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Highlighting African American History during Black History Month

Monday, February 02, 2015

In honor of Black History Month, The History Center is proud to highlight several of our online collections that showcase the history of African Americans in Angelina County and honor the members of the African American community that have contributed so much to our community. 

The first item to be highlighted is The Mirror, a 1956 publication of the Lufkin Negro Chamber of Commerce and Dunbar High School. The Lufkin Negro Chamber of Commerce was organized in April 1940 to advance education, encourage better community relations, and improve standards of living within Lufkin's black community.   Lufkin’s African American community was very close knit, and its churches, businesses, and schools all worked together to promote and support the citizens of their community, something that is reflected in The Mirror.  This publication is akin to a yearbook or annual, but it covers the entire community, not just the schools.  It lists each church, includes a photograph, and many include a history of the congregation and a list of its leaders.  Lufkin and Angelina County’s elected officials are included, as are the employers and employees of local businesses.  There are photographs of the schools and their administration, as well as photos of the students, clubs, and sports teams.  The publishers also included photographs of community organizations like the scouts, fraternal organizations for men and women, choirs, agricultural extension activities, and community-wide summer recreation services.

The Mirror is an exceptional snapshot of Lufkin’s African American community in 1956 and is an excellent resource for those interested in Angelina County history or genealogy. This resource can be downloaded from our online collections section by clicking here.