[Updated for 2021]
February is here, which means it’s time for Black History Month.
For all the social media teams out there looking for an impactful way to celebrate the achievements of Black Americans this year, this is for you. We’ve put together 31 tweetable facts you can share to join the conversation and broaden the reach of this important information. Your customers will be talking about Black History Month, so why shouldn’t you?
With Twitter (and all social media, honestly) consistency is key. Tweeting every day can raise engagement, followers, and mentions. We’ve made it easy for you, with a month full of links and 280-character count soundbites! So get out your tweet scheduler and get ready for some Black History Month fun facts!
31 Tweetable Facts for Black History Month
- The U.S. isn’t the only country to celebrate #BlackHistoryMonth. Canada also observes it in February, while the U.K. recognizes it in October.
- Martin L. King Jr. improvised the most iconic part of his “I Have a Dream Speech.” Onstage near Dr. King, singer Mahalia Jackson reportedly kept saying, “Tell ‘em about the dream, Martin,” which could have been the inspiration.#BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2CXbkt0
- One in four cowboys was Black, despite the stories told in popular books and movies. In fact, it's believed that the real “Lone Ranger” was inspired by a Black man named Bass Reeves. #BlackHistoryMonth
- In 1905, Madam C.J. Walker invented a haircare product line specifically for African American hair. She became one of America’s first female millionaires. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2D1uFIU
- Theoretical physicist Dr. Shirley Jackson invented the technology that is responsible for caller ID and call waiting. She was awarded the National Medal of Science in 2015. #BlackHistoryMonth
- The NAACP chose Rosa Parks as the face of the anti-segregation movement because was deemed less polarizing than Claudette Colvin, who refused to give up her bus seat nine months before Parks. #BlackHistoryMonth #ComedyCentral http://bit.ly/1NU5Z4E
- The iconic cartoon character Betty Boop was inspired by Esther Jones, a black jazz singer in Harlem in the 1920s. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Jerry Lawson was a self-taught engineer who invented the video game cartridge. He was one of only two Black members of the Homebrew Computing Club – a club that also included Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. #BlackHistoryMonth http://engt.co/2c2EbPo
- In the 1950s, when universities did not typically offer financial assistance to Black athletes, football star Ernie Davis was offered more than fifty scholarships. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Lonnie G. Johnson was a NASA engineer and a toymaker who invented the Super Soaker. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2AQ2Q0T
- As a child, Muhammad Ali was refused an autograph by his boxing idol, Sugar Ray Robinson. When Ali became a prizefighter, he vowed never to deny an autograph request, which he honored throughout his career. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Harriet Tubman is best known as an underground railroad "conductor," but she was also a Union spy who freed 750 slaves in one night during the Combahee River Raid. She is the only woman to plan and lead a Civil War military operation. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/1G7FobQ
- In the 1880's, Jan Ernst Matzeliger invented an automated shoemaking machine that could produce seven hundred pairs of shoes a day – compared to the fifty pairs a day a worker could. In a time when many could not afford shoes, his invention helped lower shoe prices. #BlackHistoryMonth
- When NASA’s numbers were calculated by hand, the hands were often those of Black women. Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Miriam Mann, Christine Darden, and Annie Easley, to name a few. #BlackHistoryMonth #HiddenFigures http://bit.ly/2nDTxeb
- Chaka Kahn, dubbed the "Queen of Funk Soul," is also well known for singing the theme song to public television's popular educational program #ReadingRainbow. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Barack Obama attended Harvard Law School, where he graduated magna cum laude. He was the first Black editor of the Harvard Law Review. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2EtPny1
- Legendary tennis player Arthur Ashe was the first Black player selected to the United States Davis Cup team. He remains the only Black man to have won the singles title at Wimbledon, the Australian Open, and the US Open. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Oprah Winfrey's first name was originally spelled “Orpah” on her birth certificate, a name chosen by her aunt as a reference to a biblical character. #BlackHistoryMonth http://cnn.it/2EuqouJ
- Aretha Franklin was not only the first Black woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, she was the first woman. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Cathay Williams was the one and only female Buffalo Soldier. In 1866, she posed as a man named William Cathay to enlist in the 38th infantry. She served for two years before a doctor discovered she was a woman, leading to her discharge. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2msTmV2
- Inventor of the three-way traffic signal, Garrett Morgan, became the first Black person to own a car in Cleveland, Ohio. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Jackie Robinson not only became the first Black man to play on a major sports team, but during college at UCLA, he was the first student to letter in four different sports in a single season. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2mt3oHT
- In 1821, Thomas L. Jennings became the first Black person to receive a US patent. The patent was for "dry scouring," an early form of dry cleaning. #BlackHistoryMonth
- John Lewis, U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 5th district, was the last surviving member of the "Big Six" leaders, who planned the March on Washington in 1963. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/2qY9aUB
- Bessie Coleman was the first Black woman to become a pilot. She grew fascinated with the stories of returning World War I pilots and went to France in 1920 to pursue her dream of getting into aviation. She was awarded her international pilot's license in June 1921.
- Matthew Henson, the first Black Arctic explorer, was navigator, craftsman and "first man" to the famed Robert Peary. They traveled together on seven voyages over twenty-three years, and Henson planted the American flag at the North Pole in 1909. #BlackHistoryMonth http://bit.ly/1QSB1WF
- Robert L. Johnson, America’s first Black billionaire, is also the first Black majority owner of a major American sports team, the Charlotte Bobcats. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Daniel Hale Williams, the first person to successfully conduct open-heart surgery, also opened the first racially integrated hospital in 1891. #BlackHistoryMonth
- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday was made into a national holiday with the assistance of Stevie Wonder, with special lyrics from his "Happy Birthday" song. #BlackHistoryMonth
- 2008 marked the year that Usain Bolt became the first man to win three world records at a single Olympic event. #BlackHistoryMonth
- The first African American to win an Oscar, Hattie McDaniel, wasn't allowed to attend Gone with the Wind's national premiere. #BlackHistoryMonth
And there you have it. 31 tweets for you to use to keep your audience engaged -- that's one for each day of February, plus a few extra so you can find the ones that suit your audience best. If you want extra bonus points, tag Ironmark in the tweets and we’ll retweet you! Happy tweeting!
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