Sen. Brown Statement on Black History Month

Annual Commemoration Started by Son of Former Slaves who Earned Ph.D. from Harvard University In Order to Address Absence of Information in U.S. History Canon

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In honor of Black History Month, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) released the following statement:

“When Carter G. Woodson – who labored in coal mines as a child – started what became Black History Month in 1926, Ohio had already produced 19th Century Poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. Columbus-native Granville T. Woods had already invented the telegraph device that sent messages between moving trains and train stations.

“And Mary Jane Patterson had already become the first black American woman to graduate from Oberlin College. Garrett Morgan, a Clevelander, had already invented the traffic signal. Ohio State Representative John P. Green had already introduced a bill to establish Labor Day in Ohio.” 

“Today, in honor of those pioneering Ohioans and the notable Ohioans who came after – including two Pulitzer Prize-winners: Nobel Prize-winning writer Toni Morrison from Lorain and former Poet Laureate of the United States Rita Dove from Akron – it is my honor to salute African Americans who continue to enrich American culture, the arts, sciences, and history.”

Sen. Brown seeks to create new opportunities to build on this legacy of achievement. By advocating for science, technology, engineering, and manufacturing education for underrepresented groups, including African Americans, Brown is bolstering the next generation of Ohio artists, scientists, and engineers.

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