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December 21, 1978
Black Quotidian: Everyday History in African-American Newspapers

December 21, 1978

On December 21, 1978, the Los Angeles Sentinel ran down the reasons why some black people had an on-again, off-again, on-again relationship with Kwanza. “During the 1977 Kwanza celebrations, it was discovered that the celebration was one created by Ron Karenga,” the article preface read. “It was immediately dubbed ‘a hoax.’ Many people became disenchanted after discovering that Kwanza was not an African festival, although it was based on an African concept. But, the black communities soon realized that in creating Kwanza, Karenga was making an effort to bring blacks closer together. So, now again, Kwanza activities will take place throughout the black communities of this country.”

The earliest reference to Kwanza I found in the black newspaper database was this article from the Pittsburgh Courier, January 9, 1971.