African American History

Learn about the achievements of African Americans who have shaped South Carolina and American history.

Black History Month is celebrated every February to honor the achievements of African Americans who have shaped American history. Historian Carter G. Woodson hoped to raise awareness of African American's contributions to civilization by establishing Negro History Week. The event was first celebrated during a week in February 1926 that included both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass' birthdays. The week was later expanded to a month in 1976 during the United States bicentennial.

PHOTO: On March 20, 1969, Black hospital workers at the Medical College of South Carolina in Charleston went on strike to protest the firing of twelve employees and to call for higher wages and union recognition.

Within this Collection

Briggs v. Elliot Case | The World of Cecil -Shorts

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Learn about the Briggs v. Elliott court case - The first in history to challenge segregation in public education. Joseph DeLaine, Levi Pearson, and Harry Briggs all played pivotal roles in this...
Final Chapter | The World of Cecil

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Cecil's career and life are described as essential in helping people understand the history, the sacrifices, and the victories of the movement. His dedication and ability to capture powerful moments...
Art Architecture Invention | The World of Cecil

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Cecil's frustration with racial barriers in his dream of becoming an architect fueled his innovative spirit. He embarked on a journey of self-learning, eventually designing houses, including one with...
Cecil and Strom | The World of Cecil

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This chapter explores the complex relationship between Cecil Williams and Strom Thurmond, a prominent figure in South Carolina politics with a history of segregationist policies. Cecil Williams, who...
Elloree | The World of Cecil

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This segment focuses on the actions of the state legislature in South Carolina, led by Governor George Bell Timmerman, to pass laws making it illegal to belong to the NAACP. Teachers in Elloree...
The Charleston Hospital Strike | The World of Cecil

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The first segment of The World of Cecil: Part Two focuses on a labor strike in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1969, where hospital workers, predominantly Black women, were fighting for fair pay and...
The Orangeburg Massacre | The World of Cecil

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In the final segment of The World of Cecil: Part One , the documentary recounts events from 1968 when students from South Carolina State University, led by John Stroman, attempted to desegregate the...