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Posted on: January 29, 2020

Norfolk Public Library Celebrates African American History Month

Throughout February enjoy events that focus on African Americans and the vote

NORFOLK, VA – Norfolk Public Library (NPL) is proud to celebrate African American History Month in February with a series of events that focus on the national theme, “African Americans and the Vote.”

The year 2020 marks the centennial of the Nineteenth Amendment and the culmination of the women’s suffrage movement. The year 2020 also marks the sesquicentennial of the Fifteenth Amendment (1870) and the right of black men to the ballot after the Civil War. The theme speaks, therefore, to the ongoing struggle on the part of both black men and black women for the right to vote.

NPL encourages you to learn more about the rich and long history of this important topic in America by joining us for more than 30 events planned at libraries throughout the city. Events kick off on Saturday, February 1 at 1:00 p.m. at the Jordan-Newby Anchor Branch Library at Broad Creek with the Opening Celebration, African Americans and the Vote.  The opening program will feature guest speaker Dr. Charles Ford of Norfolk State University and the Norfolk Library Board. Enjoy performances by the gospel singing duo of Ralph and Renee Payne, and Rosita Burnette.

On Sunday, February 2 at 3:00 to 5:00 p.m., NPL presents its 6th Annual African American Trailblazers Honors Program at the Chrysler Museum of Art, at One Memorial Place in Norfolk. The achievements of five distinguished individuals will be recognized with awards: Larry D. Boone, Norfolk Police Chief; Father Joseph N. Green, Former Norfolk Vice-Mayor; Regina Lawrence, President and CEO, STOP Inc.; Cecelia Tucker, Old Dominion University’s Director of Community Relations; and Pernell “Sweetpea” Whitaker, Olympic and Professional Boxing Champion. 

Additional programs throughout the month include historical theater productions, concerts, a doll exhibit, teen bazaar, local author visit, cooking demonstration with a celebrity chef, and more! All events are free and open to the public.

For a complete list of events, visit the Library’s website at

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