One of Erie's best known and most important historical figures is being remembered all week long.

Erie Mayor Joe Schember declared Dec. 2 as Harry T. Burleigh Day, honoring the African American vocalist, composer and music editor.

He is known around the world for developing the American musical art form of spirituals and composed more than 2,000 works.

Burleigh was born in Erie on this date in 1866.

The local Burleigh Legacy Alliance has worked hard to shine a light on his contributions to music.

Johnny Johnson, Burleigh Legacy Alliance President said, "A lot of time these people are not remembered. As significant as Harry T. Burleigh was not only in Erie, but the nation and also internationally, he should be recognized by the people he lived among."

Other events this week include a panel discussion Thursday night at Blasco Library about Burleigh's music, and the dedication of a new historical marker in Perry Square on Friday.