Black History Month

Airports mark Black History Month

As you travel to and through airports throughout the U.S. in February, keep an eye out for events, exhibits and special programs marking Black History Month.

Here are some of the profiles, tributes and Black History Month campaign kickoffs we spotted on airport social media feeds already.

Airports celebrate Black History Month

Airports and airlines are celebrating Black History Month.

Here’s a selected round-up of some stories, art, and exhibits to look for when you’re traveling around this month.

If we missed yours, please let us know.

Updates added: February 15, 2022

SFO Museum Honors Tuskegee Airmen with exhibit

Through April 7, 2022, passengers visiting SFO’s Terminal 3 (Departures Level) will see a great exhibit of photographs featuring the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of primarily African American pilots and airmen who fought in the U.S. Army Air Forces during World War II.

(332nd Fighter Group pilots. March 1945 (L-R) Col. Benjamin O. Davis, Commanding Officer, and Edward C. Gleed, Group Operations Officer)
Crew chief Marcellus G. Smith of the 332nd Fighter Group works on a North American P-51D Mustang  March 1945 

The images of the 332nd in Ramitelli in March of 1945 are from the Library of Congress and were created by photographer Toni Frissell (1907-1988). She was a successful fashion photographer during the 1930s and early 40s and during World War II pursued more challenging assignments with the American Red Cross, the Women’s Army Corps, and the 332nd Fighter Group.

Black History Month at Atlanta Airport

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport’s Black History Month music series is in full swing. The weekly concert program features soul, jazz, blues, and rhythm and blues and takes place Friday evenings during February from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the airport atrium.

Here’s what’s coming up:

February 10: Charles Marshall “The Jazz Ambassador”

February 17: The Sounds of Essence

February 24: Satin Finish Band

While you’re at ATL, be sure to take a moment to visit the airport’s exhibit honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Located on Concourse E, the exhibit features photographs and artifacts, including the suit King wore when he met with President Lyndon Johnson, a radio he used to listen to news reports while on freedom walks and the robe he wore to accept the Nobel Peace Prize.

Fresh art at RDU; Fresh Music at ATL

 On Thurs. Feb. 10, Raleigh-Durham International Airport’s Terminal 2 will unveil Friendly Folks, a mural created by local artist Jane Filer and commissioned by the Triangle Area Sister Cities (TASC). 

Mural at RDU

Look for the colorful mural in the international arrivals bag claim area. The piece is 45 feet -long and depicts bright happy figures as well as birds and flowers representative of North Carolina.

In Atlanta, Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is recognizing Black History Month with a great line-up of jazz, blues and rhythm & blues performances in the Music in the Atrium series.   Concerts will be held in the Airport’s Atrium Friday evenings during February from 5 to 7 p.m.

February 11:    Frankie’s Blues Mission
February 18:    Joe Jennings
February 25:    Darren Winters Ensemble

Travel and learn during Black History Month

As you travel around the country during February, keep an eye out for celebrations and exhibitions in honor of Black History Month.

In Atlanta, for example, you don’t even need to leave the Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport to see an impressive exhibit about Martin Luther King, Jr. that includes the permit from King’s march on Washington, the suit he wore to meet with President Lyndon Johnson, and the transistor radio he took to rallies and marches to monitor the news.

atlanta-airport-mlk-exhibit-bigger-image

The exhibit is on Concourse E and online as well.

For other Black History exhibits and activities around the country, see the piece I put together for MSNBC.com.

After reading that article, the folks at American Airlines got in touch with me to point out some aviation trailblazers they’re especially proud of:

Captain Dave Harris, who in 1964 became the first African American to pilot a commercial jet, and Joan Dorsey who that same year became the first black woman to be a flight attendant for American Airlines.

american-black-history