Carter G. Woodson, one of the first African-Americans to graduate from Harvard University with a doctorate degree, is credited with establishing Black History Week (then called “Negro History Week”) in 1926, designed to highlight and celebrate the Black experience. Since then, U.S. presidents have proclaimed February as National Black History Month.
Frances Ellen Watkins Harper was an African American lecturer, poet, abolitionist, suffragist, and reformer born September 24, 1825 in Baltimore, Maryland. She authored Sketches of Southern Life" (1872), "The Martyr of Alabama and Other Poems" (1894), and her well-known novel "Iola Leroy", or Shadows Uplifted, one of the first novels published by a black woman in the United States (1892).
Maggie Lena Walker founded the St. Luke Penny Savings Bank, offering checking and savings accounts, mortgages, and loans to provide economic empowerment to women and help strengthen Richmond's emerging black middle class.
Madam C.J. Walker, was born Sarah Breedlove on December 23, 1867 in a one-room cabin with a fireplace, a few windows, and a porch located on a cotton plantation on Delta, Louisiana. She would build a beauty empire employing 40,000 African American women and men in the US, Central America, and the Caribbean and found the National Negro Cosmetics Manufacturers Association in 1917.
Harriet Tubman was born Araminta Ross around 1820 in Bucktown, Maryland. She would escape to Pennsylvania in 1849. She worked for the union army as a spy, scout, nurse and cook from 1862 to 1865 during the American Civil War and would become a supporter of Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, joining their cause in campaigning for women's suffrage.