Heritage Month
AZPM Celebrates Black History Month
Black History Month celebrates the rich, vibrant history as well as the political, scientific, social, and cultural contributions of African Americans to this country and the world at large.

Here's the story behind Black History Month — and why it's celebrated in February. From NPR's Special Series: Black History Month.

Feature Dr. Sian Proctor is a geoscientist, educator, afrofuturist artist, and most recently-- the first black female astronaut to pilot a spacecraft. Watch her story RETURNING TO EARTH featured on Arizona Illustrated. (PHOTO: Courtesy Dr. Sian Proctor)
Enjoy a special collection of stories, programs and educational resources that highlight history, culture, and accomplishments of African Americans.

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Welcome to the BLOCK PARTY!From PBS PBS is celebrating Black History Month by throwing a Block Party! Throughout the month of February, stream new and beloved programs celebrating Black excellence. Explore More
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Black Culture ConnectionFrom PBS Explore Black history and culture though films, stories, and voices across public media. Explore More
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Stories to Celebrate Black History MonthFrom StoryCorps StoryCorps stories that center Black voices in conversations about Black history, identity, struggles, and joy. Explore More
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All About the Holidays: Black History MonthFrom PBS LearningMedia Help students learn about the origins of Black History month in this brief video for grades K-5 Explore More
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African & African-American Culture in the ClassroomFrom PBS LearningMedia These videos provide examples of West African and African-American music, dance, and storytelling. Explore More
Story100 Years From Mississippi Mamie Lang Kirkland left Mississippi in 1915 and would not return until a century later.
StoryRITUAL Host Tank Ball explores the history and meaning of rituals performed in the South.
StoryRazing Liberty Square Miami's Liberty City public housing projects become ground zero for climate gentrification.
StoryGOSPEL Live! GOSPEL Live! Presented by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is a concert celebration honoring the legacy of Gospel music in America. Produced as a companion to the new 4-part series, GOSPEL.
StoryGOSPEL GOSPEL, a new 4-part series hosted by Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr., explores Black spirituality in sermon and song.
StoryPOV: Brief Tender Light A Ghanaian MIT alum follows four African students at his alma mater as they strive to become agents of change for their home countries Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.
StoryJackie Robinson Jack Roosevelt Robinson rose from humble origins to cross baseball's color line and become one of the most beloved men in America.
StoryJazz Ken Burns follows the growth and development of jazz music from the gritty streets of New Orleans to Chicago's south side.
StoryLittle Richard: King and Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll This portrait of the legendary Little Richard explores his far-reaching influence as well as his advocacy for the rights of Black artists in the music industry.
StoryAmerican Masters: How It Feels To Be Free The inspiring story of how six iconic African American women entertainers challenged a racist industry.
StoryAmerica Reframed: The Cost of Inheritance Exploring reparations to illuminate the scope and rationale of this complex debate.
StoryIndependent Lens: Racist Trees Racial tensions ignite in this documentary, when a historically Black neighborhood in Palm Springs, California, fights to remove a towering wall of tamarisk trees.
StoryHarriet Tubman: Visions of Freedom Meet the woman who repeatedly risked her life and freedom to liberate others from slavery.
StoryBecoming Frederick Douglass Discover how a man born into slavery became one of the nation’s most influential leaders.
StoryZora Neale Hurston: Claiming A Space The influential author and anthropologist whose work reclaimed and honored Black life.
StoryFight the Power: How Hip Hop Changed the World Chuck D from Public Enemy explores Hip Hop’s political awakening over the last 50 years.
StoryAmerican Masters: Roberta Flack Discover music icon Roberta Flack’s rise to stardom and triumphs over racism and sexism.
StoryIndependent Lens: The Big Payback The passage of the first-ever reparations bill for Black Americans stirs up a debate.
StoryMaking Black America: Through the Grapevine This four-hour series introduces a vibrant world at the heart of the Black experience.
StoryMuhammad Ali Muhammad Ali brings to life the iconic heavyweight boxing champion who became an inspiration to people everywhere.
StoryThe Voice of Freedom The life of singer Marian Anderson and her triumphant 1939 concert at the Lincoln Memorial.
StoryThe Black Church: This is Our Story, This is Our Song Henry Louis Gates, Jr. explores the 400-year-old story of the black church in America.
StoryThe Falconer One of only a handful of African American falconers in the country, Rodney Stotts is on a mission to build a bird sanctuary.
StoryFannie Lou Hamer's America Explore the lesser-known life of one of the Civil Rights Movement’s greatest leaders.
Celebrate Black History Month with this collection of stories from AZPM.
BIPOC EntrepreneursBIPOC Entrepreneurs How the Community Investment Corporation is empowering BIPOC entrepreneurs with interest free micro loans in Southern Arizona.
Clea McCaa, Sierra Vista’s New MayorClea McCaa, Sierra Vista’s New Mayor Clea McCaa has made history by not only becoming the first Democrat elected in a Republican stronghold, but also by becoming the first Black mayor of Sierra Vista.
Camp NacoCamp Naco Former Buffalo Soldier camp near Bisbee honors the past while making plans for the future.
Meet a Sierra Vista civil rights pioneerMeet a Sierra Vista civil rights pioneer For Dorothy Coston-Tompkins, it’s about service, investing in people, and creating spaces and opportunities for everyone to have their voices heard.
Senator announces formation of first-ever Black Caucus in Arizona Legislature Senator announces formation of first-ever Black Caucus in Arizona Legislature State senator Catherine Miranda made the announcement Monday afternoon.
The Buzz: Black History in Southern ArizonaThe Buzz: Black History in Southern Arizona New efforts are being made to bring contributions by the area's Black population to light.
Sierra Vista school district honors longtime member, educator for decades of serviceSierra Vista school district honors longtime member, educator for decades of service Connie Johnson has been a schools and civil rights leader in the area since the late 1960s.
Black History 101 Mobile Museum makes two stops at Cochise College campusesBlack History 101 Mobile Museum makes two stops at Cochise College campuses The stops come in honor of Black History Month and the 50th anniversary of hip-hop.
TUSD students fundraise to save annual HBCU trip through musicTUSD students fundraise to save annual HBCU trip through music The event is in partnership with the African American Museum of Southern Arizona.
Neon Prophet and Chicago BarNeon Prophet and Chicago Bar The desert reggae band Neon Prophet has been playing a weekly show at Tucson’s Chicago Bar since 1984.
Honoring African American soldiers from last century Honoring African American soldiers from last century Descendants and others gather for 2nd Annual Nogales Buffalo Soldiers Salute
African American Museum of Southern Arizona opensAfrican American Museum of Southern Arizona opens The museum officially opened on Saturday, Jan. 14 and is located at the University of Arizona.
Ivy, Gilded in BlackIvy, Gilded in Black Ivy Wahome's new exhibition shows the Victorian era from a different perspective.
Charles Mingus at 100Charles Mingus at 100 This year Arizona celebrated virtuoso jazz musician Charles Mingus’ 100th birthday with evenings of music and the dedication of The Mingus Memorial in Nogales, AZ.
As Arizona recovers from pandemic, Black entrepreneurs still face challengesAs Arizona recovers from pandemic, Black entrepreneurs still face challenges Black business owners, who as of 2021, have the lowest entrepreneurship rates of any single race and ethnicity in the U.S.
Returning to EarthReturning to Earth Dr. Sian Proctor is a geoscientist, educator, afrofuturist artist, and most recently-- the first black female astronaut to pilot a spacecraft.
AlannaAlanna At the age of 47, Alanna Airitam left a successful career in advertising to pursue photography full-time.
Where were you when you first heard the hip hop duo Outkast? Dr. Regina Bradley wants to know.Where were you when you first heard the hip hop duo Outkast? Dr. Regina Bradley wants to know. Dr. Bradley is an author and educator who has chronicled the importance of hip hop’s cultural influence, particularly in the American South.
Barbea's KwanzaaBarbea's Kwanzaa For the past 50 years, Barbea Williams has shared the message of Kwanzaa, its principles, and festivities throughout Southern Arizona.
Coach Adia Barnes on MotherhoodCoach Adia Barnes on Motherhood The University of Arizona Women’s Basketball coach on balancing family, being a role model for her players, and normalizing what it means to be a mom.
William “Curly” and Annie NealWilliam “Curly” and Annie Neal The journey of William “Curly” and Annie Neal as pioneers, entrepreneurs, and in 1895 the first Black owners of luxury resort in Arizona.
The TalkThe Talk Covering issues of race and racism, and how Black people can be perceived by non-Blacks. (08:30)
Afro HerperAfro Herper Earyn McGee is a lizard-loving PhD who's changing the idea of what it means to be a scientist. (07:15)
Grand Mama JonesGrand Mama Jones Grand Mama Jones, as she is known in her family, has been a rock for everyone around her. (07:32)
Just Listen: It Won't MatterJust Listen: It Won't Matter Community leaders Sam Brown and Debi Chess share their experiences in the final installment of the "Just Listen" series. (3:38)
Just Listen: Empathetic Listening 101Just Listen: Empathetic Listening 101 How can we have healthy and transformative conversations about racial equality? (2:48)
Hearing IsaiahHearing Isaiah Young Tucson environmentalist Isaiah Haley is cause for hope and optimism about a clean, safe, and more sustainable future (8:00)
Just Listen: Assume No Harm Just Listen: Assume No Harm A healthy conversation requires active listening. Sam Brown and Debi Chess, two cultural leaders in southern Arizona’s black community, explore what it means to “Assume No Harm”. (04:32)
Own Words: Being Black in America Own Words: Being Black in America Tucson artist Seanloui shares his experiences and what he sees as the solution to current demonstrations.
Sugar HillSugar Hill An intimate look inside Tucson's historically black Sugar Hill neighborhood.
Just NajimaJust Najima A profile of singer and recording artist, Najima Rainey, and the unique stylings of her band 'Just Najima'
She PhiShe Phi The all-girl step group from Holladay Magnet School brings their special brand of attitude, excellence, and teamwork to the stage.
Memory LaneMemory Lane Barbara Lewis shares stories and recollections about attending classes at the historic Dunbar School.
28 Days of Black History28 Days of Black History Local business owner, J.R. Harrison explores black culture in his own unique way.
Quin DavisQuin Davis Special effects creator Quin Davis represents an endangered type of cinematic artist.
Lasting LegacyLasting Legacy Nearly eighty years ago, the Maxwell family moved to Tucson. Over the decades they helped pave the way for many of the positive changes we see in our community.
Dunbar Pavilion UpdateDunbar Pavilion Update New things are happening at the Dunbar Pavilion, home to Tucson's formerly segregated schools.
Being Black in TucsonBeing Black in Tucson What it is like to be a member of a small minority in a big city.
The Dunbar BarberThe Dunbar Barber Martio Harris teaches and mentors the next generation of young barbers in Tucson.
These StreetsThese Streets During Borderlands Theater's 2018 production of Barrio Stories in Barrio Anita, we spoke with Virginia, a young Tucson poet.
Historic Tucson African American Social Club DemolishedHistoric Tucson African American Social Club Demolished The Beau Brummel Club hosted black entertainers and athletes for almost eight decades
Lola's JusticeLola's Justice Lola Rainey saw firsthand the scars that racism left on her family, her friends, and her own sense of herself. So she set out to bring a little more justice to the world.
Michele's Journey: Motherhood During and After IncarcerationMichele's Journey: Motherhood During and After Incarceration According to the Prison Policy Initiative, in the United States 80% of women in jail and 56% of women in prison are mothers.
The Full NelsonThe Full Nelson Life has thrown her a few curve balls. She is a mother, author and performer ... Adiba Nelson is a force of nature.
Black History in Southern ArizonaBlack History in Southern Arizona Most people may not associate Southern Arizona with black history, but a group of people are working to change that.
The PreventionistThe Preventionist Joronda Montaño is turning her painful past into a positive force for change—fighting substance abuse, rising suicide rates, and the toll of trauma and violence one kid at a time.
The Curley SchoolThe Curley School The Curley School in Ajo, Arizona, originally built in 1919 was in danger of being demolished. Now, it’s model for historic preservation, adaptive reuse, and regional and economic development.
Juneteenth in TucsonJuneteenth in Tucson At the annual Juneteenth Celebration, current Tucson residents reflect on cultural changes they have seen in their lifetimes and how much work still needs to be done.
Black Mental HealthBlack Mental Health Many people in the black community put off getting help because of the stigma surrounding their struggles.
Finding FamilyFinding Family It is easier now than ever to find out more about our own family’s history.
Cressworth LanderCressworth Lander Over the past decade Arizona Public Media has documented the stories of southern Arizonans who served in our armed forces in a series of programs called “Tucson Remembers”.
Art Life - Teré Fowler ChapmanArt Life - Teré Fowler Chapman Teré Fowler-Chapman describes herself simply as a poet, but believes that role involves “wearing a lot of hats”.
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