Are you looking for a list of things to do in Atlanta, Georgia for Black History Month? Most of Atlanta and the state of Georgia is on a high right now and for good reason. For the first time in almost 30 years the state went “BLUE” in the presidential election and voted for democratic nominee President Biden and Vice President Harris. Then, in January, we elected the first Black senator from the state. Reverend Dr. Raphael Warnock from Ebenezer Baptist Church. This is the same church that Dr.Martin Luther King Jr. and his father preached at although in a different building across the street. We also elected a Senator with a Jewish background-Senator Jon Ossoff.
Atlanta Georgia is known as the “cradle of the Civil Rights Movement”. Between 1940 and 1970 Black leaders congregated in Atlanta fighting for voting rights, education and employment opportunities. These leaders included former Congressmen John Lewis and former Atlanta mayor and United States Ambassador to the United Nations Andrew Young. Atlanta provided the infrastructure of Black churches, Black-owned businesses and historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU). Therefore, there is no shortage of things to do in Atlanta Georgia for Black History Month.
Here is a list of things to do in Atlanta Georgia for Black History Month for all ages from kids to seniors.
Atlanta Museums that Celebrate Black History
National Center for Civil and Human Rights
This is not just a regular museum. Their website describes it as a museum AND a cultural institution that connects the U.S. Civil Rights Movement to human rights challenges today.
Established in 1978, this museum has been in existence for 42 years. It is Atlanta’s first and oldest Black History Museum. Its mission is to help all Americans and international visitors understand and appreciate the contributions of Africans and African Americans to America and the World.
The High Museum always has a great collection of African-American artwork. In the first quarter of 2021 check out “Dawoud Bey: An American Story”. His photographs chronicle Black life in America for 45 years starting in the 1970s.
Atlanta History Center
The exhibit “Black Citizenship in the Age of Jim Crow” allows you to examine historical artifacts, photographs and art for 50 years after the Civil War during the fight for Civil Rights in America.
Sweet Auburn Historic District: Black History Highlights
John Lewis Mural
View this mural on the corner of Jessie Hill Jr. Drive and Auburn Avenue.
Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History (AARL)
The collections in this library are dedicated to the study and research of African American culture and history and other people of African descent.
The Municipal Market in Sweet Auburn (The Curb Market)
Save up your appetite for this amazing food hall with Southern specialties.
A Black-owned book shop and reading room for rare and classic Black books located on Auburn Avenue.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Sites
Dr.Martin Luther King Jr. Monument
“Hope Moving Forward”, Downtown Atlanta near Mercedes-Benz Stadium. This is a new monument by a Jamaican sculptor.
Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park
This park, including the visitor center, The King Center, Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, Freedom Hall and his birth home are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, LIVE virtual group tours are available Wednesday through Friday. Contact Rebecca Karcher at [email protected]
Consider attending church service across the street at Ebenezer Baptist Church, home to our new senator Reverend Dr. Raphael G.Warnock.
This tour is given by one of my favorite companies in Atlanta. They also do virtual tours and food tours (pre pandemic).
Historically Black Universities and Colleges (HBCU)
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. attended Morehouse College as well as fellow civil rights leader Julian Bond. It is a liberal arts college for Black men that was founded in 1867.
Spelman is a liberal arts college for Black women that was founded in 1881. Voting rights activist and founder of Fair Fight Action, Stacey Abrams, is a graduate of Spelman college.
Clark Atlanta University
Initially founded as Atlanta University in 1865, Clark Atlanta University was the first HBCU in the Southern United States. Atlanta University merged with Clark College in 1988 to form Clark Atlanta University. Along with Spelman and Morehouse Colleges they are members of the Atlanta University Center (AUC) consortium.
Black-Owned Restaurants in Atlanta
Paschal’s was founded as a small sandwich shop by 2 brothers in 1947. The specialty was a fried chicken sandwich. In 1959 it became a brick and mortar on what is now known as Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. The restaurant is known for soul food specialties like fried chicken, collard greens, cornbread and peach cobbler. During the 1960’s it was the unofficial headquarters for the civil rights movement. Leaders of of the movement frequently met there for strategy sessions. It was also the site for voter registration drives and a safe haven for Black activists released from jail. The restaurant owners posted bond and served free meals to civil rights activists.
Busy Bee Café
The original Busy Bee was founded in 1947 by Lucy Jackson- a self taught cook. She ran the business for two decades. Busy Bee is known for mouth watering soul food like oven roasted chicken & cornbread dressing, macaroni and cheese, chicken and waffles, BBQ ribs and sweet potato pie.
Black History Month Activities For Children
Center for Puppetry Arts
Enjoy these virtual events:”Stories of Color” explores the African Diaspora. Younger kids will enjoy “Anansi the Spider: A West African Folktale”.
Children’s Museum of Atlanta
The museum will have hands-on science activities, art and real-life story telling during the month of February.
Brave & Kind Bookshop
A curated neighborhood bookshop in Decatur with creative workshops, story clubs and special gifts. They have a lot educational and inspirational books for Black children!
Historic Oakland Cemetery
African American Burial Grounds Tour
This may seem like a bizarre recommendation but this is one of the most beautiful cemeteries I have been to. Walking tours in the cemetery show the final resting place of Atlanta pioneers including William Finch Maynard Jackson and Carrie Steele Logan.
I hope you have enjoyed my list of things to do in Atlanta Georgia for Black History Month. This is a great list to hold on to for whenever you visit Atlanta Georgia and would like to explore African-American history in the city. Atlanta Parent also has a great article on ways to celebrate Black History Month.