February is Black History Month, and Black history and culture are essential parts of Montgomery County, Maryland’s heritage. Take the opportunity to honor and learn more about Montgomery County’s Black heritage through these in-person and virtual events happening all month long.
Visit Montgomery’s Chief Strategy Officer, Cory Van Horn, recently joined What’s Happening MoCo? podcast host, Derrick Kenny, to chat about all the ways to celebrate Black History Month in the county. Check out the video above, or listen to What’s Happening MoCo? wherever you get your podcasts.
Take a Black History Road Trip
All month long throughout Montgomery County
Stories of the Underground Railroad are rich and rooted deep into Montgomery County. The multitude of historic sites and experiences make for an interesting self-guided road trip throughout the county to help understand the trials, tribulations, and heroism of the freedom seekers.
Unshakable: The Rise of Newmantown at the Agricultural History Farm Park
Every Friday and Saturday in February, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Agricultural History Farm Park, 18400 Muncaster Road, Derwood, MD 20855
Explore the history of formerly enslaved Albert and Mary Newman, who emigrated to Montgomery County in 1862 and became landowning farmers despite unprecedented circumstances. Albert, Mary, and their children built a thriving Black kinship community known as “Newmantown” on the grounds of what is now the Agricultural History Farm Park.
Black Masking Mardi Gras Traditions
Monday, February 6, 2023, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.
Virtual event hosted by The Potomac River Jazz Club (reservations required)
Discover the very important but lesser publicized centuries, also known as rituals, that play out on Mardi Gras in predominantly Black neighborhoods.
Community Roundtable Project: African American History & Culture
Thursday, February 16, 2023, from 6:30-9:00 p.m.
Locals Farm Market, 19929 Fisher Avenue, Poolesville, MD 20837
Join Maryland artist Sarah Matthews for a discussion about the artwork created by the participants of Riverworks Art Center’s Excursion & Exhibitions program, who traveled to Washington, DC to visit the National Museum of African American Culture & History. The artwork, which will be on display at Locals Farm Market, was created based on the participants’ experiences at the museum.
History Happy Hour: Martin Luther King’s Vision of Democracy
Friday, February 17, 2023, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Sandy Spring Museum, 17901 Bentley Road, Sandy Spring, MD 20860
Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dreams of democracy are much grander than the last refrain of his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Racial integration and interracial harmony were important, but structural inequality formed the root and branch of a broken America. Dr. Quincy Mills, historian at the University of Maryland, College Park, will discuss King’s ideas on the importance of economic security in American democracy.
Black History Month Family Day
Saturday, February 18, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park, 16501 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring, MD 20860
Bring the whole family for a self-guided exploration of Montgomery County’s Black history at Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park. Drop by the Visitor Center to pick up take-home activities for kids and trail maps to explore the Underground Railroad Experience Trail. This is a great opportunity to connect, learn, and get exercise as a family.
Black History Month Transcribe-A-Thon
Monday, February 20, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Virtual event hosted by Sandy Spring Museum
Explore the history of Sandy Spring through transcription. For more than 300 years, the Sandy Spring area has been home to generations of African and African American families. In honor of Black History Month, help uncover some of these family stories awaiting discovery by transcribing historic documents.
When the Stars Align: Celestial Navigation and the Underground Railroad
Saturday, February 25, 2023, from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Josiah Henson Museum & Park, 11410 Old Georgetown Road, North Bethesda, MD 20852