Black History Month Booklist and Programs

Black History Month

Black History Month honors the achievements, rich culture and history of African Americans and recognizes the important contributions of Black individuals in society.

Black History Month Featured Books
Explore the displays in the library dedicated to Black History Month and visit our featured booklist online, including titles like Black Joy: Stories of Resistance, Resilience, and Restoration by Tracey M. Lewis-Giggetts, The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story by Nikole Hannah-Jones and The New York Times Magazine, and The Young Crusaders: The Untold Story of the Children and Teenagers Who Galvanized the Civil Rights Movement by Vincent P. Franklin.

Click here to take a look at the booklist.

You can also click here to view additional book recommendations on cloudLibrary.

Programs and Events
Page Turners Book Discussion: Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson
Monday, February 12, 7-8 p.m. / Cardinal Room / Register
Thursday, February 22, 10-11 a.m. / Conference Room H / Register

Two estranged siblings delve into their mother's hidden past - and how it all connects to her traditional Caribbean black cake - in this immersive family saga. Charmaine Wilkerson's debut novel is a story of how the inheritance of betrayals, secrets, memories and even names shape relationships and history. Deeply evocative and beautifully written, Black Cake is an extraordinary journey through the life of a family changed forever by the choices of its matriarch.

Researching Haitian Heritage
Monday, February 19, 7-8:30 p.m. / Live on Zoom / Register

If you have Haitian roots in the Chicago area or beyond, or are curious about this history of Haitian culture and community in the Chicago area, don't miss this unique presentation. Join author, researcher and Professor of History and African American Studies Dr. Courtney Joseph as she discusses researching immigration from Haiti and its diaspora in the Chicago area.

Elevating Voices: Reclaiming My Humanity: A Reflective Journey to Finding Purpose
Wednesday, February 21, 7-8:30 p.m. / Hendrickson Room / Register

Join us for an evening of purpose with Dr. Michael Allen, a recent Principal of the Year and Crain's Chicago Business Notable Black Leader and Executive, as he coaches parents, caregivers and our community to cultivate humanity so we can better cherish ourselves and others. Presented in partnership with District 214 Community Education, League of Women Voters and the Mount Prospect Public Library.

Wider Lens: Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am
Thursday, February 22, 6:30-9 p.m. / Hendrickson Room / Register

This documentary is an artful and intimate meditation on the life and works of the acclaimed novelist, Toni Morrison. From her childhood in the steel town of Lorain, Ohio, to the '70s-era book tours with Muhammad Ali, from the front lines with Angela Davis to her own riverfront writing room, Morrison leads an assembly of her peers, critics and colleagues on an exploration of race, America, history and the human condition as seen through the prism of her own literature. Facilitated discussion will follow the viewing. Rated PG-13; 120 minutes.

Intro to Researching Your African American Ancestry
Saturday, February 24, noon-2 p.m. / Live on Zoom / Register

Black History Month is an opportunity to uncover important aspects of American history and your own heritage through resources available to you at your local public library. Explore your family history through pre-emancipation papers, census records and other documents. Join author and researcher Janis Minor Forte in this online workshop on conducting research into African American genealogy and history. 

For Kids: Read, Learn & Create!
Saturday, February 24, 1:30-2:30 p.m. / Lindsey Room / Register

Read and discuss the works of a bestselling African American author. Then create a unique mixed media collage inspired by African American artwork. Materials and snacks will be provided. For kids in grades 2-3.