The significance of african american history

If the Nama-Herero wars were among the most savage in colonial Africa, an equally bitter, costly colonial war was fought by Britain against the Afrikaner South African Republic. Many historians stress that in reality the contest was for control of the rich Witwatersrand gold-mining complex located in the SAR. Although there were many Uitlanders foreigners; i.

The significance of african american history

I addressed the familiar themes of the origins of that great document: I recalled the longstanding debate over the role of Abraham Lincoln, the Radicals in Congress, abolitionists in the North, the Union army in the field and slaves on the plantations of the South in the destruction of slavery and in the authorship of legal freedom.

And I stated my long-held position that slaves played a critical role in securing their own freedom. Related Content Historical Laughter As I left the broadcast booth, a knot of black men and women—most of them technicians at the station—were talking about emancipation and its meaning.

Once I was drawn into their discussion, I was surprised to learn that no one in the group was descended from anyone who had been freed by the proclamation or any other Civil War measure.

Others may have been the children of immigrants.

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While they seemed impressed—but not surprised—that slaves had played a part in breaking their own chains, and were interested in the events that had brought Lincoln to his decision during the summer ofthey insisted it had nothing to do with them.

Simply put, it was not their history. The conversation weighed upon me as I left the studio, and it has since. Much of the collective consciousness of black people in mainland North America—the belief of individual men and women that their own fate was linked to that of the group—has long been articulated through a common history, indeed a particular history: In commemorating this history—whether on Martin Luther King Jr.

Such celebrations—their memorialization of the past—are no different from those attached to the rituals of Vietnamese Tet celebrations or the Eastern Orthodox Nativity Fast, or the celebration of the birthdays of Christopher Columbus or Casimir Pulaski; social identity is ever rooted in history.

But for African-Americans, their history has always been especially important because they were long denied a past.

The significance of african american history

Given opportunity, black Americans voted and stood for office in numbers not seen since the collapse of Reconstruction almost years earlier. They soon occupied positions that had been the exclusive preserve of white men for more than half a century. By the beginning of the 21st century, black men and women had taken seats in the United States Senate and House of Representatives, as well as in state houses and municipalities throughout the nation.

Ina black man assumed the presidency of the United States. African-American life had been transformed. Within months of passing the Voting Rights Act, Congress passed a new immigration law, replacing the Johnson-Reed Act ofwhich had favored the admission of northern Europeans, with the Immigration and Nationality Act.

The new law scrapped the rule of national origins and enshrined a first-come, first-served principle that made allowances for the recruitment of needed skills and the unification of divided families. This was a radical change in policy, but few people expected it to have much practical effect.

It will not reshape the structure of our daily lives. At the time it was passed, the foreign-born proportion of the American population had fallen to historic lows—about 5 percent—in large measure because of the old immigration restrictions.

Not since the s had the foreign-born made up such a tiny proportion of the American people. Bythe United States was no longer a nation of immigrants. During the next four decades, forces set in motion by the Immigration and Nationality Act changed that.

The number of immigrants entering the United States legally rose sharply, from some 3.

Slavery comes to North America , 1619

During the s, a record 7. By the beginning of the 21st century, the United States was accepting foreign-born people at rates higher than at any time since the s.African-American cultural history. From the earliest days of American slavery in the 17th century, slave owners sought to exercise control over their slaves by attempting to strip them of their African culture.

The physical isolation and societal marginalization of African slaves and, later, of their free progeny, however, facilitated the retention of .

An African from Hernando de Soto's Expedition into the Lower Mississippi River valley decides to remain behind to make his home among the Native Americans there. Africans in the New World. In the United States, the month of February is observed as Black History Month or National African American History Month, and we use the month to remember the important contributions and achievements of African Americans throughout our nation’s history. The celebration can be felt nationally and worldwide as many organizations, cities, states and countries host events [ ].

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Aug 21,  · Watch video · Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of blacks in U.S. history. This article was written by B. Gordon Wheeler and originally appeared in the February issue of Wild West..

His Black California: The History of African-Americans in the Golden State is suggested for further reading, along with The Black Infantry in the West, , by Arlen L. Fowler; The Battles and Victories of Allen Allensworth by .

African-American history is the part of American history that looks at the African-Americans or Black Americans in the United States.. Although previously marginalized, African-American history has gained ground in school and university curricula and gained wider scholarly attention since the late 20th century.

The black history that pre .

African American Culture History – The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland