By Megan Wehring
KYLE — “Black history is just American history that’s not being told,” said Kyle City Council member Dex Ellison, following the Black History Month proclamation during the Feb. 2 meeting.
Black history celebrations originated in 1915 for African American achievements and it was renamed ‘Negro Achievement Week’ in 1924. While the outreach was important, there was still a growing desire to make an even greater impact. By February 1926, ‘Negro History Week’ was coined by historian Dr. Carter G. Woodson who knew that February would be significant to many because of President Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass’ birthday celebrations.
Finally, in 1976, honoring Black history was extended to include the entire month of February. Today, Black History Month “garners support throughout the country as people of all ethnic and social backgrounds discuss the African American experience,” the city of Kyle’s 2021 proclamation reads.
Kyle was not the only municipality to adopt this proclamation — Hays County Commissioner Court and Buda City Council also participated. Several events will pop up around the county within the coming weeks including: Dialogue for Peace and Progress and Kyle Public Library Black History Month Book Display.
Ellison will be moderating the Dialogue for Peace and Progress, held at Kyle City Hall and virtually, to allow for open and honest conversation.
“We will have a great panel that will be discussing a number of different items that deal with Black History Month as well as the theme of general family,” Ellison said. “Everybody has a family and everybody has a perspective of what that means to them.”
While city government bodies and communities continue to diversify, Ellison said he has a responsibility to bring forth proclamations to promote inclusion.
“I just want to thank my colleagues for always being supportive of me as I pursue these proclamations and endeavors,” Ellison said. “They are important to our city. Our community wants to see these and understandably so.”