Largo, Md. – Black history and culture are a programmatic focus year-round at the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS). This Black History Month, the Library’s virtual programs explore Black creativity and ingenuity across disciplines with read alouds for children, an appearance by author and journalist Wanda Smalls Lloyd, a new series that explores Black inventors and innovators curated by the Library’s Workforce and Community Development Team, the Black Authors in Sci-Fi & Fantasy series presented by the PGCMLS Writers’ Group, book discussions, an open mic event, and film discussions. Registration required for select programs.
Prince Georgians are encouraged to explore Black history and culture locally and nationally via the Library’s online resources and Sojourner Truth Room at the Oxon Hill Branch Library. Black LGBTQ+ artists are invited to submit their work for inclusion in “Black and Proud+” a forthcoming community art exhibit to be displayed this winter and spring at PGCMLS branch libraries. Submissions are due February 11. Learn more at pgcmls.info/black-heritage.
Featured Online Resources
PGCMLS Black Heritage Webpage
An introduction to Black History Month and black heritage curated by PGCMLS staff. Includes recommended streaming and reading content.
African American Experience
Research African American history and culture, including primary sources, timelines, audio clips, photographs, maps, and images.
African American Heritage
Research collection was created in partnership with leading African American genealogists and recognized leaders in genealogical information and consists of a mix of resources, records, and tools. Connect with a community of research experts, whose mentoring and assistance can be the difference between research success and futility.
OverDrive Black History Month 2022 Collection
Curated list of recommended eBooks and audiobooks.
About the Sojourner Truth Room
The Oxon Hill Branch of the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System was built on the site of the Sojourner Truth Elementary School in 1967, at the height of the Civil Rights Movement. In response to the Civil Rights era’s growing request for African American research materials, the Oxon Hill Branch Library’s special collection located in the Sojourner Truth Room was created. Named for Sojourner Truth, the collection continues to honor one of this country’s truly remarkable women and has become an outstanding regional resource. This comprehensive collection of reference materials on African American history and culture includes over 18,000 cataloged items (many are rare or out-of-print), periodicals, sheet music by African American composers, photographs, and posters. The pamphlet file contains pamphlets, clippings, and other reference sources. Explore the collection at pgcmls.info/sojourner-truth-room.
African American Inventors and Innovators Series (All ages)
Wednesday, February 2, 6-7:15 pm: Communication
Wednesday, February 9, 6-7:15 pm: Technology
Wednesday, February 16, 6-7:15 pm: Transportation
Wednesday, February 23, 6-7:15 pm: Science
Author Events Co-presented with the Prince George’s County Office of Human Rights (Adults)
Thursday, February 10, 7-8 pm: NewSouth Books Series: Wanda Smalls Lloyd on “Coming Full Circle”
Thursday, February 17, 7-8 pm: NewSouth Books Series: Cole S. Manley on “The Unlikely World of the Montgomery Bus Boycott”
Events for Children and Families
Tuesday, February 1, 4-5 pm: African American History Read Aloud (Ages 5-12)
Thursday, February 3, 10-10:30 am: Read Aloud: Black History Month (Ages 2-5)
Tuesday, February 8, 4-5 pm: African American History Read Aloud (Ages 5-12)
Friday, February 11, 4-5 pm: Craft and Create: Royal Portraits (All ages)
Tuesday, February 15, 4-5 pm: African American History Read Aloud (Ages 5-12)
Wednesday, February 16, 7-7:45 pm: Plant-based Soul Food Cooking (All ages)
Tuesday, February 22, 4-5 pm: African American History Read Aloud (Ages 5-12)
Wednesday, February 23, 7-8 pm: Open Mic: Celebrating Black Culture (All ages)
Black Authors in Sci-Fi & Fantasy Series (Adults)
Wednesday, February 9, 6-7 pm: Black Authors in Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Wednesday, February 23, 6-7 pm: Black Authors in Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Book and Film Discussions (Adults/Teens)
Tuesday, February 8, 7-8 pm: Prince George’s County Reads: “A Question of Freedom” [Book Discussion]
Wednesday, February 9, 7-8:30 pm: “The Prophets” by Robert Jones, Jr. [Book Discussion]
Tuesday, February 15, 6:30-8 pm: “Just as I Am” by Cicely Tyson [Book Discussion]
Monday, February 21, 7-8 pm: “Passing” by Nella Larsen [Book and Film Discussion]
Tuesday, February 22, 7-8 pm: The Elephant We Don’t See: A Diversity Dialogue – “The Source of Self-Regard” by Toni Morrison [Book Discussion]
Monday, February 28, 7-8 pm: “Through a Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergency of a people” [Film Discussion]
Partner Events (Adults)
Thursday, February 3, 12-1 pm: Shelf Life;”The Silent Shore” with Charles L. Chavis, Jr.
(Presented by Maryland Humanities)
About the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System
The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) helps customers discover and define opportunities that shape their lives. The Library serves the 967,000+ residents of Prince George’s County, Maryland through 19 branch libraries, a 24/7 online library, and pop-up services throughout the community. PGCMLS is a responsive and trusted community-driven organization. Programs, services, and outreach activities serve booklovers, immigrants and refugees, job seekers, children, young professionals, seniors, and families alike. Learn more at pgcmls.info/about-us.