African-American History Month 2019

February 1, 2019 | Austin, Texas | 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 both harsh conditions and prejudice to help 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. 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. And Richard Overton, an American hero and Texas legend, who was a man that stood out even amongst America’s greatest generation who selflessly risked their lives in World War II. 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, 2019, to be

African-American History Month



View a PDF of the Proclamation