Celebrating African-American History Month

February 27, 2018

In Texas, we are all one family, even though we are a state formed by people of many different races, nationalities, religions and backgrounds. Throughout the month of February, we have celebrated the rich contributions of African-Americans to the Lone Star State and our history by declaring the month as “African-American History Month” here in Texas. Greg issued a proclamation in recognition of the celebration, and I encourage all Texans to take a moment to reflect on the contributions and achievements of African-Americans in Texas, and the way they have helped impact and shape our state and culture.

Below is the text of the proclamation:

As a state and nation shaped by the diversity of our citizens, it is vital we recognize and celebrate the different races, nationalities and backgrounds of the land we love.  In particular, African-Americans have made tremendous contributions to our society.  Having faced slavery, many forms of oppression, deep-rooted adversity and the very real dangers of demanding equality and change, the contributions and achievements of African-Americans are imbued with a unique strength and resilience, which are respected and greatly valued in the Lone Star State.

There are many examples of excellence throughout African-American history in Texas.  The Buffalo Soldiers, regiments of African-Americans in the post-Civil War U.S. Army, overcame harsh conditions and prejudice to tame the Texas frontier, serving our nation with distinction.  Bessie Coleman grew up in Atlanta, Texas, and inspired people all over the world, shattering long-held stereotypes as the first African-American to become a pilot.  Barbara Jordan rose from humble beginnings in Houston to become the first African-American state senator in Texas in more than 75 years and a leader of the civil rights movement.  And Wallace Jefferson, raised in San Antonio, twice made history — as the first African-American justice on the Texas Supreme Court and the court’s first African-American chief justice.  In our diverse state, there is simply not a facet of life that has not been shaped in some way by the contributions of African-Americans. 

Each year, February is designated African-American History Month to remember and learn from the tribulations faced by the African-American community, while celebrating its many invaluable contributions.  At this time, I encourage all Texans to take pride in and discover more about the strength that comes from our diversity.

Therefore, I, Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas, do hereby proclaim February 2018 to be

African-American History Month