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Black History Comes Alive on the Internet

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RALEIGH — February is Black History Month and the event is celebrated by adults, students and organizations. The Internet plays a major role by providing information about the heritage of African Americans.

Hunter Elementary School students learned about African American history by listening to Marlene Shaw, who is part of a reading group striving to teach students about the history and culture of their African American classmates.

"I am an advocate for picking up the book, which I don't think will ever lose its place," Shaw said.

Black History Month is widely celebrated on all kinds of Internet sites. WRAL'sLiving the Legacyis a strong resource for any facet of the celebration. Users will find links to dozens of sites including NetNoir's very rich site.

History, stories and pictures help people understand thousands of years of black history.Life magazineis known for pictures and visitors will find a lot of them on their site.

Shaw is concerned that many students cannot get on the Internet to study black history.

"We know that many young people have access to the computer, but many don't," she said. "They may have access to a library."

The recent publication of Encarta Africana byMicrosoftwill find its way to many libraries. It is perhaps the most complete work covering African history to date.

The idea for the CD ROM grew from W.E.B. DuBois' idea for an encyclopedia of black knowledge 100 years ago. Today, Black History Month and Encarta Africana are a reality.