HOUSE RESOLUTION NO.2009-4622, by Representatives Pettigrew, Eddy, Carlyle, Liias, Maxwell, Finn, Hunter, Hudgins, Pedersen, Wallace, Sells, Williams, Wood, Orwall, Green, Goodman, White, Johnson, Walsh, Nelson, Dammeier, Haler, Jacks, Appleton, and Roach

     WHEREAS, Our nation was founded upon the notion that freedom and equality are inseparable; and
     WHEREAS, The fight for freedom and equality is celebrated each February as our nation recognizes Black History Month; and
     WHEREAS, Black Americans survived nearly 400 years of slavery and human bondage, earning their freedom with President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, only to face another century of segregation and discrimination in the South; and
     WHEREAS, In February 1926, Carter G. Woodson founded "Negro History Week" which was later expanded to Black History Month, in the hope that Americans would learn about forgotten chapters of our nation's history and develop mutual respect for people of all color, race, and creed; and
     WHEREAS, George Washington Bush came to the Northwest with his wife and family seeking a place free of prejudice, and homesteaded a 640-acre parcel that later became Bush Prairie, now known as Tumwater; and
     WHEREAS, George Washington Bush founded the city of Centerville, now known as Centralia, and single-handedly saved the city from bankruptcy and starvation during the closing of iron works and local lumber mills, by providing food for the local citizens and making interest free loans to residents of the community; and
     WHEREAS, Representatives Charles Stokes and Marjorie Pitter King were the first Black American man and woman to serve in the Legislature following the proclamation of Washington statehood, and Charles Z. Smith was the first Black American to serve on the Washington State Supreme Court; and
     WHEREAS, The Washington State Legislature is honored to have among its former members the following elected Black American representatives and senators: Sam Smith, Michael Ross, Peggy Joan Maxie, George Fleming, Bill Smitherman, Jesse Wineberry, Vivian Caver, Dawn Mason, W.O. Bush, Charles Stokes, and John Lovick; and
     WHEREAS, Black Americans have made significant contributions to Washington state history, including: Civil rights leader Edwin T. Pratt; poet Mona Lake Jones; artists Jacob Lawrence and James Worthington; historian Esther Mumford; and musicians Quincy Jones, Ernestine Anderson, and Jimi Hendrix; and
     WHEREAS, On January 20, 2009, President Barack Obama was sworn in as the first Black American president of the United States of America;
     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the Washington State House of Representatives recognize during this month of remembering Black history the Americans of African descent who have contributed to the vitality of Washington State; and
     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That the members of the Washington State House of Representatives do hereby recognize and appreciate the many benefits of Black History Month to our citizenry and to our culture in general, and that we urge all citizens of the state of Washington to join with us in taking the opportunity this month to explore this rich history.

I hereby certify this to be a true and correct copy of
Resolution 4622 adopted by the House of Representatives
February 16, 2009

Barbara Baker, Chief Clerk