African Heritage Month

Across Canada, Black History Month has been celebrated each year in February since 1950. The month of February was chosen because of the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln, who both played a large part in the emancipation of enslaved Blacks. In 2008, the Canadian Senate officially declared February as Black History Month across the country, but in Nova Scotia, Black History Month was renamed in 1996 and is now recognized as African Heritage Month.

In 2004, African Nova Scotian Affairs (ANSA) held the inaugural reading of the African Heritage Month Proclamation in the Red Chambers in Province House, Nova Scotia. Since then, ANSA has been working to expand awareness of African Nova Scotian Heritage Month throughout the Province.

African Heritage Month serves as a time to celebrate the contributions made by those of African descent. In Nova Scotia, we have over 400 years of heritage and contributions. Nova Scotia is home to a very rich African Heritage. This year, the municipality hosted the 5th Annual Proclamation Event. This event served as a chance to bring community together and highlight the young leaders of African descent and celebrate the local contributions of person os African descent.

County of Kings - African Heritage

Located within the Municipality of the County of Kings are two historical Black communities: Gibson Woods, and Pine Woods. Both communities are located West of Canning and North of Kentville. Pine Woods, now called Aldershot, was founded by sisters Dinah Powell and Chloe Landsey. Lanzy Road in Aldershot being named after founder, Chloe. Some family names that may be recognizable coming from this community are Jones, Beare, Lanzey, Smith, Bell, Powell, and Higgins. Gibson Woods located was named after George Gibson. George, a Black Loyalist, purchased the forty acres of land for forty pounds in 1804. After George’s death, the land of Gibson Woods was divided among his five children. These two communities were once connected via by a small bridge named Gentleman’s Bridge that was demolished by 1960.

International Decade for People of African Descent

2023 marks the 9th year of the United Nations’ International Decade for People of African Descent (DPAD), which started in 2015 and will continue until 2024. The purpose of this decade is to strengthen global cooperation in support of people of African Descent as well as increase the awareness and the passage towards presence in all aspects of society.

Each year, the province establishes a theme in accordance with the purpose of DPAD. This year’s theme is Seas of struggle – African Peoples from Shore to Shore, recognizes the struggle that people of African Descent faced from the Shores of the African Continent to the shores of Nova Scotia. Truly, the Atlantic Ocean is a constant part of African Nova Scotian history.

More information on the International Decade for People of African Decent can be found here

For more information on the work of the Municipality of the County of Kings and events taking place throughout African Heritage Month, contact the Municipality's Diversity Specialists, Ahmed Aly at or Graysen Parker at