Black Americans have always been an important part of the American story. Here are some of our favorite new kids’ books that focus on Black history and Black heroes, great for Black History Month and all year long.
Mildred was Black. Richard was white. That made their marriage illegal, until the brave couple fought to have laws against “mixed” marriages struck down. Suggested for grades 5–8.
The long overdue story of Black women’s struggle for suffrage, and the obstacles they faced from white suffragettes. Suggested for grades 5–8.
An African American lawyer takes on the defense of a group of Black men who were unfairly sentenced to death. Suggested for grades 5–8.
The true story of Ona Judge’s escape from slavery in the household of George Washington. Suggested for preschool–grade 4.
Connects the dots between the suffrage struggles of Reconstruction and the voting rights struggles that Black Americans endure today. Suggested for grades 5–8.
In 1965, a group of 104 teachers marched peacefully to the county courthouse in Selma, Alabama, to demand that Black citizens be allowed to register to vote. Suggested for grades K–4.
Tulsa, Oklahoma, was home to a thriving district known as “Black Wall Street,” until 1921, when white mobs destroyed the district and killed many of its residents. Local officials and media covered up the attack, but the truth finally rose from the ashes. Suggested for grades 3–8.
Effa Manley used her passion, personality, and smarts to build up the Negro Leagues at a time when Black players weren’t welcome in baseball. Suggested for grades 5–8.
A tribute to each of the more than 50 African American women who changed the world for the better. Suggested for grades 3–6.
Profiles of more than 50 Black American women in STEM occupations. Suggested for grades 5–8.
Philip Freelon struggled to read as a child, but he grew up to become one of the country’s great architects. Suggested for grades 1–5.
It was a fateful day when Thurgood Marshall was caught misbehaving in school and was punished by being forced to read the U.S. Constitution. That punishment developed his interest in the law. Marshall grew up to become a lawyer, then a judge, and finally a Supreme Court Justice renowned for his civil rights decisions. Suggested for grades K–4.
Zora Neale Hurston grew up loving the stories folks told, and so she began to tell stories herself. Her dad and her grandmother punished her for “telling lies,” but her mother encouraged her to “jump for the sun.” She did—and became one of the country’s great writers. Suggested for preschool–grade 3.
She started at her school newspaper in Chicago and took journalism all the way to Japan during World War II and to the White House briefing room, where she broke barriers as one of the first Black journalists. Suggested for grades 3–6.
In 1968, Shirley Chisholm, became the first Black woman elected to Congress, and in 1972 she was the first Black candidate from a major political party (the Democratic party) to run for president. Suggested for grades 3–6.