-Bonetta.

Many people say that it’s important to remember the forgotten people who have helped to shape the UK.

How do people celebrate?

Many people take the time to do research into their backgrounds or find out more about black people who have made a difference to the country.

People across the UK go to museums to find out more about Britain and it’s part in the transatlantic slave trade- a time where black people were traded for goods and sold into slavery to work. This lasted for more than 400 years.

Schools teach children about important and influential black men and women from history.

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