By Linda Cameron 

How many of us know when Black History Month began? What do we really know about black history? Some interesting historical bits: in the 19th century, Jamaican politician Marcus Garvey launched the Pan African nationalist movement. As far back as the 18th century, African-Americans were trailblazers in politics, art, science, healthcare and technology. Leonard C. Bailey invented the folding bed, an automatic postage machine and other mechanical devices. Inventor George Washington Carver  did groundbreaking work in agricultural science. Former slave and abolitionist Frederic Douglass  became an influential Republican statesman. His devotion to the Republican Party was unwavering. In the U.S. and throughout the world, Africans and African-Americans have made many historic contributions. Here are exciting ways to celebrate their achievements.

The Scott Collection & African American Life       
Minnesota History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55102
(651) 259-3015
www.mnhs.org/event/5097

Date: Feb 20, 2018 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

A former Chicagoan born in Greenville, MS, Walter R. Scott relocated to Minneapolis in the 1940s. In his adopted state, Scott noticed the achievements and contributions of African- Americans in Minnesota were going unnoticed. Through interviews with men and women of diverse backgrounds, Scott documented their accomplishments in three original book volumes, released as a single hardcopy in 1976, the year of the U.S. bicentennial. Join Scott’s family for a presentation and discussion of this seminal collection.

Black History Month: Movie Night
Central Gym at Minneapolis Park
3416 4th Ave. S., Room 103
Minneapolis, MN 55408
(612) 236-4013
www.minneapolisparks.org/parks__destinations/recreation_centers/central_gym

Date: February 22, 2018 at 8:30 p.m.

In honor of Black History Month, movies about black achievement will be screened every week in February. An exciting cinematic presentation, each movie spotlights the successes of African-Americans despite racial and cultural disparities. Informative, enlightening and entertaining, Black History Movie Night is co-sponsored with the Green Central School. Call for a movie schedule.

Pilgrim Baptist Church
732 Central Ave. W.
St. Paul, MN 55104
(651)-227-3220
www.pilgrimbaptistchurch.org

Minnesota’s oldest, largest and predominantly black Baptist church has a deep and resonant history. Its founding members landed at Fort Snelling in 1863. The Rev. Robert Thomas Hickman took a leading role in the church’s growth and development. Under church authority, he established two more parishes in Minneapolis and Hastings. Pilgrim Baptist Church continues its mission of outreach ministry, education and community commitment. Since 1866, the church has attracted many Minnesota parishioners and visitors.

Related: Best Historical Sites In Minnesota

African Goods & Gifts
117 Willow Bend
Crystal, Minnesota 55428
(763) 269-4570
www.africanfoodsandgifts.com

One of the most outstanding gift shops in Minnesota, African Goods & Gifts sells African-made food, clothing and gift items. The authentic foods are as tantalizing as the fashions and accessories. The store’s cosmetics and beauty treatment products rival those advertised on informercials. Here’s a secret: African beauty products are often hard to find. So are the dinners that can be conveniently ordered online or in person. Stop by the restaurant and gift shop or visit online.

Mama D’s Kitchen                       
920 E. Lake St.
Minneapolis, MN 55407
(651) 280-5044
www.mamadskitchenmn.com

Serving Twin Cities, Mama D’s has a terrific spot in Midtown Global Market. If you yearn for the taste of genuine American Southern soul food, come to Mamma D’s. Everything is made from original recipes. The plates of grits, barbeque and greens are a simple banquet that is a feast to behold and taste. For a sampling, try a deep fried soul food platter of okra, mushrooms, and generous wings and ribs. Oils and grits are aplenty, but this southern comfort food is for real. Balance your digestion with a healthy dose of collards simmered in ham and bacon drippings.

Related: Twin Cities Chef Wants Soul Food Restaurant In North Minneapolis

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