Black History Month events on Long Island
Black History Month has its roots in 1926, when the organization now known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (asalh.org) initiated the first "Negro History Week," according to the Library of Congress. In 1975, President Gerald Ford issued a message on the observance of Black History Week, and in 1976, ASALH expanded the observance to the month of February. Since then, U.S. presidents and Congress have signed proclamations and passed laws, respectively, to continue the annual monthlong observance. This year's theme is "Black Health and Wellness."
EXHIBIT: HIGHLIGHTS FROM HUNTINGTON'S AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY
Based on the African American Historic Designation Council's work to educate and increase public awareness about the values and contributions of African Americans in the town, the exhibit shares the story of such prominent figures and organizations as Booker T. Washington, Samuel Ballton, John Coltrane, the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church and Evergreen Missionary Baptist Church, 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, Feb. 9 to March 31, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building, 228 Main St., huntingtonhistoricalsociety.org, 631-427-7045.
A picture display of prominent leaders who have helped advance the movement for rights for African Americans, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily through Feb. 28, Visitor Center at Planting Fields Arboretum State Historic Park, 1395 Planting Fields Rd., free, parks.ny.gov or plantingfields.org, 516-922-8600.
Kathleen Velsor, author of "The Underground Railroad on Long Island: Friends in Freedom," takes you a journey from the arrival of the Quakers in the 17th century to the enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation, 7 p.m., hosted by Bay Shore-Brightwaters Library, free, email email@example.com for a link, bsbwlibrary.org, 631-665-4350.
JUPITER HAMMON PROJECT
Discover Jupiter Hammon, the earliest published African American author, who was born on Long Island in 1711 and survived four generations of enslavement, presented by Preservation Long Island, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by Half Hollow Hills Community Library Dix Hills Branch, free, cardholders only can register for a Zoom link at hhhlibrary.org, 631-421-4530.
CLASSIC FILM DISCUSSION
Phil Harwood leads an online discussion of the drama "Lilies of the Field" (1963, not rated, 1:34), starring Sidney Poitier, available to watch on Kanopy, 7 p.m., hosted by East Meadow Library, free, register for a link at eastmeadow.info, 516-794-2570.
SATCHMO: LOUIS ARMSTRONG
Marc Courtade discusses the life and career of trumpeter, composer and singer Louis Armstrong, one of the most influential figures in jazz, 7 to 8 p.m., hosted by Glen Cove Library, free, register for a Zoom link at glencovelibrary.org, 516-676-2130.
TRAILBLAZERS — AFRICAN AMERICANS IN SPACE
Bill Thierfelder examines the lives of scientist Katherine Johnson, mathematician Dorothy Vaughan and astronauts Mae Jemison and Ronald McNair, 2 p.m., hosted by Levittown Library, free, register for link at levittownpl.org, 516-731-5728.
THE JUPITER HAMMON PROJECT
Discover Jupiter Hammon, the earliest published African American author, who was born on Long Island in 1711 and survived four generations of enslavement, presented by Preservation Long Island, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by Northport-East Northport Library, free, register for a link at nenpl.org, 631-261-6930.
Anna Katsavos leads a discussion of the novel "Harlem Shuffle," by Colson Whitehead, 1 to 3 p.m., hosted by Plainview-Old Bethpage Library, free, register for a link at poblib.org, 516-938-0077.
Museum educator Alice W. Schwarz examines and discusses the paintings of Robert S. Duncanson, an internationally acclaimed African American artist of the 19th century and the only Black member of the Hudson River School of landscape painters, noon to 1:30 p.m., Port Washington Library, 1 Library Dr., free, register to attend in-person (masks required) or online at pwpl.org/events/adult-events, 516-883-4400.
Screening of "Hidden Figures" (2016, rated PG, 2:07), a biographical drama starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe, 2 p.m., Bethpage Public Library, free, bethpagelibrary.info, 516-931-3907.
STIRRING UP HISTORY — FOODS OF BLACK HISTORY
Historian Diane Schwindt discusses the importance of historical African American foods and their influence on the way we eat today, 6 7 p.m., hosted by Brentwood Library, free, register for a link at brentwoodnylibrary.org, 631-273-7883.
GROUNDBREAKING AFRICAN AMERICAN COMEDIANS
Sal St. George celebrates the contributions that eight Black comedians have brought to the world of comedy, how each introduced an incomparable style of comedy to the world in their own distinctive voice while breaking racial prejudice barriers along the way, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by Copiague Library, free, cardholders only can register at copiaguelibrary.org, 631-691-1111.
Poet David Mills reads from and reflects upon the research behind his recent collection "Boneyarn," about slavery in New York City, 7 to 8 p.m., hosted by East Hampton Library, free, register for a link at easthamptonlibrary.org, 631-324-0222.
THE URGENCY OF TONI MORRISON
Bill Thierfelder explores the life and legacy of Nobel Prize-winning writer Toni Morrison and how she examined racial and gender identity in America, noon to 1 p.m., hosted by Hewlett-Woodmere Library, free, visit hwpl.org for a link, 516-374-1967.
BLACK HOLLYWOOD — THE EARLY YEARS
Learn about Black film legends and lesser-known artists of the period whose talent is an important part of Hollywood's legacy. These artists paved the way for future generations of African American actors who would claim their rightful position as leading stars of the silver screen, 7 to 8 p.m., hosted by Sachem Library, free, register for a link at sachemlibrary.org, 631-588-5024.
UNSUNG HEROES OF BLACK HISTORY
An in-depth look at some of the lesser-known, but important heroes of Black history, 7 to 8 p.m., hosted by West Babylon Public Library, free, register for a link at wbab.suffolk.lib.ny.us, 631-669-5445.
GENEAOLOGY 101 — RESEARCHING ANCESTORS OF COLOR
Gain knowledge and techniques for researching ancestors of color, 7 p.m., hosted by Bay Shore-Brightwaters Library, free, email firstname.lastname@example.org for a link, bsbwlibrary.org, 631-665-4350.
BAY SHORE HISTORICAL SOCIETY MEETING
In recognition of Black History Month, the society presents "Are We There Yet? A Short Trip But a Long Journey Through Bay Shore’s Black Community," masks are mandatory, 7 p.m., Bay Shore-Brightwaters Library, 1 South Country Rd., free, bsbwlibrary.org, 631-665-4350.
AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY ON LONG ISLAND
Historian and author Lynda Day discusses the history of African Americans on Long Island, 7 to 8 p.m., Copiague Library, 50 Deauville Blvd., free, cardholders can register at copiaguelibrary.org, 631-691-1111.
THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD ON LONG ISLAND
Author and professor Kathleen Velsor discusses the development of slavery in New York City and how Long Island became an important stopping point on the Underground Railroad, 1 p.m., hosted by Freeport Library, free, register for a link at freeportlibrary.info, 516-379-3274.
Author and historian Claire Bellerjeau discusses her nonfiction book "Espionage and Enslavement in the Revolution: The True Story of Robert Townsend and Elizabeth," 7 p.m., hosted by Freeport Library, free, register for a link at freeportlibrary.info, 516-379-3274.
AFRICAN AMERICAN READ-IN
Cultural appreciation of Black writers, past and present. Members of the Adelphi University community who would like to read aloud from their favorite Black writers can email email@example.com, 4 to 7 p.m., presented by Center for African, Black and Caribbean Studies at Adelphi University, free, register for a link at bit.ly/3uiZcfx, 516-877-4978.
ART TALK AND CRAFT
Learn about Romare Bearden, an artist of the 20th century who celebrated different aspects of African American life through his inventive use of collage technique, then create your own collage; for children in kindergarten to fifth grade; 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., Huntington Library, 1335 New York Ave., free, register at myhpl.org, 631-427-5165.
AFTERNOON AT THE MOVIES
Screening of the biographical drama "Respect" (2021, rated PG-13, 2:25), starring Jennifer Hudson, 2 p.m., Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Library, 407 William Floyd Pkwy., free, register at communitylibrary.org, 631-399-1511.
HISTORY OF A SEED AND THE BLACK GARDEN
Learn the history of the fish pepper and other heritage vegetables, 7 p.m., hosted by North Shore Library, free, register for a link at northshorepubliclibrary.org, 631-929-4488.
Discussion of the novel "The Nickel Boys," by Colson Whitehead, 10:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., Smithtown Library Smithtown Branch, 1 N. Country Rd., free, smithlib.org, 631-360-2480.
Museum educator Alice W. Schwarz examines and discusses the paintings of Robert S. Duncanson, an internationally acclaimed African American artist of the 19th century and the only Black member of the Hudson River School of landscape painters, 11 a.m., hosted by Shelter Rock Library, free, register for a link at srpl.org, 516-248-7363.
SONGS OF LIBERATION AND LOVE
Rhonda Denet celebrates the African American experience by highlighting luminaries who used their talents to elevate, educate and encourage through music, this musical journey includes gospel, jazz, soul and pop with songs recorded by Mahalia Jackson, Dinah Washington, Sam Cooke, Nina Simone, Curtis Mayfield, Aretha Franklin, Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder and more, 7 to 8:30 p.m., South Country Library, 22 Station Rd., free, cardholders can register at sctylib.org, 631-286-0818.
THE HISTORY OF AFRICAN AMERICAN RELIGIONS
Ronald Brown discusses how African religious traditions have blended with European Christian religions to produce a unique variety of African American religions, masks required regardless of vaccination status, 12:30 p.m., Elmont Memorial Library, 700 Hempstead Tpke., free, register at elmontlibrary.org, limited seating, 516-354-5280.
Marc Courtade discusses the life and work of actress and model Cicely Tyson, 2 to 3:30 p.m., hosted by Jericho Library, free, register for a link at jericholibrary.org, 516-935-6790.
Paige Patterson performs the songs of Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Donna Summer, Ella Fitzgerald and more, masks required regardless of vaccination status, 2 p.m., Elmont Memorial Library, 700 Hempstead Tpke., free, first-come, first-seated, limited seating, elmontlibrary.org, 516-354-5280.
POETRY READING AND BOOK SIGNING
Poet David Mills discusses his poetry collection "Boneyarn," which explores slavery in New York City; books are available for purchase and signing; 1 to 2:30 p.m., Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Library, 407 William Floyd Pkwy., free, communitylibrary.org, 631-399-1511.
LA Blacksmith performs songs covering the period from slavery to the present, 2:30 to 3:30 p.m., hosted by Uniondale Library, free, register for a link at uniondalelibrary.org, 516-489-2220.
Performance by Adam Sadberry, the principal flutist of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, known for his radiant, lyrical playing, as well as his commitment to expanding the Black diaspora in the Classical music world through promoting equity, representation, music education and commissioning music that tells stories of the Black diaspora, masks required, 2 p.m., East Meadow Library, 1886 Front St., free, register at eastmeadow.info, limited seating, 516-794-2570.
PERFORMANCE: NOT JUST ANOTHER MOTOWN SHOW! THE STORY OF MUSCLE SHOALS
Jerome "City" Smith & the City Sounds Music Ensemble, along with the City Sounds Horn Section, perform R&B, funk and soul stylings of Motown music, masks required regardless of vaccination status, 2 p.m., Elmont Memorial Library, 700 Hempstead Tpke., free, first-come, first-seated, limited seating, elmontlibrary.org, 516-354-5280.
WEST AFRICAN DRUMS
Learn to drum on the djembe or dance while playing the dun duns, discover traditional West African rhythms from Guinea, Mali, Senegal and Ivory Coast, 2 to 3 p.m., Patchogue-Medford Library, 54-60 E. Main St., free, register at pmlib.org, 631-654-4700.
Screening of the biographical drama "Respect" (2021, rated PG-13, 2:25), starring Jennifer Hudson, face masks are required, noon, Westhampton Free Library, 7 Library Ave, free, register at westhamptonlibrary.net, 631-288-3335.